Is there a bigger figure in Christian music than TobyMac? He’d be hard to top. From his days in DC Talk to co-founding Gotee Records to the chart-topping albums of his solo career, Toby McKeehan is among the most notable artists ever. Fortunately he has done more than his fair share of passing the torch to numerous artists over the years.
One of Gotee’s newest signings is a dynamic young singer named Hollyn (check out our full interview here) and she had nothing but great things to say about her friendship and collaboration with the legendary artist.
Hollyn has been making music in some way since she was nine years old, and even auditioned for American Idol at 15. Though she didn’t make the cut, it didn’t dampen her musical dreams: “I went to Winter Jam, and TobyMac was headlining, and… I was like, Oh my gosh, I have a feeling I’m going to work with him and do Christian music. I don’t know if it’ll ever happen, but I feel like that’s something I need to be doing.”
And the Phone Call:
Apparently, she wasn’t the only one that felt this. Not long after that Winter Jam show, her dad got a call from McKeehan. “So I went back to the same tour and met Toby… and he told my parents he was interested in working with me. So we were talking about that, and the direction we wanted to go, and just kind of getting to know each other.”
T-Mac the Mentor:
Though you may expect to hear stories about young pop stars controlled by labels, expectations, and the whims of whatever sells at the moment, Hollyn speaks gratefully about her experience having TobyMac as a mentor. “He’s such a big part of [my music]. And he’s not controlling over it. I feel like a lot of people think when you’re signed to an artist’s label they really control what comes in and out.
“He’s such a big factor in it and I always want his opinion and he’s always willing to step in and help in any way. It’s just out of love. [He’ll help me] if I’m having trouble writing a song, or he’ll come help us in sessions and stuff, swing by to see what we’re working on. It’s a great relationship. He’s encouraging and I really appreciate his views as a person, and not just because he’s TobyMac. He’s such a mentor to me.”