Modern Duo: Marian Hill
“I’ve made a setup for myself over the years where I’ve got drum pads and keys … and some knobs. I’m basically constantly busy. I like to play each element as it’s introduced”
Marian Hill, a songwriting duo, originally from Philadelphia. Samantha Gongol and Jeremy Lloyd have teamed up together, taking on the name Marian Hill as a combination of the characters’ names, Marian Paroo and Harold Hill, from The Music Man.
Rolling Stone has acclaimed this group as the most Shazam’d band in America, surpassing high profile artists such as Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars. I’d say that’s a pretty big accomplishment when people just want to know the creator of the song once they have a taste. They initially went big when Apple released an ad for the air pods, and they featured Marian Hill’s song, “Down,” as the soundtrack. Both Samantha and Jeremy were excited to watch the ad and to see the growing possibilities of their music. Since then, their songs have been featured in many more different ads like Taco Bell.
Their songs might not be as familiar due to the fact that they tend to focus more on instrumentals within their music. Regardless, people are easily captivated by the mystical beats that all of their songs contain.
Samantha Gongol and Jeremy Lloyd met in middle school and was able to keep in touch up until college when they naturally started to create music together. Samantha remains as the vocalist of the duo, while Jeremy takes the majority of the songwriting part. The song, “Down”, is a part of their most recent album known as Act One. The most unique thing I noticed about this album was how many instrumental sounds were brought together to create the whole beat. In an industry where some artists will create repetition in their lyrics that might not even carry meaning and where they depend on computer generated sounds, this is a unique approach to the modernizing industry.
They claim to consider songs about relationships as their go-to because it is true how relationships are never the same and there’s definitely a lot of layers they can produce towards the theme. They want to capture the delicacy of such topics, and as a result, the pair tend to be very careful with the choice of their lyrics. I think that totally pays off. Thoughtful lyrics are getting quite harder to come by with today’s music.
The pair’s musical style would be summed up as a distinct combination of R&B, modern pop, jazz and blues. Overall, the rhythm of their songs are so silky and dreamy. It’s not hard hitting or heart pumping, but rather music that crawls up to you softly and captivates you.