Watch the music video for “Holdin’ On,” the latest single from funk liberation band Britton & The Sting, above. The collective of artists, many with theatre credits, has made a reputation of providing medicinal hope through their music. After the year of 2020, they’re needed now more than ever.
In fact, it was the unpredictability and instability of 2020 that led to Britton & The Sting to release the new track. The band’s fearless leader, Britton Smith (Be More Chill, Shuffle Along…), says, “2020 and much of the first quarter of 2021 have pushed most of us nearly over the edge, but still, here we are ‘holdin’ on.’ The song asks a critical question: ‘HOW are you holding on?’ We all pull from different wells for strength, support, and energy. When push comes to shove and you’re hanging on with all that you have left, you tap into something that has been waiting on this moment to support and assist you in pushing through and holding on a little longer.”
The single releases ahead of Britton & The Sting’s triumphant, in-person return post-pandemic—a two-show day on Juneteenth, a date that feels cosmically aligned with the band’s intention of creating spaces of liberation and wholehearted release. With the effervescent and unapologetic Smith offering messages of wisdom and audience members dancing together in fellowship, their concerts transcend into sanctuaries of freedom and healing.
The Sting includes Joshua Dawson (music director/keys), Amber Iman (background vocals), Tiffany Mann (background vocals), Eli Menezes (guitar), Joshua Roberts (drums), and Daniel Winshall (bass). The “Holdin’ On” music video also features award-winning actor Larry Owens (A Strange Loop).
“Larry Owens is one of my prolific voices in our lifetime,” says Smith. “Here he’s taken on the form of a famous late night show host to introduce queer mega pastor and congregation Britton & The Sting. The setting of the video is both an homage to James Brown live in Rome and a manifestation for Britton & The Sting to soon be on a familiar late night show. The video pulls from past liberators and hopes to mobilize the space for The Sting’s ministry and passion for future liberation both individual and institutional.”
On June 19, the band will first take the stage in Times Square at 12PM ET for Broadway League’s Broadway Celebrates Juneteenth and then head uptown to the Intersectional Voice Collective’s Juneteenth Jubilee at The Africa Center Plaza at 4PM ET. Britton & The Sting has additional performance dates on June 22 and 23 at 9:45PM at Feinstein’s/54 Below.