Philadelphia duo Marian Hill — Jeremy Lloyd and Samantha Gongol — fused R&B, electronica and saxophone-heavy jazz influences on their second EP, Sway, which arrived in February via Republic/Photo Finish. Their songs have been taking off on Spotify and Vine, and they recently stopped by Rolling Stone‘s studio to perform a trio of tracks for our Sperry Sessions series of live performances.
“At the core of it, for Sam and I, we’re always making sure that there’s this really solid song at the center of it,” Lloyd told Huffington Post. “Basic chords, melody, lyrics but there’s a song there that stands on its own and could be covered and exists as a song which is basically. . .the crux of what I was studying in school.”
Joined by sax player Steve Davit, the group nails bluesy, speakeasy vibes on “One Time” which has become a popular soundtrack for Vine videos. “Whisky” was the first song they penend together as a duo. “I came home on a break from college, and I had this beat I’d been playing around with,” Lloyd reveals at the beginning of the clip. “When I played it for Sam, she started singing immediately. Then we made something like nothing either of us had made before, and it became the beginning of the Marian Hill sound.”
“Got It” shows off the instrument that gives the group its signature. “The people had demanded more sax,” Gongol says before Lloyd completes her statement: “So we gave it to them.”