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December 22, 2014

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Steve Holy finds spiritual relief in his music

If you go

  • Who: Steve Holy
  • When: 10:30 tonight, Sunday and Monday
  • Where: Tropicana
  • Tickets: $59 and $79; 739-2411

With that name, perhaps Steve Holy should have been a priest.

After all, his grandparents were Joseph and Mary Holy.

“Father Holy — I’ve thought about that,” the 37-year-old country singer quips during a telephone interview from Dallas, where he was born and raised.

But he chose not to follow a holy life — or even to join his family’s “holey” business. In the 1930s his grandfather invented a commercial drilling machine, and his dad continued to run Holy Drilling in Dallas.

Instead, Steve Holy pursued country music and has turned out such hit singles as “Good Morning Beautiful,” “Brand New Girlfriend,” “Blue Moon,” “Don’t Make Me Beg,” “Come on Rain” and “Men Buy the Drinks (Girls Call the Shots).”

“There’s no common thread in any of them,” Holy says. “Basically, what’s going on in my life at the time is what I focus on musically.”

Holy will perform tonight, Sunday and Monday at the Tropicana, one of a couple of dozen country acts performing in Las Vegas during the National Finals Rodeo.

Holy was drawn to music at an early age. It was a way for him to deal with the pain of losing a brother and, later, his father.

“Music was the only thing that gave me relief,” he says.

Although Holy traces his roots to such country artists as Charlie Rich, Mickey Gilley and John Conlee, he’s equally at home performing the covers of Elvis, Sam Cooke and doo-wop artists. Fans who attend his Las Vegas show will hear plenty of country, but might also be treated to Roy Orbison, Dean Martin or even the Commodores.

Had he not turned to music, Holy says he probably would have joined the family drilling business. However, around the time he graduated from high school he became a regular on “The Johnnie High Country Revue” in nearby Arlington.

“I played there on weekends and worked for my father during the week,” he says.

The popular show showcased local talent and also launched LeAnn Rimes’ career. Holy caught the attention of Rimes and her father, Wilbur, whoproduced his first album, “Blue Moon.”

She gave him his first break in Las Vegas. In 1998, after signing with Curb Records, Holy opened for Rimes at the Las Vegas Hilton.

“This date at the Tropicana is a dream come true for me,” he says. “I can’t wait to play Las Vegas. I feel like I belong there. I would love for Vegas to be my home.”

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