Julian Miles Holland was born on 24 January 1958 in London. By the age of 8, he had picked up the basics of boogie woogie and blues piano from an uncle. Studying music at school, by his mid-teens he was playing in the pubs and clubs in the East End and South London.
At age 15, Jools met Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford and formed Squeeze in 1974. They released an EP in 1977, followed by their first full-length album in 1978. The band achieved international success scoring hits like “Take Me I’m Yours,” “Bang Bang,” “Up The Junction” and “Pulling Mussels (From The Shell).” Jools left the band in 1980 on amicable terms to launch a solo career.
He formed Jools Holland and his Millionaires. They disbanded after one album. Jools continued to play on sessions and hosted the UK TV Show, The Tube.
In 1985, Squeeze reformed, releasing another album. Jools remained with the band until 1989.
In 1992, he began hosting the late night UK television offering, Later…with Jools Holland. By the middle of the decade, he was better known as a television host who occasionally recorded albums. By the mid-1990s, he had formed the Jools Holland Rhythm and Blues Orchestra. The 18 piece band plays numerous shows each year and has recorded several albums.
Over his lengthy career, Jools has played on sessions for a wide variety of artists including Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Sting, B.B. King, Luther Vandross, Fine Young Cannibals and others.
He also spent four years on the US Television show, Night Music (hosted by David Sanborn). He has also filmed three years of The Happening at London’s Astoria Theater, two seasons of Name That Tune, and several Jools Holland Hootenanny New Year’s Eve shows.
Eric Clapton worked with Jools at taping for David Sanborn’s US Television Show, Night Music. Over the years, Eric has guested on several of Jools’ albums and has appeared on his television shows. Additionally, Jools performed with Eric at the Concert for George in November 2002. They performed together in January 2005 in Cardiff, Wales at the Tsunami Benefit Concert held at Milennium Stadium. More recently, Jools interviewed EC for BBC Radio 2 in late 2010 and they shared the stage at the Prince’s Trust 2010 Rock Gala at the Royal Albert Hall on 17 November 2010.
Jools was awarded an OBE in 2003 by Queen Elizabeth II for Services to the British Music Industry