Julia Shammas Holter (born 18 December 1984) is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, composer and artist, based in Los Angeles. A CalArts graduate, Holter released her first studio album, Tragedy, in 2011. A second album, Ekstasis, followed in 2012. After joining Domino Records in 2013, she released her third album, Loud City Song. Her fourth album, Have You in My Wilderness, was released in 2015.
Holter has also collaborated with other musicians, including Nite Jewel, Laurel Halo, Ducktails, Linda Perhacs, Michael Pisaro and Jean-Michel Jarre.
Holter was born in Milwaukee, WI. At age six her family moved to Los Angeles, where she later attended the Alexander Hamilton High School Academy of Music. She studied music at The University of Michigan for four years, graduating with a degree in composition. After seeing Michael Pisaro perform an avant-garde composition in Michigan, she was inspired to study with him at CalArts, where she graduated from another composition program. Holter contributed songs to multiple compilation albums in 2008. In 2010, she began playing with Linda Perhacs' band and released a CD-R titled Celebration and a collection of live recordings.
Her debut studio album, Tragedy, was released in August 2011 on Leaving Records. Inspired by Euripides' Greek play Hippolytus, the album received generally favorable reviews and was named one of NPR's "Best Outer Sound Albums Of 2011".
Holter released a second album, Ekstasis, in March 2012 on the RVNG label. The album drew comparisons to works by such artists as Laurie Anderson, Julianna Barwick, Kate Bush, Joanna Newsom, Grouper, and Stereolab, and received many positive reviews. Holter spent three years making the album, whose title comes from the Greek word meaning "outside of oneself." The music video for album track "Moni Mon Amie", directed by Yelena Zhelezov, was also released in March.
In addition to collaborating with other California-based musicians like Nite Jewel (Ramona Gonzalez), Holter released her third album, Loud City Song, in August 2013 on Domino Records. Unlike her first two albums, which were recorded mostly alone in her bedroom, Holter recorded Loud City Song with an ensemble of musicians.
In 2015, Holter released her fourth album Have You in My Wilderness, which became her most successful charting release to date. She also contributed to Ducktails' fifth studio album, St. Catherine, with her bandmates Chris Votek and Andrew Tholl.
Holter collaborated with Jean-Michel Jarre on a song for the second part of the Electronica double album, released on July 18, 2016.
In November 2016, she curated her own program during the tenth anniversary edition of Le Guess Who? Festival in Utrecht, The Netherlands. This program included performances by Laurel Halo, Josephine Foster, Maya Dunietz, Jessica Moss and other artists.
Holter was previously in a relationship with former Real Estate guitarist and Ducktails frontman Matt Mondanile. In 2015, she contributed to his Ducktails album, St. Catherine.