Meet Antler Hill
Neil Lee Griffin
I was born and raised in Upstate, SC, and have been fond of music since I was a child. There was always a piano and guitar near by, so it was never out of reach, growing up. In my mid-teens, I decided that music was something I wanted to learn more about, so I set out to take piano lessons, and did so for a few years. Using the knowledge I gained from those lessons, I taught myself to play guitar. In that time, I started learning to play by ear which, I found to be incredibly fun.
From the teasing in school to struggling to say my own name, growing up with a stutter wasn't easy. I was always searching for ways around the difficulty. You don't stutter when you sing, due to the "choral effect". In singing I found myself freed from the bonds of the stutter, something I hasn't really known. To me, music is complete freedom.
In my early twenties, I started to write and perform my own material. Granted, it was nothing fancy, but it was something I could call my own, and as with all things, the more you do it, the better you become. I have always loved movie scores and theme songs from TV; the way you can set up a scenario or convey an emotion in a story without saying a word really resonated with me.
Wanting to do more with my music, I started incorporating orchestral styles and storytelling elements in my writing. My personal music tends to lean in the direction of a darker folk style, usually accompanied by a narrative or atmosphere. Now I'm living my dream, writing film scores for MarVista Entertainment.
I was born near the southern beaches of Virginia to two talented musicians. Music, crafts, and a deep artistic streak were all a huge part of my life from infancy. I moved to Columbia, SC to attend college, then to the upstate in 2007. Being nothing if not a multi-faceted individual, by January of 2010, I was practicing massage, starting my glorious career in accounting, and taking art classes. That was when a classmate heard that his friend Neil needed a female singer for a project he was working on and introduced us.
I'd been in church choirs, taken chorus classes all through high school and college, and regularly belted out tunes by Imogen Heap, Linkin Park, Andrew Peterson, and Broadway staples while driving down the interstate or washing dishes at home... but I'd never been much of a solo singer or "in a band," so I was excited about the opportunity.
Neil and I got along well right away and that one project turned into an ongoing musical relationship, which turned into a deep friendship, and finally a lifelong partnership. We were married in the woods of NC in 2016.
When Covid-19 hit, everyone's life was changed in a myriad of ways. For Antler Hill, it meant fewer live performances and vendor shows. It also marked the launch of Neil's career as a film composer! We'll never be "out and about" as often as we used to, but I don't think we'll ever stop completely. Meanwhile, we spend most evenings together, watching movies (call it Neil's "research" for his job) and I'm content to sit alongside, crafting away.