Singer-songwriter HONEY perfectly knows that music never stops evolving. Indeed, she keeps developing as an artist and always trying new stuff at the studio. Best of all, she’s about to release a new single on May 13th, entitled “Sleeping Ugly” (Pre-Save It Here) where she puts her rapping skills to the test. Get all the details in this exclusive interview.
1 — What should people know about you? What sets you apart?
I’ve been singing since I was 5 years old and began writing around 2013. The music I write stems from strong emotional connections with topics that focus on self-love, positive image, and embracing oneself. I’ve struggled with addiction my entire life and writing music is an outlet for me to not only tell my story but connect with listeners. We all struggle, and we have all fallen to the wayside at one point or another. I want to be an artist that brings light to the lives of those who walk in the darkness. I want to be a voice for those who are afraid to speak up. I want those who feel misunderstood, to be heard and loved. I want to be the voice and hand you hold, to know that you are never alone.
2 — How, when, and why did you become an artist?
That’s actually an interesting question… artistry for me is something within my soul. The first time I sang for an audience I immediately felt a deeper connection with performing than I ever had with anything else. It was as if singing had opened a new door to my soul and I was able to express a deeper level of who I was. I still feel this way, and feel it more and more with each day that passes. I found my purpose at a young age and I think as I look back, the artist was born at 5 and has grown ever since.
3 — Do you think your upcoming single “Sleeping Ugly” marks an evolution as opposed to the previous ones?
Absolutely! My producer and I are always challenging ourselves to up our game with every release. There have been many songs that haven’t made the cut, but the ones we do release, we feel are always one level above the previous. One thing that I’ve never tried before is Rap and “Sleeping Ugly” pushed me there, so get ready to hear this chick lay a beat!
4 — Why did you choose that title?
I’m an extremist and wanted to create a title that would grab the listeners’ attention. I thought it would be cool to do a play on words with a classic fairytale and defy labels by going with the extreme opposite of beauty, which is ugly. The purpose is to ask ourselves… what is beauty? What is ugly? Without one can there be the other? What makes one negative and the other positive? I personally believe ugliness can be a positive thing, but really these are all just words… labels that we have preconceived judgments about. While there is beauty in all of us, the ugly parts are what mold us and create an arch in our story. The song and title are an expression of me embracing who I am and who I am becoming.
5 — Is there a message that you would like to convey in this new song?
Yes! The message is to embrace all of who we are, and love ourselves to the fullest… the good, bad and UGLY!
This was the second song I wrote during COVID, the point in my journey where I regained confidence. I had lost so much of who I was while pursuing addictive patterns, but when I started my journey of recovery, I found myself and embraced everything I had become through my pain.
“Sleeping Ugly” is a cheeky way of me expressing the authentic being I have become while calling out those who try to put me (us) in a box or place expectations on who I (we) “should” be.
I incorporated a Rap in the song, which touches on a period in my life where I would’ve gone to anyone at any time to avoid being alone. The rap is symbolic of who I am now… confident, decisive, and different from who I once was. It expresses a different side of me that I’ve never shown before, and I’m pretty pumped about it!
6 — Do you create lyrics spontaneously?
Yes! Once I’m in the studio everything is fresh, built from the ground up. We discuss topics I want to write about or I share stories, then we typically build a catchy theme or title to build around it. We typically get through a song written and recorded within a few hours.
7 — Which were your musical influences and inspirations?
As a young child, I was always a fan of the powerhouse divas: Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey. As a singer-songwriter, I have major respect for Maggie Rogers, Hayden James, my producer Josh Zegan (AKA. yesh), and the people with who I have the privilege of worshipping at Hosanna Church in Minnesota. Some amazingly talented artists there!
8 — Do you plan some new video or live shows after the pandemic?
YES! And during! I have a new lyric video coming out for each new song I release, so there will be many to come. There are also “About” videos explaining the story behind each single. You can watch at youtube.com/HoneyRibar
My team and I are also in talks about live streaming a release show in Fall 2021 where I will be performing all my newest singles from this year.
9 — Is there any kind of secret formula for going viral with your music releases?
No secret formula, just lots of vulnerability and sharing my heart. It’s not easy being an artist in such a judgmental world. There’s always a fear of being “too much” or “not enough”, but I feel that being ourselves is the only truth that each one of us holds. I hope that by sharing myself and my story I can help others.
10 — Thanks for doing the interview, anything you’d like to add?
First off, thank you! I appreciate you taking the time to get to know me and for sharing my story with others. Thank you for being part of the light.
Also, make sure to check out my newest single “Sleeping Ugly” premiering May 13th at 9 PM PDT on all music platforms. My newest single “Oh Lawd” is also now available on Spotify, Apple Music, and more! And remember… spread acceptance and love! The world needs it!