Sugar & Spikes Tattoo Feature: Badass Singer Honey Larochelle
By Safety Pins
December 31, 2012
Honey Larochelle creates the kind of music where the funk drives into your soul and before you know it, you are rocking your whole body with your stank face on! Honey has been performing ever since she was 5 years old and was practically raised in soul and rock music with her mother who has sung with Marvin Gaye, Bryan Adams and Bon Jovi. It’s easy to see that Honey’s “Stankface Music” is a genre that was long in the making. After years of singing lead for The Brand New Heavies, and performing with artists including Joss Stone, Macy Gray and Roberta Flack, Honey is releasing her first solo album, “The Yes Feeling”. She is dedicated to her music and even has inked a small treble clef tatted on her Solar Plexus. It’s a genuine and honest ode to the love of her art form and this is something you can feel when she belts out her music.
Honey has also started a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to help push out her solo album. She is the label. It’s this leap she has decided to take with her music that makes her grey and black inked fairy seem the most symbolic to me, flying endlessly over her body. It’s no doubt in my mind she’ll be soaring to new heights very soon.
Check out our interview below!
By Mika Kenyah, CEO of Sugar & Spikes
MK: What is your sound?
HL: I do what I like to call Stank Face Soul. It’s the fun and sexy side of soul music. It’s funky like Chaka, soulful like Alicia, and edgy like Lauryn and it will undoubtedly contort your face 😉
MK: What do you think sets your music apart from what is popular today?
HL: Well, I do soul music. Even though kids don’t buy it, radio rarely supports it, and labels no longer sign it, it still has a place in the world. It makes babies, it’s the soundtrack at dinner parties, and the fuel at dance parties. My music specifically is made for singin’ in the mirror, bumpin’ in your car and making sweet love.
MK: Who are your influences?
HL: My mother first and foremost. She sang with Marvin Gaye, Bryan Adams, Bon Jovi and many others. But I was also influenced by classics like Smokey Robinson, Chaka Khan, and stars from my childhood like Lauryn Hill, and D’angelo.
MK: When did you realize you were destined for being a singer?
HL: I grew up on tour and in rehearsals with my Mum. I never really considered any other careers. I was performing at 5 years old in choirs and telethons, so I fell in love with music and stages from very early on. When I finally moved to New York to pursue music, it was only a year before I was touring with the Heavies. That’s when I knew I was in the right field for me.
MK: How did you get involved with the band, The Brand New Heavies?
HL: My friend and mentor Maya Azucena called and told me that they were auditioning and to call their management. They sent me 3 songs to learn. I learned them all front to back and totally nailed the audition. Suddenly I was going on tour!
MK: Did your band perform alongside Roberts Flack, Joss Stone and Macy Gray? Or did you sing backup for these singers?
HL: Both. I met Macy on a double billed Macy Gray/Brand New Heavies tour. She wanted to support me, so she signed me, and I started opening for her on her tours. Then my close friend, one of Joss Stones’ long time band mates, Antonia Jenae, called and asked me to join Joss’s band. I sang backup but then I got to open for her on her UK tour. Later, Antonia’s husband introduced me to Roberta Flack, who immediately took me under her wing. Then in about 2009 the Heavies called and invited me to sing lead. I was their lead singer for 2 years.
MK: I see that you are a Roberta Flack protege…what has she taught you and what was your first meeting with her like? Did she share with you what made her take notice of you in the first place?
HL: Haha, my first meeting with Miss Flack was crazy! I was so nervous. And she was so warm and giggly. I think she could tell I was nervous. She was like, “just singing this song” and she started playing the chords to “No Woman No Cry.” I was so embarrassed cause I didn’t know the words! She told me to just”make some up.” So I went ahead and just started singing gibberish- mumbo-jumbo non-existent lyrics. She loved it. She was like “I’m snatchin’ you up!”She said she liked my “ears”…She liked that I could find the missing harmony with all the others singers.
The biggest lesson I’ve learned from her so far is the value of space. Like musical space. I used to do too many runs and tricks and feel the need to fill every hole and blast every moment of every show. But she showed me how much people enjoy the quiet intimate moments too. There are so many different exchanges available between a performer and an audience. Loud and high energy ones are not the only things of value. Sometimes having them sit up in their seats to hear exactly what you’re doing is a special moment too.
Thank you Roberta!
MK: I know you were signed to Macy Gray’s label. Are you still signed to it? If not, could you share what happened?
HL: Macy and I worked together for 3 years. We wrote so many songs together and I learned a lot from her. She is a friend and a mentor. But in the end, I was on a mission to finish my album and do things my own way. That’s why I’m doing this kickstarter. Basically, I’m the label now. I have so much music to share, and I have 9 more days to make my goal, so that I can make a difference for someone else out there. There are so many hidden costs.
MK: Do you have any tattoos/ink that are musical related or a symbol of inspiration related to your music? If so, Please describe it and why you chose it.
HL: I have a treble clef directly on my Solar-Plexus. It was my second tattoo. I wanted to get something I would believe in for the whole of my life. I put it there cause I used to want tattoos that no one would see. I save those for the intimate moments. They’re always a nice surprise. 😉
MK: What are your hobbies/interests outside of music?
HL: Well I’ve been learning to edit video. I actually edited the video on my kickstarter all by myself. I’m pretty proud of it. I love math. I know its weird but I have always loved math and science. Beyond that, I love dogs. But music really takes up every waking hour of my day. So I don’t have a ton of time for other hobbies or interests right now. Maybe one day I’ll take up dog walking!
Please take a listen to the album samplers and check out her kickstarter campaign at this link:
And you can always visit: