Updated: Nov 12
Recently DARKUS had the pleasure of being introduced to New York based singer-songwriter Skye Houston, who this October put out her debut single Joyride. Originally from London, the 22 year old who has grown up inspired by the likes of Etta James, moved to the USA at a time in her life where music was not just her passion but was also the catalyst to set her free.
What makes Skye such an exceptional artist is the way she doesn't hold back, and speaks from the heart - the true essence of any singer-songwriter.
Having briefly visited the UK to see friends and family, we took the opportunity to catch up with the lady herself to find out more about the new song plus much more.
Welcome Skye, How are you doing?
I'm very well. Thanks. How are you?
Good. Thanks. How are you enjoying your time in the UK?
It's been short and sweet. It's nice to be home from America and spend time with my family and catch up with some of my friends.
So tell us what has been like these past few months for you?
It has been so busy. I partnered up with SoundCloud in August this year and told them about the fact that I had a release coming up. They wanted me to come out to LA to get the music video filmed.
I was like, that is an absolute yes!
Having worked on it for a good few months, finally the final cut is ready and the single is ready to go, which comes out on 28th October 2022 so as you can imagine there is a lot of planning to do in preparation for the song to launch along with doing fresh shoots and all the press related things that go along with releasing new music.
Before we get to talking about Joyride itself, now you've got a team around you, how easy is it for you to explain your vision to a new set of people?
It was an interesting process doing that. In August the director and I sat down together and just talked through some ideas. Even when I was writing the song, I kind of just had this vision of what I wanted the visual aspect of it to be like.
So when I sat down with her and I explained everything I said to her, I was like, first of all, what do you think the song is about? What do you think the meaning is behind these lyrics?
And you know what? She thought something completely different to me, which I loved because it just proves that everyone interprets this track in their own way.
How do you feel like being in LA has helped your creativity?
I found myself being surrounded by people who continually inspired me. When your in that environment, the best thing about it is that everyone's got their own creative direction.
I went to a writing camp in LA with Warner Chappell in January this year. I met so many artists from everywhere, from places such as Nashville and even Detroit. You have a great mix of people as well because you have some people who have been in the industry for many years and then you have the new comers. What is also great is that while everyone is focused on their own thing, there were also plenty of opportunities to work together too.
On that note, what is your direction if we base it on the here and now?
I feel like I've got a lot of things to say and sometimes cant find the words to say them but writing allows me to say these things. It is my form of therapy. It's my way of talking about things in a lot more simple terms than what goes on in my head because my head is super crazy all the time.
When someone listen is to my music, I want them to know its ok to be open about things that you find difficult talking about. A lot of my music has been based off experiences in my life that I have struggled with or things I have thoroughly enjoyed, so I think about what I have gone through and put it down into words.
When I was growing up listening to Etta James and Nina Simone, and people who write such powerful lyrics, it made me think like, if I were to ever be an artist, I would want to be like that. I want someone to listen and get the shivers up and down their spine.
Given that the music is personal to you, how do you find being able to say those intimate thoughts with a new listener, knowing that they're gonna get strength from what you're saying?
So initially when I started writing Joyride it was about all the personal things I had been experiencing in the romantic aspect of my life. Initially, I was like ‘oh my God, if I ever put this out, I wouldn't want anyone to hear this’.
Over time though, having got used to doing it more and more and being more and more open, I gradually started to let go and started being more confident in sharing.
I know that there are gonna be so many people that listen to this, who are just going to be able to relate to every single aspect of it. Music has helped me through so many moments in my life where I've just needed an outlet and someone to relate to. So as scary as it might of felt at first to write this, it is that realisation that someone out there is going to be thankful that weren't just able to listen to Joyride, but relate to it too.
Is it scarier sharing it with a random listener or a or close friend?
You know something I would probably say that it's harder to play it to a friend than to a random stranger.
With Joyride coming out on 28th October 2022, as it gets closer and closer what are those adrenaline levels looking like?
Oh my God lack of sleep! Haha
As soon as I wake up in the morning lately I’ve been on the phone to this person and that person trying to get everything sorted, but despite that it is also probably the best feeling ever. That adrenaline that I'm waking up to. All this hard work is going into something that I love. And I'm just more excited than anything else.
Why did you choose this song particularly as the debut?
I'm not even joking, I probably have a catalogue of about fourty songs that I could release, but there's probably only about 12 of those that I absolutely love and that are a true reflection of me as an artist.
Joyride though was the one I recorded when I first moved to New York, it was my first studio session I'd had since moving there. I was nervous because I had just moved to this massive new city. I had a session with this amazing producer called Benzi Edelson and we just hit it off massively and to be honest I feel as though Joyride was a great place for me to start at in my career.
I just felt like I had really found myself, I know it sounds cringe but its true. I wasn't going out anymore like I used to. I was just focusing on my life and getting my music together and just focusing on me rather than getting distracted on making everyone else happy or allowing life to distract me.
This is why the song is called Joyride too because it is about how life is a joy ride. It is when those moments when fuck u up that you realise what's actually important.
Listening back to the completed master, do you still get those butterflies and shivers like you did when you first wrote it?
Oh my god - without fail every time. It's just when something means so much to you. Obviously when your working on a song you get used to hearing it over and over again, but hearing that mastered version was like it had been given another lease of life and having the fully finished version just made it feel even more amazing.
What are you doing to celebrate once it's finally released?
The producer and I have actually planned a huge night out.
I wrote this song over a year ago and sat on it for a long time so it will be good to finally be able to celebrate that and it will be a nice little teaser before I eventually bring out the EP which will pretty much be ready to come out soon too.
Why October 28th then?
Okay, so my birthday is on the Wednesday where I will be turning 22. I didn't originally set out to do it the same week but I thought you know what, it's been a month since the master was complete so it just felt right.
To anyone that's about to listen to Joyride and given that it may also be their first introduction to you as an artist as well, what's the best way to embrace your music as a first time listener?
I would start off by heading over to the main music platforms such as Spotify, Apple Music and SoundCloud plus also YouTube where you can check out the live music video. You can also stay connected by checking out my Instagram too.
Well thank you so much for spending the time to chat to us Skye, wishing you all the best for the new song, and we definitely look forward to catching up again once the EP comes out too!
Since speaking to Skye, we are delighted to share the news that Joyride continues to flourish as music fans really connect with this powerful and engaging song, The official music video to Joyride will be available soon and is definitely not to be missed! She may be a new comer, but if your looking for some fresh new music to leave you thirsty for more, then Skye Houston is the name for you!
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Article By Thushara S. Chandrasiri