Check out our interview with London’s independent singer, songwriter and producer Honey Gentry. Creating baroque pop for introverts, Honey’s work explores themes including escapism, dreams, and mythology. Entirely self-produced and recorded from the comfort of her bedroom, the artist manages to capture a free, honest and totally personal experience with her DIY, homemade music.
Finding influence in the likes of artists such as Mazzy Star, Tori Amos and Lana Del Rey, Honey is inspired by musicians who would turn deeply personal and private experiences of teenage girlhood and young womanhood, into something intensely human and real.
Her new three-track EP, Different Water, sonically shimmers with dreamy, echoing synths, layered vocals and delicate piano melodies, delivering an overall celestial quality and her music has garnered millions of streams to date and has been supported by outlets including NME, BBC Radio Ulster, Earmilk, Dork, Fred Perry Subculture and more.
Follow Honey @honey.gentry
Hi Honey Gentry, please tell us a little about you?
I am a singer, songwriter and producer from London.
Describe your sound in 3 words?
Introspective, dreamy, nebulous
Who influenced you and why did you choose to make music?
I knew I wanted to make music even when I was little, I had no idea what form it would take, especially since I couldn’t even play an instrument and was not a natural singer! But I just had a feeling. All of the artists I loved inspired me in some way – but I distinctly remember watching an interview with Marina where she said something like, she went to argos and bought a keyboard and just started. And I thought, that’s what I’m going to do as well. I was probably 14 or 15 at that time, Marina was the first pop star who came along and inspired me to be completely DIY and teach myself the things I needed to know. Which I still do to this day!
Do you play any instrument?
I can play the keyboard and the guitar enough to write and accompany myself – but I was never formally taught.
Do you ever get nervous?
Tell us about your new EP “Different Water?”
I started writing these songs at the end of last year, after having taken a little break from music whilst I settled into my new day job and new routine. I wanted to give myself the space to explore what else I could do. I had a really busy and fulfilling year, but I missed making music so much. So by the time I came back to music in the autumn, I felt ready to dive even deeper into producing and writing than I had done before. I really wanted to create a rich sonic experience.
What’s the story behind the songs?
With Nebula, I was more thinking about the tiny, ordinary moments in our lives that we sometimes take for granted – and also the incomprehensibly big and profound, like the birth of a star in interstellar space, or what happens to our bodies after we die. We are living through those big and small things simultaneously, all the time.
Different Water is a reflection on how our experiences and time fundamentally change us. It’s inspired by the saying, “No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man”.
Under Taurus, which is inspired by a poem by Louise Glück of the same name, is about how we bend and change ourselves – saying or doing things that aren’t necessarily true to us – just to please others.
What is the most rewarding part of your work?
The part I find most rewarding is when a song is almost finished, and I’m listening to it in as many different contexts as I can in order to fine tune the mix. At that point the song feels so full of promise and excitement, a secret only I know about!
What book should every entrepreneur read?
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain. It’s cliche to say, but this book changed my life. It fundamentally changed how I approach things like self care, which for me now includes lots of quiet, reflective time.
What advice would you give to your younger self and why?
“I love you” isn’t reserved for romantic relationships, and you can’t over-say it. Tell your friends you love them!
How would your best friend describe you?
Hopefully: reliable. But probably: mad.
If you are a book, what would be the title of the book and why?
“Was I being weird? Confessions of an oversharer”
What’s next for Honey Gentry in 2023?
I’m making my tentative first steps into music for film, which is something I’ve wanted to do for many years! I’ll also be making a start on my next project, which I hope will become an album.
What is your favorite healthy food?
I had the loveliest paella verduras in Ronda when I was in Spain last month. I also had some amazing Lebanese food!
And your favorite cheat food?
I definitely don’t believe in cheat foods, I think moderation and mindfulness is key. But I love cheese and onion crisps… especially the supermarket own-brand ones.
How would you explain your fashion style?
Casual, comfy… I love a vintage dress or a vintage top and jeans. And I live in my Vans.
What is your own definition of happiness?
To spend my days mostly content, well-balanced and generally at peace. To be able to spend time with people I love, or do things I love. Generally I find simplicity is the key!
If you could meet someone living or dead, who would it be and why?
I’d love to sit in a garden and drink coffee with Marilyn Monroe
What would be the dream holiday, and who would you go with?
I would absolutely love to go to Japan – I’m going to try and visit in the next few years because I’ve wanted to visit since I was little – and definitely with my boyfriend!
Best advice ever given?
“Start where you are” – I say it all the time now. There is never a perfect time or moment to start a new project or habit. The best you can do is with what you have, in the moment. Write the bad song. Record the bad vocals. Paint the bad painting. Even go for the short, horrible run. Whatever it is, you’ll only start to improve and find your stride once you’re actually doing what you want to do!
Do you support any charity?
Mind, and The Forgiveness Project
Where do you see yourself and your career in 5 years from now?
As much as I do enjoy my day job I’d love to be making music full time. I’d love to see my music in a TV show or film; and I’d love to compose original works for other media. As long as I’m making music I love, I’ll be content.
What is you favorite song to belt out in the car/for karaoke?
Honestly, Tribute by Tenacious D
What do you think of Social Media?
Like everything in life: perfectly fine and useful in moderation and with a healthy mindset. See the positives where you can – a chance to connect with people around the world who share your interests and loves. Amazing for DIY artists – it opens so many doors for us. And pay less attention to the negatives, if you can. And if it doesn’t serve you in a good way, don’t feel a pressure to have it in your life.
Where we can follow you?
Book: Either Quiet (Susan Cain) or The Highly Sensitive Person by Elaine Aron.
Quote: All I can think of right now is: “”You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.” – Wayne Gretzky” – Michael Scott
Movie: The Virgin Suicides
Tv Series: It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Favorite Food: If there’s pasta involved I’ll probably love it
Travel Destination: California
Sports Team: I don’t have one sorry!