Catch up with LA-based singer-songwriter Sky Colette and listen to new single, "Hey Big Spender", from her forthcoming project.
What first got you interested in music?
Sky Colette: I've been singing since I was two years old. It's kind of funny, 'cause this was pre-YouTube, and my mom said it scared the mess out of her and my dad because they were like, 'why does she know every song on the radio?,' [laughs] and they realized it was something that I just did; I'm like a walking karaoke machine, or a jukebox, so I retain music so easy. Growing up, listening to Whitney Houston and all of her songs - and of course I was never shy [laughs] - I would always sing. I remember, Sister Act, the first one or the second one, it had a girl who was like, 'what is the first thing that you wake up thinking about? That's what you're supposed to be doing,' and I had that moment when I was five, I knew I was going to be a singer [laughs].
Do you remember the first album you had?
It had to have been Alicia Keys' Songs in A Minor. That album was everything for me and I was in high school, I think, when it came out and I was like, 'wow, that type of sound is amazing,' and the way she spends her time writing all the songs and how passionate she was, that was incredible to me.
Which musicians would you say you've been influenced by?
Of course, Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey. My parents always put on the old school radio stations, so I listened to a lot of old school artists but, of course, Alicia Keys and Mary J. Blige, too.
Is there an artist you're hooked on now?
As a songwriter, I love, love, love Taylor Swift. I think that she can paint stories in such a way and she's so consistent. I think it's because, when she was younger she was a songwriter and she was working at 15 and she came out of country - which we all know, country music is all about the lyrics - so I think that's how she was able to translate that into her music. But the way she visually makes you see everything, it's just amazing. So her, and I'll always love artists like Bruno Mars. He's awesome, as far as putting that show together, being an entertainer, and I love his sound, too; I love how he was able to take the 1950s/1960s sound - and some of the '80s - and translate it to today.
How would you describe your own sound to someone who had never heard you before?
My fans say that I'm a mix between Katy Perry, Lana Del Rey, and Sade and that's what I get a lot of.
What were your inspirations behind your new single, "Hey Big Spender"?
Oh my goodness [laughs] so, pretty much, I feel like if there was ever an era that I should've been born in [laughs] - I love my generation now and the freedoms that we have and I feel like I was born in the right time - but if anybody ever asked me, 'what other era would you go back in time to and explore?,' it would definitely be the 1950s. I feel like "Hey Big Spender" was my going back in time song and it is such a cool, nice, upbeat song. It's very different, as far as our culture too because, nowadays, I've learned that there are some guys that want to be financially supported by women, and this song goes totally against that [laughs]. I feel like it has an old, classic flair with a new swing and I love it. "Hey Big Spender" is such a classic song anyway and I wanted to bring it back and do it with my own flair.
Could you tell us more about your forthcoming project?
Yes, so I will be doing a lot of experimenting with my sound, so I guess expect a pretty full record. I hope to drop an album in the near future and probably I'll have some more visuals for you guys as well, so that way you can see a little bit more of what I'm doing.
What do you hope your listeners are able to take away from your music?
I feel like music nowadays, there is so much breakup songs and misery and it's just a lot of negativity in music now - this is my personal opinion and there are some good songs that uplift you, but I feel like there's not enough - and, really, I just want people to feel good after they hear my music. Some of my music may have been some really profound stuff, but now I just want people to laugh and have fun and listen to my music and put a smile on their face. That's all I want right now.
Is there anything you'd like to add?
Just that, me, originally coming from the South and coming to LA to live my dreams, I want anybody who's reading this to know that you can do anything that you put your mind to and you should never limit yourself. I never thought that I could get to this place where I've gotten to and I just want to encourage anybody that, if I can do it, you honestly can, and you should never let your environment, the people around you, anything hold you back from your dreams, because you never know unless you pursue them. I mean, this year, I got to perform at a pre-Grammy event and I was like, 'this is so weird! This is the same thing that three years ago I was watching and this year I got to perform,' and it's so cool and anything is possible, you just have to have a plan and have faith and just to do it. Believe in yourself, believe that you can do it. When I first started doing this, I didn't think I could do it, and I'm really honest about that and now I have that confidence and I'm grateful that I pushed past my fear and I was brave enough to do this. I think about all the people who just need a little courage, that's all, so I'm just encouraging people, you can do it.