Art lovers have reason to be excited for new sounds and new sights at the top of a new year. And today delivers on both, as it brings another confident and self-assured single from the mighty Ari Chi—a local artist steadily pushing R&B into an exciting direction in 2020.
For the uninitiated, Ari Chi is the ukulele songstress hailing from the Tampa Bay area, making national waves with her blend of R&B, Soul, and Folk. Known for her thoughtful, artsy photos and uber-creative visuals, Ari Chi regularly sets the bar high, yet keeps on delivering.
Her newest record “Hot Honey” explores further into the intoxicating guitar licks and reassuring soul we were presented with in her fantastic 6-track 2019 EP Lost In the Hues.
Not many artists in the area have been on a hotter run than Ari. 2019 was one of hard work, full of live performances at SXSW and House of Creatives, alongside a 21-city support tour for Oliva Gatwood that spanned from coast to coast. She bolstered her discography as well, delivering plenty of visual content to wash it all down. Capitalizing on all her well-earned momentum, she dares to be different without compromise.
This starts with “Hot Honey,” which the hyper-talented Tampa Bay artist is coupling with a new video release directed by Ari Mairena-Dannon. “The visual doesn’t include me, for the first time I was able to sit back and actually help direct. My vision was clear and I didn’t want to waver from that. This visual is dedicated to the deeply melanin,” says Ari. She grows in both her development process for the sights of her music as well as the sound, continuing to expand on the palette she started with her ColorFool project. “Hot Honey” sees her bringing in complimentary tones around her nectar-touched voice, accompanied by guitarist Albert Parks and bass player Chris Martinez. The end result is a soundscape that Ari’s voice belongs on.
The track is produced by Maxx Forman of Dojo Sounds. His eyes light up and he can’t hold back a smile when asked of the process with Ari and the production. Maxx doubles down on Ari’s talent, going on to describe the process; “Working with Ari is always amazing. She brought me on to capture vocals, then back at the end to master and finalize the record. The recording process was simple, we went for a minimalist, less-is-more approach to match the feel of the instruments. Her voice texture and cadences are her standout qualities to me, as well as her raw but dreary lyrics. Kind of a challenge to not get lost in your feelings while listening.”
The final, mastered piece is a song of hallucinatory soul, perhaps pairing well your favorite vice. This would be the perfect soundtrack to get into your groove, relax and let go.
Please enjoy the new single and visual “Hot Honey” by Ari Chi. Join her for a birthday celebration and single release on January 17 at 7p.m. at ‘The Attic’ (500 E. Kennedy Blvd).
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