Los Angeles-based singer-songwriter Bibi Bourelly's talents are currently best recognised as the writer behind Rihanna's 'Bitch Better Have My Money', but that's all about to change with the fearless 21-year-old having recently dropped a second song of her very own, 'Ego'.
In a 'Meet Bibi' open-letter-style audio message posted on her YouTube earlier this year, Bibi made a public service announcement: "I want to find all the people who want to witness a world where anything's possible. I want to find all the people who want to contribute and leave a dent and a mark in time. I want to find all the people who really care and have a lot to say and no-one's listening to them - I want to inspire them to have a little more backbone and be a little bit louder." And that's exactly what transpires on the unshrinking 'Ego', during which Bibi sings, "I won't ever be fake, that ain't up for debate."
"...I am not willing to conform to society's standards if I don't think they are right. I'm not willing to be something I am not, to impress or please people who don't understand me to begin with."
CDM: How does your songwriting process work?
BIBI: I like to write to chord progressions or guitar because it allows me to devote and dedicate all of my attention to the top-line. I hear something I like and can usually tell if I hear something dope to it within the first 30 seconds or so, and if I do, I tell the engineer to put the song in Pro Tools and go in and start singing, and before we know it there's a song :-)
CDM: Do you write your lyrics specifically for the songs, or do you write poems or prose and then evolve them into song-form?
BIBI: I don't write before I write, if that makes any sense lol. Most of the songs you hear are all just off the top of my head - very intuitional and what felt right in that moment. I think that when I create like that it allows me to write honest lyrics, since it's kind of an impulsive way of creating. I write lyrics specifically for the songs.
CDM: Lyrically, what's your favourite song that you've written?
BIBI: A new one I wrote on Thanksgiving: "I don't know where I'd be without the boy - his eyes, his lies, his heavenly smile - unworthy. I'd be unworthy, beat down and dirty."
But they say that every creator likes what they created last the best :-)
CDM: Obviously you're known for your work on Rihanna's music, but how does writing music for other people differ when compared to writing your own music?
BIBI: A lot of the time when I write songs, I do write for myself and people end up hearing them when they're done and ask to cut them. I very rarely go in with an artist and write specifically for them. I don't think that results in honest music. I don't conform my art to fit anyone else. I create the art, and if someone I respect enjoys it, they have to adjust themselves to what I created. I'm not really willing to compromise when it comes to things like that. My music means a lot to me.
CDM: I love that in 'Ego', you say, “They want me to be this picture-perfect girl / In a little picture-perfect world / But I cuss when I talk.” Why do you think society still encourages stereotypical imagery of what a 'girl' should be?
BIBI: I'm not really sure why society or people do or think half the dumb shit they do, I just know that I am not willing to conform to society's standards if I don't think they are right. I'm not willing to be something I am not, to impress or please people who don't understand me to begin with. I'd rather just be exactly who and how I am, at all all costs. No matter what. There is no point in pretending to be something you're not, it just leads to wasted time and an unhappy life.
CDM: Having been born in Berlin, has European music and growing up in Germany influenced the way you go about writing music?
BIBI: I think that growing up internationally and around different cultures and environments was bound to influence me and the way I hear music and see art. When you're around and exposed to a variety of different things, you're bound to be affected by them. So yes, I suppose so.
CDM: If you were a country, which song would be your national anthem?
BIBI: 'Hallelujah' - the Jeff Buckley version. I think that's one of the greatest songs of all time.
CDM: What do you think is the difference between a good song and a great song?
BIBI: Well, it depends on what your definition of good and great are :-) I guess the question is, is something really good if it's not great?
CDM: If B.I.B.I. were an acronym, what would each letter stand for?
BIBI: LOL I know the two B's would stand for Baddassss Bitchhhh but I can't figure out a noun for the I's hahahahahaha help.
CDM: What's on your bucket-list?
1.) Paint a huge picture on a gigantic canvas.
2.) Hear thousands of people sing my song with me :-)
5.) HOLD A MONKEY AND SWIM WITH A DOLPHIN AND PET AN ELEPHANT AND FEED A WILD BIG CAT LIKE A LION OR SOMETHING AND HOLD A KOALA BEAR!!!!!! :-)
Bibi Bourelly's single 'Ego' is out now - click HERE to purchase via iTunes.
Watch the 'Ego' music video below…
P.S. Click HERE to check out more of CDM's 2016 Must-Know artists in CDM Issue #17!