Barbie Almalbis appears to be like again on her storied profession, what lies forward, and one of the best recommendation she’d give her 20-year previous self

Music has at all times been a fixture in Barbie Almalbis’ life for so far as she will keep in mind. From her early beginnings as a baby within the small Barangay of Culasi in Roxas Metropolis, Capiz, to her life now as a spouse and mom. This was evident because the LIFESTYLE.INQ staff made their means into the house she shares along with her husband, Martin Honasan. Fender Stratocasters held on their partitions like items of paintings, and amplifiers adorned the edges of their dwelling space nearly camouflaging themselves as furnishings. 

Barbie, is after all, the versatile vocalist many first got here to like through the late ’90s to early 2000s. Lead singer of the bands ‘Hungry Younger Poets’, and ‘Barbie’s Cradle’, her hit songs have earned her a seat amongst among the nation’s most prized musical icons. 

Nevertheless, regardless of her astounding success and stature within the trade, Barbie stays grounded. A trait not many within the musical diaspora are graced with, Barbie’s humility is refreshing, exuding nothing greater than grace, achievement, and gratitude for her storied profession as she shares with us the various phases she has gone by means of in life and music. 

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Might you clarify your beginnings within the music trade?

I grew up in Roxas Metropolis, Capiz. My mother’s facet of the household all cherished music, sang, performed devices, and had a choir in our native church. My Lolo Rene and My Mother Inday additionally wrote some songs that they performed throughout mass. Trivia: My Lolo’s brother is Fr. Eddie Hontiveros, the priest who wrote Pananagutan, and different Filipino Mass songs.

Rising up, they taught me to play the piano and guitar (at 11), and I began writing songs at 14. By the point I moved to Manila for faculty, I had written perhaps 30 songs, I can’t keep in mind precisely.

It was in Accounting class, I sat beside a musician who launched me to Ricci Gurango who grew to become my bandmate in Hungry Younger Poets. We made demos, began performing, and acquired an everyday gig in Freedom Bar in Anonas, QC. That’s the place we ultimately acquired linked to document labels and eventually signed with Sony Music Philippines and launched our first album.


With the peak of social media, inventive careers may be pursued by just about anybody these days, whether or not that be in music or artwork. What had been some useful classes you realized beginning out that you just suppose is exclusive to your technology of artists?

Music was one thing I actually loved rising up. In Grade 5, I started taking part in guitar and did it on a regular basis. There was nothing a lot to do for leisure in our small Barangay [Culasi].

There was no cable television, we lived so removed from town middle that even the native TV channels couldn’t attain us! However taking part in guitar was my instantaneous dopamine repair. Till immediately, I can come house drained from a gig and loosen up by taking part in extra guitar. Haha! Music wasn’t a method to an finish. I didn’t have a aim, I nonetheless don’t have many targets immediately. It won’t be one of the best factor to not be goal-oriented, however I feel having music as its personal reward helped preserve me transferring and taught me not to surrender. When all the things stopped through the starting of 2020, I used to be grateful to nonetheless be capable of play music in my room like once I was younger.



What’s your inventive course of like everytime you’re engaged on a brand new venture? How would you evaluate it to earlier than you grew to become a mom, and now that you just’re a mom When do you’re feeling essentially the most inventive?

I attempt to be in a state of circulation once I make one thing. Often, I play some chord progressions on the guitar or piano, then once I discover one thing attention-grabbing, I simply check out completely different melodies and mumble phrases that don’t make sense till they do. I like working in a messy setting the place there are loads of stimuli. I can’t write a lot on trip, on the seashore, or on the mountains. It’s like taking part in I suppose. I stay for the inventive moments the place you’ll be able to come across one thing new and shock your self.

I’ve realized {that a} girl’s mind modifications loads when one turns into a mom, I simply don’t know precisely how that has modified my inventive course of. I do know I’ve to be extra organized to get issues achieved. My husband and I, like working at evening when the children are asleep. I additionally love how all of us get to bond although music as a household, it’s helped us even in instructing the children a few of their classes at school. We made some songs to assist them with math. It’s additionally simply nice to be round youngsters who’re so fearless and free, youngsters are simply innately inventive, it jogs my memory of what I ought to attempt to be.

The extra I stay in religion and hope (quite than concern), the extra freedom I’ve to be inventive.

Lots of people have this concept that artists make their finest work each time they’re heartbroken or upset, whereas others say it’s the overall reverse. Do you agree with this type of ideology?

There’s a direct correlation between emotions and creativity for certain. However I discover not all damaging feelings make you inventive. Worry or disappointment generally is a big hindrance. I needed to unlearn a lot through the years.  The extra I stay in religion and hope [rather than fear], the extra freedom I’ve to be inventive. Apart from, it’s so unhealthy to be in a darkish state simply to make one thing good. I’ve skilled being so unhappy that I couldn’t even get pleasure from music. So, a spread of feelings is nice, all types are welcome.


Would you say the form of performer you’re relies on who’s on stage with you that evening? So for instance, is Barbie taking part in solo completely different from Barbie when she’s along with her Hungry Younger Poets/Barbie’s Cradle band-mates? Fairly like how actors are with the characters they painting in numerous motion pictures.

For certain! Recording and performing music is a very collaborative factor for me, and I depend a lot on bandmates to make it work. All of us have our completely different strengths and I’m so grateful to have actually proficient musicians to work with. They encourage me loads and assist me develop. After we play a gig, we attempt to go away loads of room to experiment with the association so we don’t get bored, so the songs naturally change from gig to gig, and relying on who’s taking part in within the band.

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You talked about throughout our shoot that you just love style. Do you may have any favourite artists you take a look at or appeared up style-wise?

I like style and respect people who find themselves nice at it, I simply don’t have the pure expertise for it. It usually takes me lengthy to buy or discover what to put on, ‘trigger I can’t think about it in my head.

I can simply let you know if I prefer it if I already see it. Hehe. I don’t comply with many style pages, besides IconAccidental and BonPon on IG.


What’s one factor in your profession bucket checklist that you just nonetheless hope to attain in the future?

Actually, to maintain on making and taking part in music ’til I’m previous. Haha!


Let’s say you’re granted one complete day with 20-year-old Barbie. What recommendation would you give her and what would you do along with her?

Oh my! This one’s tough as a result of that was a tough interval for certain. A lot uncertainty, insecurity, and I simply made plenty of errors throughout these years. Possibly I’ll begin by telling her to strive to not fear an excessive amount of in regards to the future as a result of God is so gracious and good that he can flip issues round. Additionally, strive to not try so exhausting — like paddling so exhausting in order to not drown — attempting to regulate issues which you could’t. It’s a lot easier now, actually. Extra obligations now for certain, however issues are a lot easier too. Simply “search first the dominion of God and His righteousness,” as a result of he’s acquired you and he loves you! I’ve written down a journal of the small and large miracles he’s achieved, and lots of open doorways in my life, the various issues I didn’t plan and couldn’t have achieved by myself. It’s simply that God is devoted and loves us. There are various challenges nonetheless alongside the way in which, however even by means of the exhausting occasions, there’s a supernatural peace and satisfaction that you’ll find in Him.


The relationships you share are the true presents. An excessive amount of competitors can’t be wholesome in the long term, we actually need to help one another to make the music trade develop and be higher.


What recommendation would you give to somebody who’s starting to make their means by means of the music trade?

My youngsters Stina and Liam are each moving into music increasingly currently. I’ve at all times inspired them to strive completely different inventive workouts, like making poems and writing songs. Additionally to discover a good stability between self-discipline and delight, do the exhausting work however at all times discover one thing about it you get pleasure from. It’s a protracted street and also you want all the enjoyment to maintain you for the journey. Lastly, be an encourager, and construct up these round you.  The relationships you share are the true presents. An excessive amount of competitors can’t be wholesome in the long term, we actually need to help one another to make the music trade develop and be higher. “When the tide rises, it lifts all of the boats.”