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Honey Padre Is A Pioneer

Written by on May 12, 2021

If there’s one thing you need to know up front about Honey Padre, it’s his commitment to authenticity in all his creative endeavors.

Charles A. Honeywood is Honey Padre — a Chicago-based hip-hop artist who found his footing absorbing the sounds of the city’s most iconic 90s rap groups. Incorporating poetry-centered lyrics and catchy instrumentals, Honey Padre’s music has been featured on Young Chicago Authors’ Louder Than A Bomb mixtape and on WGCI 107.5 FM.

His collaboration with fellow Chicago aritst Oliv Blu, “Lovin Out Loud,” was included in our In Rotation picks for April 2021.

“[Music and poetry] fulfill the inner need to create beauty, to make things and to express myself — and hopefully inspire others in the process. “

Honey Padre

You started playing music at a very young age — eight years old, to be exact. Had you grown up around music? Is anyone else in your family a musician? Who encouraged you to start playing music at such a young age?

I was really encouraged by my mother to play the piano at the age of eight years old to stay active, out of trouble and learn the language of reading music. Along with that, I also found myself to be musically inclined from listening to artists such as jazz musicians Count Basie and Louis Armstrong while spending time with my grandfather. Also, my grandmother was a gospel singer for her church choir and my aunt plays the piano and writes music. 

As both a poet and a musician, how do the two intersect and overlap? How do they inform one another?

Being both a poet and a musician, I’ve realized the two intersect and overlap in a multitude of ways. Music exposed me to rhyme, rhythm and repetition, which are some of the same skills needed to learn to read music. Because the poetry I write has cadence, rhythm and rhyme, the music I create is used to complement it. Poetry also helps me stay sane with the world we are living in today. In my opinion, that is how they both intersect, overlap and inform one another. They fulfill the inner need to create beauty, to make things and to express myself — and hopefully inspire others in the process. 

Who are some artists you especially admire?

Artists that I especially admire are Do or Die, Common, Barry White, Da Brat, Dreezy, Lupe Fiasco, Luther Vandross, Ludacris and Kanye West.

You were featured on Young Chicago Authors’ 2015 Louder Than A Bomb mixtape. Could you describe that experience to us?

Being featured on YCA’s Louder Than A Bomb 2015 mixtape was an unforgettable experience. My track “His Demons,” which featured 7 Metrix and ELL V!RTUOSO, was a step out of my comfort zone from the material I was used to writing. Once the track earned a placement, that experience contributed to my confidence of writing material that leaves a positive impact and sheds light on the day-to-day experiences in our neighborhoods.  

What is one thing you’d like to see change in the Chicago music scene?

The change I’d like to see in the Chicago music scene is more collaboration. Growing up in the 90s, rap groups such as Do Or Die, Crucial Conflict, Psychodrama were and still are extremely important to me. I feel as if the Chicago music scene has gotten away from that. In the past, artists took inspiration from a variety of regional influences, and I’d like for us to return to that while focusing on lyricism.

What’s your favorite part of the Chicago music scene, something you hope never changes?

My favorite part of the Chicago music scene is the amount of notable musicians with various styles this city has produced. One thing I hope never changes is how our artists have the ability to be inspired by a variety of global influences and embrace it with that distinct Chicago style like we’ve done time and time again.  

You just recorded a single with fellow Chicago artist Oliv Blu, “Lovin Out Loud,” which we featured on our In Rotation playlist for April. Could you describe to us what that experience was like?

Working with Oliv was an amazing experience. She is one of the most talented singers to come out of Chicago, and having her talent grace the track was deeply humbling. Having her engineer, Disrupt, provide his expertise in the writing, post-production and editing is what took the track over the top, giving it the sound you hear today.  

Do you prefer collaborating with other artists or working alone? Why?

I honestly prefer collaborating with other artists versus working alone. My reason being is I see myself as a pioneer who loves exploring new possibilities and generating novel ideas and music. While in that creative mindset, multiple heads are always better than one, in my opinion. 

Where does the name “Honey Padre” come from?

It’s a funny story. While attending college, I earned the nickname “Chuck Daddy” — “Chuck” for my first name, Charles, and “Daddy,” which was an inside thing I had between a friend of mine at the time. As I started to find my own voice as an artist, I decided to change my name to something that catered to my style, while still being me in the process. Having a unique last name, “Honeywood,” helped with half the battle. That’s where the “Honey” portion comes from. Although it sounds smooth, I realized I didn’t want to call myself “Honey Daddy.” So I went with “Padre,” which means father in many romance languages. From there, “Honey Padre” was born and introduced to the creative world. 

What are you most hopeful for this year?

I am most hopeful for having my first short film that I’ll be directing, “Pictures Only,” being shot and distributed this year.

What do you think people most often misunderstand about your music?

What I think people most often misunderstand about my music is that I’m doing this to follow the trend or that this is a gimmick, when in actuality, this is a poetic form of me expressing myself over soulful instrumentals. 

What do you most hope people do understand about your music?

What I most hope people do understand about my music is that this is authentically me and heavily influenced by the artists that have come before me.

Do you have any words to live by?

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do, so throw off the bowlines, sail away from safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, dream, discover.” – Mark Twain  

Do you have anything coming up listeners should be aware of?

As far as projects go. I do have another single titled “Better” that I am currently working on with 7 Metrix, produced by Arrington Porter, projected to be released in the summer of 2021.

Follow Honey Padre on Twitter, and stream his music on Spotify below.

Edited for length and clarity by Morgan Ciocca.

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