by Chandler Christopher

May 9th, 2022

Happen Twice has got a special Babehoven interview you today. Babehoven is the Hudson, New York-based indie rock project of Maya Bon. Started in Portland in 2017 as a passionate side-project, Babehoven was propelled into the music scene due to her organically-growing fanbase and rising demand for live shows from the rising star. Maya, who was an environmental studies major at Lewis & Clark University, moved back to her home of Los Angeles upon graduating in 2017. It was there that Maya met future bandmate and partner, Ryan Albert, who was working at her mom’s art studio at the time. 

Maya has proved herself to be an extremely gifted songwriter, always speaking from the heart and “using music to peel back the layers of her own experience.”  On Babehoven’s latest EP, Sunk, Bon aims to answer a seemingly simple yet ultimately life-changing question: What if, instead of constantly trying to change things we can’t change and trying to move against the immovable tides of unfixable things, we simply give ourselves permission to let go of things and stop struggling altogether.  Hence the title, Sunk, framed as an act of self-care rather than self defeat. The project’s intention reminds me of a specific song called Swim and Sleep (Like a Shark) by Unknown Mortal Orchestra. 

Babehoven played Happen Twice’s first ever show this past March during South by Southwest. We also did a really rad cassette project together and Maya, Ryan, and the rest of the band absolutely charmed the crowd with their lo-fi, indie rock ballads. The duo of Maya and Ryan, who I interviewed at the end of March over a Zoom call from Austin, Texas to Portland, Oregon, have continued to collaborate and blossom their creative and personal relationship and it was such great fun to chat with them. Support these incredible artists in the most direct way possible through buying their SICK merch on Bandcamp, here! Babehoven Interview Q&A below! Babehoven Interview

Q:  Maya, tell me about how you first got your start in music…

Maya:  I’ve always been a musician, really since I was a baby. Singing was kind of the first thing I did… When I was five I started taking piano lessons and when i was 12 I started playing guitar and bass, etc. Starting to play as Babehoven in 2017 was my first step away from singer-songwriter vibes and trying to make a more complete project.

Q:  Tell me about the beginning of Babehoven…

Maya:  I recorded the first couple projects in Portland- it was very much not a creative process recording-wise and we just recorded it how it sounds live and then we would leave, but it was a great experience. I eventually signed to a local, Portland label called Good Cheer Records which was really helpful in getting gigs in the early days.

Q:   So then you moved to LA shortly after starting the project… Did you move anywhere else?

Both:  So we were in LA for almost a year, then we moved to Philadelphia and Covid hit. So, we moved to Vermont, where Ryan is from, and recorded some projects like Demonstrating Visible Height Differences there. We also recorded Sunk there and finished it in April of 2021. We waited to release it because we signed to New York-based label, Double Double Whammy, which we have absolutely loved and are stoked about that partnership! Now we are based in Hudson, New York.

Q:  How did y’all end up signing with Double Double Whammy?

Ryan:  DDW contacted us and we really wanted to work with them. They didn’t have the conventional way of the other labels we had gone to. To Maya and I, this wasn’t the normal way that people have done this, with the empty promises and non-transparent communication- and DDW was the complete opposite of that, very direct and to the point. Maya and I feel very lucky to be working with them and to be friends with them, it was kind of a dream come true. DDW just took the cake, they were amazing. 

Q:  Your music is very personal.. Is that something that is a conscious decision or is that something that comes natural in your songwriting? Do you guys write songs together? 

Maya:  I’m the songwriter. They’re my songs and I feel protective over them in a lot of ways. I’m not interested in that in a collaborator. I write stream of consciousness and allow whatever is in my brain to go into a subconscious state and I can just access it. I try not to think about it too much. I love the human mind and I want to know what people are thinking, because otherwise I’m not interested in music. There’s something about an open book that feels like it grabs me. When I write songs, it comes out of me out of nowhere, very quickly. Ryan produces and works as a collaborator with me in that space.


Q:  I read on your website a little bit about the intention behind your latest project, Sunk. How did you reach this conclusion within your introspection? Has this been something that has been a life-changing sort of realization or is it more that the project is actually about self-reflecting on this premise?

Maya:  Someone mentioned that my albums are almost like the stages of grief. I’m in a new stage of my life that is so beautiful. I feel so much more in control and happier. It was a phase of my life where I had to work through some very deep pain. I think that’s what makes it so relatable for people. 

Check out some of Babehoven's tunes and support artists by following them on their socials linked below! :)