20 QUESTIONS WITH PAPER CLIP CLUB QUEEN AUDREY MIKA

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Like many rising Gen-Z artists out there, Audrey Mika’s professional career began on the internet. Specifically by singing originals and covers through a now-iconic pink-toy microphone. Her first video dates back to August, 2015, during which a young Audrey clutches a ukulele, sporting wavy long locks and singing her heart out to original song “Paper Jet.” Since then, the young singer-songwriter’s career has skyrocketed, amassing a YouTube cult following of 1.5 million who call themselves the “paper clip club,” a name that originated from Audrey being bored of regular earrings and deciding to sport paper clips instead.

Anecdotes like these bring forth telling truths as to why Audrey specifically has made such an impression on the interwebs. We can boil down her natural magnetism to one primary principle: an unwavering dedication to self and authenticity. A quick scroll through Audrey’s videos and her charismatic, quirky personality shines effervescently. A willingness to always say what’s on her mind and shed facades, even while the camera is rolling, has gripped the hearts of many like-minded, self-proclaimed awkward teens, who long to find their place in the world.

Though her personality is 10/10 on the please-let-me-hang-out-with-this-girl scale, her ear-perking vocal tone and penchant for writing from a unique perspective has been turning heads across the music industry. R&B-tinged, anti-pop, interlacing splashes of whimsical sounds and spoken colloquial phrases, Audrey’s music is not only extremely viable in the market today but embodies a sort of musical time capsule for her thoughts and feelings.

People all over the world are most certainly tuning in to these thoughts and feelings, as her breakthrough 2019 single “Y U Gotta B Like That” has amassed over 24 million spins on Spotify alone, now boasting a 2020 remix of the single, featuring R&B artist KYLE. Showing no signs of slowing down, Audrey Mika is on the precipice of greatness as she steps out of the niche YouTube community, showcasing the artistry she has to offer to the world at large.

We had the special treat of playing a round 20 Questions with Audrey. Read on to gain insight on her addiction to bucket hats, what to order at the best burger joint in the Bay Area (spoiler, it’s not a burger), and the secret power Audrey always wished she had.

Favorite quarantine hobby?

My friends and I started to cook more at home. To be honest, I don’t really help them but I try to as much as I can, but I kind of always mess it up. But cooking has been really fun and I help with the cleaning!

First song you bought on iTunes?

“Problem” by Ariana Grande. I don’t know why I remember that… but I just remember hearing the song, I had just bought my iPod and I was like “I’m gonna buy this song with my own money!” I was so excited.

Most underrated artist?

Oooh! Wow, oh my god, there’s too many. Hold on, I need to look at my playlist real quick. I would say that one of them is definitely Don Toliver or Dominic Fike… Lucky Daye deserves so much more. There’s also some major major underground artists that I have found that are so underground that they are not yet underrated, but they’re on their way.

Best Tik Tok challenge?

(Laughs) All jokes aside, I think “Renegade” is the most iconic dance challenge that anyone could have ever created. It will go down in Tik Tok history, I believe that.

Proudest moments in your career thus far?

Being able to say that I recorded “Y U Gotta B Like That” in my bedroom and now that song has really started something for me… To say that I engineered that song basically, I’m very proud of that. Another thing I’m proud of, well more grateful for, is being able to write with my best friend and actually put out the songs that we write together.

What mythical creature captures your essence best?

I’m pretty sure it’s a mermaid or maybe I just want to be a mermaid.

What do you miss most about the Bay?

The air! The literal air, it’s so fresh for some reason. I miss my family of course and my house, but the air is like really nice to breathe. And the people there are different, they just care.

Favorite thing about bucket hats?

There’s too many of them in the world! There’s too many different ones to buy. They all have different textures like they can be fuzzy or they can have snakeskin or they can be leather or they can have diamonds on them, there’s just too many options. My collection is racking up.

How many do you have now?

I’m counting them right now… one, two, three… I’m pretty sure I have twelve.

Best binge-worthy Netflix show?

Gossip Girl.

Blair or Serena?

Blair Warldolf.

How many piercings do you have?

(Laughs) I have 9 piercings and after this quarantine, I’m about to get 10.

Favorite local food spot from back home?

There’s a burger joint called Sparky’s that’s like 2 minutes away from my house. Their food isn’t necessarily that good but it’s just that I grew up eating there, so their milkshakes, burgers, BLTS, they have this chicken teriyaki dinner that’s so good. That’s just the spot for me when I go home.

Favorite song to perform live?

I love all of them but I think a big one would be “Change Your Heart,” just for me personally, vocally and performance-wise. Our band also really brings that song to life so it feels like a punk-rock song, it’s not a punk-rock song at all, but it feels like one. Another one’s got to be “Y U Gotta B Like That” just because the crowd just gets so hype for it and it’s really really fun.

What’s an unusual hobby of yours?

It’s not really unusual but I like skating! I just started skateboarding in November.

Denim or Leather?

Can I say denim and leather…?

What’s the craziest internet rabbit hole you’ve gone down?

I’ve gone down the weird side of YouTube… it’s just all kind of disturbing… These videos are so strange, but have billions of streams…. I can’t even describe what the videos are, it’s just the weird side of YouTube.

What’s one part of childhood you wish was implemented into adulthood?

The part where it doesn’t get complicated ever. I know that’s life but it was really nice when things weren’t complicated. I’m not gonna say carefree because I’m honestly very carefree now, but I’d just say the innocence of being a child. I wish that could just stay forever.

Would you rather speak every language on earth or be able to speak to animals?

SPEAK TO ANIMALS! 100% I wish I could speak to my dog. You don’t even know how bad I wish I could have that power.

Best piece of advice your mom or dad ever gave you?

Be different. There are so many people doing the thing that you’re doing and you just have to find a way to stand out, by being you. You know, make people connect with what you’re doing. That’s the advice I moved out here with.

CONNECT WITH AUDREY MIKA

INSTAGRAM // TWITTER // YOUTUBE

photo / Lauren Lamboy

story / Jessica Thomas

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