Watch Mary Lambert’s Video For “Ribcage”
“Openness is the key to empathy, and that empathy is the key to human connection.”
The clip for "Ribcage" finds Mary Lambert alone at a table with a bottle of liquor. Living in the darkness, she sings. I wear it like a crown. Later she adds ominously, I don't know how to fill this space/ The invitation's on the page/ Open up my ribcage. Angel Haze and K. Flay also contribute to the track.
The genesis of "Ribcage" was an interview that followed 2014 Grammy Awards, where Lambert performed her part in Macklemore's "Same Love." Soon after, she was blindsided on TV: "I was asked without relevance or warning about my childhood abuse, as well as being raped in an army barracks as a teenager," the singer tells FADER in an email. "I tried to respond as best I could, knowing that it was live television, but everything afterward was a blur. As soon as the cameras were off, I went into a full-blown panic attack. I didn't know it then, but this same situation would happen multiple times in the year."
"I questioned so much after that interview," Lambert continues. "Have I done this to myself? Is this what happens when you are vulnerable and open? How do I take back control of the telling of my own story?"
"I wrote 'Ribcage' because I was exhausted," she adds. "I wrote it because my truth was hungover and needed a sarcastic joke. I wrote it because 'Secrets' was an optimistic version of vulnerability, and because self-empowerment doesn't always come wrapped in a bow. I will continue to talk about my own sexual trauma when I feel safe enough to, and when I'm in control. I still believe in the power of vulnerability—that openness is the key to empathy, and that empathy is the key to human connection."