Marie Ulven Ringheim, known professionally as girl in red, has captivated audiences worldwide with her emotive indie pop music. Born on February 16, 1999, in Horten, Norway, Ulven's journey from a small-town girl to a global music icon is a testament to her talent, resilience, and authenticity. Her raw, honest lyrics and unique sound have made her a beloved figure in the music industry, resonating deeply with fans across the globe and inspiring countless listeners.

Early Life and Musical Beginnings

Marie Ulven grew up in Horten, a quiet town in Norway, surrounded by her sisters and raised by her divorced parents. Her mother worked in technology, providing a stable but tech-centric environment, while her father served as a policeman, instilling a sense of discipline and structure in her upbringing. Despite the absence of a musical background at home, Ulven's fascination with music was ignited by her grandfather, a musician who played the guitar and piano. His influence was instrumental in shaping her early musical interests.

In 2012, Ulven received her first guitar as a Christmas gift, marking the beginning of her musical exploration. Initially, her interest in the instrument was sporadic, as she was more engaged in fingerboarding at the time. However, in 2013, she began to take the guitar seriously, dedicating more time to mastering the instrument. This period of self-discovery and skill development was crucial in laying the foundation for her future musical endeavors.

Ulven's formal musical journey began in 2015 when she started writing and releasing her own music on SoundCloud under the moniker "Lydia X." Her early works, predominantly in Norwegian, showcased her raw talent and provided her with a platform to experiment with her sound and lyrical style. Recognizing the broader appeal of English-language music, she soon transitioned to writing and performing in English, adopting the stage name girl in red.

Her breakout moment came in 2017 with the release of her single "I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend." This track, characterized by its candid lyrics and emotive melody, quickly gained traction online, resonating with a wide audience and setting the stage for her burgeoning career. The song's success was a testament to her ability to connect with listeners on a deeply personal level, touching on themes of love and longing that were both universal and intimately felt.

As girl in red, Marie Ulven continued to build on this early success, developing a unique voice in the indie pop scene that combined introspective lyrics with a distinct lo-fi sound. Her journey from a small-town girl in Horten to an emerging global music icon underscores her resilience, creativity, and unyielding passion for music.

Rise to Fame

In 2018, Marie Ulven, known as girl in red, released her debut EP, Chapter 1. This collection of songs, recorded in her bedroom, explored themes of romance and mental health with raw honesty and emotional depth. The intimate nature of her music resonated deeply with listeners, quickly garnering her a dedicated fanbase. Following the success of Chapter 1, Ulven released Chapter 2 in 2019, continuing to delve into personal and relatable topics that struck a chord with her growing audience.

Ulven's breakthrough came with her debut studio album, If I Could Make It Go Quiet, released in 2021. The album was both a critical and commercial success, praised for its candid lyrics and innovative production. It earned her three Norwegian Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year, solidifying her status as a significant force in the indie pop scene. The accolades were a testament to her talent and the profound impact of her music on fans and critics alike.

In 2024, Ulven's career reached new heights with her signing to Columbia Records and the release of her first major-label album, I'm Doing It Again Baby!. This milestone marked her transition from an independent artist to a major player in the music industry, expanding her reach and influence. The album showcased her evolving sound and artistic growth, cementing her reputation as one of the most compelling voices in contemporary music. Through her relentless dedication and authentic artistry, girl in red continues to captivate audiences around the world.

Musical Style and Influence

girl in red is celebrated for her candid exploration of deeply personal and often challenging topics, such as mental health, sexuality, and relationships. Her music is a distinctive blend of indie pop and bedroom pop, characterized by lo-fi production and introspective lyrics. This unique soundscape creates an intimate atmosphere that draws listeners into her emotional world. Ulven's ability to articulate the complexities of young love and mental health struggles has made her a relatable and influential figure for many young listeners. Her songs often feature raw, unfiltered lyrics that speak to the authentic experiences of her audience, offering solace and understanding through shared emotions. The DIY ethos of her music, from the production to the storytelling, emphasizes authenticity and relatability. This approach not only sets her apart in the music industry but also reinforces her connection with fans, who see their own lives reflected in her music. girl in redÔÇÖs artistry resonates deeply, capturing the essence of contemporary youth culture and the nuanced emotions that come with it.

Impact and Recognition

Marie Ulven, known professionally as girl in red, has been hailed as a queer icon and one of the most exciting singer-songwriters in contemporary music. Her influence extends far beyond her music; she has become a symbol of authenticity, self-expression, and empowerment for many in the LGBTQ+ community. Ulven's openness about her own experiences with mental health and sexuality has provided a powerful voice for those who often feel marginalized, creating a safe space for fans to explore and embrace their identities.

In 2022, she was awarded the Telenor Culture Prize for her "artistic distinctiveness and explicit messages of boundless love," highlighting her significant cultural impact. This prestigious award recognized not only her musical talent but also her commitment to promoting inclusivity and understanding through her art. Ulven's candid approach to songwriting, addressing themes of love, mental health, and self-discovery, resonates deeply with her audience, offering solace and solidarity to those facing similar struggles.

Her music's commercial success is equally impressive, with over five million certified digital units sold in the United States alone. This achievement underscores her widespread appeal and ability to connect with a diverse audience on a deep emotional level. Ulven's ability to articulate the intricacies of personal experiences in a relatable manner has endeared her to fans worldwide, who see their own stories reflected in her lyrics.

Beyond her musical accomplishments, Ulven's impact is felt in the sense of community and belonging she fosters among her listeners. She actively engages with her fanbase, using her platform to advocate for mental health awareness and LGBTQ+ rights. Her concerts and social media interactions create a supportive environment where fans can share their stories and find strength in their shared experiences.

Ulven's artistry goes beyond creating music; it is about building connections and empowering individuals to embrace their true selves. Her impact is evident not just in her accolades but in the lives she touches through her unyielding commitment to honesty and representation in her art. Through her work, Marie Ulven continues to inspire and uplift, making a lasting difference in the world of music and beyond.

Personal Life and Challenges

Despite her success, Marie Ulven has been remarkably transparent about her struggles with anxiety and the pressures of fame. This openness has endeared her to fans who appreciate her candidness about the often-hidden challenges that accompany a high-profile career. In various interviews, Ulven has spoken candidly about the difficulties she faces in managing her mental health, revealing the strategies she employs to cope with anxiety and the stressors of the music industry.

Balancing personal life with a burgeoning career is no small feat, and Ulven frequently discusses the strain this balancing act places on her well-being. She often shares how the demands of constant public attention and the pressure to consistently produce music can be overwhelming. This honesty about her mental health struggles provides a stark contrast to the polished image often presented by celebrities, making her a relatable and authentic figure.

Ulven's music often serves as an outlet for these personal battles, offering listeners a raw and unfiltered glimpse into her inner world. Songs like "Serotonin" explicitly address her experiences with mental health, capturing the complexity of emotions and the reality of living with anxiety. Through her lyrics, she articulates feelings of vulnerability and resilience, creating a sense of solidarity among fans who face similar issues.

Future Prospects

As girl in red continues to evolve as an artist, her future in the music industry looks incredibly promising. With the release of her new album, I'm Doing It Again Baby!, in April 2024, and an extensive tour planned for 2024-2025, Marie Ulven Ringheim remains dedicated to her craft. Her upcoming tour will see her performing across various countries, including headline shows in major venues like Dublin's 3Arena and appearances at prominent festivals such as Fuji Rock and Incheon Pentaport Music Festival.

Ulven's ability to connect deeply with her audience through her raw and honest songwriting has garnered her a loyal fanbase and critical acclaim. Her music, which often explores themes of love, mental health, and self-discovery, continues to resonate with listeners worldwide. The success of her previous album, If I Could Make It Go Quiet, and her recent singles, including "October Passed Me By," have solidified her position as a significant force in the indie pop scene.

Looking ahead, Ulven's commitment to pushing the boundaries of her music and maintaining her authenticity suggests a bright future. Her collaborations with notable artists and producers, such as Aaron Dessner, and her ability to adapt and grow as an artist, indicate that she will continue to make a substantial impact on the music industry. As she navigates the challenges of fame and personal growth, girl in red is poised to remain a beloved and influential figure in contemporary music.

Discography Highlights:


  • Chapter 1 (2018)
  • Chapter 2 (2019)

Studio Albums:

  • If I Could Make It Go Quiet (2021)
  • I'm Doing It Again Baby! (2024)


  • Three Norwegian Grammy Awards for If I Could Make It Go Quiet (2021)
  • Telenor Culture Prize (2022)

Notable Singles:

  • "I Wanna Be Your Girlfriend"
  • "We Fell in Love in October"
  • "Serotonin"

Marie Ulven Ringheim, known to the world as girl in red, continues to inspire and move audiences with her heartfelt music and unyielding authenticity. Her raw, emotive lyrics and candid exploration of personal struggles resonate deeply with listeners, creating a powerful connection that transcends typical fan-artist relationships. UlvenÔÇÖs music not only provides solace and understanding but also champions mental health awareness and LGBTQ+ representation. As she evolves as an artist, her commitment to authenticity remains unwavering, ensuring her continued impact on the global music scene.

Stay connected with more insights from the vibrant world of music at Woke Waves Magazine.

Check out our article on "The Queer Female Revolution: Billie Eilish And Rising Lesbian & Bisexual Pop Icons"

#MarieUlven #GirlinRed #IndiePop #MentalHealth #QueerIcon

Jul 6, 2024

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