Exposed Meets Ella Eyre.
BRIT School success story, Ella Eyre, is the new female whirlwind on the pop scene. and she’s still only 20. Blimey. Ella’s Twitter feed is also a lovely, outspoken accompaniment to her career – highlights include the photo of her family in the car on the way to V Fest, captioned ‘Bring the family to work day’, mentions of her cat and numerous selfies. How meta. With a voice described as ten years older than she is, her soulful, bold approach to music is refreshing and reminiscent of past classics. And her ethos in life is just as inspiring: “I want my music to be ballsy; I want everything I do to be powerful and full of energy.”
The songstress will be visiting us here in Sheffield on October 9 when she takes to the Plug stage. Samantha Fielding gave Ms. Eyre a bell to chat about old school inspirations, teenage drama… and The Lion King?
Hi Ella! I’m feeling a little bit gutted this morning, because I found out you’re the same age as I am – do you have any advice as to how I can catch up with you?
One of the best bits of advice I ever got from my mum was that ‘nobody ever likes a teenager’! It’s so frustrating when you’re young – because you want to be taken seriously. But the most important thing she taught me is to use that energy to work hard. You’ll have all the time in the world as an adult to enjoy yourself – and you can’t work too much when you’re younger. I decided I wanted to set myself up before I was 20 because I knew what I wanted to do.
Ooft, I hope it’s not too late for my showbiz career then. Tell us a bit more about the new album…
Well, I’ve been working on it since I was 16/17, so it’s been a long process! It’s all about maturing and growing up. I like to write from real experience – so quite a lot of it is personal. But I thought, instead of moaning, the album has allowed me to learn from my problems – and hopefully I can share this experience.
We’re so looking forward to you coming to Sheffield on the 9th! Have you got any Sheffield memories from a previous time?
Thanks! I’ve done a few shows in Sheffield before, for the radio arena tours. but this is my first headliner in Sheffield. It’s going to be so nice! My tour manager is actually from Sheffield – so he can’t wait to show me around. He’s very proud about coming from there!
As he should be! You played Wireless Festival this summer – how was that?
Amazing! It was my first time at Wireless – and I loved it. It was overwhelming to be on the line up with so many incredible artists – like Pharrell and Kanye West. The turnout was great and the weather was amazing. Although it was really hot in the tent, people were still getting down and having fun.
Your new single, ‘Comeback’, is about a break-up when you were 17. When I was 17, I was still getting drunk in car parks. How do you get so much inspiration?
When you’re a teenager, it’s like you’re in the most dramatic movie in the world (laughs). Looking back, there was a lot I was traumatised about! But you find a way out of it. Everyone deals with things differently… and I like to think that some experiences leave us all feeling the same. Everyone has felt angry and sad about a break up at one point. So I just channeled that energy into making an angry song!
Angry songs are my favourite type of songs…
They’re great for the gym!
Do you ever feel a bit out of your depth against older, more experienced artists?
I think it’s just part of the process, really. You can learn a lot from older artists, but it’s going to be scary no matter how old you are… your work is personal and it’s under scrutiny. I actually find outside of the industry scarier!
Who’s been your favourite person to work with so far?
I’ll have to say Rudimental, but I’m a bit biased because I spent a lot of time with those guys. I owe them a lot. They’re so charismatic and inspiring and I had an incredible time touring with them. As we knew each other before we were in the public eye, it’s been lovely to be a part of things.
I loved your version of ‘No Scrubs’ with Bastille – are there any other classics you’d like to cover?
I would love to dig deeper into the old school classics, maybe go back to the Aretha Franklin days. I love 90’s pop and have always been fascinated by soulful voices like Tina Turner.
Now, let’s ask a few questions… like, what you would bring to a desert island… because no one’s ever done that before…
Song for happy days?
Happy – Pharrell Williams.
Easy. And a song to mope about to?
There’s a new song by James Bay called Let It Go. It’s really soulful, so that’s definitely my moping song.
With a name like Eyre, is it obvious what book you’d take?
No! I’ve not read Jane Eyre, actually. I’m a fan of Kill Your Friends, by John Niven. It’s supposedly quite true to life, which makes the irony of the story even funnier.
You played Tallulah in Bugsy Malone when you were 16. Favourite film/musical?
The Lion King, both the film and musical, no doubt about it!
And finally, if you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?
An interesting choice, but we’re sure Henderson’s will go nicely with it.
The lovely Ella Eyre comes to Plug on October 9. Tickets start at £13. For more information, and to book tickets, visit www.the-plug.com.