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The Street Gypsies Conversation With London's Sweetheart - Ella Eyre

Ella Eyre at Nokia and La Blogothèque Lumia Live Session

Nokia Lumia Live joined forces with La Blogothèque to take us music lovers on a ride... no quite literally – a ride!

Nokia's Lumia Live is a series of free music events that specialises is showcasing the hottest emerging talent in really obscure locations around the UK. This month, Nokia and La Blogothèque decided to take us on a road trip to Dingles Fairground Museum in Devon with the artist on everyone’s ‘on- to-watch’ list...the 19 year old Ella Eyre.

Fresh off winning her first BRIT Award with the Rudimental smash hit “Waiting All Night”, Ella seems to be taking all this attention in her stride. From studying at The BRIT School to winning a Brit award; and signing a publishing deal and then a record deal two weeks after!

A few minutes before Ella hits the stage [bumper car] I sat down with her to find out how she is feeling about all the attention she has been getting, her inspirations, and this amazing location courtesy of Nokia and La Blogothèque.

Interview by Troy Oraine and Edited by Matt McCurdy

TSG – How are you enjoying this setup so far, are you excited about tonights Lumia Live Session?

EE - It’s a little bit mind blowing – I feel like I have walked into a different world...a parallel world.

TSG - Nokia's hooked you up!

EE - I know [laughs]

TSG – So lets get straight into it... how did you start singing? How did you discover this amazing talent?

EE – I guess I have always liked singing! I think my mum would probably tell you her earliest memories were in church; all of her friends would want to sit near me because I would sing the loudest. So I have always enjoyed it…thought of it as a way to express myself. I didn’t really start to take singing seriously until I was about 16; when I got my first role in a school play as Tallulah in ‘Bugsy Malone’. That was when I first started experiencing being in front of a crowd; I really loved that! Being able to communicate through song... And so I studied musical theatre; but I didn’t feel like it allowed me to be creative enough. I was singing somebody else’s words. Being a different character. So, I started writing and I guess...here we are.

TSG – Nice! So you spoke about writing! You signed a publishing deal before your record deal; how does signing a publishing deal hone your talent as a songwriter as opposed to solely coming out as a vocal artist?

EE – When I signed my publishing deal I was thinking more like an artist anyway. It was always in my head to be an artist. I signed my publishing deal first because I guess they were very passionate about me as an artist; I believed it would help me a great deal.

TSG – You went to ‘The BRIT School’ like artists such as Adele and Jessie J. How do you feel the 'BRIT School' developed you as a performer or an all round artist? Do you think it brings anything special to an artist?

EE – There is one [main] thing I liked about being at The BRIT. You are surrounded by so many likeminded people. I don’t think its going to make you act a certain way, I just think you learn more about yourself and about how you like to perform…especially in musical theatre, when you are playing a different character and have to perform in a certain way. But, my way of looking at it was doing it my way! I think that is what BRIT taught you...it taught you to use your own mind because no one is going to do it for you.

TSG – If you had to give up singing or song writing which one would it be?

EE – [Long pause]...That is really hard! Ultimately, when song writing I have the singing to look forward to afterwards, and when I’m done with the singing, I have the song writing to look forward to. Err...do you know what...I would probably give the song writing up because.... [Long pause]...I don’t know! That a really hard and not an easy question because singing allows me to express myself but I wouldn’t want to be singing somebody else’s song so I’ll have no songs to sing...

TSG – You have to choose one...[laughs]

EE – I would give up singing because I could always sing the song I had written [laughs]

TSG – Your BRIT performance – it is actually one of my references in rehearsals for an artist that I am working with and you killed it. Totally killed it!

EE – Thank you

TSG – What was it like winning a BRIT?

EE – It hasn’t sunk in and I don’t think it will. It was very surreal because I think at that moment I was convinced that we hadn’t got it because we had lost out at the MOBOS. Also, because it was my first awards show I was very excited – so for the BRITS I was like ‘this is ridiculous... no way is that going to happen…I went to BRIT School two years ago…’. It would be too unbelievable. And so, for me, it hasn’t sunk in. The idea of it is very big and very meaningful for me. My BRIT arrived in the post the other day and even now I can’t take it out of the box. It’s still in its box because I don’t want it to collect dust!

TSG – With regards to your singing, who inspires you as an artist? Who inspired you to keep going?

EE – I think one of my main inspirations would probably, quite stereotypically, be Beyoncé. Just because her style is so hard hitting and so passionate. I watched a performance where she said ‘I have given you 110% and I need you to give it back’. She is so right...she is 110% at all times! So when I am performing – that is exactly the kind of energy I want to portray and give to the audience. Also, I think I take a lot of inspiration from artists like Lauryn Hill and Adele. I really believe in what they are saying...you’re not just listening to their voice you’re looking at their face and taking a lot from the inside when you see them performing.  I guess there is a lot of inspiration when I’m performing. I like to think it is just very raw and from the heart.

TSG – So… ‘Nokia Mix Radio’...have you created a playlist?

EE- I have! I created a playlist. 30 songs

TSG – Who were your top 5 must haves on this playlist?

EE – Basement Jaxx – they are my childhood heroes. Gorrillaz...Obviously I have got my Beyonce track on there and I’ve got such a long list and I can’t think of anyone [laughs while looking for help from her manager]. Ohh I can't think, I have gone blank...Check it out!

TSG – I most definitely will. Well Ella it seems that all the time we have, thanks again for your time and good luck with the performance.

EE - Thank you Troy, thanks a lot.

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Check out the video for Ella Eyre’s Lumia Live Session below.

Be sure to check out Ella's EP Deeperand album when it drops later this year.