Beatrice Eli

Two years after the release of her acclaimed It’s Over debut EP, Swedish pop phenomena Beatrice Eli is back in the game. We met with the young musician to talk about honesty, pride, and MTV.

With her singular voice and haunting pop beats, Beatrice Eli gained considerable international attention with her 2012 debut EP It’s Over. After some time away from the limelight and a period of severe writer’s cramp, the Swedish pop phenomenon is finally back with new single Girls, a piece of confident, kick ass pop that combines Beatrice’s singular voice with soft backup vocals and lashing drums. We met with the young musician to talk about honesty, pride, and MTV.

When, and with what did you become interested in music?
– As a kid through dancing I think. I wasn’t very good at it, or maybe I was average, but I loved expressing myself through music.

What did you listen to back then?
– My sister and I were obsessed with MTV (I guess that’s not something unique), but I think that gave me a wide understanding of music. I still go back to that 90’s stuff all the time, which I think shows in my music.

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How do you believe that you’ve developed as a musician since the release of It’s Over?
– I think that I had already begun to develop while the EP was being released. I still love big beats and straightforward lyrics, but I don’t know if practice maybe makes it… ehm better?

Where do you find inspiration and inputs for your music?
– Inspiration, I don’t know. I think that’s somewhat unconscious. Inputs I get from friends. I’m fortunate to have talented and intelligent people around me to tell me what to do, haha.

Tell us more about your new single Girls.
– It’s the first single from my album and it’s a song that is very important to me.

I feel like I’m a part of an important time for female artists

You’ve said that it was written during a period of severe writer’s cramp. How do you get out of such a state?
– It was written once I was out of that period. I don’t have the recipe, sometimes it helps not to write for a wile and just do other stuff, other times the best thing is to keep writing. The most important thing is to not over-think, I need to work on that.

Girls presents a perspective on sexuality and desire that is rarely seen within pop music. Do you aim to make a statement or bring about change with your music?
– It’s sad that a song about being gay is seen as a “statement”, but since it still is, I hope it can at least give some comfort/pride/power to people who don’t fit the heterosexual norm. I think I try to write from a honest place, but if that’s bringing about change, I don’t know.

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The Swedish pop scene is currently thriving with young, female singers with both skills and attitude, such as Ji Nilsson, Marlene, Julia Spada, Tove Lo, Silvana Imam, Zhala, and yourself. Why do you think that the Swedish pop scene is suddenly dominated by girls? And do you feel like a part of this growing scene?
– Don’t forget Seinabo Sey and there’s so many more! I don’t know, feminism maybe? Yes, I feel like I’m a part of an important time for female artists. But it’s still fucked up, most high positioned A&Rs and CEOs are men. We need more women on top positions of the music biz to make changes from within the system.

What happens in the nearest future?
– Feels like I’ve been saying this for a while now, but I’m finishing my album.

So there will be an album?
– Yep, the album format is NOT dead. I refuse to believe that.

Watch the video for Beatrice Eli’s lastest single Girls here.

Photography by Pauline Suzor.