For most people, having a BRIT, a MOBO, a No.1 single and a top 5 album - all before the age of 22 - would be achievement enough for a lifetime. But Ella Eyre isn’t most people.
From the moment she tore onto the scene as a fiercely energetic, lion-haired 19-year-old, lending her precociously soulful voice to Rudimental’s chart topping single ‘Waiting All Night’, Eyre didn’t pause for breath. She picked up a BRIT Award for British Single Of The Year, co-wrote another UK No.1 single, Sigma’s ‘Changing’, won Best Newcomer at the MOBOs and finally, after a handful of high charting solo singles, released her debut album, Feline, in 2015. But after all that, she’s still on a mission to prove her worth.
“I think maybe the saddest thing about me,” she says, “is I’m never content in my successes. Having a BRIT Award is wonderful, and it sits on my cabinet, but I won’t look at it till there’s four. I’ve got two No.1s sat on my cabinet, but I don’t look at them because there’s not enough. I never get complacent.”
But the most important thing to Eyre – far more important than chart positions and awards, and the reason she started making music in the first place – is her live show. “When you’ve got 6,000 people in front of you that have paid to see you live, singing all the words, bringing signs, wanting to meet you after – that’s actually far more important than having the No.1 in the Wikipedia page.” It’s something she started to forget towards the end of the last album campaign, when she began spending too much time “worrying about the numbers and figures of it all.” Because for her, it had never been about that. “I had to take a step back and go, ‘I like what I do, but I don’t love it anymore. What’s different? What’s changed?” In the end, the solution was simple: “I need to chill out.”