For one day only, we caught up with Dublin based electronic producer and singer-songwriter EDEN. We got into the nitty-gritty of his journey to becoming the artist that is known as EDEN, with first-hand experience that you don’t have to splash the cash to be a successful international recording artist. Read on for an insight into the life of EDEN and some unexpected tips on how to make your music a living dream…
Hannah: Vertigo is due for release on January 19th. How long have you been writing and working on this, your debut album?
EDEN: A long time. The last song on the album is about 3 years old. I was scared to work on the album as a whole because I knew how much work I put into the EP’s and I knew what I wanted the album to be. I didn’t feel ready to start the album because I didn’t think I could do a good enough job. But then slowly but surely I had an idea and I loved it so much I saved it and started building it up. At the end of 2016 I made ‘start//end’, and thought this is it, this feels like the album. Then 2016 through to just before the summer of 2017, I had been sketching ideas and writing things down and made a large chunk of the album.
Hannah: Who would you like to collaborate with in future?
EDEN: I really want to collaborate with SZA, but she’s become massive recently. Even before ‘Ctrl’ came out I thought oh my god she’s amazing. ‘Ctrl’ was probably my favourite album of last year. Start to finish it is a wonderful piece of art, but you can’t compare albums because everything is so different.
Hannah: What artists other than SZA are you listening to at the moment?
EDEN: I really like the King Krule album ‘The OOZ’. I love his writing style. The production and the slinky jazz gloopy feel of the album I thought was so cool. His songwriting is just incredible. I love the way he formulated the songs from a lyrics point. I just really like it as it really resonates with me.
Hannah: You’re only 22, do you have any tips for someone trying to emerge into the music industry?
EDEN: Someone was asking me for advice the other day saying she’d like to start putting songs on Soundcloud and I asked her if she had recorded them and she said no, so I said don’t feel like you have to get a professional recording of it. There is a phone recording on my album that I recorded on my Sony phone. It doesn’t have to be super high quality – you don’t need to spend all your money at a studio. If you feel strongly about it, people will find it and you can’t please everyone anyway. As you get better, pick up gear as you go, but it took 3 years for me to become EDEN and I’m only just releasing my album. It just takes time, and you can’t expect everything to be a hit. But the reality is if you want to do music as a career, do it. I would put music out even if nobody would listen to it. You just have to experiment with it. People over think it too much and don’t get started. Just go and run with it. It’s the best thing you can do.
Hannah: Do you write songs for other people or would you like to?
EDEN: I used to want to. I used to like the idea of sitting in my bedroom and making music and not doing shows. I thought instead of doing shows I would write songs for other people. I help a lot of my musician friends write songs, but I haven’t really submitted a song to someone else yet. I have songs I would never use, I just haven’t got around to it, but I would like to.
Hannah: The music industry can be unreliable in terms of making an income. Do you have any tips for people trying to make money out of their music?
EDEN: For me, I was in school when I started making music. I was living with my parents didn’t have any bills to pay and I didn’t want to sell my music so I put it online for free. I grew my fan base by the time I dropped out of Uni, and thought if I started my music, I could support myself and thankfully, my parents didn’t kick me out. So I didn’t start selling my music, but I did start putting it on Spotify. I might as well be on the platform if people are using it. So I started making as much money as people thought I would just from Spotify, and that was like wow. There is money to be made there, its just being realistic in what to expect. I don’t think you can decide to be a musician and quit your job and start from scratch and that will pay all your bills. So just use all your free time and put music online and build a following so that when it comes to the point when you’re finished Uni or your music is taking off, you know what steps to take next.
Hannah: How long did you go to uni for and what did you study?
EDEN: I went for about 2 weeks and then stopped turning up because I was skipping class to make music. I was studying Science because I wanted to be an Astronaut or a Musician. They’re both crazy long shots so I thought I’d study Science and get as close to being an Astronaut as I could, and then the music thing happened.
Hannah: Which opportunity has made the biggest difference to your career so far?
EDEN: I think Spotify helped a lot because I didn’t want to sell my music so I put my music there and started earning money. It helped as it was a security thing. I was making enough money to live comfortably, and that’s kind of making it. At that point, I got to do what I loved all day and every day. And be alive, eat, and have somewhere to sleep every day and not be in a hostel or a shelter. That’s freedom in a way. Putting my music on a platform such as Spotify was a good opportunity and opened everything up. When I signed with management at the end of 2015, the first thing that they suggested was to put on a tour. It took it from being an Internet thing to seeing people at these sold out gigs.
Hannah: What is your favourite venue you’ve performed at?
EDEN: There was one in Washing DC and they gave me an apple pie, I really liked that. I’m a sucker for an apple pie and it was delicious. I played in Brussels and there was this place called La Rotonde, it was one of my favourite shows ever because it was such a weird and interesting space.
Hannah: You’ve got a massive following on social media. Do you have any social media tips that emerging artists can use to grow their fan base?
EDEN: I’ve not really cared about having big social media since day 1. It gets to the point where my management suggests I post something. I’ll leave my Facebook without a post for about 2 weeks. I didn’t have Instagram until about 2015/16. My friend in America actually made my Instagram because he thought I should have it. But I love it now because I love photography. Do what you feel like doing and don’t feel under pressure to conform to expectations. You don’t have to have social media or use it in the way that everybody else does.
Hannah: If you weren’t a successful musician, what career path would you follow? …And you’re not allowed to say, Astronaut,
EDEN: I really like driving, so like a racecar driver? When I started having my businesses, Meek Mill sampled one of my songs and this was before I had a manager or a lawyer. I had to work out tax codes and all the information that comes with it. I thought it was really cool, I like the business side.
Hannah: Lorde liked your song ‘Sex’, how did that feel?
EDEN: I actually thought that was fake. I texted my manager asking if it was a hack and asked who posts on Facebook walls anymore? Then I realised if she was hacked why would the hacker post on my profile? It would be the worst frape ever. It was weird. Growing up in Ireland the music is very UK and US-centric. It always feels like you’re looking in and it still feels that way to me to an extent. So she’s someone I listen to and she makes incredible music. Not only did she listen to my music, she liked it enough to post it on Facebook. It was nice to know I’m not as separated from everything else that’s going on. We haven’t been in contact since, but I did see her at Coachella, which was cool.
EDEN’s debut album ‘Vertigo’ will be out Friday 19th January. EDEN sat down with Hannah Marie, the soul fused rocker from London.