Verge Meets: Eliza Shaddad

Photo cred: Melanie Tjeong

There are many artists who we admire here at Verge, but one of our favourites is the brilliant Eliza Shaddad. After achieving so much academically, she has managed to capture our hearts with rich and soulful songs full of power and emotion! Her borderless experiences and impactful messages has lead to her being one of the most exciting rising artists yet. With her debut Album, Future, coming out on the 26th of October,  we were fortunate enough to sit down with her to discuss the highs of her career so far and what she’s looking forward to conquering next!

Photo cred: Melanie Tjeong

Tell us about how you got into music? 

I’ve had a bit of a roundabout journey into music really. I studied other things; French, and Philosophy.  I leaned the piano as a kid, and bought my first guitar at 16, but the singing and writing was always happening in the background.  It wasn’t till I moved abroad to teach that I realised I was doing the wrong thing and I wanted to be a musician.  I came back to London, applied to study Jazz at a Conservatoire here, and I’ve been doing this ever since.

Did you always want to be a musician? 

I didn’t, no. Or maybe I did I just didn’t really think it was possible. I was on the brink of a PhD when I realised this was actually what I wanted.  

You’ve got some incredible dates lined up for over the next few months, what’s the highlight of touring for you?

My favourite bit will always be getting totally lost in the moment onstage.  Getting dragged right back to where you were and what you were feeling when you first wrote the song…  Though the friendships you form along the way and the van banter are generally second to none too.

Do you have a favourite place to perform? 

I have a major soft spot for the Union Chapel in London

Your musical style sets you apart from the crowd, can you tell us about your creative process and how you create your music? 

I write on guitar – and almost always finish the song like that before moving on to other layers.  I demo the songs at home, playing in all the different parts – adding samples – experimenting really to create a strong idea of what the final track will sound like, and then I take it into the studio with my producer Chris Bond, who is an incredible musician, and we bring it all to life.

What’s the best part of being an artist? 

I guess for me it’s the deeply moving feeling of connecting with people through this excised personal experience. 

Do you have a highlight in your career so far? 

I opened for Turin Brakes at The Palladium in March and that venue is just so incredibly beautiful and has so much history, it felt pretty spectacular.

Who are some of your top inspirations, what did you grow up listening to? 

I grew up listening to a lot of outspoken female writers – people like Tori Amos and Ani DiFranco and bands like Hole, and Skunk Anansie, and then at Uni I fell head over heels for Bob Dylan and Joni Mitchell.  I love Nina Simone above all others. 

What is the message that you want to send out through your music? 

I suppose it would be sending some kind of comfort out there – telling people they are not alone in thinking those things we all think and are ashamed of.

Is it important to have a close relationship with you fans?

I think so.  The whole point is human connection. 

What’s next on your list, what do you have planned? 

It’s a big Autumn! My debut album is out on the 26th October, and my band and I head out on a headline tour of the UK and Europe in November/December.

Do you have any advice to up and coming musicians trying to get their music out there? 

I guess trust your own feelings about the music you want to make, and then stick to your guns with it.  It takes longer, but I think it’s worth it.

Check out Eliza Shaddad’s official video for her latest single “Just Goes To Show” below. 

Be sure to listen to Future available on the 26th of October!

Keep up with Eliza on:

Instagram

Twitter

Facebook

Spotify

Apple Music