Rosie Paldi Edwards chats with rising 21 year old singer, songwriter and producer EVA, who got nominated for three awards at this year’s Youth Music Awards – the Music Video Award (Public Vote), Live Performance Award and the Rising Star Artist Award. Eva talks about how she got involved with Youth Music charity, NextGen Fund and how it feels to win all three of her nominations.
“It goes back to when I started making music in a youth club called Audio Active in Brighton. They ran an all female production group every Thursday and through that I met a mentor figure called Bobby Brown.” After finishing her A Levels, Brown told Eva about the NextGen Fund and after a swift application, her name and forty others were on the list for funding. Eva goes on to say “That was my first contact with the Youth Music Charity. They give the winners 2,500 pounds, which is so much money. From then, I started to mix and master my first track, then made a music video and did that three times over till my money ran out.”
Eva explains how you don’t have to be in the city centre to get all the opportunities, “there are also loads of regional opportunities, like South East or Wales, you don’t have to just live in London. You can also apply multiple times for the same thing and there’s loads of other programs that are similar. They have a great mailing list that says ‘this is all the opportunities for this week’ and it’s sent out every friday.” She goes on to talk about the importance of community and the friends you make along the way, especially if you’re in a new city. From regularly attending open mic and jam nights in London, it helped her get really comfortable with performing live and meeting other like minded musicians.
Eva has been booked for shows, nominated, played on the radio and even made an appearance on ITV! She explains how “all these different experiences were also kind of work experience as its project management. It’s such good training. You put so much work in as a musician and results can be quite slow sometimes, but then things like the award happens and I did Glastonbury, so it’s like oh gosh, it’s working.”
In just a year of making music and receiving support from Youth Music Charity, she has made big moves in the music scene, releasing 4 singles to performing at Glastonbury after being chosen as a finalist for Glastonbury’s Emerging Talent Competition 2023. The singer goes into the process of how she got her Glastonbury slot. “They have 30 judges and they give them a few hundred tracks and it just so happens that they liked my track. It then went to another round of judges and they picked me for the shortlist which was nine people. You go to Shepton Mallet, Micheal and Emily Eavis are there as well, I performed two songs and before they decided on the winners they said we could all perform. My main booking that gave me my ticket was the Lonely Hearts Club and I also got booked by Bread and Roses and I got to perform a third time at the festival at the Hive stage just across from the BBC Introducing stage.”
Eva explains how her song ‘My One’ came into fruition when she met now bandmates Luke Gomm and J P Rose. “I knew Luke had worked with Lily Allen and she’s like my favourite artist so I was excited to work with him. We had our first studio session together, it was the second time I had met him, so we were just getting to know each other and vibing. We started making this beat, it was a really harmonious studio session, it felt like an instant trio, they are both incredible musicians. J P plays the bass and Luke plays the keys so they also came with me to Glastonbury.” She describes the surprisingly easy process of making ‘My One’ “after coming up with the chorus, Luke was like ‘let’s add these Drum and Bass high hats and J P is like okay what about this,’we were just sharing ideas and then we got this song, it felt like it had just appeared.”
A lot of organising and many phone calls later Eva arranged a day to shoot the music video for ‘My One’. “It was freezing that day because we filmed in February. After that I had all the footage we needed and edited it together with my friend. That’s the whole process from recording to getting the music video finished and then finally you put it all together.” Her now award-winning music video shows her love for themes, “there is something about having this iconography, like a symbol with the song, so I decided to do a whole golf themed music video. The song is playful, using Jersey Club with Drum and Bass elements.”
Using the same process, Eva explains how she got the idea for her ‘Snow’ music video, a catchy UK Garage / house track. “All the lyrics surround the idea of someone who is quite nonchalant and so I thought of snow, you know it’s cold.” The singer talks about being creative on a budget and trying to come up with something that’s eye-catching but attainable, “I don’t have the money to go to a ski slope so I was thinking about how am I going to make something that’s memorable but also includes the theme of snow. I found this music video of this christmas song in the 90s and they are all wearing white outfits in front of a greenscreen and so I thought I’d just make a parody of that.” Again the process of making it was quite challenging she said as the lighting didn’t always work with the greenscreen and so lots of edits were made to make the footage work. However, hard work definitely pays off as the music video proves for itself you don’t need a big budget to make a captivating and creative video.
From being played on the radio to getting interviewed for ITV, Eva explains how Youth Music got her on the news. “I got an email from one of the Youth Music staff members, and they were saying ITV News is interested in me. I was like what, that’s so random but okay that’s gotta happen. They asked me a few questions and it went back and forth like that for a bit and it was such an experience. To just be in the studio and find out how everything works, because I love the whole production side of it all.”
From UK Garage, House, Drum and Bass and soulful melodies what has Eva got up her sleeve next? She describes her music taste at the moment as a blend of “funk, house and disco. The next song that I’m doing is called “How Many Times” and it’s sort of a mixture of funk and disco but not explicitly just cheesy soul. I had a disco themed party for my birthday and just been listening to alot of that lately.”
So with a new song in the works, I had to ask if she was going to make an accompanying music video. Eva stated “looking back at all the planning, I don’t think I’ll have a full length video for this one but shorts instead. At Glastonbury I did loads of recording with a camcorder, so it’s got that retro look. At my birthday party I also filmed and got everyone to dress up all 70s, so I’m going to use some of that footage as well as the footage from the awards ceremony. I’ve also got a gig tonight at Georges Tavern in London, where I’ll do some more filming.” With nothing but creativity and flair for music I’m excited to see what Eva brings out next.