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Eden J Howells - Carving spaces


In the vast landscape that is the London music scene, emerging artist Eden J Howells stands out as a unique force. The singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist recently celebrated the release of their debut EP ‘the fool’, marking a significant milestone in the independent artist's musical journey. Set in moody Primrose Hill, where we candidly talked and admired dogs, this interview takes a deep dive into the artist's early memories, creative process, ex’s banter and their role in contributing to positive change in the representation of non-binary artists.




Eden's journey begins without the backing of a musical family. Growing up in Guildford, just outside London, they learned to play the flute in school — an instrument that might seem worlds apart from their current sound. Nonetheless, even as a child, Eden finds joy in creating songs, a spark that will later ignite their passion for music and the discovery of their voice, “I would make up little songs when I was a kid, in the bath, playing with whatever (...) from that I was like, ‘this is really fun!’” Joining a choir during those formative years marked a turning point for Eden; by getting to grips with their ability to sing, as well as receiving positive feedback from others, fuelling the realisation that music could be more than just a fulfilling pastime — it could be a career.


Eden's relationship with music evolved organically over the years. In the early days of Spotify, they would spend hours curating playlists and exploring different genres. It was a period of self-discovery, they tell us, a journey of finding resonance with various musical styles: “I would sit on my laptop in my room for like hours and just make playlists.” Identifying as a fan of numerous artists, they cultivated a distinctive musical style, which fostered a sense of community and allowed them to connect with like-minded creators and writers. Despite the presence of ever-dreaded imposter syndrome, they then realised they could pursue music professionally and be that for other people, akin to the artists they listened to. As a result, they found themselves not only on the listener's side but also as a contributor to the musical landscape, which brought a fresh perspective on the industry and themselves.



Discussing their recently released debut EP, which they describe as a ‘folky honest journey’, Eden reflects on the songwriting process and the emotional depths that their music aims to explore. A standout track is ‘nice enough’, a sultry break-up song laced with vulnerability and self-reflection: ”Sometimes, I feel like people don't listen to the lyrics,” Eden notes, ”it's a breakup song, and it's a lot about ego and not taking ownership for what's happening.” Navigating the complexities of personal relationships and mental health through songwriting has become therapeutic as has the process of converting emotions into melodies, which in turn has created a body of work that resonates with a growing audience.


Balancing vulnerability and strength feels like a musical tightrope and Eden acknowledges the delicate balance between sharing personal experiences and maintaining strength as an artist. The process of baring one's soul in a song can be challenging, but Eden sees it as a powerful connection point with their audience, “It's a difficult one,” Eden admits, “music has always been a massive emotional outlet for me (...) and I find that a lot of people relate to those feelings, and they find value in putting those feelings into words.”


The conversation takes a turn as Eden discusses the challenges they’ve faced in the music industry, particularly around issues of representation and financial barriers. The lack of specific spaces and funding for trans and non-binary musicians becomes a focal point. “Releasing the EP was a reminder that there's not any space carved out for trans and non-binary musicians,” Eden points out, “it's a reminder that a lack of space and funding that needs to be addressed.“ While recognising the strides made regarding inclusion, Eden emphasises the need for genuine representation and the acknowledgement of the unique challenges faced by trans and non-binary artists.


When talking about the future, Eden mentions their primary focus: making music a sustainable full-time career and continuing to connect with audiences, “I want to be able to do music full time and survive off the money I make from music (...) I would love to make an album, play more festivals, and organise events that promote inclusivity.“   As they learn and adapt to the complexities of the music industry, Eden remains a voice for positive change, encouraging inclusivity, and embracing the multifaceted nature of their identity. In a world where music serves as both a mirror and a beacon, Eden J Howells continues to carve a path that reflects their unique journey, inspiring others to embrace authenticity and resilience in pursuing their creative endeavours. Eden promises to drop new music soon and will also hit the stage at the Camden Club, on the 7th of February next year - don’t miss it!


You can find Eden J Howells on Instagram and Tiktok.



 

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PHOTOS ANA PINTO PROOFREADING BEA VASQUES

TALENT EDEN J HOWELLS

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