Following the release of their brand new single and video RIP My Diary, we caught an interview with musician and songwriter Elliot Wren to find out more about the music, their journey so far, and their hopes for the future. Here’s how it went.
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Hi Elliot – thanks for the interview, and congrats on the release of RIP My Diary! For those who don’t know, how long have you been writing songs, and what made you choose this particular one for a single and video release?
I’ve been writing songs since I was 9 years old – pretty much since I can remember. I chose RIP My Diary as my debut single and video release because the song, for me, tells an important story about letting go of the toxicity in your life.
What do you hope people take away from the single?
I hope that people take away from this song the message that you do not need to stand for other people’s bad behavior – that you can let go of the past and focus on having better and healthier relationships.
The song and video are both brilliantly crafted. In terms of the sound, did you play with a band for this?
Thank you so much! I’ve played this with my acoustic band but the recording itself was not with a band. The instruments were done by Brad Young of BKY Music.
How did the video making process compare for you to that of songwriting, and are there any other ways in which your creativity manifests itself?
Making a video and writing a song are both extremely creative processes, and both involve a lot of collaboration in every stage. I think for me, writing the song was more hands on while making the video was more me handing others the rein, but I was still very involved. I find a lot of ways to be creative in everyday life. I love all forms of writing (not just songwriting) and I love finding ways to be artistic and crafty.
I noticed you play a ukulele in your live clips – what drew you to the uke, and do you play (or aim to play) any other instruments?
It’s kind of a funny story actually. I won a ukulele in a costume contest and ended up learning it because I liked the way uke sounded. Since then I have learned more and more and continued to love playing uke. I play guitar and a bit of piano, and would love to learn more instruments in the future.
Who or what would you say has inspired you in recent years to make this kind of music?
I am inspired by all kinds of things in the world around me. I get inspiration from things I see and hear, things people I’m close to are going through, things I’ve experienced. Pretty much anything is fair game.
There’s a Taylor Swift cover in your recent collection, what is it about Taylor’s music that connects with you?
I have always connected to Taylor Swift’s music. I think mainly it’s the way she expresses herself through her lyrics and tells her story in that way. I have always been the same way – better at expressing myself through lyrics than spoken words.
What does a live show from Elliot Wren entail, is it generally solo acoustic? And what’s the live scene like around Boston right now?
It’s always changing whether I’m generally performing solo or with my acoustic band. There is a mix of both. The Boston music scene is pretty nice. When I started out, I didn’t know anyone and of course it was scary performing in front of strangers. That said, the connections I made on social media helped with that and it turned out that Boston has a really friendly and supportive group of artists I now consider friends.
Do you ever struggle with confidence issues, and if so, how do you overcome this?
Of course I do, I think everyone does to some extent. I try and overcome this by reminding myself that no matter what happens I will be ok, and that small mistakes aren’t the end of the world. I try to think about it like this: if someone made the exact same mistake on stage and I was in the audience, would I think they screwed up and judge them really badly? No. So why would I do the same to myself?
What are the main values you want to bring to the music world?
I want to bring a sense of compassion and understanding into the music world. The greatest thing about music is that it has the power to bring all types of people into the same space and really bring them together, and I want to do what I can to encourage that.
If you could play any venue or event in the world, which would it be, and why?
I would want to play at Boston Pride. I want to show my own pride as well as foster inclusion, acceptance, and awareness. I’m extremely passionate about that.
If you could sit down to lunch with anyone at all, past or present, who would you choose, and what would you ask them about?
I’d want to talk to Taylor Swift. I would love to ask her about all the things she’s doing to change the music industry for artists. I would also love to talk to her about how she’s been using her platform to bring awareness to LGBTQ+ issues even though she is not LGBTQ+ herself. I think it’s important for non-LGBTQ+ people to be open to bringing awareness in a way that’s respectful and I would love to ask her about that.
Is there a longer project on the way, or a tour?
In terms of longer projects, I want to continue recording my music and eventually release an EP or album. I would absolutely love to go on tour once my album or EP is completed and I have enough released material to make one.
What’s your vision for the future – where do you hope to take things as an artist?
I am still only 18 and I have time to figure things out. Getting my college degree from Hofstra University is my short term priority. I would love to find ways to help LGBTQ+ artists, artists with disabilities, and other artists who face extra difficulties in day to day life by showing them that it is possible to pursue music and find love in what you do. Surrounding yourself with people that support you (like my team at Strega Entertainment Group, basically my second family) is key to that.
In terms of concrete goals, I want to keep releasing music that I’m proud of out into the world. I want to keep growing as an artist and improve myself and my art. And of course I would like to make a difference with my music. I’m ultimately just excited to see how my life experiences reflect in my music.
Is there anything else we should know?
Not that I can think of. You asked some awesome questions, thank you! I hope it will help people connect more with me and my music.
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