It’s been a monumental year for Elli Ingram. The nineteen year old Brighton-born singer/ songwriter’s had a meteoric rise to stardom, from being signed to Island records and releasing her first EP ‘Sober’, to touring with Chase and Status. Her cover of Kendrick Lamar’s poetic justice generated over 300, 000 views and with a recent MOBO nomination for Best Newcomer, alongside Daley and Etta Bond, she’s showing no signs of slowing down.
Praised for a soulful husky voice, gritty lyrics and adorable vintage style, with critics drawing comparisons between her and Adele/Amy and not only for her vocals but that frank honesty, she brings a bit of heart and soul, which makes a refreshing change to the gyrating, latex wearing pop vixens of 2013. She’s also a little bit nawty and that’s why I like her. The cover for her EP Sober features the adorable Darling in a Tearoom, clutching a bottle of Jack Daniels. I chat with the little lady herself to talk all things Music, fashion and Brighton.
How long had you been trying to crack the industry?
It has been an amazing year, everything has happened pretty fast. To be honest I'd just started finding my feet musically about a year and a half ago...I started putting a few videos on YouTube and one thing lead to another and here I am. I appreciate that doesn't happen to everyone and I'm grateful for where I am now.
How were you discovered?
Like most people these days, through YouTube and Soundcloud. An Artist’s exposure and visibility is so much greater.
Do you think growing up in Brighton affected your musical style?
I think Brighton has opened my ears to a wide range of music. I think being from a place like this has inspired me to be more free and become an individual.
Has your fashion changed much since you’ve come into the spotlight?
Not at all, the only thing that's changed is I've become more aware of other brands and designers.
Where are your favourite places to shop?
Oh I couldn't name one. I love a good bargain in a charity shop or a bit of vintage shopping is always a treat. I love my high street brands too though; Topshop, Urban Outfitters, Zara... they always come up with the goods.
What are your plans for when you finishing touring? Is there another album on the way, who are you working with?
I just finished the tour with Chase and Status, and I'm sad it's over. But the minute I got back home I was gone again. I spent last week in a residential studio with my two boys Felix Joseph and Rudi Redz. It was an amazing week of sweet music making and I hope that's how I'm going to spend most this year.
You write very honestly, where do you draw inspiration for your lyrics?
I can only write about how I feel inside. If I try to write about something I can't relate to it sounds like shit. I've found it hard to open up with my lyrics but I'm getting use to it now. It's not an easy thing letting people hear my lyrics; it's basically my diary.
You’ve been compared to Adele and Amy Winehouse, which musicians inspired you growing up?
It's a compliment being compared to Amy because she's a huge inspiration of mine. Whilst growing up I was surrounded by all different genres of music and artists from Joni Mitchell to The Specials to John Martin to Johnny Cash which have all inspired me to this day.
What are you listening to at the moment?
I made a bad mistake to not updating my iPod before I went on tour so I was stuck with a lot of the same music. I've been loving off Party Next Door - I'm a huge fan of Drakes new tune 'Hold on we're going home' - Banks is also a new found favourite.
If we have 24 hours in Brighton, what should we do?
I'd start in the Lanes, there's amazing independent shops and cafes, I'd recommend Iydea for lunch it's a lush vegetarian buffet! If the sun is shining a table down Gemini is always good. It's an outside bar on the seafront and they always have live music. Go have a quick game on the pier as well whist you there! Seeing as we're down on the beach we might as well stay here. There's an amazing seafood restaurant called Riddle & Finns that I recommended for dinner. There's a couple good clubs on the seafront too that are worth a visit, and if you really want to be in Brighton for 24 hours, once you've fallen out the club, stumble up to Buddies all night cafe for a greasy fry up!
What have been the highlights of your summer so far?
There's been a few! Playing Glastonbury on the main stage is still hard to digest. Ibiza was incredible because I had a load of my friends out. The whole summer has just been unforgettable.
Finally, you’re probably bored of this question, but what does the future hold for Elli Ingram?
Who knows, I can't see into the future but I do hope it's a lot of happiness, creativity and success.