INTERVIEW: Learning to be human with Dodie

Dodie first graced our screens on YouTube when she was just 16. Now aged 23, Dodie is on tour and has a top five EP. Emma Storr caught up with the Essex-born singer to find out all about her Human EP, working with Tom Walker and chatting honestly about mental health.

How did it feel when Human entered the top five in the UK Albums Chart?

I hadn’t allowed myself to be too excited. I got to number six with my EP and I didn’t want to aim for more in case I was disappointed. I thought whatever happens I’m happy, then it appeared at number five and I was just amazed.

What was it like to work with Tom Walker on the EP?
It was interesting. I didn’t know Tom before that and we were just collecting a bunch of people and seeing who would like to sing on a track with me. Tom’s lyrics are so nice, we had writing sessions and his style was really different. He was so happy to sing on it and now we’re internet friends, he’s just so nice.

When you were first making videos, did you expect to get over one million followers on YouTube?
I remember making videos and I didn’t have a goal, I just did it for fun. Honestly, it was like procrastinating form doing my homework. I didn’t know what I was going to do, I wanted to go to uni, but took a gap year which ended up being my entire life. I’m really lucky honestly.

You’re very open online about your mental health. Why is that important for you?

It baffles me that people have to livewith this alone and not talk to anyone about it. I think it’s important to talk about, and share, whatever I’ve learned. Sometimes it turns into a big forum of people supporting each other, and you especially need that if you’re ill.

From living life on the road to making music, how do you work to stay grounded?
Definitely my friends. I come back after tours and I’m burned out, then I take off my makeup and my friends call me goblin Dodie. We make tea and chat about nothing and I’m like: here’s my real life. We definitely need those moments.

What advice do you have for Source readers looking to pursue a music career?
Just start in any way you can. The music you’re making now won’t be what you want it to be, but if you start and make mistakes, then start again, you’ll learn. It’s never too late!

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