FINNEAS On The Intuitive Creation Behind “ocean eyes” & Working With Sister Billie Eilish [ANATOMY OF A SONG]

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FINNEAS is a multi-faceted entertainer who has proven to be the jack-of-all-trades. From acting, to singing, to producing music, the young songwriter/artist is becoming one of the most talented musicians in his field. Practically redefining pop music alongside his sister Billie Eilish, the two became a groundbreaking discovery after the release of Billie’s song “ocean eyes.”

Cementing himself as a renowned songwriter and producer, he has gone on to collaborate with acts such as Khalid, Kehlani, Jessie Reyez, Olivia O'Brien, Sabrina Claudio, Marian Hill, Bruno Major, and still continues to create hit after hit with his sister Billie Eilish. FINNEAS has two shows coming up early in 2019 in Los Angeles and New York City. Be sure to get your tickets fast and take a listen to his solo project material.

Billie and FINNEAS are very close siblings and have shown extreme love and appreciation for one another. Having toured as the opener for Billie’s last tour, FINNEAS has established himself as a dynamic force ready to ignite at any point. With its heartbreaking nature and soothing vibe, FINNEAS talks us through the anatomy of “ocean eyes.”

BRAIN: The Thought Process

OTW: When you first sat down to write “ocean eyes,” which came first: lyrics, top line/chord progression, or production? How did the rest fall into place?

In a unique and fantastic instance, everything about the verse happened all at once. I sat down at my piano, played and sang the entire first verse at once. The rest of the song took some time to get right but I knew where it was going.

OTW: Billie has mentioned never being in love before, but this song really conveys the sincerity that’s involved when you love someone. How did you help her channel that emotional intent when you tracked the vocals?

She might be the most convincing singer I’ve ever heard. I’ve never doubted a single word she sings. It’s such a gift. Her voice is like a Stradivarius violin.

OTW: Which part of songwriting feels more natural to you: writing lyrics or composing music?

Both are incredibly impossible or incredibly easy at different times. Wish I had a better explanation.

HEART: The Core Emotion

OTW: What’s the most important thing you hope people take away when they listen to “ocean eyes?”

I just hope they don’t hate it.

LEGS: The Means To Take Off

OTW: Was this song always intended to be cut by Billie?

My high school band did it before Billie. I knew it was meant for Billie the first time I heard her sing it though; she brought life to it that I couldn’t believe.

OTW: What was the best part about working on this song with your sister?

Finishing it and sitting back and realizing we’d made something we loved. I honestly don’t think we [had any disagreements] on that song. We often do, though. Disagreements are good!

OTW: You’ve gone on to collaborate and write with many artists. What do you think made “ocean eyes” the track to break Billie, and, likewise, yourself?

It’s catchy, her voice is beautiful, and I think the lyrics speak to people.

HANDS: Advice For Songwriters Who Need A Lift

OTW: Your career is full of different creative facets: acting, songwriting, and being an artist yourself. What advice would you give to those other “pluralists” out there pursuing many passions?

Just give each thing as much care and attention as you can and don’t spread yourself too thin. For me, doing each different thing makes me like the others that much more. I hope I never have to do just one thing.

OTW: Who are your Ones To Watch?

Dominic Fike and Dijon.

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