Coming off the heels of a tremendous 2022, 21-year-old pop singer Emilia Tarrant is excited to share her latest EP, When It Was Chaotic, with the world. The collection of songs on the latest EP demonstrates Tarrant’s singing and songwriting prowess and is only a taste of what’s to come on her forthcoming album, set to be announced later this year.
But before her music was supported on BBC Radio 1 and invited to play at the iconic Glastonbury Festival, Tarrant first got her start in music at 12 years old, when her mum brought a piano to their house so she could learn to play. Tarrant tried out a few keys herself, which quickly led to her writing her first song within a week after that.
“Growing up I was never thinking ‘oh, I want to be a singer-songwriter,’” Tarrant recalled. “But I always loved music from an early age and it was so natural to me to just start.”
While she started out writing at a young age, Tarrant dove into more complex songwriting at around 15 years old, inspired mainly by her relationships at the time and the people in her life. Then by 16, she met her manager and then started to branch out into playing live gigs.
“I think just playing even in front of my family and friends was like a big deal, but I realized that the most important part of making music for me, even now, has always been sharing it with other people,” she says.
Since then, Tarrant released her first EP, Honeymoon Phase, in 2021 and worked alongside producers and songwriters that helped hone in her inspirations and meticulously craft her sound. She sees When It Was Chaotic as a coming-of-age for her since it’s a project she’s been working on since she was 19. The collection of songs is based on different emotions and is about different experiences in her life. Each includes its own element of chaos, which served as inspiration for the title.
Tarrant reflected on the intense writer’s block she dealt with during the height of the pandemic and lockdowns in the UK and how they affected her songwriting process. “I write my songs based on what I’m feeling and what’s going on in my life,” she recalled. “During the mandate, there was nothing going on so it made it harder to write, but that’s where ‘When it was Chaotic’ came from. I was writing about being very numb and kind of preferring even like the motional craziness. of life. Then some of the other songs from the EP were written after the pandemic”
The latest single of the EP “Another Life,” describes the aftermath of seeing one of her exes three years after their break up. In the press release about the latest single, Tarrant describes the mixed emotions seeing him after so long and the emotions and questions that experience brought up for her. “I didn’t get a lot of initial closure when we broke up, and ended up feeling like a fool, as at the time the relationship felt good from my side,” she recalled in the press release “So we based the song on all of the ‘what ifs?’. What if we tried harder to keep the relationship going? What if we had met each other later in life? And so on.”
While the other songs on When It Was Chaotic are inspired by Tarrant’s relationships, one of the standout songs on the EP is “Best Friend Heartbreak,” which eloquently describes the pain of losing a close friendship. It was a song that Tarrant had been trying to write over a few years but found it difficult to really dive into as she worked on it. “When I finally wrote it and got it off my chest, it was an incredible feeling. Listening back, I really felt like I captured the emotion and it feels like there was a weight taken off my shoulders,” she says.
When It Was Chaotic is now available on all streaming platforms.