Billie Eilish shares her perspective on success, social media and fame

In this interview and studio performance, Billie Eilish talks about having the kind of early fame and success that speaks to how stars are made: billions of streams and video views.
Billie Eilish in Chanel during the Oscars arrivals at the 92nd Academy Awards in Hollywood, Los Angeles, Calif., Feb. 9, 2020. (Mike Blake/Reuters)

This interview originally aired on November 8, 2018.

Billie Eilish is one of the biggest pop stars of her generation, although she still doesn't like to differentiate between her and her millions of fans. 

"I try as hard as I can to not be anything more than they are," she tells Q host Tom Power. "We're all equal. … It's weird, because they're all, like, my age. They're all kids that I would be friends with."

This much is apparent when you go to any Eilish show, which is more like a "karaoke night" she says, with her audience singing back every single word to her. "I basically could just not show up and the show could still go on."

Her debut studio album, When We Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go?, a collection of deep, brooding, malevolent and celebratory pop released in March 2019, quickly became the best-selling album of the year and resulted in six number one singles, including When the Party's Over

Eilish, who writes and records her music with her brother Finneas O'Connell, was 18 years old when she won five Grammys in 2020 and became the youngest person to win Album of the Year. But don't expect to hear Eilish boast about any of this. While she doesn't take moments like this for granted, she also doesn't put too much stock in them. 

"The fact that I'm gonna die one day and that everyone around me is gonna die and no one will remember me after a certain point makes me feel so good," she says. "I could do the best thing in the world and nobody would remember it … or I can do the worst thing in the world and that won't matter because I'll die eventually. So you don't really have to worry that much." 

She dropped by the Q studio in 2018 to chat about her career up to that point, as well as share her perspective on success, social media, music that inspires her, fame and even existence.

Watch the full interview above.

Produced by ​Mitch Pollock


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