Remember when letter later – the overhyped ‘movement’ of sending yourself a letter that would turn up in your inbox in the year or date of your choosing – was a huge thing? We all wanted to try it: to send our future selves a heartfelt letter to serve as either a memento of the life we lived or a reminder of the life we wanted to live. The words that contained our aspirations and frustrations we wanted our future selves to know.
Well, a truly creative and well-thought ‘time capsule’ interview by Vanity Fair just given American singer-songwriter a real-life scenario of talking to one’s younger self (selves in Eilish’s case). Vanity Fair has interviewed the talented musician every 18th of October since 2017 with the same series of questions. It has over the years become a tradition amongst Billie Eilish fans globally, allowing them a virtual peek into her life as she grows as a woman and as a music icon.
In a 27-minute video uploaded on Vanity Fair’s official YouTube account on Tuesday, Eilish watched her three previous videos intently – smiling, laughing, rolling her eyes and covering her face – as she listened to her 15, 16 and 17-year-old selves answer Vanity Fair questions.
It was hilarious and funny at first, with the singer agreeing and negating her past selves’ answers. Her wit has always been her asset, aside of course from her haunting whisper-like vocals. But as proof of how much she has grown over the span of four years under the limelight, Eilish’s youthful wisdom has also deepened and she is now more empowered to use her platform to promote worthwhile advocacies such as body positivity and environmental preservation.
With a growing number of social media followers – from 257,000 Instagram followers in 2017 to 67.5 million this year – Eilish sure has become a force to be reckoned with.
And looks Billie Eilish had somehow predicted how her 2020’s gonna go. In her 2019 interview, Eilish said, “If I want a hundred days off next year, I hope I get that.”
Eilish quipped, “Girl, you got what you wished for. You happy?”
She added, “This is the most amount of time off that I’ve had in five years now. During the first month quarantine, I was like ‘wow! This is most amount of time off I ever had. I can’t believe it. It’s like a free vacation.”
Like everybody else, Eilish was wrong. This global health crisis has stayed far too long than we all ever anticipated. Billie Eilish was supposed to go on a massive “Where Do We Go?” tour in North and South America, as well as Europe this year. But because of the pandemic, all her shows were postponed. The tour was intended to push forth Eilish’s climate-change awareness campaign.
“But I will say I have made and created things that I don’t think I would have created without this amount of time. I would like things to be normal, though. I would like that. But I’m grateful for what it’s given me.”
“I really wanted to go on that world tour. We started it, three shows in then cancelled and flew back home.”
“It’s so weird what we take for granted. I never thought that I would not be able to do shows one day. So much time spent me dreading tour, dreading press. I had no idea that I was dreading something that I would one day not even be legally allowed to do. That’s what’s crazy to me. The shows were like the one thing that I feel I’ve ever been good at; the only thing that made me feel like I belonged.”
When asked what matters differently now than a year ago, Eilish answered: “Everything matters differently now than a year ago. Honestly, everything. Like all the things that I think mattered the most a year ago, matter less. All the things that I thought mattered the least a year ago, matter more. I learned so much about the way people are living. I wasn’t aware of climate crisis and social injustices…all the bad things. They kind of made me think differently.”
As a teenage artist in fast-paced, liberated country, Eilish has also been a subject of nasty rumors. At 16, she was rumored pregnant. A year after, at 17, she was said to have sold her soul to Satan. The controversy blew up after the pop star released a video of her All the Good Girls Go to Hell single. A closer reading to the song’s lyrics suggests differently though, as it was really intended to create climate awareness.
But this year, 18-year-old Eilish has faced another rumor which she immediately discredited at as malicious comments, saying those words from online trolls didn’t come as an offense simply because she’s comfortable with how she looks.
“There’s this picture of me, like, running from my car to my brother’s front door on like, a 110-degree day, in a tank top,” the Ocean Eyes singer explained.
“And everyone’s like, ‘Damn, Billie got fat!’ And I’m like, ‘Nope, this is just how I look! You’ve just never seen it before!’”
Billie Eilish’s fashion style mostly consists of baggy clothes and track suits. In another interview in 2019, the pop star revealed that she wears loose outfits so people won’t be able to judge or sexualize her, adding that nobody can have an opinion on her body because nobody has seen what’s underneath.
Beyond fashion and spreading body positivity among her young fans whom she loves inspiring, Eilish has also learned to use her influence to create social changes. She was never the one to shy away from expressing her political perspective, knowing many people are looking up to her and taking her opinions seriously.
“I have a huge platform. Why would I want to waste that. Yes, it’s easier to say nothing but that’s not gonna help anything. There’s a big difference between being silent and processing. You have to think through what you have to say. Say it the right way. It’s really important to speak up but also be respectful.”
Career-wise, Eilish has achieved so much in just four years. From being Apple’s Up Next Artist in 2017 to guesting in Ellen and Jimmy Fallon’s shows, sold-out tours, biggest selling album of 2019 and to her five – yes, FIVE! – Grammys!
It wouldn’t come as a surprise if she bags more awards as Eilish is up for several Grammys in 2021, alongside female powerhouses Taylor Swift, Dua Lipa and Beyonce for Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance.
It was obvious in her four videos how Eilish has changed and grown – her hair color, confidence, perception about life and the industry she’s in, her priorities and her courage to speak up for her principles.
But if there’s one thing that hasn’t changed at all, it was Billie Eilish’s love for her family. In all four versions of herself, Eilish revealed she stays connected to her parents and to her brother, who she also consistently named as her best friend.
And like her Vanity Fair interviews in 2017, 2018 and 2019, her 2020 video ended with her hugging her mother.
“Don’t take your parents for granted, people,” Billie Eilish – an 18-year-old lady – said.
After, Billie Eilish is a young star that is on her way to define the best version of herself. A young star has grown up so much and still have a lot more to keep going on.