5 Songs You Didn’t Know FINNEAS Wrote for Artists Besides Billie Eilish

Almost everyone knows Billie Eilish, the pop singer who, before the age of 21, won an astonishing seven Grammy Awards amid a host of other honors. Knowing Eilish, however, means knowing her almost-as-famous brother, too—Finneas O’Connell. O’Connell, whose stage name is FINNEAS, is also a singer, but has become well known as a wildly successful songwriter and producer.

Videos by American Songwriter

O’Connell has collaborated with his famous sister many times, winning awards for his contributions on tracks such as “Bad Guy,” “Come Out and Play,” “Six Feet Under,” and “Lost Cause.” In subsequent years, O’Connell has also written for films. He made history along with his sister as two of the youngest people to win a “Best Song” Academy Award for “No Time to Die,” the title track of the James Bond film of the same name. The theme song, which was performed by Eilish, earned both siblings a host of other honors as well, including a Grammy and a Golden Globe.

O’Connell is also the frontman of the band The Slightlys, and has released several albums as a solo artist. One of his songs, “What They’ll Say About Us,” landed on the Billboard Alternative Chart, climbing to No. 24, while “Let’s Fall in Love for the Night” peaked at No. 17.

But more than anything, O’Connell is a fantastically active songwriter. He has worked behind the scenes with artists such as Justin Bieber, Trevor Daniel, Camila Cabello, and many more. Having become known for his skill in writing lyrics and composing intricate, one-of-a-kind instrumentals, O’Connell has become highly sought-after as a songwriter to the stars. Here are five songs you didn’t know he wrote for other artists.

1. “Bikini Porn,” Tove Lo (2020)

When Swedish artist Tove Lo wrote the lyrics for “Bikini Porn,” her team had a less-than-enthusiastic response, even telling her that the song’s potential was all in her head. So the singer reached out to FINNEAS in an attempt to bring her vision to fruition. The result was a carefree and unabashedly weird song about cutting loose on the beach.

“I’ve been a fan of Tove Lo since the minute I first heard Habits in 2014,” FINNEAS wrote in an Instagram post. “Sometimes you can tell instantly that a songwriter or singer is going to have a lasting impact immediately and that’s exactly how I’ve always felt about tove. Writing with her proved me right.”

Run around in your boring bubble
Scared to pop it, you think I’m trouble
Time to time I know you’ll be dreaming
What would life be if I just go with her?

[RELATED: Billie Eilish and FINNEAS Win Oscar for Best Original Song for ‘007’ Theme “No Time to Die”]

2. “So Will I,” Ben Platt (2020)

Ben Platt has become known as the actor from Pitch Perfect and Dear Evan Hansen, but the mellow-voiced singer also made waves with his single “So Will I.” The song was written at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, during a time of global fear and uncertainty. Platt intended it to be a song about human connection—ironic since he and his co-writers had to collaborate over FaceTime. After Platt wrote the lyrics, he reached out to FINNEAS to help compose the song, but barely dared to hope that he would respond. But respond, he did.

The mountains won’t start moving
And the rivers won’t run dry
The world will always be there
And so will I

3. “Used to This,” Camila Cabello (2019)

FINNEAS teamed up with singer Camila Cabello to write and produce her song “Used to This” in 2019. The song, which was featured on her second studio album, was about her relationship with Shawn Mendes. Mendes’ song “Señorita,” in turn, was also about their relationship.

FINNEAS reached out to Cabello with hopes of collaborating with her, later posting on Instagram: “Camila Cabello is one of my favorite artists. I stood in the crowd at lollapalooza last summer and watched her set in awe. I texted my managers/publisher right then that I would die to write with her.”

It’s gonna take me a minute
But I could get used to this
Like every tattoo on your skin
I’m memorizing every inch
I could get used to this

4. “Moral of the Story,” Ashe (2019)

Ashe released the song “Moral of the Story” in 2019 on her second EP. But it wasn’t until the next year when it was featured on the soundtrack for To All the Boys: P.S. I Still Love You that it became a hit. The song peaked at No. 71 on the Billboard Hot 100. Ashe wrote the song with FINNEAS after meeting him during a songwriting session.

The singer said that she and O’Connell had a deep creative connection and believed in the power of her EP long before it hit the Top 100. She also credited him for adding some of the track’s most intriguing sound effects, making it truly stand out from the crowd.

It’s funny how a memory
Turns into a bad dream
When running wild turns volatile
Remember how we painted our house
Just like my grandparents did?
So romantic, but we fought the whole time
Should have seen the signs, yeah

5. “The Most Beautiful Thing,” Bruno Major (2020)

FINNEAS reached out to indie singer Bruno Major, hoping to collaborate. They wrote Major’s “The Most Beautiful Thing” together, a gentle guitar ballad to an unnamed soulmate. The song has the unmistakable lyrical genius and musical complexity that FINNEAS has become known for.

“Bruno became one of my favorite artists after his music was recommended to me by my manager Danny back in 2017,” FINNEAS wrote on Instagram. “[We] met for coffee in the summer of 18, talked for 2 hours, I got horribly sunburnt and we started writing songs whenever we were in the same city. Every day I spend with Bruno feels nothing like work and I am so proud of this song we wrote together.”

I don’t know who you are
But I’ll save you a seat
Hang my coat on a chair next to me
I tried to reassure the waiter
Say you’re down the street
He laughed at me
So here’s to you
The most beautiful thing that I have never seen

Photo: Luke Fenstemaker / High Rise PR

Leave a Reply

The Meaning Behind “Hold the Line” by Toto