Country singer Brooke Eden has carved herself a unique spot in the Nashville space. Coming in hot with her self-titled debut EP in 2014, she immediately captured audiences with her fun-loving ’90s-influenced sound.
In 2021, she once again made waves by coming out as a member of the LGBTQ+. Her personal journey of acceptance helped to create a bold new sound with a compelling message to boot.
Ahead of the release of her newest EP, Choosing You, Eden sat down with American Songwriter to chat about her songwriting process, her latest single “Left You For Me” and her new partnership with The Recording Industry Association.
The RIAA partnership, called “Music Matters,” was spurred on by the idea of being one’s true self. The initiative sees Eden appearing in schools, medical centers, and studios to showcase how music can become a tool for self-discovery.
Eden, who spent time in the hospital as a child herself, finds that music was the guiding force in her recovery.
“RIAA reached out to me about working on a music initiative,” she says. “In talking about my experiences with music, and what they do, we decided on a partnership called Music Matters.
“I was terrified at the hospital, I did not want to be there. But we had a music therapist that came in every couple of days,” she recalls. “It really made my experience in the hospital a positive one. We just wanted to show the impact that music has on everyone’s lives. I also just wanted to give back from that experience that I had when I was a kid.”
The onus of becoming one’s true self is one that Eden is particularly passionate about given how her rise in the music scene gave her the freedom to come out in her early 30s.
“Even in my adult life, music has been like therapy for me. I’ve had a lot to get through in my adulthood,” she adds. “Realizing that you’re in the LGBTQ community a little later than other people, and just in general, it’s a journey.
“You’re so conditioned by society and by religion that life is supposed to be a certain thing, and you’re supposed to love a certain way,” she says. “Music really helped me through that whole process, and that whole journey to get to a place of self-love that I was not at before.”
On top of the partnership that she hopes can take her own experiences and mold them into something positive, writing music has become a form of therapy for the vocal powerhouse.
“To me, a writing room is more like a therapy room,” she says. “Just to have that common human experience, makes you feel like you’re not alone.”
One such song that brought her out of a dark situation was her latest single, “Left You For Me.” In the track, Eden breaks it off with her former partner, letting them know that, unfortunately, there is someone else—herself. The song is a rallying cry for anyone who feels they need to break free from a toxic situation.
“‘Left You For Me’ started with a feeling,” she says. “It was the feeling of doing something you dread for such a long time, like leaving a toxic situation.
“At the time, me and my co-writers, we’re all going through different perspectives of leaving a situation to become the most authentic version of yourself,” she adds. “It feels like you know that the other side will be better but there is really hard. We just wanted to celebrate that moment that you finally get the courage to change your reality into something that’s more true to who you are.”
Eden continues, “Whether it be a toxic relationship, leaving behind drugs or alcohol, it’s about leaving expectations of what everyone else thought my life should be, and, and leaving all of those expectations and people-pleasing behind so that I could just live my most authentic life.”
Mirroring her drive to leave everything that doesn’t serve her best life behind, Eden’s latest songs are all about finding a sound that makes her happy. Taking her childhood inspiration and mixing it with a time-honored classic feel, Eden is tapping into what molded her into an artist in the first place.
“I grew up on ’90s country, but later on in my life, I found like ’60s and ’70s Motown soul and just absolutely fell in love with that,” she says. “It’s this mixture between the two genres of music that kind of have molded me into who I am as an artist and what I love to listen to.”
Her latest EP, Choosing You, is due out on July 29. Described as a statement of love, self-acceptance, and resilience, the album’s tracks chart a course for Eden’s journey back to herself.
Like “Left You For Me” the rest of the EP explores healing, learning, love, loss, and happiness in a release she calls “really special.”
“It’s a very self-empowering EP,” she reveals. “I think that it will resonate with people going through a lot of different things. So I’m really excited for it to be out.”
Photo: Choosing You Main EP Image