Eloise Alterman. Photo Credit: Caity Krone
Eloise Alterman chatted about her debut EP “Sad Bird,” which was released today via ATCO/Big Yellow Dog/Atlantic.
Grammy Award-winning producer Dave Cobb (Brandi Carlile, Sturgill Simpson, The Highwomen) produced the album and we’re excited to be launching the first chapter of Eloise’s musical journey, with her debut EP.
On her piano-laden ballad “Her,” she said, “I have always loved piano-heavy songs and it just felt like the perfect feel for this song. Anytime a song starts with the piano I’m immediately pulled in, and I wanted the same for this song.”
Regarding the song selection process for her new EP, she said, “I have written so many songs for this EP but the ones that stuck out the most were the ones that felt the most vulnerable. It really sets the tone as well for who I am as a person and a songwriter with trying to be as honest as possible about struggling to hold myself together.”
She listed “Seasons” as her personal favorite song in the collection. “I love ‘Seasons’ because there is a glimmer of hope to it. Still very much in the trenches of heartbreak but knowing you’re going to survive and just waiting for time to heal,” she said.
A self-taught pianist/guitarist who began penning soul-baring songs in her early teens, Alterman moved to Nashville alone at age 17, without knowing a soul in all of Music City.
After spending years working on her own to sharpen her craft, she inked a deal with ATCO/Atlantic Records on the strength of her powerful songwriting—an element showcased on her new EP Sad Bird. Made with Dave Cobb, Sad Bird presents an up-close portrait of heartbreak, healing, and self-discovery.
With an understated yet captivating sound informed by longtime influences like Stevie Nicks and Joni Mitchell, all throughout Sad Bird, Alterman boldly pushes outside her comfort zone to uncover the kind of timelessly poignant pop songs that cut right to the heart.
To that end, the hypnotic lead single “Her” emerged after a long period of adamant resistance to its subject matter. “I’d finished writing all the songs for the EP, but there was still one thing I hadn’t addressed—the other woman,” says Alterman. “I really didn’t think I would ever be able to write that song, but then I finally was able to be real with myself and admit what I’d been avoiding.
The result is a raw but lushly textured track centered on Alterman’s moody vocal work, precisely channeling the singular pain of knowing the one you love is hung up on someone else.
On her music and songwriting inspirations, she said, “Life and my take on how things affect me as a person. I’m a deep feeler and I’ve always known that about myself, and music has been a wonderful outlet for that.”
She opened up about being an artist in the digital age. “I feel like every artist of every generation has faced the changing times and strange newness of technology…even in the 70s… artists had to change with the times. I just feel lucky to have a team that helps me understand the strategies and ways to reach as many people as possible with the help of technology,” she said.
Alterman listed John Mayer and Bon Iver as her dream collaboration choices in the music business.
On her definition of success, she said, “Feeling understood by the people who listen to my music and helping people feel their emotions by listening to the music and making it a safe place to be vulnerable.”
“Sad Bird (The Hurting Phase)” is available on digital service providers by clicking here. “I want you to know I absolutely have not ‘made it’ to pure happiness and peace, but I’m working on it every single day! And if you are that person too, we’re in this together,” she concluded.