- 01 Feb 18
Meet Billie Eilish, the 16-year-old Los Angeles wunderkind with an Irish connection set to take over pop in 2018.
Billie Eilish is thrilled to be giving her first Irish interview. One of the year’s brightest musical prospects, her full name is Billie Eilish Pirate Baird… O’Connell. So yes, there’s a connection to the old country. Also, Hot Press pronounces “Eilish” correctly. This is a big deal to the 16-year-old Los Angeleno. She is fed up, at an existential level, of Americans calling her Billie “Eye-lash”.
“I’m Scottish and Irish,” she says. “I can’t tan AT ALL. For years nobody had ‘Eilish’ even in their vocabulary. Literally the other day somebody stopped me in the street to take a picture and he said that his girlfriend’s first name was ‘Eilish’. I was like, ‘Oh my God’. I’m excited to go to Ireland and not be the only one. I like being unique and everything, but I would also like to be somewhere people can pronounce my name correctly.”
Eilish recently turned 16, which might not normally be a big deal in a pop star. A 16-year-old Justin Bieber, for example, made perfect sense (probably more sense than the 23-year-old version). Teenage Taylor Swift singing about high school and mean girls and boys – yes, that added up too.