With her forthcoming debut EP dropping soon, NYC-via-Boston’s Ella Galvin is ready to make her mark.

Displaying her genre-fluid tendencies across singles like the UK two-step sounds of “Do Not Disturb” and the guitar-driven power ballad “Spare Me”, Ella’s songs showcase her fondness for experimentation and innovation. Having spent the last few years developing her sound and fine-tuning her live show with performances around New York City, Galvin fuses a wealth of musical knowledge with diaristic storytelling that captures the discomfort and introspection of being a young, queer woman in today’s world.

Ahead of her EP release, we caught up with Ella Galvin about creating the project and her experiences as a queer woman in music – read on for more.

SheBOPS: Congratulations on your new single, “Do Not Disturb”! What inspired you to write “Do Not Disturb” and how does it connect to your personal experiences?

Ella Galvin: Thank you! I wrote “Do Not Disturb” about a situationship I was in that I didn’t feel super invested in. I wanted to capture the feeling of wanting someone just to feel less lonely, but caring more about the idea of a relationship than the actual relationship itself.

How do you feel the atmosphere and mood of “Do Not Disturb” differs from your previous single, “Spare Me”?

They are totally different vibes, for sure! “Spare Me” is a much slower, more singer-songwriter song, whereas “Do Not Disturb” is more experimental for me. I’ve never done a bedroom-pop song before so creating “Do Not Disturb” was fun. Lyrically, “Spare Me” is definitely a deeper emotional song while “Do Not Disturb” is a lot more playful.

Could you elaborate on the significance of the voice note that concludes “Do Not Disturb”?

Honestly, it’s just a silly therapeutic message that I recorded after I ended things with the person I was in a situationship with. I never sent it to anyone, but sometimes it just feels good to say how you’re feeling out loud. 

What do you hope listeners take away from the lyrics of “Do Not Disturb”?

That it’s ok to go through phases of relationships. Each of them fills a need you have in that moment<3 

I also hope it lets everyone know that you can do that with your iPhone notifications (put your phone on DND but still allow notifications from specific people), haha. It’s kinda sick! 

How do you envision “Do Not Disturb” fitting into the larger narrative of your upcoming EP?

The song fits the overarching narrative of the EP, which was about me learning about what I wanted and did not want in the long run. I’ve reached a point where I refuse to be treated badly and I won’t ignore red flags. I’m growing up and I’m choosing to put myself first. 

Can you tease any themes or concepts we can expect to hear on your upcoming EP?

The EP is a lot of songs about being in your early 20s and self-growth. It delves into all the different types of relationships, like romantic, friends, work, etc. that we navigate in our early 20s.

How has living in New York City shaped your music and your identity as an artist?

There is inspiration everywhere in New York City. The music community in NYC also feels like such a small world. There’s such a vast amount of different artists here but I feel like everyone somehow knows each other. 

Can you share a moment of doubt or uncertainty you’ve experienced in your music career, and how you overcame it?

In January 2021, I left the music group I was originally in. I felt super undervalued and unappreciated. It actually almost drove me to quit music entirely. Then, I met a jazz artist who sang at a spot in the East Village. He asked me if I wanted to jam sometime and from then on we started working on stuff together. Through him I also learned about my current Buddhist practice — long story short, I started chanting Nam Myoho Renge Kyo and watched as I took my first step as a solo artist into the NYC music scene.

What’s one thing you wish more people knew about you as an artist?

This isn’t something specifically about me, but I do wish that more people would know that anybody can do it, whatever “it” is. Everyone doubts themselves so much, but it’s so important to believe in yourself, your art, and just communicate with the people around you for feedback. It’ll only help you become better and better. We are all such capable people! 

What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned since starting your music career?

After every show I write down what I think went well and what I can improve on — this helps me be the best I can be for the next show I do. Sometimes I really don’t have a lot of time to prepare but you learn from all of the issues you face in planning shows, releasing music, writing, collaborating.

What challenges have you faced as a young, queer woman in the music industry, and how have you overcome them?

It’s really important for me to make music that allows my identity as a queer woman to really shine through, and to work with people who understand that. Incorporating my queer identity in a unique way that hasn’t been done before is a great challenge though.

How do you think your identity as a queer woman influences your music and your perspective as an artist?

I think I’m really still learning how to best incorporate that into my music and writing. I’m still discovering things about myself so it’s something I’m still navigating personally and musically.

In what ways do you think the music industry can better support and uplift queer women artists?

Continue to support queer and/or female artists by streaming their music and going to their shows. Additionally, I think it’s important to prioritize and give opportunities to queer or female photographers, videographers, musicians, graphic designers, etc. And, most importantly, to PAY them for their art! 

What’s one goal you hope to achieve with your music in the next year?

I’m really hoping to play more shows in different cities in the next few months. Stay tuned! 

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