In the June issue of British Vogue, Billie Eilish speaks about personal choice, about fear, about fun, about women’s bodies, about consent, and above all about confidence. Billie collaborated closely with the team here, led by style director Dena Giannini, to commission designers from Gucci to Alexander McQueen, Valentino to Burberry, on a series of custom looks.
“I don’t think there’s ever been such a young pop artist to write songs that are so personal,” Elton John tells Snapes. “Billie Eilish’s songs come from within her. She reminds me of Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan – a totally old soul from a vocal point of view. She doesn’t sound like anybody today.”
Those words are one hell of a compliment from a great musician himself !!!
As for the old soul’s, 19-year-old current-life decision to go blonde and voluptuous in British Vogue — in advance of her new album, Billie had a send off in February. “I’m not putting on that f**king wig one more time!” the pop star Zoomed to debut her Botticelli blonde hairdo. A few weeks later, she went Instagram-official with an image that became the fastest post to reach a million likes: a cool six minutes. Two days later, the hair debut was the third most-liked post ever.
It took four dye sessions and a lot of patience to erase the signature jet black and lurid green we’ve known for 18 months. She was “ready for it to suck” — the blonde metamorphosis — but it’s been transformative. “I feel more like a woman, somehow,” she says, surprised.
People who ask if Billie Eilish is the next Cyndi Lauper, now know the stakes are far higher. The M-word is on everyone’s lips. Once you’ve been compared to Billie Holiday by Elton John, the sky’s the limit.
On the subject of fashion, sexy has not made news in recent years — although the Fall 2021 Burberry collection breathed a bit of sensual life into today’s women who demand to be taken seriously. Billie admits that she’s quite fascinated with the aesthetic of the mid-20th century pin-ups. This admission of style desire sent BV style director Dena Giannini running into the waiting arms of Alexander McQueen, Burberry, Gucci and Valentino for a series of custom looks.
EIC Edward Enninful concludes in his June 2021 editor’s letter: “I think it’s safe to say the result is Billie Eilish as we’ve never seen her before – but as always with Billie, it goes deeper, and it is the story behind the transformation that is key. That Billie is 19, is often hailed as the antidote to toxic tropes for women in pop, and has been a reluctant icon of body positivity (a term she has a complicated relationship with), as well as, of course, a feminist thought leader for her fans, makes this an intriguing change of gear.”
Billie’s metamorphosis coincides with “a chilling new song that confronts abusers who exploit underage girls”, writes Snapes. “Don’t make me not a role model because you’re turned on by me,” she says about this aggressive visual move to take control of her own narrative. “Showing your body and showing your skin – or not – should not take any respect away from you.”
Tell that to the Republican women’s body-managing mafia, Billie. Now that Kanye West sees himself as God’s man in charge of shutting down Planned Parenthood, don’t be shocked if he accuses you of being the next woman in a long line of historic women who threaten the very pillars of Western civilization. That might not be a bad event in 2021, Billie. Just sayin’. ~ Anne
Read more VOGUE