Enny Owl on Girlfriends and Short Films - Tunes Tuesday Interview Transcript
Updated: Apr 6, 2022
Maud: Hi, I'm Maud Mostly, my pronouns are they/them, and welcome back to Tunes Tuesday, a weekly series where I sit down with 2SLGBTQ+ queer musicians and bands to talk to them about their music, their experiences, and much much more. Today I am joined by Los Angeles-based folk artist Enny Owl. Hi, how are you doing? Thank you for joining me, would you like to introduce yourself?
Enny: Thank you for having me! Hi I'm Enny Owl and I'm an indie folk singer-songwriter. My pronouns are she/her.
M: Amazing, thank you for being here with me today, and the first thing that I really want to dive into is really another interview that you did this year. So earlier this year you were on a podcast that gave you the opportunity to open up about your coming out story, and while you weren't able to mention your girlfriend on there, in a later post you talked about how she made that process so much easier for you to go through. She also works in the music industry, which is pretty cool and has produced some of your songs in the past so what is it like having someone in your life that can support you so much personally and professionally?
E: It feels like the best of both worlds, because she understands me as a person, my identity and so I have that support and she also understands what it's like to be an aspiring artist and like, she knows the industry so well so all the technical stuff that I don't really understand I can always go to her about.
M: Absolutely that sounds amazing it's like a bit of a you know like when people talk about like industry power couples a little bit.
E: Yeah, people have said that as well, we're like an industry power couple.
M: I love that, that's so cute. And then I want to talk a bit more about your music then so in your song House on a Garden you bring in some Yoruba. What inspired you to do so, and what personal meaning do you feel that added to the song?
E: Well I think because I wanted to write a song that was about my childhood and my parents native language is Yoruba, so I thought it'd be cool to incorporate that in my music and share a bit of my heritage with my fans so yeah I feel like it made it a bit more personal.
M: Absolutely, and do you feel like it added you know, any extra meaning to that you know, album potentially? Do you feel like that came up in any of the other songs?
E: Hmm, wait what do you mean by that? Say that again?
M: No worries at all! So you know, you talk about tying in that culture and that heritage do you feel that you do that consistently throughout your music or do you kind of just enjoy finding places here and there to bring it in?
E: Right. I think, I mean I guess I did it more so in that song, and in my other songs- that's a good question, I've never been asked that before! But I guess I am showing different parts of myself in every song like I sometimes share my queer identity and then in that song it was more about my cultural background and in some songs it's about things I've been through so I suppose every song has a different personal meaning.
M: Absolutely! And I think that's really beautiful that you find ways to you know, share all these pieces of yourself throughout your music and to really make them that personal to you, and be showing that level of vulnerability and identity to your fans, it's wonderful. So then for your 2017 album Scented Cigarettes, you decided to tell an ongoing story of queer love friendship and heartbreak through the music videos of each track it came out so beautifully, I'm like in tears watching the whole thing but is that the first time you'd taken on a project like that and how did you find that process?
E: Yes, it was definitely the first time and while I was- also thank you for saying that, because that means a lot to me because I- when I was doing it I felt really insecure about it because I didn't really have the budget that I wanted at the time and the way I pictured it was a lot more, I don't know like higher quality? Sorry, my headphones keep falling because of this flower crown. But yeah, it was a lot to take on but I was proud of it while I was making it. What was the other question? M: Just how did you find the process? And feel free to talk through it a bit you know, what went into it?
E: The process was very stressful, it was also healing as well because obviously it's based on my college experience when I first was coming into my queerness, so it was a bit weird directing myself like my what happened to me, but a lot of people said that it meant a lot to see that so it made me feel a bit better and encouraged me to keep making it, but yeah it just I thought it would make sense to make a video for every song since the whole album was about one storyline I thought it'd be cool if it was sort of like a visual album.
M: Yeah, and I mean that's super cool and I know you just mentioned that the process was kind of a bit healing, would you mind speaking a bit more to that?
E: Oh yeah, I feel like making when I made the album it was more heartbreaking because I was still like heartbroken, but the videos it was like it gave me a second chance to look at the situation from a different perspective, I could see her side I saw that I was a bit naive back then it was almost cringy, just to relive that and I started to heal and go “this was meant to happen, we both learnt something from this, I can finally move on.” So once I got to the last few videos I started to feel like I was letting go of all the like, hate that I had.
M: That's so wonderful, and you mentioned that this really was your first time taking on such a big and in-depth project, so did you find it was easy to get support while you were working on it and get you know what you needed?
E: Well luckily I had a few friends who were very nice and willing to lend me their equipment, and then the actors that I had in the video they were both my friends and they didn't ask for any payments they just believed in the story, so I was very fortunate, but of course with that there comes some hate there were people who were judging my camera settings and “this doesn't look like professional” and blah blah blah, so I had to deal with those hate comments and just tell myself you know, I'm doing the best I can with what I have like no one gets to to like this great place in their life without having like you know, trials and mistakes, so I just had to ignore that and focus on the positive I was hearing.
M: Absolutely, that's true. What was that positive that you were hearing? You know, what was the reception at the time or are you still hearing about it today much?
E: Yeah, a lot of people- and I always get surprised when people say “yeah I loved it, it was so beautiful” just because I'm like “I know, but the quality.” But I need to stop doing that because obviously that's what I could afford at the time. But they just love the storyline and they feel like they could relate to it because I guess a lot of people have been in that situation where they like started to fall for a friend, and you know, I mean every queer person has that story, and yeah it just felt nice to know that people could relate to it and they really appreciated that I put myself out there like that so that they could feel less alone.
M: Absolutely, that's beautiful, and you know you mentioned that you know, that's what you had at the time so with what you have now and with your music still growing, do you see yourself taking on you know more projects like that in the future or trying to direct something again?
E: Yeah, I would love that! Actually with my song Sandbox I wanted to before the lockdown happened, I wanted to do like, a whole short film set around that song because I actually really enjoyed doing that and now that I can afford somewhat better equipment I'm like “might as well do another like film” that would be fun.
M:Absolutely, well I'm looking forward to watching that if you do end up making it Sandbox is one of my favorite songs of yours I think it's absolutely beautiful, so if you would like to check out any of the videos or music that we've mentioned in the interview today, please head to any of the links down below to support Enny Owl and her wonderful music. Thank you so much for joining me today and she will be playing us out, see you next week!
*Sandbox by Enny Owl begins playing*