The talented rising star Henry Moodie is one of the artists to watch out for in 2023 according to Amazon Music’s Artist To Watch in 2023. With having 92 million worldwide streams, 3.5 million monthly listeners on Spotify and having already his own headline shows, we can definitely see why. With his new single ‘pick up the phone’, Henry is more honest than ever about himself. To get to know him better, we had some time to chat with Henry where he talks about his new single, headline shows, and more.
Hi Henry, thank you for your time with us. Congratulations on your new single ‘pick up the phone’ and playing your own show at the Islington’s Academy! How does it feel like to have played your biggest headline show so far?
Thank you so much for having me! Islington was such a fun show, I feel like I’m still recovering from it on how good it was; it was so surreal, the crowd was lovely. I was playing ‘pick up the phone’ which wasn’t released yet but people knew the lyrics already from the teasers that I’ve posted on TikTok, it was just unreal and so so so fun! I actually miss it already because I won’t do another headline show for a while now, so it’s going to be weird because it was kinda the end of the first era of my life.
Then on your new single, ‘pick up the phone’, what is it about? Can you tell us more about the song and the process behind it?
I wrote this song in New York with this songwriter called Aldae — who’s an absolute legend by the way! We just had this loop on repeat and instantly came up with the chorus melody and we were adding the rhyme scheme and we were like ‘Oh this is sick!’. I didn’t really know what I wanted to write about that, I love to write break-up songs but I wanted to write something that was more connected to me so we decided to write about the journey with my mental health because that’s such a big part of my life. So this was my chance to write about it; however, I didn’t want to make it a sad song but more motivational and be able to help people through a hard time. I start singing about the dark moments of my life, but then when the song progresses, it’s more up-lifting, it’s a sort of a therapy and support song in one. I want to help people through hard times.
That’s beautiful, and really brave to write a song about it as well, because I think it’s quite hard to write about it whilst it’s such an important topic.
Yeah, it’s quite hard to write about; it’s so much harder than writing something about love. It’s a sort of therapy, because you really have to be vulnerable and that’s pretty difficult.
Is that also how making music started for you? As a way to express your feelings?
Yeah it kinda started as therapy, my mum is a therapist so I have been always in an environment where I was open with my feelings. Songwriting was my way to express myself, and I think that actually started when I was in school; when I was 11 or 12-years old.
What’s your biggest inspiration when it comes to making music?
Well, my favourite artist is Taylor Swift, she is actually the reason how I got into music. The way she manages to create so many eras with absolutely amazing songs — in my opinion there’s no album from her that flops. I’m so scared to get tickets for her tour as well haha. But besides Taylor, my school is also a big source of inspiration; I feel like the music block in my school is where I always belong; my friends and teachers there were really inspiring. My friend Izzy and I always used to cover Taylor Swift songs at school as well; but I always thought it was awkward and embarrassing back then.
But now you made it to the point where you opened for The Vamps in the O2 Arena, having your own headline shows and you’re even in the Amazon Music’s Artist to Watch in 2023. How the HECK do you process all these achievements? How do you stay calm?
I feel like I’m still processing it haha. I’m really grateful for how things are going right now; I kinda went from 0 to 100, which is great because it’s always been a dream. However, it’s really crazy do I just stay grateful for everything that’s happening and let it fly by; that’s how it keeps me sane.
You’ve mentioned how your mental health has been a big part of your journey. Are there any other challenges that you’ve faced during your career?
I don’t know if it has anything to do with my career, but I’ve always struggled with anxiety as well. When I was in school, I had some tics and I was really anxious. I really went through a bad phase of panic attacks a few years ago. I think I kinda learned how to deal with it; it’s obviously not gone but I try to reassure myself by thinking ‘This is anxiety, it happens. ‘ Now I’ve known more about about do I feel like I have more control over it.
What was it like for you when you played your first show?
My first solo show was supporting The Vamps in Manchester, and I was SO nervous. I just basically had stage fright, but right now I don’t really have that anymore, maybe it became more normal to me. But yeah, the first show was so scary, however their fans are so welcoming so after a few songs that feeling was gone. I think smaller venues are actually more scary than playing arenas, which I never expected to do in my life. In arenas, you really don’t see the faces, whilst in smaller venues you see more faces so it does feel like you play for more people than that you actually do in an arena, where you only see the first few rows.
What is your favourite thing in your career so far? Was that playing those shows?
Honestly, I think the Islington show was such a highlight of my career; it was such a fun show and I wish I could do it all over again. But there will be another headline show in the future!
Ooh.. exciting! Do you have any other dreams you hope to achieve, opening for Taylor Swift maybe?
Oh my god, opening for Taylor Swift would be my DREAM! But I also can’t wait to release my first album. However, I think my ultimate dream is to headline the O2 arena in London, after playing there as support act for The Vamps I was like ‘Yeah, this is it!’.
I’m sure you’ll make that happen someday! Then we’re already at the final question, are there any things we can expect from you in the near future?
I’m really excited for the music video of ‘pick up the phone’, we are shooting it this week, so that’s something I am really excited about and probably the biggest thing that’s coming up right now. Future headline shows as well, — whenever that is.
We want to thank Henry so much for the lovely chat with us. Stream ‘pick up the phone’ right here.