Billie Eilish Reveals Suicidal Origins Behind 'Everything I Wanted'
By Paris Close
March 13, 2020
Billie Eilish’s song, “Everything I Wanted,” was much darker than you thought.
In a New York Times profile, the 18-year-old admitted her 2019 record, written as an ode to brother Finneas, was originally inspired by a dream in which she alludes to taking her own life. As Eilish explained, the subject caused a “big argument” between her and Finneas “because I admitted something that I was, uh. It wasn’t a physical thing I was admitting. I don’t know how to put it without actually saying it, and I don’t want to actually say it.”
“But it was me admitting to something that was very serious about my depression,” the songbird continued. “A very serious step that I was admitting that I was planning on taking. And Finneas said, 'I don’t want to write a song about you killing yourself and how that’s everything you wanted!'”
Finneas, who appeared alongside his sister for the interview, added: “It was a period where I was really worried about my sister, and I felt like an enabler in helping her write a song as bleak as that song was. Like the musical equivalent of giving an alcoholic another beer: ‘I’m not going to support this.’”
Reasonably concerned, Finneas felt as if they had written the song “in real time,” and recalls telling his sister, “‘This is something we’ve got to write on the other side of this hill. We have to go through this in real life. You can’t always solve your problems in a song.’”
What listeners received in 2019 is a revised version of the track with a shift in perspective. “Finneas and I both had the idea to make the song about each other, instead of just me and how I was feeling,” Eilish revealed. “We had a complete block and the way we got through it was to make it about us as siblings and what we mean to each other.”
Read the profile in full here.
Photo: Getty Images