This Wednesday, Netherlands-based DJ Eevee will be in Hong Kong for the first time to perform at This Town Needs in Kowloon. The 25-year-old is considered one of the most influential names in lo-fi hip hop, boasting more than 900,000 monthly listeners on Spotify. She caught up with Young Post ahead of the show to talk about her career so far.
“I started DJing about five years ago, before I started making beats,” Eevee said. Soon she bought a laptop which came with a basic music programme, which kick-started her passion for music production. “I loved it so much, I was focusing more on that than performing!”
She released an EP, Unexpected, in 2016, which led to huge demand for in-person performances. “That’s how I started doing live sets, and then later I also got back into DJing, so now I do both,” she said.
While many big-name artists have criticised Spotify and other streaming services for their low pricing structure, Eevee sees it as a useful platform for making her career as a musician a sustainable one. Her top three singles Hold Up, Viola and Azalea have collectively amassed more than 13 million streams.
“I think nowadays it’s kind of important to have a Spotify profile, as a lot of people use it. It’s a great way to connect with people all over the world and show them your music, and it’s a good way to grow as an artist and get more fans,” she said. She added that the ability to include her live dates on the site helps to connect more with listeners, who can easily find out where and when they can see her performances.
Although Eevee is starting to build a global following, she has certainly faced her struggles along the way. She released a number of beat tapes – albums of instrumental music and beats – on the online music platform Bandcamp, and designed accompanying artwork for the tapes. But creating the artwork came from financial constraints rather than a desire to express herself visually.
“I made them, but I don’t really like them to be honest!” she confessed, explaining that losing her job forced her into that position. “I needed to find a way to make money. I had already planned to make the beat tapes and they were ready to go. I only needed artwork, so I decided to make it quickly myself so I could pay my bills on time.”
Following the positive response to the tapes, Eevee intends to press them onto cassette and vinyl, with new artwork, hopefully within the next year.
For her Hong Kong performance, she’s decided to do a live set. “I’m so excited to come over. I wanted to do something special for this show, so I will only play originals.” She’s also planned to arrive a few days early to explore the city, explaining: “I like to travel around the world, and meet other creative people and my fans.”
With her future looking increasingly promising, her hard work and uncompromising nature make her advice for aspiring musicians ring true: “Keep believing in yourself even if nobody does. Stay true to your vision, and as long as you do you, people will notice that.”
Eevee opens for Snail Mail, presented by Gluestick.
Edited by Charlotte Ames-Ettridge