Eden XO Is Not Your Average Pop Star

Eden xo and I chatted about Coachella, her new EP and politics in the Middle East; how many pop stars can hold down that conversation? Half-American and half-Iranian, Eden xo brings a fresh perspective to the pop star paradigm, and there’s nothing she doesn’t have an opinion about. The new EP, Dirty Blonde will be released this Spring, so start to get prepared; Eden xo is not your average pop star.

You were just at Coachella, right? Did you have fun?

Eden XO: Yeah! I had the best time. I’ve been a lot, but this time was my favorite because I didn’t really care. Hozier was great on the stage. Azaelia Banks was amazing, like really incredible.

Did you see the Drake-Madonna kiss?

E: No, because I left early to watch Game of Thrones! I’m so bummed that I missed the Madonna kiss; we were driving back and my Instagram feed just went off.

[Laughs] That’s awful! Were you one of the girls in a flower crown this weekend?

E: No, I wasn’t [laughs].  I was going for more of a comfortable look. I was doing some overalls, some Doc Martens, some comfy hats. When I went to the Nylon party, I made more of an effort, and was wearing this amazing pajama silk robe. That was pretty cool.

Are you really into fashion?

E: I love fashion! I really love Jeremy Scott, he’s been one of the first designers to give me clothes and we’ve been internet friends, and it was awesome, because I actually go to meet him at Coachella. My whole thing is mixing low-end with high-end. I find things at the 99 cents store and pair them with pieces that are more high end. 

How did you get your name?

E: Well, Eden is my middle name, so it was given to me, and I wanted people to be able to find me easily, since when you search Eden, a bunch of porn comes up. I figured that XO would be cute at the end. 

It is cute! You’re Iranian, right?

E: I’m half Iranian and half white. It’s a huge part of who  I am. I speak Farsi, I know how to make Persian food, and I’m so close with my family and my cousins. I don’t even know the white side of my family.

How do you think your background influences your music?

E: Well, the scales in Middle-Eastern music are really different, so that was an interesting way to learn about music. You know, my dad didn’t come over to the States and immediately start listening to Johnny Cash, so he would play a lot of Iranian music at home. The melodies are totally different. 

Have you ever been to Iran? Do you feel strongly about politics? 

E: No, I’ve never been, and it’s mildly depressing that I can’t visit my homeland. It would be amazing to do that, but there’s so much conflict in the world right now. I have causes and issues I feel strongly about, as any person. What really sticks out for me are women’s rights in the Middle East, and how f*cked up that is. The fact that women are forced to be submissive in all manners of life, you know, they can’t show their hair, they have to wear a scarf to go out in public. I’m tolerant and I understand and think that there’s beauty in all kinds of religions—I don’t identify with any specifically—but a lot of women in Iran don’t get a lot of chances that I did. The kids dancing to Pharrell’s “Happy” were arrested! That’s f*cked. I’m hoping to start a dialogue about these kinds of things when I release my music.

Is there a certain message you want your listeners to come away from your EP with?

E: Yes, I want people to listen to Dirty Blonde and know that you can triumph over adversity. This EP is all about the struggle to do that, so I definitely want people to feel that they can realize their dreams. 

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