#186: Ella Mai
Today on A Waste of Time with ItsTheReal, we welcome singer Ella Mai, whose song Boo'd Up has been called the song of the summer, to the Upper West Side! Ella talks growing up in South London, moving across the pond to New York City in eighth grade, going to high school in Queens, and because she got unwanted attention from her English accent, she focused on playing soccer and shied away from her natural singing ability. We discuss Ella's return to London after senior year theater internship, getting a job in the back rooms of Top Shop, and while at college joining a girl group called Arize, their short run on the TV show X Factor followed by their split, and how Ella rebounded by doing 15-second song covers solo on Instagram. We talk about how the videos went viral, DJ Mustard reached out, Ella's return trip to NYC on her own dime, the prolific work she and Mustard created over the course of one evening and how it led to more work in Los Angeles, recording with Ty Dolla $ign, ultimately signing to DJ Mustard's imprint at Interscope Records, 10 Summers. And most amazing of all, how Bay Area DJ Big Von took a chance on one of Ella's EP cuts from 2017, watched the club go up in front of his eyes, and launched the unlikely rise of the hit song of Summer 2018, Boo'd Up. All that, plus much more!