“God, there are so many people! Hello!” exclaims Ellie Goulding to the crowd at the opening of her new live album Live At Amoeba Music San Francisco. Even after all this time, a packed audience still shocks the rising star. It’s been two years since the world first met Ellie Goulding. In the Spring of 2009, a handful of demo tracks landed on the internet from an angelic voiced siren, who had a knack for both acoustic and electronic sounds. Covers of songs like “Black and Gold” and “Sweet Disposition” showed a talented, young artist, with a gift of finding new angles for existing songs, while original cuts like “Under the Sheets” and “Starry Eyed” propelled Ellie to instant fame. From there, the UK singer experienced her first, with the release of her debut album Lights, a tightly woven Folktronic masterpiece that landed at the top of the UK charts. Before her album even dropped, she won the BBC Sound of 2010 Award and the 2010 BRIT Critics’ Choice Award.

Then a little cover of an Elton John classic happened. Ellie nailed a flawless rendition of John’s “Your Song,” which was then used as the theme song for the colossal UK retailer John Lewis’ 2010 holiday campaign. That marked the moment where Ellie Goulding transformed from a budding talent into a household name. Across the pond, a reworked version of Lights hit the US a year later, and so began Miss Goulding’s journey to the top. Since that point, Ellie Goulding has sold out shows coast to coast, run laps around other artists (literally, she’s a runner with a Nike campaign) and even performed at the Royal Wedding.

As Ellie continues writing her follow-up to Lights, she joins Katy Perry on her California Dreams Tour. We caught up with the songstress just as the tour was starting.

How does it feel to be touring with Katy Perry?

I’m looking forward to it, because I haven’t played a show in ages. I reckon it’s going to be really fun. I’ve met Katy before and she’s really cool. She’s a fan, yet she’s the main thing. It’s really cool to open for someone who’s a fan.

Katy must love the UK. Didn’t she also have Natalia Kills on tour too?

Yeah! And Robyn, Marina [& the Diamonds]. It’s kind of perfect. I’m really happy to be doing it.

How is writing the new album coming along?

It’s getting kind of clearer what my influences are now, and I think I feel like my voice is able to open up a lot more. It’s stronger and I feel like it’s at a really good point now, where it’s got the strength to carry across what I want to carry across. I suppose with the first record my voice was just warming up. Now I feel like it’s ready to do the real thing. That sounds really lame. It’s true, because my voice now, I feel like, goodness, I feel like I was holding back, quite a lot. I’m not holding back on this one. It’s a mixture, really. I’m just excited to have new music out. We’ll see.

Will there be any collaborations?

That’s something I want to try to and do, but I’m not sure if it will happen. I don’t want to say or else I’ll ruin the surprise. I’m sure you’ll want to hear it as a surprise and not have me tell you right now, but…I’ve got this idea with this person, but I’m not sure if it’ll happen. We’ll see.

When I interviewed Jessie J, she said you two were going to collaborate on something. Doesn’t she call you Snow White and she’s the Wicked Queen or something?

Yeah, I’m more of a Snow White and she’s the Wicked Queen, but she’s not wicked. I mean, she’s wicked in a good way.

Will that collaboration be happening?

I would love to. She’s one of my favorite singers, and not just that, but we’re really good friends, so that would be really cool. I just think, right now, that we’re both really busy and stuff, you know?


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