What does a songwriter do for inspiration while in quarantine? In the case of Canberra's Sophie Edwards, she reaches out to her social media following.
Taking on suggestions, such as "write a song about falling in love with your forever person", Edwards used her time stuck at home writing something that fit the briefs her followers gave her, before posting the final result on her social media.
"A lot of the time, I'll just be really in a mood to write a song," she says.
"I get in really creative moods, and once I start writing lyrics, it doesn't stop. But sometimes I just need that initial idea.
"I love being able to connect with people during lockdown. So if I'm not feeling particularly inspired, and I can tell someone else's story, why not?"
The social media creations are just a taste of what's to come, with the Canberra singer-songwriter on track to release her debut EP, Feel Again Soon in October. Friday also marks the release of her latest single Next.
Unlike the suggestions given to Edwards over social media, Feel Again Soon is full of songs that touch on feelings and situations that aren't often found in music, such as being the mediator in a fight and having messages left on read.
The EP has been four years in the making, with Edwards first setting out to create just as she was finishing her degree at the Australian National University's school of music. From there, she was offered a chance with local label Vacant Room Records, to produce her first EP.
"It's been good for me because I feel like I've been able to get lots of people that I admire on every single part of this EP," Edwards says.
"Because I'm still a developing artist, being able to start at ANU and have my usual supportive uni network and then being able to branch out into other things that give me a bit of practice in the studio to gain some understanding on how everything works, was beneficial to me.
"It meant that by the time we were finishing the EP this year, I was super comfortable in the studio, we smashed out the vocals on all the songs in like an hour."
The EP itself has been ready for release since last year, but like a lot of things at the moment, the release has been postponed because of COVID and lockdowns.
Even though that's still the case, and it's still unlikely that Edwards will be able to promote the release with live shows, it does reach a point where things can't wait any longer - which is good news for the singer's fans.
The time has also given Edwards a chance to collaborate on future projects with other songwriters interstate.
"It's a bit tedious because you need to go back and forth on Zoom more so than if it was face to face," Edwards says.
"I can't just be 'Oh, can you retake that tiny bit of the vocal?' I'll have to listen to the recording, and then send a bunch of notes.
"But it's been good for me living in Canberra. Suddenly, all of the hubs of music in Sydney and Melbourne are more open to collaborating with people from Canberra. Everyone's using the internet anyway, might as well try it with this new girl from Instagram."
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