And the Young Ladies Shall Swoon: 7 Questions with Finn Matthews
New Jersey’s Finn Matthews has a voice sure to make the hearts of high school girls palpitate. The 17-year-old pop vocalist’s debut singles, “Half Hearted” and “I Wrote a Love Song,” are the kinds of tunes that become soundtracks for young-love stories everywhere. The singles have also been a long time coming. Elijah Blake, who penned songs for Keyshia Cole, Rick Ross, Rihanna, and Usher, not to mention his own albums, picked up on Matthews’ talent when the boy was only nine. So, it’s also no wonder that only a few months after his first releases, Finn is already being compared to prodigies like Shawn Mendes and Troye Sivan. Matthews’ newest single, “Julia,” proves the point.
Recently, Matthews spoke with Rawckus about making music, hanging with Elijah Blake, and reminding people he’s still human.
Rawckus: This must be an exciting time for you, with the recent releases of “Half Hearted” and “I Wrote a Love Song.” How’ve things been going, now that your music is out there for the world to hear?
Finn Matthews: Things have been great! It is a really good feeling to be able to show people my music and have them be interested in what I’m trying to say. I think the most important thing with music is being able to relate to it, and that is what continues to motivate me.
Where did you learn how to sing?
FM: I didn’t learn how to sing in any one place, but most of my practicing took place in my bedroom, while studying different music, so I guess that would be where I most learned to sing. I was exposed to some amazing singer very early on, like Brandy, Tonéx, Brian McKnight, and lots of others.
Elijah Blake has expressed some very high praise for you. Do you ever feel pressured to live up to those kinds of expectations?
FM: There is definitely a lot pressure to meet expectations, but I don’t stress too much about that. I know that if I do my best and put the work in, then whatever happens, happens, so there is no point of worrying about it.
What’s your relationship with Elijah Blake like?
FM: Elijah is like a big brother to me. He is not only one of the people I look up to musically, but I can always count on him to give me advice with anything, music related or not.
There is definitely a lot pressure to meet expectations, but I don’t stress too much about that. I know that if I do my best and put the work in, then whatever happens, happens...
What’s a typical day in the life like for Finn Matthews?
FM: It really depends on the day. Some days I am in the studio all day, some days I have rehearsals for a few hours, or I go to a voice lesson, and some days I just stay in and create music by myself. Every day of my life involves music in some form or another.
I noticed on your YouTube channel that you reply directly to many of your listeners’ comments. Is that kind of interactivity something you hope to keep up as your career grows?
FM: Being accessible to listeners and fans is very important to me. Realistically, if I were to receive hundreds or thousands of comments, it would be hard to respond to them all, but responding to comments reminds people that I’m still a human. That feeling of being able to interact is important for people to be able to relate to my music, as well as to me as a person.
Most people would have a hard time imagining what it would feel like to be a teenager looking at all these vast prospects before you. Can you describe what that’s like?
FM: It is mind blowing to me how lucky I am to be surrounded by so many amazing people that believe in me and want to help me. Sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming, but in a good way. Overall, I would say it’s a lot to take in, but it only motivates me to do my best to turn the prospects into reality.