EXCLUSIVE: Annika Wells on writing for BTS and Jonas Brothers
Annika Wells is a singer/songwriter that needs to be on your radar. Wells has written for megastars like BTS, Jonas Brothers, Steve Aoki, and more. Now making her label debut, we got to chat with her on it all.
What’s the story behind your latest single, “F*ck Being Sober”?
“Fuck Being Sober” is an accumulation of my thoughts on life boiled down into a single song. I’ve lived by the idea that we’re all going to die one day and none of this will have mattered. So why not hug your friends a little closer, push yourself a little farther, and do something that scares you? FBS is a love letter to the nihilists and the misfits and the rule-breakers… and a call to action for those who just need that last push over the edge.
This is your label debut with Vol 1/Epic Records. Can we expect some more singles and or an EP on the horizon?
Yes, “Fuck Being Sober” was just the beginning. Next comes a song called “Love Sucks” (shh). Although it sounds like it might be as equally tongue in cheek as FBS, it’s actually a heartbreaking love song. I write so many songs a day that at this point it’s just about getting as much music out there as we can so I can write more.
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I myself am a huge Jonas Brothers fan. What was it like writing with them?
I actually wrote that song with Freddy Wexler and Gian Stone, a few of my favorite writers. It was a random day in the summer and we almost jokingly decided to write a Christmas song. A few months later it found itself in the hands of the Jonas Brothers and took off from there. I was on tour with Illenium when I got the call that they were cutting the record – I was in a random mall in the middle of nowhere in a candle shop and couldn’t believe the news. A few months after that and it went #1 on A/C radio. It was one of the best moments in my career so far.
You’ve also written for PRETTYMUCH, BTS, Hailee Steinfeld, Noah Cyrus, and Steve Aoki. When did you realize songwriting was your calling?
I’ve been annoyingly obsessed with music since I was born. I discovered songwriting in third grade after combining poetry, singing, and piano. It was a lightbulb moment – I knew that’s what I wanted to do with my life. I’ve been making music ever since.
Do you have a dream artist to work with?
Alexander23. He’s my absolute favorite. Such a killer writer, producer, and singer. He has a way of putting a complicated emotion in such a simple way that I love. Also, his drums sound so gross in the best way. I really want to collab with him.
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What’s one song you wish you wrote?
“Anything But Ordinary” by Avril Lavigne. Such a bop, such a throwback, just a masterpiece. That song made me fall in love with pop music.
Once things are back to normal, do you have a dream city to play in?
Red Rocks is my dream venue. I performed there with Illenium on his tour and it’s my dream to go back and do my own show. I’m kind of a nature freak so the combination of rocks and mountains and music is the clashing of all my passions. 2022 I’ll be up on that stage.
What have you been listening to, reading, and watching during quarantine?
My dog snore. My stomach grumble. The news, begrudgingly. Flea Bag season 2. Remi Wolf. Three Women by Lisa Taddeo. Porn. The hair on my legs grow. Anything by Jeffrey Eugenides.