The unique musician came to sudden fame at the age of just twenty, but does she write her own songs?
Halsey does write her own songs. It was this talent that led to her original discovery, as she spontaneously performed a song she’d written at a party, gaining the attention of a small-time music producer.
Read on to learn more about Halsey’s songwriting talents.
Songwriter Since The Start
Although Halsey’s life was reportedly littered with struggles from a young age, she’d always keep music at her core. Unlike some other prominent artists, Halsey has been mostly open with her life and upbringing. She’s been very candid about the darkest moments of her life.
In a 2016 interview, Halsey explained how she’d suffered a miscarriage in a hotel room mere hours before a performance. Amazingly, she still took to the stage, but this only garnered negative and hurtful feedback. Some critics argued that she was lying about the miscarriage, as nobody could have possible gone on to perform immediately after.
She’s also been very open about her history with alcohol and drugs, and the trouble it led her to. In a 2019 interview, Halsey confirmed that she no longer drank hard alcohol, drugs or smoked pot as a result of these troubles earlier in life. This interview also dove into her past, particularly when she was homeless in New York.
Halsey described sleeping with men merely to get a place to stay for a few nights. She explained that she “… was having sex as a means of survival.” However, it was while homeless on the streets of New York that she was actually discovered.
While ‘couch surfing’, Halsey was invited to a party at a Holiday Inn in New Jersey. While here, she actually wrote a song at the party and performed it in front of the crowd. Amidst the people was a small-time music producer, who loved her sound.
As a result, Halsey was invited to record a track in said producer’s basement. It was this first song – that she had written herself – that gave her the first taste of success. Ghost was launched on SoundCloud, a platform for mostly independent artists. Halsey explained that within hours the song was blowing up, and she’d been contacted by five record labels before the next day came.
This song, the first real track that Halsey had successfully written, would propel her into the spotlight. You can see the music video for this song on YouTube.
Halsey hasn’t just relied on her own performance acumen to make her songwriting skills known. She’s collaborated with many artists in the past, including some pretty sizeable names in the industry.
Most notable is the successful track Closer by The Chainsmokers (featuring Halsey). In this track, she wasn’t the primary artist but was featured predominantly in the vocals. This song was one of the most popular pieces from either artist, reaching over one billion plays on Spotify alone as of 2020.
Between 2014 and 2020, Halsey also co-wrote songs with artists such as Justin Timberlake, Sia, BTS, Yungblud and Timbaland. These artists are incredibly successful in of themselves, showing a great faith in Halsey’s songwriting abilities. She was particularly fond of her collaboration with BTS, as shown in a 2019 Twitter post.
Although she’s a people person professionally, Halsey explained in a 2020 interview that she doesn’t have any real friends. While she attributes this to her busy professional lifestyle, there are elements of her past that make her untrusting towards other people. In this interview, she explained: “My life is tremendously non-conducive to nurturing personal relationships.”
However, that may not be an issue for the exceedingly talented Halsey. She seems to be satisfied using her musical talent and songwriting skills to build bonds with her fans and collaborators.