Jeremy Williams-Chalmers, Arts Correspondent

Musical Motivation: ELA

ELA is originally from West Wales, a little village called Brongest near Cardigan but then she moved to Monmouth for 10 years (the reason, she thinks, that she mostly lost her strong Welsh accent!) She credits her musical father with helping her from a very young age to learn to play music and to sing, but above all, to work hard. This inspired and enabled her to win a coveted music scholarship where she decided to focus on the freedom of expression she found in singing. Of her father, she says “He's definitely one of my biggest musical inspirations because he taught me how to tell a story whilst singing which I think is super important.” ELA also is also inspired by the strong contemporary female artists that she loves– including Jorja Smith, Mahalia and Dua Lipa. We caight up with her to find out more about the songs that make her...


Break My Stride - Matthew Wilder

The opening chords always put a cheesy grin on my face. It's a great song to listen to on your way into work on a Monday morning to make sure you go in feeling positive. After listening to this song, you won't let anyone take that smile away and no one will break your stride!


Everglow - Coldplay

Chris Martins voice never fails to make the hairs on my arms stand tall, especially in Everglow. This song makes me always think to make the most of life whilst we've got it and makes me contemplate how lucky I am. It certainly puts life into perspective and overall makes me feel extremely grateful.


Don't Watch me Cry - Jorja Smith

The way Jorja Smith sings this song is like nothing I've heard before, it's almost as if she's nearly crying whilst singing. I've seen her perform this song live 3 times now and she never fails to make me cry. It's such a private song which she has shared with the world, and I can relate her pain.


Fuck you - Lily Allen

If you tell me when you first listened to this song and it didn't make you laugh then I'll buy you a pint. Lily Allen never fails to say it how it is. There's been many a night out when me and the girls have been screaming this song off the top of our voices over an ex whilst belly laughing. It's just brilliant.

Want to work out

Body Work - Majestic

You can't listen to this song and not move. The base line gives me life when working out and keeps me going. Majestic is a genius and I can't wait to see what else he brings out to the world to help us 'make our bodies work'.


Better Together - Jack Johnson

I was raised right next to the beach in West Wales and Jack Johnson's voice always takes me back to the ocean. My family and I always used to play this song every car journey so this songs holds a special place in my heart.


Sweet Disposition - The Temper Trap

Sweet Disposition takes me on a journey every time. I almost feel like I'm flying when I listen to this record. It really chills me out and is a great one to listen to with your mates or on your own.

Feel Determined

Stronger Than Me - Amy Winehouse

Stronger Than Me is all about being a strong woman in a relationship which resonates with me. The song reminds me women are just as strong as men and compels me to be stronger in life. I'd also say that 'Girls' by Beyonce is a strong runner up as it encapsulates female empowerment.


Funky Sensation - Disclosure

Who doesn't love a bit of funk on a night out? It's great to see more disco and funk coming back into the charts as it's what I love to dance to. Disclosure are the kings of a dance records, which Funky Sensation certainly is.