Born as Bille Eilish Pirate Baird O'Connell, she was raised in Los Angeles by performer parents. Her mom, Maggie Baird, is an actress, screenwriter and songwriter.
Billie Eilish wrote her first song at the age of four. She told Coup de Main
it was "about falling into a black hole, but being happy to be there."
At the age of eight, Eilish was singing in the Los Angeles Children's Chorus.
Eilish released her debut EP, Don't Smile At Me, when she was just 15 years old. Released on August 11, 2017, it charted all over the world.
Eilish writes most of her songs with her older brother, Finneas O'Connell, who also produces her tracks. Their creative partnership has produced such songs as "Ocean Eyes
," "When The Party's Over
" and "Come Out and Play
Finneas O'Connell is also an actor who has appeared in Glee
, Modern Family
and Bad Teacher
Eilish is an excellent dancer and feels able to express herself just as well through that medium as in music. However a couple of injuries in her mid teens has restricted her dancing.
Billie Eilish has Tourette syndrome, which she was diagnosed with as a child. Many link Tourette's with involuntary swearing, but only 10-15% of people with the disorder have outbursts that use swear words or offensive gestures. In Eilish's case, she exhibits physical tics, not verbal.
With a total of 14 tracks, Billie Eilish beat by one Cardi B's record for most simultaneous Billboard US Hot 100 entries by a female, on the chart dated April 13, 2019. 12 of the 14 songs featured on the tally came from the teen singer's When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? album, which had been released the week before.
What is it about Eilish that connects with fans? Bonnie McKee, who co-wrote five of Katy Perry's #1 hits, told Songfacts
: "Her voice is so angelic and the music that she's making is so introspective. A lot of it is almost like a lullaby. Pairing that kind of music with this exciting visual and this exciting character and production is really exciting - it's really different."
She came of age in the streaming era, so she never purchased a CD.
Billie Eilish won on five of the six awards she was nominated for at the 2020 Grammy Awards, including Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best New Artist. She was the first female to win the four main Grammy categories in the same year and the first person to do so since Christopher Cross did in 1981.
Billie Eilish won't refer to the people who buy her records and attend her concerts as fans. She explained in her 2021 Apple TV documentary, The World's a Little Blurry, "I never call them fans. They're a part of me. Every single person is going through something. The least I can do is make the art I make because I have the same problems."