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Bee Stewart

Digging Deeper


Hi, my name is Bea, I am a singer songwriter from just outside Belfast, Northern Ireland. I moved to London when I was 19 and I love it here. I grew up around Irish folk music so it influences my writing a lot, but you’ll also probably notice some pop influences too. I write songs about things that happen in my world to help me process my messy brain and then share the feeling. Being able to connect with people through music feels very special and I’m so grateful I get to experience that. 


Being a songwriter is such a beautiful thing, but I find that it can also be scary. There are days when I feel like I don’t have anything to say or I’ve run out of ideas or motivation. At times in life when I’ve felt my whole identity is solely based on being a songwriter, it has left me with a massive fear that I’m worth nothing if I can never write a good song again. For me, getting stuck in a songwriting rut usually involves this feeling of inadequacy and resulting pressure (that I put on myself) to write something good enough to prove my worth, which then stunts my creativity, making the feeling of inadequacy worse. And so the cycle continues...    

There are lots of little things that I do to try and get myself out of a rut.  But in my experience, these things won’t solve the problem if I don’t remember that my worth is not based on how much I produce. If I never ever write a good song again I am still worth the same, I am still loved the same, I am still the same person and can live a full life. Something I’ve been learning in the last few years is that there has to be more: it is too much pressure for making music to be the only thing that brings me joy or purpose or identity.    


Creativity is something that flows through everyone, but sometimes things need to be unclogged before it can get out. I find journaling really helpful. There is a book called The Artists Way which has exercises to help people connect more with their creativity. One of them is called morning pages: the idea is that every morning as soon as you wake up, the first thing you do is write three pages of unfiltered thought. I find this really helps to get rid of the gunk and make room for creativity. 

Sometimes, frustration can come from feeling as if you don’t have enough variety in your process. Switching up the way I do things in is an easy way to encourage new ideas. If I’ve been writing on guitar for a while I’ll swap to piano, or maybe use a different tuning or chord progression. I normally write lyrics first, so if I feel like I have nothing to say, maybe I’ll try and start with a melody.   

Another way to switch up the process is to get other people involved. Sometimes I can have ten ideas on the go but I don’t have the motivation to finish any of them because I don’t know what else I want to say. When this happens I find co-writing really helpful. Sometimes two brains are better than one, and there’s something to be said for finishing a song, even if it’s not the best song you’ve ever written. You can always come back and tweak it later. It also helps me to get feedback from friends, sometimes a little bit of encouragement that you’re doing good work is all you need to keep going. 


If none of the above is working, it’s probably time to take a break and get a real shift of perspective. When I say a break, I mean proper time out; doing fun things away from music that make me feel like myself and remind me that I am more than my ability to write a good song. The point of making music is not about being the best or getting recognition or producing as much as we possibly can. For me, it’s the connection to myself and the people around me. So take the pressure off, figure out why you write in the first place and take some time to find balance and enjoy other parts of life. The creativity will definitely come after. 

Bea’s debut EP ‘Things We Never Say Out Loud’ is out now.

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Words by Bea Stewart
Bea Stewart
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