Over the course of 2017, Billie Eilish went from a precocious high-schooler who wouldn't stop singing to one of mainstream music's most exciting new voices. Her dontsmileatme EP was a crack of lightning against our musical landscape, eight tracks of dark, scrappy pop that revealed Billie's talents as a songwriter—and her fascination with morbidity. But the EP was also a family affair: Billie's brother Finneas provided most of the production, and the songs were largely written in their parents' roomy Craftsman home in Los Angeles' Highland Park.
The 16-year-old singer was homeschooled by equally creative parents, both of them actors that encouraged Billie's early interest in dance and horseback riding. She's always been a singer, but it wasn't she and Finneas uploaded "Ocean Eyes" that the musical aspirations started to come to life. That was in November of 2015, and the success that has followed swept the whole family up in its current.
Luckily, they were prepared—Billie has the right people around her, and since signing to Interscope, she's become one of the label's most sought-after acts. By the time we visited the family's house in L.A., Billie had paired with Vince Staples on the "watch" remix and cooked up some unreleased heat with IDK and Denzel Curry.
For now, however, Billie Eilish's creative base remains in Highland Park. It's somewhere between the treehouse built by her dad (he made this ladder, too), the aerial trapeze in the backyard (her mom teaches circus lessons on the side), and the hidden wall of her bedroom, where Billie scrawls ideas in black marker. It's home, but it's also headquarters.