Maisie Peters: “The Good Witch” chats to Law Soc

Emma Rouine covers Maise Peters as the first recipient of the Allii Proelio Award this academic year

Maisie Peters received Law Soc’s Allii Proelio award on the 26th of October.

She is the first of the academic year to receive the award. The award was first introduced in 2021 celebrating “those who have broadened perspectives.” She follows in the footsteps of Laura Whitmore and Denise Chaila who are previous recipients.

In case you haven’t heard of Peters before (where have you been, please reevaluate your music taste), she recently finished touring with Ed Sheeran on his Mathematics world tour. She signed to his music label Gingerbread Man Records in 2021 and her sophomore album The Good Witch was released last June which went straight to number 1 in the UK. Along with this, she is currently on a global tour, having played her first ever headline shows in Ireland with two dates in the 3Olympia. 

Secretary of Law Soc, Louise Cullen opened up the event, introducing Peters as an “absolute inspiration and role model.” Peters was rocking a very on-themed Guinness-branded turtleneck as she shared her delight in being on Trinity campus. Before the discussion began, she told the audience at the Hist Convo room “I’m a Sally Rooney girl… this is my kind of haunt.”

The conversation began with a discussion of her love for music growing up and her influences, including her YouTube and TikTok successes that have bought her a global platform today. Auditor of Law Soc, Eoin Ryan, asked Peters about her view on social media, describing social media as “a PowerPoint tool for people” such as Peters who didn’t “have the connections”, trying to “break into the music industry.”

Acknowledging this, she said “I don’t think I’d be where I am if not for social media and I’m really grateful to it for that.” When asked about the “trolling” and “toxicity” especially, for female artists on social media she said that now, rather than previously “I’ve had more recent experiences of it … it can be literally 5 tweets, it could be 5 people and when you think oh, it’s 5 people in the whole world, it’s ridiculous but I’ve definitely found that hard over the last year.” She added, “It does make you want to step away” but at the same time, there are “wonderful people that say lovely things about you.” She concluded on this point by saying there’s an importance to “weigh it up” and balance the two.

Ryan tapped into an interesting discussion when he asked Peters about one of her recent hits “Body Better” and the meaning of this song. Peters noted “..that song to me means something that maybe is different to whoever else is listening to it, I have my interpretation of what I meant by that song, and others have their own interpretations of what it means to them and I love that.”

There’s beauty in finding your own hidden meaning within a song that thousands of others can connect to too”

On a personal level, I feel like half of her discography could be dedicated to me (next time, dedicate the song to me in the credits, Maisie…). However, someone on the exact opposite side of the world could feel this too. Peters discussed a similar point to this saying, “It is amazing to get to tour an album properly and know that in all these different parts of the world that they are really reached and people are really taking it in.” This truly shows the magnitude of social media, and how music today can instantly impact listeners in every corner of the world.

What does this mean though in Peters’ personal life to release such vulnerable songs and put them out into the world? She described the process, “you write the song and then you live with the song, and most often you end up giving the song to people….6 or 8 months later.. and by that point, you’re in such a different place for whatever you’re writing about.” She sees it as “a healthy way to think about your own music”, and illustrated it as “covering past muse.”

When asked about her album, The Good Witch, claiming the number 1 spot on the UK charts last June, she described it as a “whirlwind.” However, she did point out, “You think moments like that will be the defining moment of your life or the greatest feeling ever… But I think you realise when you do things like that that’s amazing but they’re not actually really the point..”. She compared her feelings from that moment to when she was on her UK tour last March and brought one of her “best friends” and “housemate” Cate Canning on tour with her as the support. She said “we were screaming and cackling and running around … That’s the point… the number one was amazing but it’s not the point.”

This can be reflected in a track from her latest album, “The Band and I” (which she mentioned later as her current favourite of the album). The song is an ode to her band, who she has travelled all over the world with. The song truly encapsulates the vital importance of human connection and community, over some career stepping stone. No matter how great a number 1 chart position may feel!

A huge influence in her career recently is, of course, Ed Sheeran, whose music label Gingerbread Man Records she is signed to. Talking about her move from Atlantic Records to Ed’s label, she described the two labels as both being “under the same mothership.” She said, “That jump was really more than anything just to work with Ed on a closer level…we just wrote some songs together and just liked each other and he said do you want to work together and I was like yeah –  that was literally the conversation.” She added, “he’s always there” and he’s “very generous with his time.”

So, what’s next for Maisie?

She jokingly said, “I need to actually go to sleep”, and have a “girl rest, girl recovery.” She also added that she hopes to take some time to “write some more… be creative… and work on some new projects maybe and try some different things”.

Whatever it is we’ll all be eagerly awaiting it. In the meantime, we can listen to The Good Witch deluxe album, which came out on October 27. The deluxe version holds six more skillfully written songs showcasing her emotional honesty and storytelling that have become adorned all over the world.

Emma Rouine

Emma Rouine is the current Student Living Co - Editor and a Junior Sophister English Studies student. She previously served as Deputy Student Living Editor.