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Elle King says her new single “Shame” is about being “100 percent a bad influence”


Dennis LeupoldElle King has returned with “Shame,” our first taste of her long-awaited sophomore album, and she says the song was inspired by her own naughty behavior.

“I was kind of a bad kid. I got kicked out of, like, every school that I went to,” she tells Billboard. “I wasn’t the parents’ favorite friend [for their kids], I was 100 percent a bad influence. I’ve always kind of known that. I’ve always gone harder than everybody else. Especially last year, I definitely went pretty hard.”

The singer explains, “I hung out with people when I moved to L.A. that were an older version of, I don’t know, my bad side. If I imagined the devil on my shoulder, grown up, I was hanging out with a bunch of them. It’s undeniable fun — you just have to know when to know when to go home and go to bed.”

”’Shame,’ was kind of a fun way to spin some of last year,” she concludes. “You see the bad kids and you kind of want to party with them.”

According to Elle, she’d already completed her record when she decided to add “Shame” because, she says, “I really wanted a song that was going to get people’s attention. I wanted to come out the gate swinging.”

So far, there’s no title for the new album or a release date, but she tells Billboard, “I’m just excited to put music out in the world again. Not just me, but my whole band. We really put our heart and soul into all of this.”