Brooke Eden's new EP "Choosing You" isn't her coming-out album – but it's the first collection she's released since sharing her truth and feeling comfortable in her skin.
"It's an EP about self-empowerment," she said. "It's about learning to love yourself and how to choose someone who allows you to choose yourself, and that makes you the best person you can be."
Eden wrote the EP after spending her left people-pleasing and finally landing in a position where she felt comfortable setting boundaries and leaving other people's expectations behind her.
"I could just basically live my life for me," she said. "All of these songs are very indicative of that."
Eden came out on Instagram in January of 2021 when she introduced her now fiancée Hilary Hoover as her partner. The country singer says she found the courage to live her life for herself after reading Glennon Doyle's book "Untamed."
"That book is my Bible," she said. "It had so many light bulb moments for me in my life that … just wiped away the bullshit and got to the core of me. It was from that book that I decided to come out."
Getting to the core of who she is as a person also helped Eden isolate who she is as an artist. The Florida native has been signed to BBR Music Group for eight years. She knew immediately that she wasn't ready for a record deal, but when the label offered to sign her, she also knew she couldn't say no.
"I came in with, 'This is the sound that I want. This is the song that I want. Then they told me they weren't going to put that song out or like that type of music out," she said. "They wanted me to write. So I just wrote like aimlessly for three years."
Eden said she and the label "threw some stuff against the wall to see if it would stick."
And it didn't.
"I just didn't know who I was at the time," she said. "I didn't even really know what to fight for."
This music, she said, is the opposite. She didn't do it on purpose, but when people listen to this EP, they tell her they feel like they've been to therapy.
"It just was where I was in my life, and so it just so happened to be how I was writing," she explained.
"Choosing You" is a five-song EP, and Eden co-wrote every song. Her favorites include her single "Left You For Me," "Knock" and "Comeback Love," which was inspired by her fiancée. The song has a light-hearted, groovy beat and is about wanting her special person to come home.
"It's autobiographical," she said. "It is about a sassy, independent girl who is like, 'I don't need love. That's not me. I am just independent. And I just don't care about being in a relationship until you meet that right person.'"
Then the right person came along, and she wanted to be with them all day, every day.
"It's just like this 180," she said. "Life is so much more fun with them."
"Knock" was born of the peace and confidence she found with her partner, Hilary. Now that Eden has experienced being in love with the right person, she's unflinching in her honesty when she thinks her friends are making mistakes.
"My friends call me Brooke, the truth, Eden, because you don't come to me for advice if you want the glittery sugar-coated advice," she said. "You come to me if you want the hard truth that you don't really want to hear but need to hear. This song is that from an outside perspective. You're talking to someone that you care about that's trying so hard in this relationship with this person, and I'm watching them not get anything in return. Love shouldn't be like that. I feel like I now know what love looks like."
Eden hopes listeners feel as empowered after hearing these songs as she felt writing them. She wants them to know they deserve a great life, they deserve being loved, and that they should be able to live a life that is authentic to them.
"I feel like so many of us are caught in the web of society and what everybody else wants from us," she said. "It was just like the most freeing thing in my life to allow myself to be myself. It seems so much easier than it actually is. It took years and years for me to get there."