Ella Thompson is a musician and songwriter whose work traverses the landscape of classic and contemporary soul music. Finding her place in the spaces in-between, Ella and her band weave cinematic textures and arrangements around her luminous voice and lyrics, creating a mesmerising, timeless synthesis of influences from the 60’s and 70’s.

Her latest single, Let There Be Nothing is about leaving, inspired by Carmela Soprano leaving her husband Tony in the Sopranos. It’s about accepting something for what it is, without trying to change or fix it – and then making the choices you need to make. That moment is difficult, but on the other side is freedom.

The song launches with chunky drums holding down a hypnotic flute figure before Ella Thompson and the band join the fray. A reimagining of 60s and 70s soul influences it sits somewhere between Baby Rose’s collaboration with Badbadnotgood and Thee Sacred Souls. It’s spooky, atmospheric and driving with blaring horns, a propulsive rhythm section and harpsichord and guitar filling out the mix.  Ella wrote the song about seeing mother and wife Carmela battle with her decision to start her life again. Her choice to leave her mob boss husband directly challenges the patriarchal establishment she has existed in since birth – but requires a complete rebuild of her identity, which is deeply intertwined with these oppressive structures. Ella chose to reimagine Carmela’s story in this song – so she never returns to Tony and the morally ambiguous life he offers, and instead finds freedom and resilience in the unfamiliar.


In the video co-directed by Ella and Nick McKinley, the dominoes represent the interdependent structures of patriarchy, racism and capitalism. How do these structures impact our choices and what are we willing to sacrifice? Ultimately we need an overhaul if we are to have freedom for everybody.

Let There Be Nothing was recorded with many of Ella’s favourite musicians and friends, some who play in her live band and in others from her favourite local bands including Surprise Chef. The track was co-produced by Ella, Liam McGorry and Henry Jenkins, who also recorded, mixed and engineered the song.

Inspired by icons such as The Shangri-las, Renee Geyer and contemporary soul artists like Thee Sacred Souls and Baby Rose, Ella’s songwriting draws on poetry, philosophy, and personal experience to inform her lyrics. Similarly, Ella’s performances are acutely considered, embodying elements of visual art and costume and her band are consummate musicians at the forefront of Melbourne’s soulful DIY nest. The combination of which is a hypnotic, hard-hitting presentation of Ella’s voice propelled by a powerful rhythm section and blazing horns supported by lush vocal harmonies.

When she opened for soul legend Lee Fields in Melbourne, he described her as: “One of the most creative individuals I have heard in a very long time.” Recently Ella and her band have played shows supporting some of their favourite artists including Lee Fields, Thee Sacred Souls and Surprise Chef.

Ella has been singing and writing music since she was a child, her upbringing was steeped in the timeless sounds of jazz and soul. At fifteen, Ella met her hero, Australia’s first bona fide soul legend, Renee Geyer. After hearing Ella sing, Geyer became her mentor and they toured together around Australia and spent hours listening to record after record on Geyer’s couch, leaving a formative imprint on Ella’s music to this day. 

In her career, Ella has released three albums as part of the cult indie band Dorsal Fins and three more with electro-boogie duo GL, playing festivals and shows around the world. She has also collaborated with artists from The Bamboos to Mark Ronson. 

Returning to releasing music under her own name in 2023 with the EP Cocoon/Dawn and the album Domino, Ella reached airwaves around the world with The BBC’s Craig Charles describing her work as “A Lovely slice of contemporary soul” and Ones To Watch UK saying: “Occasionally you stumble upon an artist that feels like a true find, a sound that could live in any of the last five decades. ‘Domino’ a wistful, longing record that demands to be listened to in full.” Seattle radio station KEXP described Domino as “a wonderful set of moody cinematic R&B/soul songs with a golden nostalgic touch” and locally Tim Shiel from ABC Double J says “Ella Thompson has an incredible voice, so whenever she does something, we pay attention”. 

Ella writes and makes music on the unceded lands of the Wurundjeri People of the Kulin Nation and pays respect to their culture and ancestors past and present.