Today I want to introduce you Ashley Gearing. We talk all things music, collaborations, road trips, and Justin Timberlake. Ashley has an incredible voice and you are going to want to make sure you know who she is.
NN: Thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview! First off, tell us a little bit about yourself?
Ashley: Thanks so much for having me on NashNews! I am 24 years old and have been doing music in Nashville since I was twelve! Originally from Western-Massachusetts. And a pretty normal gal, thankful to call music my job for over 12 years! :)
NN: How did you get into the music world? What made you start singing and how did you decide you wanted to make it your career?
Ashely: I have loved music and performing since before I could walk. I started singing in church as a kid and that was really my first outlet singing publicly. My music teacher noticed that I enjoyed it a little more than the other kids and helped me to expand on it. That's when I began singing for local events around age 8 in Massachusetts. When I was 11, a music exec from Nashville heard me sing and invited me to come visit music city. I was shortly after offered a deal with LyricStreet Records in town and started recording. I have been hooked ever since.
NN: In 2003 you released a song called Can You Hear Me When I Talk To You, how did that song going on the Billboard Hot Country Singles and Tracks help to jump start your career? What was that experience like?
Ashley: It was a song that was really personal for me because obviously it was my first release to country radio and introduced me to the platform but it was also I song I sang in dedication to my father. He passed away when I was 9 months old. I think it was very relatable to everyone who had lost someone in their lives and touched a lot of people. It snowballed naturally because people identified with the lyrics and it was helping people cope. Very spiritual experience for me to hear the stories that fans share on how that song impacted their lives. Still is, to this day, a very special song to me.
NN: You released an EP in September, how did you choose those six songs to be the ones included in the project? What was your favorite part in getting this EP started, put together, and released?
Ashley: My producers and I took a lot of time and effort searching for songs and making sure they best represented where I am currently in my career. I have grown up in this business and certainly wanted to show my evolution. I didn't want to only put my own songs I had written on the EP because I wanted to expose a lot of the amazing songs that top tier songwriters in town have created. The songs are what country music is all about! My favorite part of this EP is getting to show fans who have followed me since I was 12 who the 24 year old Ashley is.
NN: If you could do a collaboration with anyone in the music industry who would you choose and why?
Ashley: I would love to sing with Justin Timberlake one day.. (Which girl wouldn't) ;) High hopes.
NN: If you had to define what country music is (to you), what would your definition be?
Ashley: Country music is the soundtrack of our lives! The lyrics tell the truth and express what is inside of our souls. People love the genre because it is honest.
NN: If you were driving across the country and could only take one album with you which would you choose and why?
Ashley: Carol King "Tapestry". It is the album my mom and I grew up singing to. It reaches every emotion through every song and holds a lot of sentiment for me because a lot of my memories were made to that album.
NN: What is the best piece of advice you have ever received as far as your music career?
Ashley: Someone once told me to "keep my horse blinders on." I didn't understand it at first. But it makes so much sense as I have gotten older. Basically means to just follow your own path and not be distracted by what others are doing. Everyone has their own timeline and you can only focus on yours.
Also, I follow Garth Brooks' advice on cutting songs. He always says that the best song wins whether he has written it or not. I truly believe that. I want to cut the best songs for me as an artist, not necessarily only ones that I have written as a songwriter.
Ashley- thanks so much for taking the time to do this!
Readers- make sure you follow Ashley on social media! (Links below this picture.)