Ashley Phillips
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Ashley Phillips

Band R&B Funk

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May
24
Ashley Phillips @ Bus Boys and Poets

Washington, District of Columbia, USA

Washington, District of Columbia, USA

May
10
Ashley Phillips @ NXNW

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

May
01
Ashley Phillips @ Grape Room @ the Grape St. Pub

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

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Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


Brave Soul Artist: Ashley Phillips By Monte J. Wolfe

December 12, 2006 Print version Send to friend Other articles by this author


Our Brave Soul Artist for the month of December is a young lady who is truly in a league of her own.
Hers is a name you will want to remember: Ashley Phillips. Tim'm and I first had the opportunity to meet Ashley in late October of this year at a show we performed as a part of in Philadelphia. Hosted by Monica McIntyre, this show featured another one of Philly's best kept secrets, Anam Owili-Eger, DC's own talented brotha KUKU, as well as Tim'm West (along with yours truly and Antonio Covington on background vocals). Ashley took the stage right before intermission and all I can say is our mouths dropped after witnessing her open her mouth to reveal an angelic voice while she played the guitar with finesse.
After that weekend's performance in Philly, we quickly invited Ashley to join our talented lineup of individuals set to perform as part of our first fundraising/performance event, Brave Souls UNPLUGGED.
As we knew she would, Ashley quickly won the audience over with her lush arrangements, and the powerful instrument that is her voice. In a time when soul music, real music with a pulse that makes you FEEL something is in the minority, Ashley comes along as a breath of truly fresh air.

I think of my music as personal "...lyrical professions of life, love, and truth", so as I embrace my sexuality as a core piece of who I am, I also want to exude that in my music, and in my performance.

Captivating audiences with her intimately soulful and lyrical professions of love, life, and truth, Philadelphia-born Ashley Phillips is a singer/songwriter to watch out for. Influenced heavily by jazz/funk, pop, and progressive R&B, Ashley's unique blend of acoustic R&B and soul draws comparisons to such artists as Minnie Riperton, Amel Larrieux, Adriana Evans, and Dionne Farris. We at Brave Soul Collective felt that showcasing Ashley this month was the perfect way to round out an amazing year. We sat down with Ashley to get her feelings on making music, as well as a bunch of other topics. Prepare to be astounded by what you hear from our beloved sister.
With that said, we would like to present to you, the beautiful, gifted, Ashley Phillips.
Enjoy...

How long have you been involved with music, playing guitar, singing and songwriting?

Growing up, I started singing in school choirs and then theater. Really, I have been singing my whole life. I picked up my first guitar when I was about 16-17, and have been self-taught ever since. My journey as a songwriter only started a couple years ago, when I finally made the choice to call this [singing/songwriting] a career.

As a songwriter and musician, do you have a specific process in terms of how you create songs? Do you write lyrics and then put them to music, or do you complete songs and then write lyrics and arrangements for them?

It depends. I have never found a set formula that I stick to. More often, I find that the music comes first. Then as the music takes shape, I find the words.

Who are some of your musical influences and inspirations?

Vocally, I find that I still have an affinity for House Divas. I really loved listening to 90's House divas like Cece Peniston. Something about those power house chops stirs my soul. The philly sound inspires me, as well as all of the independent artists and musicians that I've connected with along the way.

How do you feel about your generation's response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic? What do you feel can be done to help spread awareness and spark action?

I feel like my generation has a text book understanding of what HiV/AIDS is, and how it affects the world. I think it is important to see the HIV/AIDs epidemic globally, but also dealing with it simultaneously as a community issue, as a family issue. Even with statistics being put out there and facts and numbers, I think that so many people my age "other" themselves in this way that detaches them from the reality of HIV/AIDS. I think community outreach is important, and building a strong support within our communities, especially black queer communities, will help spread awareness.

How much of a role does your sexuality play in the expression of your artistry? As a new artist, how do you intend to handle the issue as it relates to your career?

I think of my music as personal "...lyrical professions of life, love, and truth", so as I embrace my sexuality as a core piece of who I am, I also want to exude that in my music, and in my performance. As a new artist, I understand the pressures to shape and mold yourself into something/someone marketable...well...sellable to a mass audience, and with all of that in mind I have made the decision to be uncompromising when it comes to being an OUT artist.

As a new artist, what do you seek to bring to the table or say with your music?

I simply - Monte J. Wolf, Co-founder Bravesoul Collective


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

"In a time when soul music, real music with a pulse that makes you FEEL something is in the minority, Ashley comes along as a breath of truly fresh air."
- Monte J. Wolfe, Co-founder BraveSoul Collective

"Every great voice commands attention and makes people stop and take notice. Yet there's an additional amazing and rare quality to Ashley's voice: it finds its way to the center of your soul and warms you, illuminating you from the inside out. And her songs! Memorable and catchy without ever being formulaic, soulful and sensuous yet never saccharine. If the world doesn't embrace Ashley, then the world doesn't know a single thing about good music."
- Anam Owili-eger, Singer/Songwriter/Musician

Captivating audiences with her intimately soulful and lyrical professions of love, life, and truth, Philadelphia-born Ashley Phillips is a singer/songwriter to watch out for. Influenced heavily by jazz/funk, pop, and progressive R&B, Ashley's unique blend of acoustic R&B and soul draws comparisons to such artists as Minnie Riperton, Amel Larrieux, Adriana Evans, and Dionne Farris.

The Ashley Phillips Band formed in 2002. Vocalist Ashley Phillips, Sax Player Maxfield Gast, and drummer Mike Pietruskco met while playing together in former band Saigon Slimm.

The AP Band has played mainly around the Philadelphia area at live venues opening for Virgin recording artist Ricky Fante at the Northstar Bar, playing shows at The Fire, Tritone, and other local philly venues. Also, featured on Power 99Fm's "Inner City" hosted by Tiffany Bacon.