What in the World is Ashley Bryan Smiling About?!?
I adore Ashley Bryan. I literally cannot help but grin from ear-to-ear when she picks up the phone. We can be discussing the most mundane of details, and she attacks the subject like an exuberant optimist, complete with her long red hair, freckles, bright eyes and easy smile.
Even more importantly, I adore Ashley Bryan’s music. Her voice is surprisingly soulful. It seeps into your bones and gives you goose bumps. Her lilted tone dips down into a world-wise, sultry swagger, revealing an unapologetic ache at the end of a line, and then it rises up into her upper register with a whisper and a thrill. This music is her very own songwriting and her lyrical poetry reflects the emotions and events and decisions and crossroads of life, but in a way that sneaks up on you. These are the songs you’ve never heard before, but wish you had.
Ashley’s always had an enormous and intense love for music. Her father owned a music studio in Atlanta before she was born, and was a singer-songwriter, musician and engineer. “At an early age, I realized that music made me feel something that had never felt before. Unfortunately, my father left when I was 7 years old, and never came back, and we never saw him or talked to him again. I turned that black hole in my life into my songwriting. A piece of my memories of my father will always be fuel for my music, and for that, I will be forever grateful.”
From the age of 18 on, Ashley has been earning her performance chops on the Atlanta-area live music circuit, even playing in bands with members twice her age. Venues have included Tavern on the Bridge, Yellow Fin, Sweetwater Brewery, Sweetwater Bar and Grill, Garrisons On The Roof, Yellow Fin Blue Room and numerous local festivals and charity benefit shows.
Today, she’s a newlywed, having recently married her long-time sweetheart, engineer and music producer Matthew Broody. She describes her recent songwriting as “pouring out of her.” “The only comparison I can make is like being under a spell or meditating where you reach a level of intimacy within and transferring that onto a piece of paper and hence–the birth of a song” Ashley says. “Sometimes I don’t even know what a song means until it’s over, and sometimes I don’t know how I got there. Sometimes I feel like I just ran a mile in the snow and never got cold.” And miraculously, she’s still smiling when she arrives.
Ashley Bryan will perform and RECORD LIVE at The Velvet Note on Friday, July 20th. Tickets are available at 855.5.VELVET or online at www.thevelvetnote.com.