Ashy Is Bringing The Girly Pop Energy We Need

emilytreadgold #1, Features

Ashy's pop energy is exactly what we needed to see during SXSW last year, we were so excited to see her back on the artist roster this year. Her set was filled with tiny pink guitars, choreography, and those pop hooks we loved. We talked to her about what excites her in music right now and how she's building her brand.

How excited are you to be back at South by?

Ashy: I loved it last year, and it really informed a new chapter in my career, so it’s nice coming back after a whole year and the difference I feel in myself.

Is it hard bringing pop to South by? You have such a pop production.

Ashy: I think it’s fun, you just take it for what it is, there’s a lot of bands and different vibes and to bring pop is super different and unexpected, especially adding the choreo, we just wanted to go all in.

Everyone says to perform on a small stage like you would at Madison Square Garden, but no one means that until choreography is involved.

Ashy: Exactly, and that’s the logic we have. We’re at Madison Square Garden as far as we’re concerned.

You can tell people get excited when you do that!

Ashy: I know! The shift in people’s faces, they love it, even if it’s not their thing. It’s a surprise because the girls are true musicians so when they dance it’s fun.

I feel like I struggle to watch something without choreo. I get bored of watching people play instruments, and I’m like, now what? What in music is making you excited right now?

Ashy: Rate!!! I can’t emphasize that enough, when she performed at the BRITS I was floored. I loved it so much, I love everything she’s doing and I love that she came from grassroots, and worked her way up in the industry and to see her winning now is so epic.

I think it shows that your career is not a straight path.What has been inspiring your songwriting lately?

Ashy: I’ve been really dicing deep into the Lana, I love the cinematic aspect to Lana and The Weeknd, and even Ray, it could be in a movie or just exist as a pop song, it’s very visual. The new songs I have coming out, they really lean into that world. And Britney too, “Gimme More,” specifically, I’m into that kind of edgy pop.

They’re building out worlds with their stuff. What has been a challenge for you this year?

Ashy: I think the journey of this year was carving out the brand of me, it was like how do I build upon this and focus on the look and the sound and the live show, but things like that take time. You have to keep writing songs and figuring your self out and what audiences want from you. I love an audience reaction, we did one song with choreography last year and they loved it. I think that sort of performance and figuring that out has been a challenge.

How have you been building that brand?

Ashy: I want to make it really sure to the music, a little edgy but still girly pop. We want to bring in the fact that I’m also a musician. I play guitar in the show but it’s like a little pink guitar, little things like that. The girls are edgy, but trying to find that balance has been a challenge.

What are you looking forward to this year?

Ashy: I’m traveling heaps, and I’m going to Nashville to write songs, which is going to be really fun. I’m going back to New Zealand, then heading to the U.K. to do The Great Escape festival. Then I’m doing some London shows and songwriting in the U.K. and Sweden.

Emily Treadgold

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