Updated: May 7
Ashely is an all-around super-human being! In his professional career, he has sung background vocals for Lady Alma, Jean Carne, and shared the stage with Bilal, Marcus Johnson, and Grammy Award Winners Take 6. Aside from recording vocals for Chavous, Sarah's Girl, Geneva Renee, Tye Tribbett, Jim Stephens, and Will Downing, he has also worked as a studio engineer. Besides his musical accomplishments, Ashley is also an active member of the Recording Academy Philadelphia Chapter and has served as vice president of this chapter. He is the founder of The Soulful Sounds Series and R&B education program. Through the I.C.A.R.E Academy program, he founded The Artists United with partner Lox Knox. Throughout his personal and professional career, he has given back to the community." I had the opportunity to ask him a few questions about his colorful journey. Here's what he shared.
What is your back story? When and how did music start for you? I'm from Philadelphia and began singing at age 3. I sang in school choirs and got a bachelor’s degree in Music from Howard University. My biggest musical influences are my aunt Helen Scott of The Three Degrees, The Delfonics, Will Downing, Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, & Prince.
What is your vocal range? I am a baritone and 2nd tenor.
When did your professional career begin? I began my professional career in college performing with The Howard Gospel Choir and recording school assignments with my ensemble class.
Are you currently signed to a label or are you independent? Soulful Sounds International Records is my own label where I am both the artist and owner.
In your opinion, what does it really take to “make it” in this business? In order to succeed in this business, you must possess a great deal of determination and strength. Moreover, as an artist, you also need to learn the business before you get into it.
In your opinion, what’s the What are the best and worst aspects of being an independent artist in your opinion? I think the best part is seeing how your music touches so many people. When the wave dies down, I think the worst part.
Have you ever released a song that you really thought would be a major success, but it didn’t do as well as you expected? Tell me about an experience you had like that? The word success is a subjective term, so you should set goals and achieve them if you want to be a success. In my opinion, making a song successful is all about achieving those goals. Generally speaking, I believe that my releases became successful once they got good press coverage and charted internationally.
Do you have a daytime job or is music your full-time job? Yes, my full-time job is music.
How important is it that your friends and family support your music by purchasing and downloading your single? Their support matters as they should be your first set of fans.
How do you feel about the concept of likes and dislikes on an artist's social media music-related post? In your opinion, is that an accurate assessment of the artist's talent, worth, or ability? That is not an assessment of an artist’s talent. If the artist makes quality music, then that is how an artist should be remembered.
If you can speak to your fans from your heart and tell them one important thing that you want them to know about being an independent artist, what would it be? Know that it is a business. The business owes you nothing and you owe it everything.
What advice would you give to new artists entering the changing industry? Have a team that you trust and knows the proper practices of the Entertainment Industry.
If you can speak to DJs from your heart and tell them one important thing that you want them to know about being an independent artist, what would it be? First, I would thank them for their job of playing the music and if they are playing my music, I would be very expressive in thanking them. As an Indie artist, I would encourage them to continue to support the indie artists.
How would you describe your music to those who have never heard it before? I would describe it as traditional soul music.
Do you write and produce your own music? Yes, I write and co-produce my own material.
Can you describe what it's like to be an independent artist? Can you share your heart with our readers? When your music and talent are loved and supported, that feels really good.
How do you prepare yourself mentally for public opinion, either positive or negative? Be prepared for the foolishness of the trolls, as I keep it in the back of my mind.
Have you ever felt so discouraged in this business, for whatever reason, that you just wanted to throw in the towel? Many years ago I did this, but whenever I thought back, I realized that there are people out there putting out work of far lesser quality than mine and that someone in the world will like it.
How many singles/albums do you have out presently and what is your favorite album/song to date? I have released 4 singles and my latest record is “Don’t Throw Our Love Away”.
What was your inspiration behind your latest release? Is it out now and where can people buy it? My latest single “Don’t Throw Our Love Away” was written on public transportation while a couple had a public argument. They can get the song https://ashleyscott.bandcamp.com/album/dont-throw-our-love-away
Photos by: Will Downing & WScott Photography biz