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Ashley Lucas

“Surround yourself with lovers of music.”

Ashley Lucas is a talented writer, winning honorable mention in international songwriting competitions, and active in the Southwest Virginia Songwriting Association. We reached out to find out a bit more about Ashley and her craft.

“I came from a musical family. My grandpa was in a bluegrass band and played banjo, guitar, bass, and mandolin, and my mom is a wonderful singer. There was always music playing in my house growing up and I was exposed to many different styles from an early age. I knew I wanted to write music, and I knew I needed to learn an instrument to do it. I took guitar lessons briefly at Kelley’s Music here in town, when I was 14, and started writing songs as soon as I learned three chords. For me, the guitar lessons were just a vehicle to the songs.”

“Now, I play both ukulele and guitar. I love having the two different instruments. If I get bored on the guitar, I’ll just switch to the uke, and it can give the song a whole different feel. I also like to write songs on the piano, but I’m not nearly as proficient. “

“I write songs from many different genres. I have an alt-rock song, a few country songs, soul songs, and some that fall more in the Americana range. Most of my songs would probably be considered folk pop. Because I write cross-genre, I have a very wide range of musical influences: Bob Dylan, Jack White, Dolly Parton, Leonard Cohen, Otis Redding, Jason Isbell, Lennon and McCartney, Anthony D’Amato, Regina Spektor, and Paul Simon…just to name a few.”

“I’ve never taken steps to sell my songs or put myself out there professional. However, a couple years ago, I decided that I wanted more out of my songwriting. I wanted to get better and connect more with those interested in my craft. I joined the Southwest Virginia Songwriting Association (SVSA) in 2015, and it really has enhanced my writing. We have an outstanding, talented group of songwriters and I’ve learned so much from them that I feel I should pay more than just the yearly membership fee! It’s afforded me opportunities to co-write, and do some demo work. I’m now the Vice President of SVSA and welcome anyone who is interested in songwriting, regardless of experience, to come to a meeting and see what we’re all about.”

“Songwriting and music will always be a part of who I am. I want my 5-year-old daughter, Everly, to know what it’s like to grow up in a house of music. I want her to see her mom doing what she loves to do. Everly is my harshest critic, but also my biggest fan. I hope that I can inspire her love of music like my family did for me. Also, I am also lucky to have a husband that supports my songwriting. It helps to have such a handsome muse!”

“My best advice: if you want to write songs, first and foremost, learn an instrument. Listen to a lot of music. Learn what you like, and try to figure out why you like it. Is it the lyrics? The chords? The way the song makes you feel? Study song structure. Study melody and prosody. Then just write what you love. If you don’t love it, you won’t do it. Write a song that makes the hair on your arms stand up. Then re-write it, because there’s always room to improve. Record yourself so you can hear what you need to rework. Let others hear your songs. Critique is so helpful in learning and bettering yourself. Surround yourself with lovers of music. And lastly, keep going. The more you write, the easier it becomes.”

Currently on Ashley’s playlist:

Tom Waits – “Old Shoes”

Bruno Mars – “If I Knew”

Freddy and Francine – “Ray’s Song”

Ray LaMontagne – “Jolene” (This is never NOT on my playlist)

The Lone Bellow – “You Never Need Nobody”

Anthony D’Amato – “If It Don’t Work Out”

Tyler Lyle – “Anyhow..”

The White Stripes – “I’m Lonely (But I Ain’t That Lonely Yet)

Violent Femmes – “Issues”

Ron Sexsmith – “Gold In Them Hills”

Weezer – “El Scorcho”



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