Ashley Wool: General Info
Madonna, Lady Gaga, Paramore, Cascada, Demi Lovato, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Britney Spears, Adele, Ellie Goulding, Avril Lavigne, Kesha, Liz Phair, Pat Benetar, Adele, Pink, Helen Reddy, Gwen Stefani
musical theatre, rehearsal studios, piano bars, any kind of dance class, NYC sidewalks, long walks through the produce section, rainbow flags, singing in choirs, ice cream, coffee, coffee-flavored ice cream, my cats, all other cats, my family, Dr. Seuss, Fred Rogers, Jason Mraz, Hannah Gadsby, Ella Fitzgerald, Homestar Runner, Jesus Christ
MOODY WITHOUT MUSIC
Ashley Wool interview with IBJ and Hooda L.K. on War Stories Radio Live's Moody Without Music Stream
SESSIONS WITH THE SONGWRITERS
Ashley Wool discusses the stories behind "Half of My Life" and "Automatoronic" on Big Ear Radio's Sessions with the Songwriters
INDIE MUSIC DISCOVERY
Ashley Wool interview with Joshua Smotherman
WORLDWIDE MUSIC DIRECTORY
Ashley Wool featured interview
About Ashley Wool (the singer/songwriter):
Once upon the year of our Paris Hilton 2006, I was one of five students in the very first freshman class of the newly-introduced musical theatre major at SUNY Geneseo.
Geneseo was known as an academically competitive public college, but not an ~*artsy*~ place. My parents had wisely insisted that if I was going to pursue something as financially unstable as musical theatre, they would not be taking out loans, so fancy-pants conservatories were out of the question. But even at a not-fancy not-conservatory, I lacked the caliber of training and "polish" of my peers, and being chiefly a pop singer clashed with the sensibilities of my more traditionalist professors. I spent a lot of energy playing catch-up, but I learned valuable lessons about coping with rejection and not hinging your self-worth on whether you get picked by a gatekeeper. And, not insignificantly, I graduated without debt. Good choices, Mom and Dad.
Focusing on my own music kept me creatively motivated during those strange and lonely years. I'd been writing songs since I was seven, but it had never quite occurred to me that I could do anything with them without a record label first deciding that I was cool enough. But then my high school theatre friend, Brynne Calleran, a singer/songwriter who had built a solid following playing out locally, released an incredible CD of wholly original songs and funded it by working after school at the mall. Brynne was also responsible for introducing me to the thriving independent music scene on MySpace (which, for those of you under a certain age, is what this page is modeled after) and a world of glorious possibility opened up before my eyes. A world where authenticity came first, and audiences didn't need to put artists in boxes.
And so it was, in those sleepy, early months of 2006, that I began washing dishes at the dining hall and scrounged up the funding to record at a local studio housed in a building that once was the county poorhouse and asylum. With the help of the owner/producer and a friend I recruited from the jazz ensemble, the recording of a seven-song live-band EP was overseen by the spirits of hundreds of outcasts who came before me, whose bodies were buried nearby in graves marked only with numbers. I had just begun taking fluoxetine for depression (still take it today); it did not escape me that, in an earlier lifetime, under different circumstances, I might have been one of them.
I called the record Not Otherwise Specified. It was home to the first incarnation of "Automatoronic," which made its way onto Sirius XMU and was nominated for a Musiqtone Musiqward for Best Indie Song--which I lost to my childhood idols, Hanson. It was also home to "You Got Me There," which earned me a top-60 finalist spot for Rolling Stone Magazine's Best Bands on MySpace competition. (This was a big deal at the time. I swear.)
I stepped away from the indie music world after college to refocus on musical theatre, but in 2016 the songwriting bug returned with a vengeance (because, 2016), and after honing my sonic aesthetic with the help of Gabriel Pressman and Garek, I finally released my first fully-produced single, "Half of My Life," in January 2020, followed by "Starving Artist" and a fabulous new version of "Automatoronic."
2020 put a damper on our big plans to finish a full-length album and make videos and stuff...but those songs have still made waves in unexpected ways. With over 100K combined plays on Spotify, inclusions on several AudioSparx compilations (where "Automatoronic" is an Editor's Pick), and features on radio stations and podcasts all over the world, it's safe to say singer/songwriter Ashley Wool is officially back in business.
Now, if only MySpace Music were back in business...