Jen Ash is a soulful pop/r&b artist, born in Lebanon and raised in France. After ending her professional basketball career, she decided to follow her true path, moving to Los Angeles to pursue her music career. She has been performing since 2018 in the City of Angels. Her influences come from the 90’s, with her goal being to create music that connects with and inspires listeners. She has learned to explore music on her own… what an amazing and tumultuous road it has been. Her songwriting channels into past and present experiences and future desires, with a splash of imagination. With the ability to create in French and English her sultry vocals will take you on a memorable journey.
With her current single, “Trouble” riding high on the national airplay charts, Jen took some time out to answer some questions for our readers…
How did you get your start as an R&B musician?
Music was always a dream for me. I never wanted to admit it, but it was my childhood dream. I thought it was unattainable, but when I moved to Los Angeles, I realized that my dream can actually come true. I had no idea how to do it, I was just very clear on my intentions, and the universe had put people on my path to help me along the way.
A friend of mine helped me write and record my first songs and taught me everything I needed to know to create music on my own, and I am forever grateful for him and his knowledge.
How do you stay up to date on new trends and styles in R&B music?
I’m very picky when it comes to RnB, I want to bring the 90s back, with amazing compositions and meaningful lyrics. I don’t really enjoy the new trends and I hope we will get back to a soulful Era very soon.
Can you describe your songwriting process and where you draw inspiration from?
I usually get inspired by my own life experience. Life is full of trigger, hurt, joy, and happiness. I dive into my deepest emotions and put them into a song. I had to be comfortable with vulnerability and have the courage, to tell the truth with no filter.
How do you handle the pressure of performing live and engaging with your audience?
I usually work well under pressure. I used to be a professional basketball player and pressure was constant. So I’ve learned to handle it quite well. I still stress right before a show, the first couple of seconds when I enter the stage, but then it goes away. Playing live is magical, people give you so much energy and support. It can be overwhelming. I honestly love it. It is my favorite part of being an artist because I make music to connect and exchange with people. As artists, we a part of something bigger than ourselves. We are here to inspire and serve people.
Can you share an example of a time when you had to collaborate with other musicians on a project?
Collaboration is fun. You learn so much and realize there are a lot of talented people. I love getting new ideas and opinions, I think putting different talents in a room takes everything to the next level.
I love having the band with me. They lift my songs in a way that is unique, and I love every single one of them for embarking in my universe.
How do you manage your time and prioritize your creative endeavors?
I’ve learned to set boundaries with friends and family. I put my goals first. I’ve learned how to say No without feeling guilty. It was a difficult process, but I had to protect myself and my Art. Time is very precious, and I want to spend it doing what I love and not trying to please everyone around me.
Can you talk about a particularly challenging moment in your music career and how you overcame it?
The big challenge for me was to embrace who I am. Where I come from, where I grew up, and all the experiences that made me the woman I am today.
At the beginning, I really wanted to be accepted, and I was trying to fit into the music industry, so I was making songs without any meaning behind it. I tried to hide my accent, and it was too much of a false facade.
The day I decided to embrace my accent and my origins, find the beauty in it, find myself, and find my identity, everything changed.
How do you balance your personal life with your music career?
Once again, Boundaries. I try to spend my free time with people who lift my energy up. I pushed away all negativity, and I’m ok not being available for that.
I think my personal life is the essence of my writing, so I have to make time for it, which sometimes is quite difficult with a busy schedule, but it’s important and necessary to spend time with people you love and love you back.
How do you handle criticism and constructive feedback on your music?
I honestly don’t take anything personal. There is no perfection in Art, some people like what I do some others don’t. I believe we all have free choices, so if you don’t like what I do, just don’t listen.
When it comes to constructive feedback I’m always open to hearing it. I believe we constantly learn, so I will take what resonates and use it to become a better artist.
What do you hope to achieve in your music career in the next five years?
Having a team of creatives working with me. A record label would be a blessing.
Having the opportunity to go on a world tour and meet people around the world.
Placing my music into movies.