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San Diego, CA (1 February 2011): With today’s release of her debut album, Let It All Go, singer-songwriter Christina Ashley stands proud and defiant, adamantly refusing to be viewed as a victim. The seventeen-year-old San Diegan turned to music – specifically singing and writing songs – to overcome a series of personal struggles that included bullying and the loss of her room and all of her possessions in a house fire. While the seventeen song collection, released by Sketchin’ Records, boasts versions of chart- topping hits written by iconic singer-songwriters, it’s the four original songs penned by Ashley with her producers, Amber & Rob Whitlock that are garnering the attention of music critics.
Lyrically, Ashley faces her vulnerability and summons courage by confronting her fears on album opener “By Your Side” and closer “Let It All Go,” a sparsely produced vocal and piano duet. Musically, she displays an innate ability for writing hooky melodies on “Away” and “I Still Remember That Time,” the latter of which is addressed to the boy who bullied her.
Throughout the diverse disc, whether it be a country-fied gospel (“I’ll Fly Away”), a retro dance cut (“When Will I See You Again”), sophisticated jazz (“My Little Boat”), or an adult-pop rocker (“These Dreams,” “I’m Not That Girl,” “Africa”), Ashley sings with the emotional depth, poise, confidence and gentle grace of a pristine angel.
Let It All Go was brought to life by a fine supporting cast of ace session players (Grammy winner Charlie Bisharat, Anthony Jackson, Trey Henry, Cliff Almond, Pat Kelley, Mike Miller, Darren Raser, Luis Conte, John Rekevics, and Lion King vocalist Carmen Twillie) along with top flight production and arrangements that breathe freshness into the cover songs. In the hope of following in the footsteps of some of the greatest singer-songwriters of the modern pop era, Ashley recorded gems penned by Paul Simon (“Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes”), Elton John (“Sorry Seems To Be The Hardest Word”), Billy Joel (“And So It Goes”), Jackson Browne (“Running On Empty”), Dan Fogelberg (“Longer”), and John Lennon & Paul McCartney (“Two Of Us”).
Encouraged by the initial response to Let It All Go, Ashley, a mature, focused and gifted overachiever who is currently applying for admission to Ivy League colleges, is inspired to write new material for her next recording project. She’s eager to perform music from Let It All Go at a hometown concert date this spring.
Below are excerpts from several early album reviews.
Blogcritics: “...the more sparsely-produced original tunes generally stand out as the most interesting. This is especially true of the album-closing title track. A simple piano ballad, ‘Let It All Go’ allows Ashley to be herself...She sounds confident as she expresses her personal, intimate lyrics...‘Away’ takes her into Norah Jones territory, another original that stands out...”
Reviewer Magazine: “...her delicate and sweet vocals show resilience through a tough time in her life...Christina Ashley’s sophisticated style and talent is perhaps best showcased in her personal songs – songs she had either helped write or performed herself. The young artist’s spare vocals alone on piano is perhaps the most effective...”
Hill Rag: “Ms. Ashley proves herself to be a promising singer-songwriter with the potential to have the long-term music career of which she dreams.”
For further information about Ashley, please visit http://www.ChristinaAshleyMusic.com and http://www.sketchinrecords.com.