Ashlee Keating – YASSS
Q&A by Lucky Smith
You jumped into the entertainment scene at a young age. What was your childhood like and where are you from originally?
I’m from Southern New Jersey, I’m a Jersey girl at heart. My childhood was great, I was doing what I truly love and was destined to do! I wouldn’t change a thing about that! Performing & singing is most important to me! I always wanted to be a performer and begged my parents to do shows and start singing and dancing when I was really young. At the age of 3 I was already on a tv show called AL Alberts TV Showcase in Philadelphia, PA singing a live song every week on TV. That was the start of it all!
Being involved in the entertainment business requires a lot of sacrifice. Being that you started early, is there anything that you didn’t get a chance to do that you would have liked?
Honestly, no. I was busy working as a kid pursuing and living my dreams, but I also had time to be a kid growing up staying grounded playing sports, making friends, and still going to school.
Explain what makes Broadway what it is and your relationship with it.
Broadway is so magical and has a special essence about it! You tell a whole story on one stage and have it come alive! I’ll never forget playing the role of Gretl in The Sound Of Music on Broadway! It was such an amazing experience! For me, being able to do all the things I love in one place singing, dancing, and acting is great!
CBS’ “Star Search” was huge back in the day. Tell us about your experience on that show and how it helped you moving forward.
I’ll never forget that moment in my life either! It was honestly iconic for me! I had always dreamed about being on that show! That was my first time ever going to Los Angeles and I worked so hard to get on! I learned a lot from the experience, met a lot of people, and it made me realize I wanted a career in pop music!
Tell us about your single, “YASSS” and it’s creation.
YASSS was so much fun to write & create in the studio! It’s a fun, uplifting up tempo, pop song. I went into the studio that day feeling myself and feeling some type of way (hence the lyric “I’m gonna flip my pony, okay b**** I slay”). I’m always saying YASSS, so the writing came about so naturally! My co-writer, producer and I laughed a lot in the session. I just wanted to create and write a song most importantly that represented me and my personality, but also a song my fans (#Keators) could relate to feeling happy, and make them want to dance along and feel themselves like the day I was writing and recording it!
You have worked with a few household names. Which of them have made the biggest impression on you and why?
I’ve loved everyone I’ve worked with so far, but I’d have to say Demi Lovato. I really respect her for living her truth and being vulnerable not just in life, but also in her newest music. I really respect that. She’s been through a lot.
Who/What inspires you?
Kelly Clarkson and Beyoncé! I love them! Both artists inspire me through their humility, power vocals, and ability as role models to others. Kelly is such an inspiring good person, her lyrics are so heartfelt and relatable. I love that she has her own talk show now as well. Beyoncé is a queen! Period! She slays life! Not only is she an incredible performer and power vocalist, but I love how she is a role model, philanthropist, and entrepreneur. They are both truly an inspiration to me. Like them, I’m always inspired to write music based off of true events and things happening in my life that I want my fans to hopefully relate to how I do with their music.
Describe your fashion sense.
Extra!!! Lol just kidding, but kind of. It really just depends on how I’m feeling that day when I wake up. I’d like to call my style trendy and flashy. I love standing out and just doing me! I love my hoop earrings and to incorporate lots of pink and bright colors… but sometimes its all about all black. I also wear a lot of workout clothes & sweat suits when I’m just feeling more chill.
A lot has been put on hold, especially entertainment. How do you feel about this COVID-19 pandemic?
It’s really tough for everyone. The most important thing is to remember we’re all in this together and we will get through it! Till then I’m just going to try and put out music that makes people feel good, and encourages them to try and get through it.
What have you been doing to cope/keep busy during quarantine?
I’ve honestly been keeping very busy! I’m trying to make myself feel as much on my normal routine as possible. I’ve been keeping up with my at-home workouts as well as talking to my fans online, singing a lot, recording live cover videos from the couch, writing new music and planning this music video release for YASSS! I started a new series on my YouTube channel called Sofa Sessions With Ashlee: Live Quarantine Covers. My goal is to post new videos weekly. Just me, my voice, the couch, recording off of my phone! My Keators have been loving them and my goal is just to keep inspiring people through using my gifts and keep everyone feeling happy during this hard time. Music truly heals.
What is the first thing you will do once this thing is over with?
Get in the recording studio ASAP and dine in at a restaurant with friends.
Lastly, how can people find you on social media?
My new single YASSS is on all streaming platforms! My social media links are below.
Photo of Ashlee by Emily Rose