BET’s hit docu-series, Chasing Destiny, showed Kelly Rowland putting together the ultimate girl group, based on her experience in Destiny’s Child, one of the most influential girl groups of all time. Along with the help of legend Frank Gatson Jr., the two shaped and molded women who sung and danced their way into the hearts of viewers across the country.
Of the girls on the show, Ash was a standout as one of the top 15 finalists, with her bubbly personality and dedication to the craft.
The young Spelman graduate had already had plenty of experience in the industry. She’s worked closely with Janelle Monae, opened up for Ryan Leslie and released some EPs of her own. Now at the top of her game, we caught up with the budding star to talk about her experience on the show and what’s next for her.
The Source: Tell us a little bit of what went on for you behind the scenes !
The first week of shooting, I was also at the Pepsi set for the Super bowl with Janelle Monae. I was balancing that, in addition to shooting the show. I was literally working all day and night. Though we [the cast] did make time to talk and connect with each other, I was super busy so I didn’t get to hang out all the time. But the ladies and I were all cool, so they understood. I was cool with all of the ladies.
How is doing work for a show different than doing work with artists?
I’ve been touring for five years with different artists. It’s something that can be hard, but if you’re willing to do the work then the outcome is beautiful. For me, the show was an extension of the kind of work I had already been doing—putting in work and time to make something awesome. The same work ethic was there, you just add some lights and a camera. For me, it was just another part of this journey.
On that journey, what made you decide to do the show?
I just wanted to try to do it all. I wanted to take the opportunity to utilize people, like Kelly and Frank, who know so much about the music business. There’s always room to grow and something to learn from every opportunity. I don’t wait on hand outs and when I saw this opportunity, I knew it was one to take. That’s how I approached it. I didn’t know if they’d be interested in someone like me. I knew I could learn from the girls and from Kelly and Frank so I decided to go for it and soak up all I could.
What do you think girl groups offer that is different from being solo.
The cool thing about being in any kind of group is having a diverse array of perspectives and approaches to things. Teamwork is really awesome as an artist—getting to learn different approaches to music. I also got to connect with people with different backgrounds and experiences, and can learn from there. I think whenever there’s a team working together, you get so much more. Even solo artists have a team behind them, even if not everyone is in the spotlight.
What pieces of advice did Kelly or Frank give you personally?
Being committed is the main thing I learned from Kelly. I got some good notes and takeaways from them both, but collectively what I got that was that this (experience) is bigger than us. Also, to not worry too much about to criticism from the other side (people who don’t do what we do). They always reminded us that we were there because they wanted us there. Another piece of advice I got personally was to making sure to get out of my own way and out of my own heads. They both were big on confidence and believing in yourself and your ability, so that’s one thing that really stuck with me.
What’s next for your career now?
The Please Like Me EP is out now and it’s all about how we, as a society, chase likes and want influence across social media platforms. Love and relationships are always a part of my story and music, and this EP is basically a collection of journal entries and honesty for me. I always want to tell my story and perspective. People can relate to it. I’ll be doing more shows and tours and connecting with the fans I made during my time on the show, so I’m excited to see how it goes.
Would you ever consider joining a girl group in the future?
If it makes sense at the time. Like I said, I really feel that all of this is a journey, so if that’s where the path leads me, then I’d be down. It’s not like I’m yearning to join one or totally against joining one, but if the opportunity presents itself, I’d consider taking it.