Showing posts from 2013

Merry Happy

Merry Christmas to all...

Merry Christmas to me...

Vienna Coffeehouse

I have long been a fan of our local coffeehouse. They used to inhabit a cute building on High Street with a lot of little cozy rooms but it wasn't set up very well for live performance. Now they have moved to a big, fabulous space with a nice stage and (heart be still!) a real piano. Parking lot. Drive-through. It's what the great urban coffee shops have, plus the convenience of East Tennessee life.
I went to see some music last week featuring my friends Eric Spurgeon and Charlie Katt at Vienna's First Friday music show, and boy are they doing it right. Great sound, nice people, beautiful singing and songwriting. Get out and support the artists at Vienna when you can.

Say Yes


I have help in the studio, which I really really need. Jim Horenburg, guitar wizard, is cutting some guitar and bass for me, and getting it done better in two hours than it would take me two months to get. I'm not good at asking for help but when I finally do it's such a relief.

Hopefully he will next advise me in how to get the vocals to sound better, once I get a good take (which this isn't).

Still... it's a fun song. "Leave Me"

Here Goes

New song, new guitar player.

"Halfway Married"

copyright 2013 Sarah Motes Ashley


I'm going to have some. Guitar demos. Of new songs. This week.
I feel like this:
You know. "aaagh!"

Lots of ideas and lyric fragments. Here's one that is part of a re-fit of an old, old song:

Go on and try, deny
You know you're gorgeous when you lie
lie lie lie some more
I like it
You keep hanging around and around and around
talking to me all night
then you say I'm not your type
it's the story of my life

Anyway, I'm having someone else play my guitar demos which is why they'll be, uh, kinda good.

I'm in the market for a young, female, great singer to write songs with/for. Know anybody?

Top of the Line

I don't know what it means, exactly, but it's the name of what my lyric "Your Second Wife" won last night at the Smoky Mountains Songwriters Festival Competition. It's technically second place, and definitely was my first time sitting in the audience waiting to hear my name called to win something.

Here are the first two lines:

Kid #1 bit someone, he's kicked out of school
Kid #2 did something bad in the neighbors' swimming pool

It's a miniature domestic drama about a bad day that gets better. It will never be on the radio, I don't think, but it seems to strike a chord with people and the Music Industry people did say it made them giggle.

Sending a few giggles back to Nashville: just another service I provide. Not counting the unintended giggles caused by bad songwriting, mine as well as other people's.

Anyway, I'm thrilled. It was a first draft and I had no idea what was going to happen. Now I'm trying to figure out how to add "A…

Not Winning Isn't Losing

I don't agree with competition in the arts. It is there, I know, it's a crucial part of our human interactions. I agree that the more talented or skilled person should be chosen when someone needs to make a choice among artists for a specific project. Similarly, it's important to discern among paintings or dress designs or songs as a way to understand what is skill and what is "art," the thing that speaks to each of us individually. But it's all out of hand. I don't like the way so many Americans are used to sitting in front of their TVs to join in the critiquing of singers, particularly. People have become far too concerned about which singer is "better," and we forget to enjoy and admire that any of us can sing at all.

It gets more complicated for me and the rest of the working artists in the world. We may not be competing on a TV show, but we are competing. As a songwriter I must compete for attention from the "industry," and at the…


I've been really busy. The short version is, I lost 67 pounds. I don't have any pictures yet. I'm also working on a wildly new and difficult kind of music and I will certainly post the "reveal" here, when I'm able to make music in public this way. It's good.

Losing a ton of weight is strange. It's wonderful. It's scary. I'm at the tough spot where I have more to lose but I don't know how hard that will be, or what I'm willing to do. It's a good problem to have. There are other problems, too; little ones. There is always someone who doesn't feel comfortable with a newer me, and I have learned not to freak out about that. There are also people who suddenly notice me. I get jobs, promotions, friendly overtures of various flavors, and clerks and bartenders notice me more quickly when I wait for service. I'm not kidding. If I were in a city, cabs would stop quicker. This used to annoy me but now I just figure it's subconscio…