Ashley Mitchell opens up about her music and new band mates, who are bringing their part-rock, part-country sound to CJ's Bar and Grille in Smyrna on Saturday.


    Ashley Mitchell fronts Ashley and The Band, a group that dabbles in everything from Southern rock to jazz. Her bandmates include drummer Donny Marvel, lead guitarist Mitch Wessell and bassist Bryce Salvatore. They’ve been together just under two months, although Mitchell and Marvel have been writing together since high school. The group will be playing at 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3, at CJ’s Bar & Grille, 19 W. Commerce St., Smyrna.

Q: How would you describe your sound?
A: I’d put it more in a rock category, like a southern rock sound. My lyrics are country and my voice, I’ve been told, has a southern drawl, which I don’t understand because I’ve always lived in Maryland. So I have a little more of a southern sound. The guys bring a little bit of an edge, and I soften it up.

Q: What have you been listening to lately?
A: We’re very diverse. Donnie and Mitch love listening to Dream Theater, that’s their new big band. Bryce is into the punk thing. And myself, I listen to everything from jazz, to blues, to classic rock. I try to touch all areas.

Q: What can we expect on Saturday: covers, originals, a mix?
A: You’ll hear both. We’re going to try and split it half and half, and try to intertwine them with everything else. We do a lot of classic rock, and a lot of people seem to like the blues type of feel, or old classic rock, like Heart. As for our original stuff, I’ve done a couple of acoustic sets playing with Donnie and we get a very large response out of “Speed” and “Farmer’s Tan.”

Q: What inspires you as a songwriter?
A: I love performing, I love entertaining. As a songwriter, I guess life. I try and write songs that people can relate to, that speak to people. One of my songs is called “Too Late,” and if you listen to the lyrics it’s about being raised by a single mother and how difficult that can be.

Q: What are the four most played songs on your iTunes?
1. “All Along the Watchtower” by Richie Kotzen
2. “It Hurts So Bad” by Susan Tedeschi
3. “18 and Life” by Skid Row
4. “Say” by John Mayer

If You Go
What Ashley and The Band performance
When 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3
Where CJ’s Bar and Grill, 19 W. Commerce St., Smyrna
Admission $5
More Info Call 659-2090