8 Wednesday June132018 Latest Christchurch news at www.star.kiwi Our People SELWYN TIMES Ashy Batchelor Whitecliffs singer following in the steps Whitecliffs musician Ashy Batchelor, 19, has released her third single Jersey. She talks to Emily O’Connell about how she got into music, what her goals are and who she looks up to How did you get into music? I was 11-years-old when I got into singing and it was also accompanied by learning guitar. I practised quite a bit and I got really into it and then I started writing songs at 13-years-old and it just all went from there. What were some of your first songs about? They were mainly about just little things that were happening in my life or I witnessed. I wrote a song about being better as a person. I also wrote a song about these are the best days of my life and things like that. I think at that age I didn’t have much to write about so I kind of grasped onto the little things. Can you tell me about your experience on The X Factor New Zealand? So I was 15-years-old when that happened. It was my first major television experience, so I learnt quite a lot about being interviewed and the whole television music scene and everything like that. That was the first time I had performed at Vector Arena as well which was a massive step for me, there was about 4000 people, I think, in the arena at the time which was a big thing for me. How did you find being on The X Factor? I learnt so much from it. I wouldn’t take it back. It really pushed me I think as an artist as well to try really, really hard and also with the competition environment, it really pushed me as well so when I came back home I was more motivated than ever. Can you tell me about performing at Christmas in the Park in Christchurch in 2015? I got one of the main acts for that which was really cool and that was the same year as I did MUSIC: 19-yearold Ashy Batchelor, of Whitecliffs, has just released her third single. PHOTO: PETRA MINGNEAU The X Factor, it was a big year for me. My judge, Stan Walker, who was on the show, he also performed at Christmas in the Park so that was a pretty cool moment. Were you nervous? I think that was the most fun I’ve ever had, actually. I think the prospect of singing in front of 100,000 is pretty daunting but I think I thrived off that and I got quite a few songs to sing as well so that was really, really cool for someone that was my age and so young. Can you tell me about your new single, Jersey? I wrote that about a year ago while I was in New York with my family on holiday and I just dreamed up this idea and the story didn’t happen to me but it was a figment of my imagination and I was staying in New Jersey at the time. So it’s been a year in the making of production and writing and everything so I’m really excited to release that. How many singles have you released? So I’ve released three singles. My first one was released when I was 17-years-old and Jersey was written when I was 18-yearsold, so there’s a lot more in the mix which that is waiting to come, it’s just timing and we’re getting them out a lot faster now which is cool. Do you plan to release an album? I’m planning on releasing an EP of maybe four songs. When would that be released? It would probably be this year because I’ve been writing quite a bit and I’ve been up in Auckland recording a lot. Can you tell me about winning Play It Strange? I think it was in my last year in school, I won the Peace Song Competition for that. It was amazing because I won it for the country so that was crazy. And that was actually a last minute entry for me, I didn’t know whether I wanted to do it and a teacher at school said “you should do it” and it was a last minute, on the day, entry and I ended up winning, so that was cool. Where does your inspiration for song lyrics come from? I think it all happens differently with every song. Sometimes it’s a word, sometimes it’s chords or something I hear within my everyday life. I think for Jersey it was being surrounded by such an inspirational place and there was just so much going on that everything I wrote to do with that song captures the essence of somewhere like New York. Are you pursuing music fulltime? Yes I am. I’m based in Whitecliffs but I fly up quite often to Auckland, every time I’ve written something or I have interviews or meetings or things like that. Do you have a producer? So I have a producer that I work with out of Parachute Studios and I’m also supported by Nicnak Media who are a management company in Auckland. What’s your goal? I want to be a recording artist. I want to be one of the Taylor Swifts of the world who gets to write and have all the resources in the world to be able to create my craft, that would be amazing. Do you plan to learn any other instruments? I would love to learn the piano, I wish I would have picked that up earlier on, at the same time as I learnt guitar, I was so committed and I had so much time but now it’s a bit more difficult. What’s the hardest part of pursuing music full-time? I think it’s being your own motivation because there can be so many set backs and a lot of the time you don’t see the benefits and the positives of everything. In the music industry, everything takes so much time and you have to have a lot of patience. Which musician do you look up to? Taylor Swift. 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SELWYN TIMES Latest Christchurch news at www.star.kiwi Wednesday June132018 9 of Taylor Swift The New Zealand Warriors got out into the Selwyn community in the lead-up to their NRL match against the Manly Sea Eagles in Christchurch on Saturday. The Warriors held a training session for aspiring rugby league players at Rolleston College on Thursday. Members of the playing roster and club officials took kids from throughout the community through a skills and drills session before Rolleston College pupils performed a haka. The Warriors beat Manly 34-14. What’s the next step for you, in your career? Well I think it’s just working on creating the hit song. Right now we’re working on that and I think we’re getting pretty close. I also think it’s about gaining a lot of support from people, if enough people like it then it will be sure to gain traction. What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learnt through pursuing music? To trust myself, I think there could have been a lot of times where I gave up or thought it was too hard but I think, especially now, I’m gaining a lot of exposure and attention, and I think if I had stopped at any of those times, I wouldn’t been able to get here. If you weren’t pursuing music, what do you think you would be doing? I have no idea. I think I would be doing something to do with writing. I’m really passionate about writing and just English in general. But I really couldn’t see myself being as passionate about something else, it’s just got this feeling when you do it. What’s your favourite thing to do outside of singing? I actually love spending time with my family, we get along really well, we’re always super supportive of each other. I also just love hanging out with my friends and a lot of them are up in Auckland, so that’s been quite good for me as I’ve been up and down quite a bit. What’s been your highlight so far? I think being able to release my own music, I think it’s been a long time coming . . . the response has been so incredible that I think that has been really amazing. Do you have siblings? I do have siblings, I have three brothers. Are they musical? None of them are musical. None of my family is musical but that’s kind of cool, they love that I am. What high school did you go to? St Margaret’s College. How did you find high school? I loved it. It was great. They are always extremely supportive of my music and I think that was the main reason why I really loved that school. Which primary school did you go to? I went to Harewood School and then I went Breens Intermediate. Can you tell me about growing up in Whitecliffs? So I’ve been here all my life. I used to drive an hour into school every day, my mum works in town so we just made the commute every day . . . I was involved in a lot of extra curricular activities at school so I would be staying late at night and going all the way back to Whitecliffs. But Selwyn in general has been really supportive of my music. Warriors media manager Johnny Tuivasa-Sheck coaching a younger rugby league player. Kase Moimoi getting a high-five. Rolleston Warriors Rugby League Club players hanging out with the visitors TALENT: Ashy performed with Stan Walker at Christmas in the Park in 2015. Ryder Rolfe Mini Warriors nursery grade practising their technique. There’s much more to come Discover a true, carefree lifestyle at Lady Wigram Retirement Village Sarah Jacobson - Village Manager 210 Kittyhawk Ave, Wigram Phone 03 341 0543 Mobile 027 3411 464 www.goldenhealthcare.co.nz Independent Living at its best. Lady Wigram Retirement Village facilities are second to none. Whether you’re looking for a serviced apartment or a single story villa mixed with luxury resort style facilities, you have an abundance of choice at Lady Wigram Retirement Village.