Mustard had the pleasure of speaking with Nicole Ash! Together we discussed being emo, her growing social media following, My Chemical Romance, their upcoming single “Nothing to Lose”, and so much more!

1.  Mustard is grateful to have you join them at Music Shelf. How are you doing today?

Doing well! I’ve been feeling really motivated about a lot of things in life recently and I’m super excited about what’s coming up this year!

2.  Mustard wonders what your relationship with music growing up?

I’ve always loved music and dreamed about being a singer or playing in a band. I used to perform songs for my parents growing up and started writing songs that popped into my head as young as 6. My older sister also introduced me to a lot of the music I grew to love.

3.  Would you consider yourself emo? Has your favorite band split up or gone on hiatus?

Yes and I’m sure other emos will understand why this is in my Instagram bio. My favorite band is My Chemical Romance and was devastated when they broke up. So happy they’re back and happy with what they’re doing now!

4.  Mustard has observed humans describe being “emo” as a phase. How do you define emo?

I’ll be one of those people saying they never left their emo phase. When I think of “emo” I mostly think about the angsty/emotional music, black clothes, and eyeliner. If you embody those traits, you’re probably emo.

5.  You have garnered a massive following on social media with your guitar covers. Who was the first guitarist that had an impact on you? When did you begin learning guitar?

Ray Toro and Frank Iero from My Chem were the guitarists that made me want to pick up a guitar. I really wanted to sing, but when I heard their music and saw the passion they put into playing, I really wanted to be like them! I got my first guitar at 16 and started learning on acoustic.

6.  How do you decide what song to cover? Do you have a process?

Sometimes I plan ahead, but most of the time, I learn a song that I’m feeling in the moment and feel inspired to play. I like to jump around and have fun with my covers, so whatever I feel drawn to, I just want to play it!

7.  How does it feel to see your audience grow via social media? How has social media helped you as an artist?

It’s pretty cool seeing how many people want to follow my music journey. Posting to social media started as just a way to practice more often and take music more seriously. Social media has made a huge impact for me, not only in how I play and perform, but also with the people I’ve met and even the opportunity for more people to hear my original music. I’m really grateful for all of it.

8.  You stand for following your dreams no matter what. Why is it important that humans do this?

Following your dreams leads to a more fulfilling life. I don’t want to look back with any regrets on chances I should’ve taken. Even though the journey is completely different for everyone, I think we all owe it to ourselves to do the things we’re most passionate about.

9.  You and Beth Knight, of Wayne Avenue, bonded over My Chemical Romance. What My Chemical Romance song or album did you bond over?

All of them. We actually first bonded over having the same guitar (Frank Iero’s signature Phantomatic). I also first heard her singing The Ghost of You on TikTok which made me want to make music with her.

10. How would you rank My Chemical Romance’s discography?

1) Three Cheers For Sweet Revenge 2) The Black Parade 3) I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought My Your Love 4) Danger Days

11. Avril Lavigne, Green Day, and blink-182 are also influences of yours. What deep cut from each artist do you recommend humans listen too?

I’d probably go with Anything But Ordinary by Avril, by Who Wrote Holden Caulfield? by Green Day, and I’m Lost Without You by blink-182.

11. What was it like to be a part of the Female Shred Collab? Could you share more about this experience?

Really cool! Cait Devin reached out if I would be part of the collab and I was excited to play along with so many other talented women supporting the There With Care organization.

12. Last year you released your debut solo single “Someone I Hate.” What was the inspiration behind this single?

A relationship headed south and moving on from it. Music is how I heal, and once I got the chorus stuck in my head I knew I had to write the full song. I also thought “I fell in love with someone I hate” was a clever way of describing heartbreak.

13. Mustard wonders why a human would lie right to your face? Is this common in human society?

Typically if someone is being dishonest or trying to hide something. I think it happens too often, unfortunately.

14. A human wants to visit Wayne Avenue. What can they find there?

Probably 2 girls in band shirts with Ephione guitars and a plastic crown.

15. You plan to release music as a solo artist and with Wayne Avenue. How do you balance both?

Recently, I’ve been putting more focus on my solo project since I recorded a couple songs with JoJo Centineo when I was visiting LA earlier this year. In terms of balancing both projects, it depends on the song and when we’re ready to release it. We’ve found what works for us as a band when it comes to what we want to write about and when we want to schedule releases. Super excited for all the releases this year!

16. What is your creative process?

It changes all the time. I used to always write lyrics first and then music, but now it goes both ways. For example, Plastic Crown from Wayne Avenue and Someone I Hate were both lyrics first, whereas Nothing To Lose was writing lyrics to the instrumentals JoJo wrote.

17. What can fans expect from your upcoming single “Nothing to Lose?

A bit of a darker sound than Someone I Hate. Also a bit of screaming. My voice and confidence as a singer has improved so much in the past year from vocal lessons and the song itself is quite vulnerable.

18. For those who have not seen you perform either in real life or via social media, how would you describe your performances?

Full of passion. Especially if it’s a super fun or aggressive song, I love jumping around with a ton of energy. When I perform, I like to have fun.

19. What is next for Nicole Ash?

I did record a second song in LA that I plan to release sometime this summer! There are also a few other surprises coming up this year.

20. Where can readers listen to your music?

Any streaming platform. Spotify, Apple Music, you name it!


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