INTERVIEW: Asha Jefferies

We may be going into Winter at the moment but that doesn’t mean we have to act like it’s Winter. My mind set is that we should just keep acting like it’s Summer and party all the way through the cold and it seems like the rest of the music industry agrees with me with the announcement of a bunch of festivals and live shows. The second annual The Squeeze Festival hosted by Lime Cordiale and Chugg Entertainment will travel down the East Coast at the start of June bringing some cool vibes with a chilled line up of indie-pop-rock. Featuring Lime Cordiale, Tyne James Organ, The Lulu Raes, Heaps Good Friends, Asha Jefferies and Comedian Demi Lardner, this eclectic line-up will keep your heart and body warm.

Brisbane singer-songwriter Asha Jefferies is an artist that has been making some waves with her intimate indie-pop with her vulnerable lyrics and pure honesty. She will be taking The Squeeze stage with her all female band and playing tracks from her EP ‘Hold Yourself Together’ as well as a bunch of “to be released” material. She’s been gracing the Triple J Unearthed airwaves, been nominated for a Queensland Music Award and playing shows along side Julia Jacklin and Radnor & Lee. And she’s done all of this only at the beginning of her career.

I recently chatted to Asha Jefferies about what people can expect from her set at The Squeeze, dived into the vulnerability of her new EP and found out what the biggest thing she’s learnt about herself as an artist from playing support and festival sets. Check it out HERE; 

TB: At the start of June you will be heading on tour with Lime Cordiale, Tyne James Organ, The Lulu Raes and Heaps Good Friends for The Squeeze. So what are you most looking forward to about these run of shows?

AJ: I’m actually most excited about bringing my girl band along! We’ve been having so much fun rehearsing and I can’t wait to take them out of Brisbane and to the big smokes. I normally tour solo, so yay for travelling with friends!

TB: Over the past year you have done a few support and festival roles and to be honest, they aren’t always the easiest shows to do. So what is one of the biggest things you’ve learnt about yourself as an artist from doing these types of shows? 

AJ: Yeah, it’s been cool but I’ve definitely been out of my comfort zone at times. Resilience and self belief is always so important. As well as making sure you have FANTASTIC people around you.

TB: What is one emotion or feeling you want people to walk away from your set at The Squeeze feeling?

AJ: I want people to walk away from the set and want to call their Mum.

TB: When you look back at the creative process of your debut EP ‘Hold Yourself Together’, what was the biggest hurdle you had to personally overcome to get this collection of tracks into the world? 

AJ: Writing the songs were the easy part, but producing and assessing how to portray my vulnerabilities and personality within the EP took a while. It’s easy to hide behind a band or a rockstar version of yourself but I’m here to be honest. Which isn’t always the sweetest, easiest thing.

TB: What would you say is the most vulnerable moment on ‘Hold Yourself Together’ for you as a songwriter?

AJ: I’d say the title track, Hold Yourself Together is the most open and scary moment. There was never an edit or filtering thought when I wrote it. It discusses attachment, addiction, drugs, dependance, betrayal, heartbreak, love and strength.

TB: Reflecting on the personal growth you’ve had between ‘Hold Yourself Together’ and ‘Honey Save Me From My Falsehoods’, what do you wish you could go back to that old version of Asha sitting in the studio and say to either inspire her or help her in the right direction?

AJ: I’d say “naw, stop being so sad Baby A. Life’s looking up. Look around you, dream big”.

TB: With all the touring and shows you’ve done, there must be some funny or strange experiences that have occurred. So what is one of the funniest or weirdest things to happen to you while you’ve been on the road? 

AJ: I have a new song called ‘Bad Kisser’ that I played at every show this year on my February tour. There were a lot of drunk mums at one show and afterwards one of them came up, gave me a big hug and said ‘you’re so great! I’m sure you’re not a bad kisser. I’m sure you’re very good’ *laughs*. 

TB: Let’s play a little game of rapid fire questions where I’m going to ask you some questions that you just need to answer with the first thing that comes to mind. 

AJ: Okay!

TB: My pre show pump up song is… 

AJ: ‘Like Sugar’ by Chaka Khan.

TB: The emoji that best describes my EP ‘Hold Yourself Together’ is…  

AJ: The holding hands emoji!

TB: Pineapple on pizza is… 

AJ: Fine and allowed.

TB: If I could have any superpower it would be… 

AJ: Always being happy!

TB: If I could have written any song, it would’ve been… 

AJ: ’Everytime the Sun Comes Up’ by Sharon Van Etten!

THE SQUEEZE FESTIVAL

Featuring; Lime Cordiale, Tyne James Organ, The Lulu Raes, Heaps Good Friends, Asha Jefferies & Comedian Demi Lardner

Saturday 1 June – The Valley Drive In, Brisbane (U18 Afternoon)

Saturday 1 June – The Valley Drive In, Brisbane (18+ Evening)

Sunday 9 June – The Forum, Melbourne (All Ages)

Saturday 15 June, Enmore Theatre, Sydney (All Ages)