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Countless artists battle to carve, define or establish their own musical identity. For some, it's a strenuous process of experimenting with various musical styles in an attempt to stumble upon something that "fits". 

What is apparent about Jamaican born British artist Adreyn Cash though, is that he is an artist that is not only fully aware of his musical identity, but in full, natural command of it. With its routes dug deep within soul music, Adreyn Cash’s sound consists of the smooth mixture of emotion and perhaps even fear, projecting music that is alternative: dark, but by no means depressing.

 

“I create music that people can listen and relate to, but also music that reaches out to the person within, the one whom we hide from the masses, my music is the voice for the hidden ‘us’.”

Growing up, Adreyn found himself in and around music from an early age. A strong musical heritage consisting of reggae artists RDX, Eric Donaldson and the all-important presence of his mother, meant that although not his birth right, it’s considered that becoming a musician himself was something he was destined to do. It wasn’t until the age of 16 however that he started taking his music seriously, upon which, he was able to flourish at an array of opportunities.
 
He championed renditions of songs such as John Legend’s “Ordinary People” at weddings, birthdays and secondary school performances that on one performance included the Mayor and Mayoress of his borough amongst the delighted audience. Excitement for him as a musician was growing. The belief was that “Once he gets into the industry, there will be no stopping him”. - Mayor of the London Borough of Bromley.
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Art direction/ Digital Editor Vanessa Abia

Art Direction/ Producer Moses Mason

Photography Jonas Martinez 

Stylist Grace Evans

Production Project Liquid 

 
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With the acknowledgment of him as a musician increasing, he began playing bigger events for an expanded fan-base that continued to grow ever stronger. This ultimately culminated into an early highlight of his career: performing at the Indig02 in December 2009. Almost a decade later, in 2018; after completing a degree in Music. Adreyn burst onto the scene with single ‘Angel’s Lie’ which was premiered by BBC 1Xtra, with further support from Reprezent Radio, Elicit Magazine, and Link Up TV, among others, and has garnered over 100,000 streams on Spotify alone. Proving the Jamaican born British singer, songwriter and producer was a force to be reckoned with.
The 8-track EP was co-produced by Adreyn Cash, alongside some of the finest UK musicians and beatsmiths, including Nutty P, who has previously worked with Ghetts, Shakka, and Professor Green, among others, 169, whose production credits include working with the likes of Drake, Craig David, and Stormzy, and rising producers Jamal Woon (Wiley, Bonkaz, A2), Shaun Barratt, and Farr Music’s Linden Berelowitz, with all songs on the seminal project, written by Adreyn. 

Art direction/ Digital Editor Vanessa Abia

Art Direction/ Producer Moses Mason

Photography Jonas Martinez 

Stylist Grace Evans

Production Project Liquid 

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From the opening track ‘Angel’s Lie’, which sees Adreyn lamenting a loss of innocence and the end of a relationship, and the deeply personal ‘Breathe’, which was written as Adreyn was battling depression in 2017, to ‘Strange Fruit’, about our forever search for unconditional love, and the slow burning ‘Mama Papa’, to the guitar-driven sensual track ‘Sweetest Taste’, Adreyn Cash’s Illusions EP takes the listener on an expansive lyrical and musical journey, which makes for a greatly compelling listen, from start to finish. 

Speaking about the inspiration behind his Illusions EP, Adreyn Cash says, “The EP is inspired by love and desire and driven by a need for love and acceptance. I wanted to write a project about the way I saw the world, my hopes and aspirations. All the things I wanted but felt I didn’t have, all the things that were illusive in my life: success, happiness, joy, love & freedom. This Illusions EP was a way for me to break through any illusions, with the hope of actualising these aspirations”.

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In 2020, Adreyn returned with his powerful 80s inspired Alt-R&B track ‘Killshot,’ the first single from his ‘Rich Girl’s Don’t Marry Poor Boys’ album, set for a 2021 release. 

‘Killshot’ is a dark, mid-tempo track written and produced by Cash himself, and deals with the act of reclaiming your “love” after heartbreak, he sings: “I’m taking back my love, cause you got the killshot”. “Killshot, for me, comes from a darker place than a song like ‘Angel’s Lie,’ that song was about closure, and forgiveness; there was no blame. Killshot is about revenge, I’m angry that my heart has been broken again, and it’s not my fault it’s hers.

Hailing from South London, and drawing influences from the greats such as Prince, Aretha Franklin, Sam Cooke and Michael Jackson, Adreyn Cash is revered for his pure, smooth and lush vocals, that travel across soul, R&B, pop and alternative music. His signature alternative soul sound, which excellently fuses elements of pop, rock, R&B, gospel and classical music, to create something striking and unique, and yet warmly familiar, has been honed to perfection over the years.

What was the inspiration behind your new single ‘killshot’? 

The inspiration behind Killshot is healing and regaining self-love/self-worth after heartbreak. This song is different in its tone though, in the past when writing about relationships or situations I tended to move away from blaming anyone. However, in Killshot, the other party is completely to blame and I’m angry about it. I’m angry because I’ve opened my heart to another person who ended up advantage of it. 

 

How has it been launching new music in these difficult times? 

2020 has been a very interesting year. I was initially supposed to release Killshot shortly after returning from LA in March/April, but because of Corona I had to delay it. I wasn’t entirely sure when I would release any music; and then when I did approve a date the world erupted with protests for Black Lives Matter. I was conflicted about releasing music at a time when my community, my people were uniting but ultimately, I think it all worked out well in the end. 

 

How does it feel to be putting music out again? 

It’s scary and thrilling and rewarding. It’s a wonderful buzz of excitement to see people’s reactions and feedback. Especially for Killshot, I was so afraid that people wouldn’t appreciate the artistic and musical direction, but it seems like they have and they’re here for the ride. 

 

Has your creative process changed since the last time you release music? 

Yes. I’m the sole producer on all my songs. Previously I would often work on my songs as a co-producer, I didn’t trust myself as a sole producer. For this entire project I want to give myself complete creative licence. Not that I won’t be working with other producers; I just trust myself more. 

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What is your favourite lyric in your single? 

“I’m taking back my love” – there’s a raw power in that line, I’m fed up of my love/me being taken advantage of. Sometimes in life you get to a stage where you have no choice but to choose you and that’s what that line represents: Me choosing me.

What else can we expect from you this year? 

I’m working on my album ‘Rich Girls don’t Marry Poor Boys’ – within the next year I’ll be releasing singles and promotional singles from that. I’m also working on a side project called ‘Reimagined’ with a producer; he’ll be remixing some of the songs from my Illusions EP but with his own twist. 

 

When did you first become interested in music? 

I’ve been around music since I was a child. It runs in the family; my mother was a musician and actor. I’m related to the Dancehall group RDX and reggae legend Eric Donaldson and I think my Grandmother is second or third cousin to Shaggy. 

I started singing in school in Jamaica at 4, and when I moved to the UK, I joined a choir in primary school and started learning the violin and it’s been consistent since then. 

 

Which artists have influenced your style in music? 

Michael Jackson, Prince, Miguel, Sam Cooke, Fantasia, Toni Braxton, Miguel, Beyoncé, Bruno Mars, Aretha Franklin, the list is endless really. 

 

What’s one thing you have gained during lockdown? 

Knowledge, haha. I spent a lot of time gaining knowledge that hadn’t been centre focus for a long time. 

 

What is something people wouldn’t know about you? 

Growing up, I was a HUGE Britney Spears fan.

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I could eat Bun & Cheese for life and never get tired of it

 

I hate raisins 

 

My mother is my idol. Everything I do is to make her proud.

 

I hate bad hygiene and bad odor. 

 

I’m a lover of ancient History especially ancient black history. I spend a lot of time researching Ancient civilizations in and across Africa. 

 

I write all my own songs. 

 

I have a degree in Music from Canterbury Christ Church University

 

I love watching Natural haircare videos on YouTube.

 

I’m an eclectic listener. I listen to almost all genre’s of music.

 

I was born in Jamaica 

ASHA GOLD 

" Rising R&B Star Asha Gold Shares Second Single 'Passenger'

Art direction & Styling Madalena Hernandez

Hair & makeup Phoebe Checks

Photography Maxine Ntambwe

Assistance Imogen Chong & Ellie Lachs

Production AIME 

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Classically trained to Grade 8 in Piano and Drums, Asha Gold is able to compose inventively, with lyricism beyond her years. Surrounding herself with music in all forms since the early years of her childhood has allowed her a diverse collection of musical influences; from H.E.R, to Frank Ocean, to her own Indian heritage.

 

In 2019, Asha performed at Tom Kerridge's Pub in the Park festival, opened the evening session for Clean Bandit, and headlined the Victoria in Dalston for Breaking Sound, plus she supported Olivia Dean at the Slaughtered Lamb with East of Eden Live. 

The runaway success of Asha Gold’s debut single ‘Too Good’ was unprecedented. Going from an entirely unknown beginner, Asha Gold was swiftly picked up BBC Radio 1’s Jamz Supernova, selected for Tidal’s Rising: R&B playlist, and also gained praise at Colors, Elevator, Clash Magazine, Earmilk and more. Now, with over 50,000 Spotify plays on ‘Too Good’, the London-based artist is ready to release her second single ‘Passenger’.

'Passenger'

reminisces on the power of travel, how it can inspire you and help you to grow as an individual.

“Passenger’ was one of the first songs I ever wrote. I had been travelling in Europe, and on my train home I heard a guy on the platform playing a riff on guitar which caught my attention. I asked him what the chords were, and wrote the song the next day with the voice note he had kindly recorded for me. It’s about escapism and how all your stresses seem to fade when you’re travelling, constantly on the move. 

Although currently we’re all very limited on where and how much we can travel at the moment, I’m hoping this song gives people the same sense of freedom when they listen to it that I had when I was writing it.”

 

Describe yourself in three words 

Ambitious, fun, caring. 

What was your creative process like when writing your latest single ‘passenger’?

The song itself has been on quite the journey! I was at a train station after travelling in Europe and I heard a guy playing guitar. He was playing the same riff you hear throughout the track, which was putting all of these melodies and ideas in my head. I nervously asked him for the chord progression and he voice-noted it for me as I couldn’t play guitar myself at the time. The next day I sat on the sofa with the voice-note and the song pretty much wrote itself! It went through various stages of production until myself, J Mac, and Dilush Selva landed on the perfect vibe. 

 

What are you most looking forward to after lockdown?

I’m looking forward to being able to hug again! I have really missed nights out and dancing too. 

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Photography 

Persephone Rosewood 

If you can collaborate with any artist who would it be?

Right now I’d love to be in a room with Masego - I really admire his musicianship. He can play about a hundred different instruments, produce, and write - he has a song called ‘I do everything’ and you really can’t argue with that. 

@Ashagoldmusic

STÖÖKI

Stööki is a movement that began in 2011. They design, produce and curate. Their ethos can be interpreted throughout their multidisciplinary philosophy of Music, Art and Fashion via the three Stööki elements of Sound, Vision & Play.

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They release themed, hand-crafted jewellery collections through interactive art and immersive events. The Stööki Movement promotes co-creation and audience participation through evolving themes inspired by youth culture. As each collection advances, they give you a chance to experience the Stööki lifestyle through a series of art forms and curated events. One of their key aims is to bridge the gap between streetwear and jewellery. As an independent designer, they have a self-made ethos that forced them to kick down doors in the jewellery industry and create their own opportunities.

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They have been running monthly Streetwear Jewellery Making Workshops since 2018 and partnered with events platform Dice in 2020. They encourage all ages and skill levels to take part in the workshops. 
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