Ashley Pater performs during a EP-release concert March 22 at Centre Stage at Surrey City Hall. (Photo: Tom Zillich)

Surrey girl celebrates 15th birthday with ‘Wild Roses’ EP release

Ashley Pater’s new EP features five original songs

Talk about a perfect birthday party for a music-making teenager.

Ashley Pater’s family and friends helped her celebrate in style at Surrey City Hall’s cozy Centre Stage theatre, where the birthday girl revealed songs from a new EP, performed with a pair of backing bands and otherwise enjoyed the thrill of turning 15.

The March 22 event marked the release of Wild Roses, which showcases five original songs written by the confident, guitar-strumming girl, a Grade 9 student at Fraser Heights Secondary.

Ashley’s folk-pop songs include her EP’s title track along with “Ice Tea,” “Lost & Found,” “Traveller” and “Tip Jar.”

(STORY CONTINUES BELOW)

The tunes were recorded at Four Destinations studio, or 4D, in North Vancouver with the North Delta-based duo of bass player Conor Brennan and guitarist Connor Neidig.

Liam Sturgess, the studio founder and chief creative director, had high praise for Ashley before he performed a couple songs of his own at her EP-release concert.

“I’ve always been keenly aware of Ashley’s ability to just go into a room and come out five minutes later with an impeccable new song, so it was an honour to work time after time with Ashley,” Sturgess said from the stage. “Year after year, Ashley has always kind of shown herself up, and moved forward in a way that is very impressive. She’s always pushing herself to take risks and doing it so seamlessly.”

Ashley has been performing music since age nine, and soon discovered a passion for writing her own songs.

She described her unique songwriting techniques for the audience at Centre Stage.

”I’ll stand in front of a mirror and I’ll use a dry-erase marker – not a Sharpie because my mom would kill me – to write lyrics all over it until completely filled and I have my song,” Ashley explained. “And the other way, which I tend to do more often now, is I’ll get a notebook and I’ll start drawing pictures. I’m not the best artist so sometimes I don’t really know what I’m drawing, but I make sense of it and turn it into a song.”

(STORY CONTINUES BELOW)

Ashley’s proud parents, John and May, have witnessed her way with creating songs.

“It’s kind of like ‘Pictionary’ songwriting,” said John, the girl’s self-described “dadager” – a ‘dad’ and ‘manager’ mashup.

“It’s a fascinating thing to watch because sometimes it comes really quick,” he added. “We’ll hear her get the guitar going and before we know it, boom, a new song, and she’ll come out saying, ‘Here, listen to this.’”

The songs on the EP are “all little stories,” according to Ashley.

“The title track (is) basically about two young lovers just hitting the road and getting away and looking for a new life. And that new life is represented by wild roses.”

A video for the song was recorded at a farm in Ladner.

Ashley and her family spend a lot of time in the Sunshine Valley area, near Hope; John is a firefighter with the Sunshine Valley Volunteer Fire Department, and Ashley says the time she spends in that area inspires her musically.

“I have actually written multiple songs up in Sunshine Valley. I’m pretty sure one of my songs, ‘Traveler,’ which is on the EP, was written there,” she said. “The whole vibe and feeling of the place, it brings out a lot of cool tones and experimentation in my music.”

Ashley’s grandfather is a self-taught musician, and she spent many years “singing and dancing around the house” with her grandparents and also her parents.

“She has definitely worked very, very hard to get to this point, with her songwriting and guitar-playing,” May said. “She works hard at it and also has a vision in her head, where she sees herself going.”

Ashley’s goal is to continue looking forward to more musical adventures, as a budding songwriter and performing.

“Last year, we thought it was our best year for music, and this year is starting to be even better, so if it keeps going like that, that’s the important thing,” she noted.

Visit ashleypater.com for more details about the EP and Ashley’s gig calendar, which include a “Breaking Down D Walls” concert at Vancouver’s StreetXB Studio on April 28.

with file from Emelie Peacock/Black Press

Just Posted

Surrey considers 75% discount on senior rec passes, drop-in admission

Council to vote Monday on proposal to deeply discount rates for residents over 70

‘A promise is a promise’: Cloverdale lantern festival opens, two months late

After months of delays due to permit issues and uncooperative weather, Art of Lights finally opens

Surrey mayor says city won’t repay $56M spent on LRT, but might pony up $40M in land transfers

There will be no tax increase for Surrey residents resulting from this, McCallum confirms

Delta-Richmond Operation Red Nose needs volunteers for New Year’s Eve

Higher demand for the service this year means ORN might not have enough drivers on Dec. 31

Cloverdale hockey team raising money for young burn survivors

Fundraiser to be hosted on Saturday at Cloverdale Crossing Save-On-Foods

MAP: Christmas light displays in Surrey, Langley and beyond

Send us pictures of your National Lampoon-style lit-up homes, nativity scenes or North Pole playlands

VIDEO: Giants winning streak halts against Everett Friday at home in Langley

Following their first loss since November, G-Men hope to regroup and defeat Victoria on Saturday.

ICBC to apply for 6.3% hike to basic insurance rates

Crown Corporation said it will be submitting its next basic rate application to the British Columbia Utilities Commission Friday

Media, robotics, Indigenous studies coming to B.C. Grade 12 classrooms in 2019-20

Provincial tests are also being changed for students in Grade 10 to 12, the Education Ministry said

Stranded B.C. trucker writes final wishes before being rescued 3 days later

‘I was just praying someone would come along’

Canfor Corp. extending temporary curtailment of sawmills in B.C.; cutting hours

Vancouver-based company says the decision is due to declining lumber prices, high log costs and log supply constraints

Canada’s prospective world junior team members await final roster decisions

Thirty-four players were invited to the national junior selection camp

Family searching for B.C. professor last seen at Colombian salsa club

Ramazan Gencay, a professor in economics at Simon Fraser University, was last seen in Medellin

Rash of bomb threats a learning opportunity for response capacity, Goodale

Thursday’s wave of bomb threats swept across communities on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border

Most Read