Taylor Ashley

Taylor Ashley is releasing a solo album about his really hard, pretty terrible year.

The past year (going on two years now, actually?) has been a transformative time for us all. Some good, some not. But this time has given many an opportunity to learn more about themselves and the world. For some, music is a great way to express or deal with what they’re feeling in the moment. It’s a type of therapy.

Taylor Ashley is a singer/songwriter who spent several years in the Colorado Springs indie rock outfit Bridges Will Break. He recently released a solo album Our, I mean, My, a concept album about his going through a divorce during the pandemic. It’s emotionally charged, passionate and vulnerable. 

Taylor left Bridges Will Break in March of 2020, right before the COVID-19 pandemic, because he wasn’t able to commit as much as he wanted to. “Where I was at that time in my life, I didn’t have the time to commit to giving Bridges my all, which caused some internal conflict. They went on a little tour without me after our last EP came out, because I just started a new job and couldn’t get the time off, for example,” says Taylor. “So, we mutually decided it would be best for the band if I exited. That being said, I’ve always wanted to release a solo record. It’s been a New Year’s resolution for, like, seven years now.”

That seven-year resolution has finally come to fruition with painful, yet healing subject matter. “I had been writing since my ex left last November. I am a very slow writer normally, but had a couple of songs done and a bunch of ideas in the first couple months of the year,” he says. “These songs helped me grieve and find myself in a way I didn’t think was possible, and they’re very personal and vulnerable.”

The album was released Sept. 10, a symbolic date. “Back in July, I realized that what would’ve been my fourth wedding anniversary, Sept. 10, fell on a Friday this year, and I knew that I wanted to release the album on that day,” Taylor says. “That deadline gave me the push I needed to finish writing a few of the songs and conceptualize what I wanted to portray through the record,” he says. “Also the push to help me record, mix and master it from friend and fellow musician Aaron Noble Brown; he was incredibly instrumental in getting this whole thing done in time, and I can’t thank him enough for it.”

This past year, so much has changed for all of us, and for Taylor it has been a tough but motivational and creative time. “For me, personally, my life has completely changed since the start of the pandemic. No longer married, social circle grew smaller for awhile, I had to work gig jobs to make ends meet after getting divorced, living with a roommate for the first time in years... figuring out how to be alone with myself inside of the isolation of lockdown was something I would never wish on anyone. But coming out of it, thanks to the support from so many loved ones, I feel more like myself than I have in years,” he says. And he says now he’s ready to get back to live shows and to create human connections again.

“A couple months ago, I remember going to a show at The Black Sheep and seeing so many faces I literally haven’t seen since the beginning of the pandemic. It was so surreal. Seeing bands play live again just gave me a lot of hope for hopefully getting over the pandemic, as well as inspiration to keep creating, and that people need to express themselves in playing shows and going to shows.”

You can listen to Our, I mean, My on all major streaming platforms, and at taylorashley.bandcamp.com.

And in the context of moving on, Colorado Springs indie rock heroes Dear Rabbit will be heading up — literally — to Boise, Idaho, for the Treefort Festival (Sept. 22-26). But before they leave, they’ll kick off the tour with a show this Friday, Sept. 17 at Lulu’s Upstairs with Denver indie/folk act Extra Gold