Ashley Delima – Stay in America
Ashley Delima’s improbable emergence as a mammoth vocal talent in the making commences with the song “Stay in America” and the song’s overall excellence hints at the boundless potential possessed by her and the creative team surrounding her. Ashley has been singing her earliest years and that commitment to her craft shines through in every passage of “Stay in America” and her collaborators have provided critical assistance for making her musical ideas taking shape. Co-written by two time Grammy award winning songwriter/producer Marc Swersky and veteran songwriting talent Brielle Brown, these pop music powerhouses have loaded up Delima’s debut with enough fervor and musical merit to justify considering Delima one of the pop world’s brightest new talents. “Stay in America” doesn’t traffic in politics or ideology; instead, this is musical art that argues, if anything, for the sanctity of dreams and the passions of a human heart.
It’s really unique how she approaches the song lyrically. Delima could give us a song full of declarative statements supporting the dreams of those looking for freedom and a better tomorrow, but Delima’s writing goes a step further and gives the song an almost poetic veneer and her vocals navigate seemingly wordy passage with a fluency and sure-footed musicality that’s quite impressive. Swersky and Brown provide an arrangement for the song that Delima inspired, and you definitely hear a strong Latin influence coming through. It isn’t ever pushed with stereotypical flourish. There’s an ear for the subtle at work here, instead, and it’s exceptional how they bring things together without ever seeming to strain for effect.
The guitar and percussion are, clearly, the lead instruments for the song. The drumming is what sets a tone from the first, especially in the relatively stripped down opening that fixes listener’s attention on the interplay between the kit work and Delima’s voice. It’s an excellent introduction to Delima as an artist and carries us into the main body of the song with a gentle onrush that never impatiently pushes on the listener. Another key component of the song’s success is that Delima, Swersky, and Brown keep the song condensed to just the right length and it maximizes the entertainment value of the song. “Stay In America” takes a stand for what it thinks is right and never beats listeners over the head with it – instead, Delima and her artistic partners acquaint listeners with experiences they should know about and entertain them the entire time. It’s an impassioned statement of personal belief and her devotion to the topic comes through in both her language and the tenor of her performance. It makes for invigorating listening and is sure to touch all but the hardest of hearts.
Photo credit is Jesse Lizotte