3 Quick Minutes, with…
Ashley Good of Whammy
August 17, 2010
Outside Chicago’s Abbey Pub with Ashley Good, vocalist for hip-hop punk band Whammy. She is the prototypical sparkplug singer – a fiery, red-headed, balls-to-the-wall rock chick whose lyrical beltings and ferocious head-bangings entertained Chicago music crowds all summer.
You don’t have a lot of specific lyrics on a night like this. How do you develop a relationship with a crowd when what you’re doing is limited compared to what your co-vocalists are doing?
It’s communication – communication with the crowd. And the crowd communicating with you, them feeling you’re embraceable. And then it’s just the moment. You gotta feel it. You vibe with it. That’s just more being in the zone when you’re performing and you’re doing your thing.
I could tell they were kind of baffled by it. It was a little different than what they had seen before. We’re early in the night still. I don’t think anybody’s had enough booze, honestly, to get into it. That’s why later acts are sometimes better than in-the-middle acts. This was more of a “sit down, listening” as opposed to a “party, get your hands together, get wild.”
Which do you prefer?
Obviously I like the party. Get your hands, get wild! (laughs) Because I’m just sort of a hyped singer when I’m on stage. It’s just what I do. I zone the fuck out. It’s all passion. It’s all music. It’s the music! It’s my body reacting to the music. Just acting upon it as loudly as possible. And my body. And everything. And then you can vibe with people, because they listen to the music, and if I can feel it and get into it like that, then I know somebody else can get into it like that.
And the crowd responding to a hair twist, responding to a fist pump –
I don’t plan any of that. It’s all different and improv – every time, it’s alive. I love to perform. I love to be on stage and sing and feel people. I use myself as an audience, and I vibe and groove with it. I’m from jazz and soul and blues and stuff like that. It takes its own direction. It takes the lead. It’s my man, the music.
Catch Ashley Good and Whammy for a free show at Double Door, September 3, 2010, celebrating the release of an EP from Whammy front-man Jason Gatz.
Jason Gatz’s EP The Indescribable Description
Ashley Good performing with Young General and Whammy in Los Angeles
The photography of Ashley Klich
And below, Ashley Good performing with Young General and Jason Gatz at Haiti earthquake benefit in January 2010 at Chicago’s Enclave