Asa has fans in space

HE describes it as a calling. Asa Jennings never wanted to be a singer but today he is preparing to release his first album. JAMES MARSTON speaks to a man who admits he is obsessed with his music.

HE describes it as a calling.

Asa Jennings never wanted to be a singer but today he is preparing to release his first album.

JAMES MARSTON speaks to a man who admits he is obsessed with his music.

HE'S sold his car and his tv.

He gave up his flat, he lives with friends and he sleeps on a mattress,

So determined is Asa Jennings to share his music with the world he admits it is overtaking his life.

Most Read

He said: “It is a bit addictive and it is a bit like an obsession. I want to do this as my future career.”

At 27 the singer-songwriter has a good job as a claims handler, he is smart and tidy and pleasant to talk to.

He said: “In 2006 I finished fourth in the UK in a vocal competition as well as winning several UK songwriting competitions online for my song The Good In Me.

“I'd never really been serious about my music due to having a good career in insurance and previous commitments, a home, a girlfriend, the usual sort of things.

“But after the break up of a relationship last year I eventually realised it was something that I wanted to do and that I couldn't escape my calling.”

Ipswich born and bred and now living in Saturn Road, Asa has taught himself how to play the guitar and piano. He said his music is hard to categorize.

He added: “It's pop rock and indie, it doesn't really fit into a genre. I have paid for my own album but its not really about making money I want to share my music. I draw on my own experiences for inspiration.”

With his debut album My Own Worst Enemy to be released on November 26, Asa is delighted it has already taken in excess of 1,000 advance orders.

He said: “I went on the internet and I set up a myspace account, as many artists do, and posted some very average acoustic demos, recorded at home.

“Despite the quality I was overwhelmed with the number of people who said the songs were amazing or my voice was great and it gave me the belief to go forward. I spent a few months writing songs for a debut album, I formed a band with some good local musicians who believed in what I was doing and the album was born.”

Currently looking for new band members, Asa is taking control of his career.

He added: “There was even interest from a number of record labels. I was told by several that they could set up meetings and get my music heard but that they recommended first of all I went and got some good quality demos done.

“Myspace has been good to me. In just a few months since posting some of the album songs I have had more than 45,000 plays and now have 10,000 fans.

“A lot of this has been done through word of mouth and people recommending me to their friends which is a fantastic feeling. Through my myspace fans I have been requested on radio in Denmark, Greece and Canada before the album is even out.”

Ambitious and focused Asa is currently trying to organise a UK tour next year.

He added: “I've been lucky enough to make some friends in the world of music via myspace. They all agree I have some fantastic songs that could achieve commercial success and that I have a voice to back it up. I decided to sell my car, my tv and everything I owned except a mattress and some clothes and I have moved house seven times this year, staying with people, to pay for studio time to get the album ready.

“I believe that I will ultimately be successful. People in the industry have endorsed this but without a record label paying big bucks to promote it's a struggle finding all the money to promote myself as well as I can. I'm chasing a dream.”

To find out more about Asa and his music visit www.asajennings.com or visit www.myspace.com/ajenningsmuisc

What would you do to chase a dream? Have you given up everything in the pursuit of ambition? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter