Name: Aisha Nichelle Ayers aka A.N.A. Moth
Hometown: Sacramento, California
Speciality/Style: Vocalist, Lyricist, Rock, Blues, Jazz
Tools of Choice: Pro Tools
Years Producing Music & Audio pre-Pyramind: None!
1. What sorts of projects are you working on today?
I work on everything from voiceover work, session singing, and writing hooks, to being the lead vocalist/lyricist in a rock band named Cute Things with Pyramind alum Andrea Iacopini.
2. Describe the style of music you write. What inspires you?
I love writing in general, and life really inspires me. I create to understand what is happening around me. I love the stories of life and the endless perceptions we are all encountering simultaneously. I like writing rock music because of my love of the blues and my internal need to stand up for myself in the strongest way possible.
I have always been attracted to syncopation and driving deliberate rhythms. Rock allows me to express the more feral part of myself. I love that, the wildness of it, the uninhibited aggression and energy of it. But I could also say writing jazz has opened my eyes to the emotional complexity of music and my own soul. It’s more introspective and personal for me when I write in that style, and it can also get experimental which is good, hard work.
3. Everyone has their favorite tools. What are some of yours, and why?
My absolute favorite tool is my notebook. Truth. All my songs come from the things that are occurring in my life or around me, so without that record there is no music for me. Before I gave myself completely to music I was a poet you know so it’s really about writing for me.
4. How do you feel Pyramind best helped or prepared you for your career in the music/sound industry?
I came out of the school not confused about how challenging the business could be. I appreciate the honesty of the school around the real struggles around choosing this business as a vocation.
I’m grateful for that because I think as artists we can be very idealistic about what we will encounter as “rock stars.” It’s good to hear real stories. It’s good to begin to develop an understanding of what it takes to protect yourself in a pretty harsh business environment.
5. Is there a unique story or memory you wouldn’t mind sharing about your time at Pyramind?
My most enjoyable times were in Music Theory classes with Anthony Peterson. He constantly held us accountable for our choices as musicians, and that’s fantastic because it’s easy to think that DAW’s are the key to musicianship. They are merely a vehicle, we are the driver, and music is the destination. He helped us figure out how to be conscious of where we were going. He really challenged me to grow myself as composer, and I will always remember that, as well as appreciate it.
6. Any advice you’d like to share with future students?
Try not to get too freaked out when you hit walls in your learning, or if you see someone else excelling at a particular skill that you would like to have. It is a slow cumulative knowledge you are forming despite the pacing of classes.
Be patient with yourself. The beauty of producing music is really the collaborative aspect. So find the people that can do what you can’t, and learn from them. And find the people that need your skill set, and give to them. There is room for everyone to shine.
7. What are your future plans?
Oh nothing big, just to y’know slowly take over the world with my charisma, strategy, and talent. How you may ask? Cute Things my band is a very exciting collaboration for me. And I love that it’s one of my boys from school.
Andrea is a huge blessing to me because his drive and passion for music matches my own. We just finished writing our first EP, and we’re looking forward to sharing it when we’re done recording it. So look out, we’re gonna blow your petticoats off…