The lyrics of the South African singer songwriter are testament that age shouldn’t stop you from achieving your dreams. Her hit single Nineteen finally caught the attention of international establishments, receiving an honourable mention in the International Songwriting Competition 2016.
After having received mass airplay across local radio stations, the upbeat pop song, which was written as a critique on the insignificance placed on the age 19 (the singer’s age at the time), came fourth in the Adult Contemporary category of the competition. With over 16,000 entries from 137 countries, this is a remarkable achievement for an artist of Ashlinn’s calibre and proof that South African songwriters are most certainly meeting international standards. The song was written together with fellow songwriters Jake Odendaal and Simeon Kriel.
Ashlinn Gray is also a motivational speaker and style icon, challenging tired preconceptions and teaching the youth to live with purpose. Through her music, she hopes to navigate the complexities of being young in today’s world, playing with the elements of light and dark in her search for truth and authenticity.
She says, “Turning 19 felt like it was missing a milestone, but through writing this song with my team, 19 became a significant year. This award was another great colour to add to my blank canvas. Age really is just a number and it’s what you do with your time that makes each year significant.”
This is just the start of a rising international career for the performer and there is no doubt Ashlinn Gray is destined for greatness.