In a basement apartment in the East Village of New York City, Ashley Selett jots her notes on a crowded sheet of printer paper. Amid a graveyard of cigarette butts, a scattering of musical instruments, and a detritus of pens and journals, Ashley pushes a stray blonde curl from her eyes, pauses to think, then writes another line. Observing her now, you’d likely not suspect her gift.
But then Ashley clears some space in the couch-nest of books and scrap paper, picks up a six-string and metamorphoses. In the space of a few notes, Ashley becomes MotherMoon, and the transformation is astonishing and entire. The thoughts she fitfully wrote just minutes before – notes on thwarted romance, alienation, and love’s discordant and misfiring needs - transform from familiar twenty-something angst in to MotherMoon’s archetypal sound; ancient pain reassembled into seductively fresh music. A soulful, melancholic ballad that delivers a first-kiss feeling, surprising and familiar all at once.
As MotherMoon plays on, she spirits us away under the smoky enchantment of her voice, while she so nonchalantly performs that art-miracle: her story becomes ours; each plucked string, our heart’s plucked string.
Then MotherMoon finishes her song, relinquishes the guitar, and a girl named Ashley asks, So, did you like it?
-Stefan Merrill Block, author of The Story of Forgetting