Lee’s Summit West grad Delwin Ashley prepares for first trip to SXSW Music Festival

tporter@lsjournal.comFebruary 26, 2014 

Hip-hop artist Delwin Ashley of Lee’s Summit will perform at a showcase during the annual South-By-Southwest Musical Festival in March in Austin, Tx. Ashley performs under the stage name ‘Sir Adams.’

COURTESY PHOTO

  • 2008

    Year Delwin Ashley graduated Lee’s Summit West High School. The 24-year-old hip-hop artist will perform at a showcase during the annual South-By-Southwest Musical Festival in March.

A video on YouTube shows Delwin Ashley doing his thing on the microphone before a packed house at the former Jerry’s Bait Shop in downtown Lee’s Summit.

Another video (for the song “Ivory Tower) on Ashley’s personal YouTube channel is an edited portrayal of Ashley first in a recording studio, then on the outside of a nondescript street in Kansas City.

In both of the videos what is shown is an obvious talent on the microphone as a hip-hop emcee, but also a talented wordsmith capable of much more than what you would find on typical rap songs.

For Ashley, a 2008 Lee’s Summit West graduate who records under the stage name Sir Adams, the use of the English language has always been an inherent strength for the budding artist.

“I’ve always been fascinated with English,” Ashley said during a recent visit to the Journal’s office. “I like words and stuff like that, so I’ve always had a big thing for the English language. After I graduated Lee’s Summit West, I went out to (MCC-) Longview with my best friend. After that, we were pretty much looking for music schools around the country.

“We pretty much got accepted into all of them, but we chose to go to Hollywood. It was a better environment. We attended the L.A. Recording School and made some good connections there. It was the best experience of my life. It was definitely the smartest decision I ever made.”

After the stint in Los Angeles a few years ago learning the ropes with best friend and fellow Lee’s Summit West grad Daniel Whitney, Jr., Ashley returned home with a new found appreciation for the business of music. Now managed by Tim Mott – yet another West grad – Ashley is a full-time working musician, songwriter and sometime musical showcase host.

He couldn’t envision his life any other way.

“What most people don’t focus on with music is the business sense,” Ashley said. “With me, when I went out there I was focused on the business sense of it. I knew how to be a songwriter and stuff like that, but I had no idea about the business part of it. When we went out there we were focused on that part.

“We were more focused on meeting the music producers and the engineers more so than the other rappers and artists to collaborate with. We were trying to meet the people who can actually tell us more about the business.”

Ashley’s master use of words and ability to spit-fire them into rhymes and pulse-baiting movement has garnered him an invite to the annual South-by-Southwest Musical Festival in March in Austin, Tx. as part of the Kansas City-based Anarchy Movement Showcase.

The invite is just the next step in a journey Ashley hopes leads someday to the “cover of Rolling Stone Magazine.”

“I got invited, so I’m really happy about that,” he said. “It’s the first time I’ve ever been invited to that.”

Now working on “Sir Meet World,” a new full-length album to be released sometime in May, and an EP entitled “(IL)Legal,” the 24-year-old Ashley is also set to soon unveil his website www.sirmeetworld.com.

The albums, the website, the invite to SXSW, the accolades on YouTube and an upcoming audition for an independent movie role, are all part of the process Ashley plans to go through to reach the top of his goal sheet.

“My ultimate goal is the cover of Rolling Stone,” he said. “I want the cover. That’s always been the ultimate goal; the cover of Rolling Stone magazine. Or at least be in Rolling Stone. I’m just like any other person doing it. I have big dreams.”

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