Blount County singer-songwriter to donate sales from first CD

Blount County singer-songwriter to donate sales from first CD to charity

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Ashley Hepperly, a young singer from Blount County is not consumed with celebrity. Her goals are much more inward. Ashley Hepperly, a young singer from Blount County is not consumed with celebrity. Her goals are much more inward.
"I was going through a very difficult time in my life. A lot of anxiety and depression. I had given my heart to Jesus at a young age, but I just got so wrapped up in worry and fear and so I started writing," Ashley Hepperly said. "I was going through a very difficult time in my life. A lot of anxiety and depression. I had given my heart to Jesus at a young age, but I just got so wrapped up in worry and fear and so I started writing," Ashley Hepperly said.
Ashley says writing "Dusty Roads" was opening her life and inner struggles to the world. Ashley says writing "Dusty Roads" was opening her life and inner struggles to the world.

By GENE PATTERSON
6 News Anchor/Reporter

MARYVILLE (WATE) - She describes herself as a singer-songwriter and in just a week, her first CD will go on sale to the world.

This young singer from Blount County, however, is not consumed with celebrity. Her goals are much more inward.

Her name is Ashley Hepperly, a 24-year-old singer-songwriter who is the worship leader at RIO Revolution in Maryville on Sundays.  Her uncle Pacer Hepperly is the pastor.

On first impression, she appears to be an intelligent, confident young woman. She is, but she wasn't always that way. Five years ago, she says she was in a real funk and turned to music for help.

"I was going through a very difficult time in my life. A lot of anxiety and depression. I had given my heart to Jesus at a young age, but I just got so wrapped up in worry and fear and so I started writing," Hepperly said.

That writing led to a number of songs, which two years ago, she began recording for her CD called "Dusty Roads."

"A lot of other people could look at other people's lives and say 'Wow, it's really glamorous, wish I could have that,' but I think when you look deep into a person's heart, you see that their road isn't as straight and perfect. That its kind of dusty and it's kind of difficult and narrow. But that part of the road is the part that heals the soul," she said.

The album will be released February 1 on iTunes, but on January 31, she's hosting a release benefit party at the Revolution Church. Admission is free, but she will take up an offering.

Her goal is to raise enough money to cover the recording costs of the album. After that, profits from the CD sales won't be going into her pocket.

"One day I was feeling really strongly that God was speaking to me and asking me to give everything, every dollar to RIO Africa, the ministry in Kenya where they need a vehicle for $20,000, and I think that's a much more important cause than my pocket.

Ashley says writing "Dusty Roads" was opening her life and inner struggles to the world.

"It's kind of like I'm taking my journal and handing it over and saying 'Here's my life.' So it's a vulnerable point, but you put a little bit of style with and melody and you've got a musical journal," she said.

Ashley's benefit party begins at 7 p.m. next Friday. For more information about Ashley Hepperly, go to her website.

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