We had the good fortune of connecting with Amberley Rae and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amberley, why did you pursue a creative career?
I think it’s easy to say choosing an artistic career path was a no-brainer, but it took me a while to get to the level of certainty I’m at now in regards to who I want to be, what I want to do, and what I want to put forward into the universe. My career in music and art started as something personal– something secret just for me as a way of processing daily life. As that world expanded, I realized I had stories to tell which resonated with people. I learned in time that I have the ability to elicit an emotional response through the medium of art. When everything falls away, I feel people rely the most on art to give them some sense of comfort and reprieve or on the opposite end pushes them to look at things from a different perspective and challenges them. There’s something sacred about storytelling and the intimacy of it in connecting people, and if I’m able to achieve that through the music I make and the art I create, then that’s everything.
Please tell us more about your career. We’d love to hear what sets you apart from others, what you are most proud of or excited about. How did you get to where you are today professionally. Was it easy? If not, how did you overcome the challenges? What are the lessons you’ve learned along the way. What do you want the world to know about you or your brand and story?
I started my career as an artist taking piano and guitar lessons as well as drawing classes. I was too shy to take vocal lessons or be a part of some drama club, but I always wanted to perform deep down. I think I’ve just had an interest in all things art and design related since I could remember– from film and cinematography to interior design and textiles. This led to me pursuing an architecture degree and finding a passion for graphic design as well. I felt like my plate was full in terms of what I was passionate or curious about and to this day, I still feel like I’m juggling a lot of hats. There’s the financial struggle and the identity struggle that have always had their spots in the back of my head, but I feel 2020 especially has shown me that I work hard because I want to be able to make music and put it out there. I want to tell stories. Although I’m just starting, I feel all the other avenues in my life currently exist to support that goal. I believe I have an attention to things that other people might miss the first time around and it’s in that little detail that sets me and my work apart and leaves people interested. Or at least that’s what I hope.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I’ve been living in Arizona since I was six years old. At first I was so antsy to get out as soon as I could and go somewhere far, far away. Now that I’ve grown up a bit, I have a deep appreciation for Phoenix and the beauty that maybe isn’t so obvious at first, but it’s there in the cracks and corners, in the desert, in the people. I’ve actually been trying to curate a list on my phone of places I’ve been and places I want to go. I think we’d have to spend a couple days in Sedona of course for some scenic exploring, swimming, and hiking (West Fork Trail specifically)– maybe Lake Mary or Buffalo Park in Flagstaff as well since we’d be up there. Back in Phoenix though, we’d go to Papago Park for sunrise or sunset. Is that too standard? I think it’s beautiful. In terms of eating, drinking, and hanging out, I’ll just put out this list: Ocotillo, Fellow Osteria, Futuro, Noons, Gracie’s, Cibo, Welcome Diner, Pomo, Phoenix General, First Draft Book Bar, Canal Club, Killer Whale Sex Club… I could really keep going but I think I’ll stop there. I think it’s all about enjoying the outdoors (except in the summer) and making your way around the local spots.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Although she is no longer physically here with me, I would like to dedicate this shoutout to my grandma because she deserves all of the recognition in my story. Growing up, she would incessantly tell me that I was going to be an artist, a singer, etc. and I would shut her down each time without fail. I would mention my shyness and my inability to express myself in front of other people, although I have to admit that in my head I always thought her vision of me seemed like a nice idea. Now years later, here I am doing exactly what she told me I would be doing and becoming the woman and artist she told me I would become. Since she passed in 2017, I’ve wished everyday that she was here to tell me again one more time, just so I could finally respond to her saying, “yes, you’re right.” I think she knows though. I feel it. I’ve written and recorded a song about it and I hope to release it someday in the future.