On stage one minute, getting dirty milking cows the next. That’s what Ashton Shepherd calls a perfect day. “I don’t mind gettin’ dirty,” the country music entertainer says. On the day I caught up with Asthon she was preparing to muddy up her boots, “We bought a couple of milkin’ cows. We weren’t happy with one of em’ so we’re taking her back to the stockyard.” Born and raised in the rural town of Leroy, Alabama, Ashton happily knows no different. “We got a couple of baby cows, a few rabbits and chickens,” she says laughing. “I enjoy it. My boy and I go out in the morning and get our eggs.”
The country girl with the deep, southern drawl grew up with the dream of being a singer. Convincing some friends and teachers of that was the hard part. “My history book had notes with country songs I had written on ‘em. People paid no attention, and thought it was the silliest thing. I even had teachers say, ‘Baby, you oughta go to college and not focus on that,’ she recalls. But, music was in her blood and soon she’d prove them wrong.
Growing up, Ashton could be found in a small shed behind her home picking guitars and belting out lyrics to her own songs. These days, you can hear her powerful voice on the radio. Ashton’s best known for her debut single, “Taking Off The Pain,” a song about a woman liberating herself after a failed marriage. Her most recent single, “Sounds So Good,” can’t help but leave you with a smile on your face. “It stuck out to me when Keith Urban said that song is a masterpiece. I said, ‘that’s Keith Urban!’ I can’t even explain how good it made me feel. I didn’t even think he knew who I was,” Ashton says.
Ashton got her big break in June, 2006 after winning a talent contest near her hometown. The grand prize was opening for Lorrie Morgan in concert which quickly turned into a record deal and the release of her first album.
While she’s grateful for the new fame, first and foremost Ashton is most thankful for being a mother. “I always dreamed of being a mamma and having children was more of a dream to me than anything career wise. When I was in high school people thought that was odd, but that’s what I wanted to do,” she shares. Soon after graduating high school she got married and a year later Ashton gave birth to their son. Now at the age of 23, this farm girl is juggling her two passions, motherhood and music.
Despite initial concerns, the country girl is quickly and quite naturally adjusting to fame. “I was scared if I ever made it big that I would be an unhappy person. I didn’t realize two years ago I would have the ability to handle it,” she admits. From farm girl to center stage, the spotlight suits her well.