Ashley Zarah is an Iranian artist born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. Her Iranian-influenced pop music represents the sound of “Iranian-America,” where she fuses musical traditions from around the world to joyously heal trauma while highlighting the distinct beauty of Persian culture. She has been featured in world-renowned editorials such as The Hype Magazine, NPR's Sound Opinions, GirlTalk HQ, BuzzMusic LA and more – and continues to use her platform to represent the people, particularly the women, of Iran while also being an avid advocate for mental health awareness, specifically in the Middle East.
Despite stemming from a background of non-musicians, there was no shortage of music in her childhood. She was raised on artists ranging from Pink Floyd, Madonna, and Natalie Cole to Iranian stars such as Sima Bina, Dariush, and Haydeh. Scouting on her own, she would discover even more eclectic inspirations from around the world including German Rock, Canadian Electro-Pop, and Middle Eastern classical; all of which inspired her to pick up instruments and gear to compose and perform the songs we hear today.
While on scholarship at the highly prestigious art institution, Berklee College of Music, she revealed herself to be both a prolific writer and expressive vocalist but truly hooked viewers with her ability to transcend cultural borders, push boundaries with her storytelling; and despite rising as a Pop icon in the Iranian diaspora, her easygoing and relatable nature.
Her versatility and range continues to expand and evolve, but so does her influence on what it means to be an Iranian-Judean woman. Her proud reclamation of her identity and bold representation in public media has not only caused controversy but more importantly has reframed how viewers see themselves and also foreign cultures around them. With features in world-renowned editorials, acclaim from international artists, collaborations in film, and more - the world continues to set their sights on her trailblazing career.