MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. --
Corporal Ashton Tyler has always believed that music has the power to lift anyone’s spirit through any hardships.
Tyler, a warehouse clerk for the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, uses music to not only encourage herself to be the best Marine she can be, but to inspire those around her.
In this interview the 22 year old from Charleston, South Carolina, tells us how the same passion she has for music has led her to become a successful Marine and leader in her unit.
Q: How does music inspire you at work?
A: Music helps me every day. From the start it puts me in a positive mood. When I wake up I know what song I’m going to listen to. It’s a favorite song of mine from some point in my life, even some from the first grade. I’m just like, ‘I’m feeling this song right now,’ and I’ll play it and it just starts my day right. When I get to work, and I feel like things are going really fast paced and I just need to take a break, I listen to music. I’m always singing too at work. Honestly, I don’t care who hears me because I just love singing, and maybe [others] will start singing too. If they’re having a bad day, it takes their mind off that and they’ll think, ‘I like that song; that just turned around my day.’ Just like a smile, singing a song can change your day, brighten it up.
Q: When did you first realize music was a passion for you?
A: My first experience with music was at church. My grandma and the rest of my family would sing in the choir. So growing up I was amazed at seeing how the music was able to inspire everyone. I wanted to do the same.
Q: Why is music a passion of yours?
A: Music is one of my passions because I just love music. It soothes you, makes you feel all kinds of different ways. It takes you out of everything that’s going on in your life and brings you to one place [full of] sound, peace and music.
Q: What’s been you’re biggest inspiration for music?
A: When I was growing up there were a lot of movies coming out based on the lives of singers. Those were a big inspiration. I remember wanting to be an entertainer like Michael Jackson and bring joy to people like he did for me.
Q: What kind of music did you grow up listening to?
A: I grew up listening to gospel music, old [Rhythm and Blues] songs, and old school hip hop. Anything that sounded good to me.
Q: What kind of effect does music have on you?
A: I feel like music can empower you because of the words that are being said. There are so many things that go on in the world and all you have to do is write a song [about it] and it will touch everyone. Everyone will feel it; how meaningful it is [and] then spread word about the song. It will up lift the people instead of bringing them down. So that’s how I feel music empowers everyone and brings us all together.
Q: Do you ever write your own songs?
A: I used to do it a lot when I was younger. I don’t do it as often anymore, but sometimes when I have something on my mind I just write it down. A few months ago, I told [her mother] I had written a new song and she told me she was so proud of me for sticking with it. I didn’t realize she liked my music. It made me really happy to hear that.
Q: How has music shaped you into the person you are today?
A: [Music] taught me if you have a passion for something stick with it. If I love it and it’s a passion I won’t stop.
Q: Do you apply the passion you have for music into being a Marine?
A: The same passion I put into singing is always going to be applied to what I do, specially being a Marine. I feel as though you should do it with passion or not at all. Some people just lack passion, but I love what I do. I love being a Marine and I’ll continue to do it as best I can for as long as I can.
For the Warrior Wednesday video on Tyler, visit our YouTube page at: http://youtu.be/2oTb-o5GOBQ