ASHLY “BLAZE” MILES
Ashly Miles was born in 1991 to a military family in Richmond, VA. Miles, Known to many as “Blaze” has also called the Carolinas home. As a child, Blaze was forced to grow up quickly, witnessing things at 13 years old that most people only see in the movies. Surrounded by drugs and alcohol by way of family and friends, Blaze remembers seeing only pain and suffering. “Everyone I was cool with was in some type of pain, so they did drugs, partied, and chased money to forget about it”. To maintain her safety, Blaze recalls having to develop a tough exterior at the expense of experiencing peace and happiness. “I had experienced both the good and the bad sides of life, and as a result I was extremely guarded, I didn’t trust anybody”
While Blaze’s early childhood would seem to take her down a path to destruction, God had a greater plan for her life. Blaze recalls that at first she was not interested in Christianity or Christians. “Although my mother was a strong Christian and took me to church every Sunday…I thought all Christians were a bunch of frauds and I didn’t care much for them” Yet through this season in her life, Blaze realizes that her tight-knit family kept her grounded and the influences of her mother and grandmother were especially invaluable.
While she had yet to experience conversion to Christ, Blaze’s heart was being chiseled. She had begun to develop a desire for God and soon her tough exterior would melt before the One who would set her free and set her on a journey to becoming a sold out musicianary & witness for Jesus Christ. She would witness to family, friends, and eventually the national community at large. “Everybody needs Jesus no matter their background. We need to know why we were created and what our purpose is and I’m here to show people the God who created them and what their ultimate purpose is”
As it has been for many musical artists—music has been a creative outlet for Blaze. “Music was always an escape for me…I was into Hip-Hop and R&B…TLC and Aaliyah were some of my favorite artists” Blaze began writing songs around 14 years old, and recalls writing her own soundtracks to movies. Music taught her how to express all the feelings she kept guarded inside.
At 16 years old, Blaze started getting curious about God, and wrote a poem called “Blood of Christ”. The song talked about the things she had seen Christians doing that weren’t so “Godly”. “A few weeks later, my family got invited to a talent show and I rapped the poem”. Coming in 2nd place in the competition—the judges clearly saw that Blaze had talent but were in awe of her lyrical content, noting that her song was mature beyond her years.
Yet God’s purpose for her life becomes evident when her song caught the ear of another talented dancer who invited her to church. Blaze responded to the invite and in January of 2007 received Christ as her personal Lord and Savior. “I watched my whole life change…I spent hours reading the bible and I became a better person from the inside out”
With her new-found faith in God, and a hope-filled heart, Blaze was on fire and ready to impact her world. No longer rapping for herself or with a hopeless message, she now wrote songs about the one who had transformed her life. “There’s nothing worse than living a hopeless life and believe me I know…my songs are about trying to show people a way out and a different way of living”
Blaze has since released her debut album He Reigns and has been hitting stages all over the country offering uninhibited energetic worship and a fresh perspective on the scriptures—all while remaining relevant to today’s culture.
Military & Ministry
True to her military roots, Blaze has ministered to the troops on many occasions. She has ministered at Ft. Lee (both at the gospel service and during the Spiritual Fitness Concert Series), Ft. Monroe, and Ft. Eustis. She also ministers at Grace Chapel and the annual Freedom Fest both on Ft. Lewis, with plans to continue her military ministry throughout her career.
Blaze perviously resided in Seattle, WA where she attended Christ the King Bible Fellowship and served as a Youth Ambassador for 6 years. She recently moved back East to Washington, D.C. Ultimately, Blaze hopes to communicate through her music that God’s love can heal the broken-hearted, restore hope, and transform lives. She is driven by the truth that the only way to gain life is by surrendering to Christ.
In 2009 Blaze released her debut album He Reigns
In 2011 Blazed released her sophomore album Exposed (debut on itunes’ top 20)
Latest Effort ThatGirlBLAZE: Transition Release Date TBA
Blaze is the recipient of several awards including:
Favorite Gospel Hip-Hop Artist of The Great Northwest Award 2009
Gospel Extravaganza Award 2010
Three time recipient of the ITM Female Hip-Hop Artist of the Year Award 2008, 2009, 2011
Kingdom Choice Awards favorite female hip hop artist 2012(nominated)
Music Love Awards female Christian Rap Artist of the year 2013(nominated)
Media & Performances
Blaze has appeared on the following:
The Bobby Jones Gospel Show 2011
The National Announcers Guild Conference 2012
GMWA Conferences 2011, 2012
Stellar Awards Red Carpet Host 2013
Unashamed/Unspoken Conference Host 2013
National Performances include:
Military SHARP events 2013
Military Mentoring Programs 2009-2011
Washington National Guard Family Resilience Event 2013
Seattle Storm Faith & Family Night 2011-2013
Blaze has also acted in Gospel Plays, co-hosted a local television show (ITM—Inside the Music)