Interview: Asha Imuno Embraces the ‘PINS & NEEDLES’ of Life in His Debut Album

Asha Imuno 'PINS & NEEDLES' © Nani Garcia
Asha Imuno 'PINS & NEEDLES' © Nani Garcia
Crackling with bouncing beats, unabashed hard-hitting bars and transcendent instrumentals, alternative R&B’s newest star Asha Imuno is burning bright with his debut record, ‘PINS & NEEDLES.’
Stream: ‘PINS & NEEDLES’ – Asha Imuno

Rapper, singer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist Asha Imuno is alternative R&B’s latest rising star and jack of all trades.

Beginning his musical journey in his bedroom closet in Moreno Valley, California, a young Imuno “spent the first two and a half years making music just figuring out what kind of beats I wanted to make and copying my favorite producers” he shares. Since taking his music beyond the confines of his bedroom closet, Imuno’s sound has often ebbed and flowed, exploring sub genres of R&B, hip-hop, jazz, and trap. Drawing inspiration from a myriad of subcultures and locations, Imuno simply envelopes you into his rich world of lilting vocals, bounding flow, heavy beats and transcendent instrumentals.

Proudly repping the 951 area code, Imuno creates these intricate soundscapes for his community. The artist tells Atwood Magazine, “That’s the ultimate inspiration. It’ll be something that will inspire them to be true to who they are and proud of where they’re from.”

A 23-year-old Imuno sits across from me on the precipice of releasing his debut album, PINS & NEEDLES on March 1st via Guin Records.

PINS & NEEDLES - Asha Imuno
Asha Imuno’s debut album, ‘PINS & NEEDLES,’ out now via Guin Records

The ambitious 16-track album flows between booming trap beats, jazz instrumentation, twanging acoustic guitars and strikingly honest lyricism with masterful swagger. “The world that I want to encompass, it has melody and harmony from my favorite Brandy songs, but it also has bounce like my favorite Brent Faiyaz songs, and bass like the trap music that I love, and texture that feels like the film world that I love,” Imuno says.

The creation of the album spanned over three years, encapsulating every aspect of Imuno’s life in that period. Whether it was experiencing love, isolation, growth or the birth of his nephew, the album discusses it all.

“It’s about appreciating the full 360,” Imuno explains. “There’s joy, there’s fear, there’s anxiety, there’s self-doubt, shame, there’s celebration, there’s exuberance. All of these things that compose the full experience that all have to be accepted. So it’s PINS AND NEEDLES.”

Imuno immerses listeners in the realm of PINS & NEEDLES both through his sonic complexity and his lyricality:

My big brother got locked up
Thought I lost him
Damn these growing pains
It hurt when you coming up knowing things
And photo frames the only place you ever see poppa
But what is there to do… be honest
For me not college
Ducking lead, lucky lead to be honest
Lookin’ up at thе sky at the party
I can’t remembеr what my brain was like before the acid
Man I was the life of the party
Carry way too much weight to be processed
Ego death took a piece of me, dog
Turned my back to God recently, dog
My pain turn to faith but not easily, dog
– “BULLSEYE,” Asha Imuno

Imuno is a lyricist who packs a punch, with heartache-inducing bars like “Plots could thicken but my skin thicker, hopscotching sand-drawn lines, I ain’t felt this way in some time. Son, he take the shade with the shine though, heavy head of shame for my sorrows, momma sensing pain in my eyes,” in track 11, “WATCH MY STEP” or “Holding hope the gold moments don’t rust” in track 5, “FLORIDA WATER,” sprinkled throughout the album.

Imuno kickstarted his musical journey producing and composing, meaning he is no stranger to instrumental complexity.

PINS & NEEDLES features instrumental variety ranging from steel drums, acoustic guitar, synths, saxophone and trumpets. Beyond the instrumental complexity the artist paints a rich and vivid soundscape by layering real audio snippets from his life into the instrumentals.

Imuno explains, “The voice memo recordings and little pieces and textures I use, recreate those moments and experiences that the music is based around.” With each listen through of this record you will notice minute, but significant details that Imuno and his co-producer, Zach Ezzy, masterfully weave into the emotional tapestry that is PINS & NEEDLES.

Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia
Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia

Community lies at the heart of this project, and is especially palpable between Imuno and Ezzy.

After meeting via Instagram DMs, the pair tested the waters of their creative partnership. “The first song we ever made together is going to be on the album, which is really special,” Zach Ezzy tells Atwood Magazine. “It’s track 8: ‘BULLSEYE.’”

Sessions became more frequent with their collaboration extending beyond studio sessions, transforming into a blossoming friendship. Ezzy says, “He’s become one of my closest friends in LA. It’s really amazing to work with somebody like him, who’s so focused on everything surrounding the music. He cares so much about the music and what he’s trying to say. He’s such a smart dude and he’s able to express things so clearly for what he has in mind.”

The two speak of one another with deep admiration and care. Imuno shares, “[Ezzy] is a true master of his craft and a musician on a different level, multi-instrumentalist, and just cool… He just brings out a different part of my creative flow than anybody else that I work with.”

The album is the brainchild of the two men, with friends and family joining them in the studio to contribute and build the vast world of PINS & NEEDLES.

Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia
Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia

The “magic” of this record stems from the involvement of Asha Imuno’s support system and the true passion for the thesis of the project.

PINS & NEEDLES is about dancing through everything,” Imuno smiles, adding, “when it’s really high, be really high, and when it’s really low it’s about finding ground to stand on; in hopes that it’s common ground for somebody else you can connect with.”

Atwood Magazine caught up with Asha Imuno to discuss musical experimentation, paranormal experiences, the importance of community, and seeking authenticity.

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:: stream/purchase PINS & NEEDLES here ::
:: connect with Asha Imuno here ::


PINS & NEEDLES - Asha Imuno

Atwood Magazine: Hi, Asha! I know that when you've been asked to describe your music in the past, you've always used the tagline that you make music for people at intersections. Where did that phrase come from? And what does it mean to you?

Asha Imuno: I mean, I was kind of a cut in the middle type kid in the most beautiful way possible. So it’s kind of just attributed to that fact that I was with the band kinda, I was with the kids in the punk scene, I was at the rap shows. I was kind of all over the place getting the best pieces of different worlds. So, it’s all about creating a through line for all these worlds that otherwise wouldn’t connect. That’s my favorite part about creating. That’s where that intersectionality comes from.

When it comes to like, finding that through-line, but it's still being you, how would you kind of define that Asha Imuno flare?

Asha Imuno: I think it’s something that, for the most part, shows itself. It just is the first thought and feeling that comes most naturally. I think there’s been times where I felt pressure to embody one specific part of the different aspects of myself. And it’s just never quite the same. Like it never hits fully the same. Whether it’s in the studio or at a show or whatever the case is singing more and rapping less, rapping more and producing more, I think it’s all about striking that balance. And paying tribute to the things that made me feel good.

And when it comes to striking that balance, do you feel as though your creative process accounts for that?

Asha Imuno: Oh, for sure. When I first started, I was just producing. So I spent the first two and a half years making music just figuring out what kind of beats I wanted to make and copying my favorite producers in my bedroom closet in high school. Then over time [I found] people to start to experiment with. As I collaborate more and more, my style changes and grows and definitely ebbs and flows. I think it’s a lot of experimentation and just trying to find things that can make me uncomfortable in a way that brings back the magic of just trying new shit.

Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia
Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia

As I collaborate more and more, my style changes and grows, ebbs and flows… It’s a lot of experimentation and trying to find things that can make me uncomfortable in a way that brings back the magic of trying new shit.

When you’re trying new things what is the weirdest place that you've drawn inspiration from?

Asha Imuno: I made this song from my album that started with an accordion. And that’s probably one of the most gut-wrenching songs that I’ve ever been a part of making. And it started out as just me like, ‘Oh haha the accordion.’ I played the Lady and the Tramp song. [laughs]

But then something kinda just struck a chord, and then it ended up being really cool. I always create with something visual going on. I’m obsessed with animation. Like there’s this channel that I love that just posts French independent animators and stuff like that. I Initially wanted to do film score composition, so sometimes I’ll start the music by trying to score whatever I’m watching.

That's so cool! That's an awesome way to link those visuals with the sound you're chasing. Have you been able to kind of like play with visuals in a way that's interesting to you? Especially with this album rollout, all the art has been really striking.

Asha Imuno: Thank you. I mean a lot of what we have, that we’re getting ready to share, are some of my favorite visuals that we’ve done to date for sure. But I think especially the one that we just shared to announce the album … It just feels like the inside of my brain being turned inside out. Which is the best feeling to just look at it and look at the homies who I’m doing it with, who’re also my best friends, like the friend of mine who directed [the visuals] is also my stylist and like my first video ever was his first job styling job ever. it’s just, it’s cool. It’s cool as hell.

That must be a super special feeling to be able to share this with them! What has it been like to come up with them and have your friends as your creative team?

Asha Imuno: It’s been beautiful. And I definitely don’t take it for granted, most people don’t have that experience. There’s different collaborators and I want to grow my community as much as possible. But having your day ones! That contributes so much to the magic. Just being comfortable, speaking the language, knowing who you are as a human being. It’s so vital. I think a lot of my world is about that, specifically. More so than what the final product looks or sounds like or whatever. It’s the process itself. And I think so much of the process comes out in what you as the listener or viewer receive. More than it is normally given credit, I feel like.

Right! I also know you were able to co-produce this album with your collaborator Zach Ezzy. What was that experience of being able to dive headfirst into your own PINS & NEEDLES universe, just the two of you?

Asha Imuno: It makes me, like, warm to think about. Because that was like 2021, I was just [finished with] my first full length mixtape. We met and immediately caught this synergy that, to this day, is continuing to create new terrain for both of us. It definitely just pushes me so much as a producer, because we do co produce most of this stuff together, but I’m taking so many cues from bro! He is a true master of his craft and a musician on a different level, multi-instrumentalist, and just cool. The best-case scenario is to be in a studio with somebody who you trust completely musically, but also as a person that you just vibe with. And we just continue to get closer and experiment more and more. We have so many songs that will probably never see the light of day that we make just because we enjoy the process. I definitely wouldn’t have gone to lengths to start singing as much as I have and really figure out how to strike that balance where it feels like it’s still me in the way that it felt when I first started rapping. He just brings out a different part of my creative flow than anybody else that I work with.

That's so special. It's really awesome that you guys have been able to cultivate that. Do you have a specific favorite memory or moment throughout the creation of this album?

Asha Imuno: There’s a lot. It’s hard ‘cause like that’s my **** for real. Like, that’s my dog. Like one time we were working on this song and it had a Dilla feel to the production. And he has this Dilla poster up in the coop, in the studio in Silver Lake, and it’s like taped up with masking tape. And we were like, I kid you not, ‘we’re channeling the spirit of Dilla, he will help us do this’ and the poster moved! And we just froze. It’s just silly shit like that.

But also, a lot of this album is about my growth journey. As a man, as a brother, as a friend, as a lover, as a musician. So, there’s real conversations that go into making sure that the music truly reflects that process. There’s songs that I could name on the album, where we were in [the studio] for like four hours and in that last 40 minutes we made the song. There’s a specific one that had so many different versions, and I was kind of pulling my hair out about it because I wanted it to be this intimate, vulnerable, touchy-feely type of song. And the production was very electronic and hard-hitting because I was going for contrast. And I had produced out ten different versions. And we were sitting and talking about it and it got to a point of finality where we decided to just reduce it to the simplest form. And that ended up being the thing that stood the test of time. And I think that was a learning [experience] for me in a bunch of different ways, especially on a personal, human level, sometimes the most beautiful path is the simplest path. Even just like in communicating, and life.

Can I ask which track it was?

Asha Imuno: Yeah, it was this song “HOLD A GOOD THOUGHT.”

I love that one! I thought that you were going to talk about “WATCH MY STEP” because I also felt like that would hit close to home, I can imagine.

Asha Imuno: Oh, for sure! That was one that I did with my friend, CONNIE, we co-produced together… And that one caught both of us off guard because that was the first song CONNIE and I had completely done together after getting in for a long time not quite getting that one where we’re both like ‘yes.’ I felt like we were damn near in there just trying to get ourselves excited. Like I was looking over at him like ‘is he f***ing with it? Is this it?’ But when it hit! We were lit for like 2 weeks. It bears a part of the story that is harder for me to talk about in ways that feel like not overbearing. It’s still fun and high energy and you can live in it.

I know you were talking about how much of this album is just you. How was exploring those depths in this project and especially with co-collaborators?

Asha Imuno: It’s a trip. The first place my mind goes is when my nephew was born, he’s going to be five this year. He’s the first of our nieces and nephews. And we all kind of just were looking at him like ‘Oh, he has our nose. He has our eyes. That’s crazy. He’s gonna have our sense of humor.’ And when you’re looking back at your reflection like that. It’s like this awe-stricken moment. Where you’re like, ‘Wow, we created and we’re creating this moment.’ To answer your question, it’s an all-encompassing spiritual journey. It’s also scary, because a lot of it is very personal. And a lot of it is laden and subtext and word playing. But I think those are the moments that you can feel the most, you can’t really run from a lot of those feelings, and it feels good. It’s like a catharsis, right?

Considering how intimate the whole album is, you also included a lot of like voice messages and moments from your real life. What was the process of selecting those moments to spotlight and work with?

Asha Imuno: Very complicated. Because they’re real, everything is from videos or voice memos. I am a firm believer in the charge of energy that comes with those types of things. It’s like, if you have a piece of clothing that you borrow from somebody, even if you don’t wear it, if it’s in your closet, it radiates an energy that’s a marker of that time. And I think in the same way, some of these intimate moments: Me spending time with my nephew or my mom’s imparting a message upon me, it’s definitely a little bit nerve wracking to present to them. And explain why it makes sense in context…

Simply put, it’s awkward. Because I’m presenting this whole thought process that may or may not have been understood, probably hasn’t been talked about and shows dimensions of myself you can only perceive through my art. Every time I make a project, me and my mom sit in the car, and I just play it top to bottom and she just asks me ‘what does this mean?’ and I like to do that with the people that are closest to me… It’s a really complex feeling. The voice memo recordings and little pieces and textures that I’ve used recreate those moments and experiences that the music is based around. But in totality, just bearing this subtext of the album, the music kind of spoon feeds you that context.

Right. I think it's so beautiful. My favorite part of the album was getting to listen to the tracks and many times those recordings kind of blend songs together. The four track stretch that is “BULLSEYE” to “DO u WANNA BE HIGH?” to “visions (high)” to “WATCH MY STEP” just flows into another. It works because of the intimate nature of the album and I can imagine you took a voice memo or a video and then you composed over it? In “visions (high)” I loved how the beats lined up with that person’s speech so it sounded like they were singing or rapping it at times.

Asha Imuno: Mhmm. That’s so cool that you noticed that! I’m a nerd about all those little details and it’s all intentional. With certain songs I had those moments and built around them like “CLEMENTINE,” but with other songs they just leaned in the direction of those moments and I ended up adding them after the fact. But it definitely makes the moments feel a little bit more full bodied. It really drives home what they mean to me. And I guess it creates a window into the four-dimensional world of what they mean for anyone, I just hope comes across. Your reaction just now feels like it does translate which is super reassuring.

This album is absolutely stunning, I really enjoyed how free flowing but technically precise it was. In terms of that technical side, do you have a band that you play with? Or is this all you because I heard some sax and trumpet and piano.

Asha Imuno: Thank you so much for appreciating all of that. Oh my god. I mean, it’s just me, Zach and a couple of our friends. That’s part of why the journey of working on an album has been a little bit longer. A lot of these things happen when we organically meet people like Joshua Childress who played the sax all over the album and Zach plays trumpet so that’s him all over the album and then my friend Solomon Fox, who did “DO u WANNA BE HIGH?” That’s part of the beauty of it too. It feels like one moment, but it’s been stretched over the course of years.

What was the difference between making a full-length narrative project over the course of three years compared to projects like the mixtapes you’ve released in the past?

Asha Imuno: Both were in the spirit of exploration, experimentation and just like trying stuff. I want to say, with Good News, I was almost trying to prove a point to myself. I was trying to wear my influences on my sleeve as much as possible. And I think that drove the music a lot more than this journalistic intention of seeing myself and then showing myself to the world. And I think PINS & NEEDLES is a lot more inclusive, because it’s so collaborative. Whereas, with Good News I pretty much produced the vast majority of it and it was just me in my closet with my closest friends seeing what we could do.

What landed you on the name PINS AND NEEDLES?

Asha Imuno: It’s funny, because I feel like it started as a placeholder. And I was approaching it in a similar way. It was in the pandemic and I was just like ‘let’s just make some songs, bro, I don’t really know what’s going on, but I just want to cook.’ And then it started to pour out this emotional dialogue that I wasn’t intending to have that felt like the reflection of being stuck in one place. It was almost like, have you seen the movie Castaway? It’s where he just starts realizing all the shit that he thought was important is not important – and the little things like having water, not stepping on coral, whatever it is, the simplest thing. It feels like this fine grain of sand that composes your whole world.

For me, that idea of being stuck in one place, and what it takes to shake that is to embrace everything as it is… Being content, loving yourself, loving your life as it is. It’s about the duality, but that duality is not just A and B, it’s A through Z. And it’s everything: there’s joy, there’s fear, there’s anxiety, there’s self doubt, shame, there’s celebration, there’s exuberance. All of these things that compose the full experience that all have to be accepted. So it’s PINS AND NEEDLES, A to Z of life.

Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia
Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia

I love that. How does it feel knowing that so much of yourself is in this one piece of media that people will be able to consume?

Asha Imuno: It’s a very complex feeling, because I’m definitely bouncing my knee a little bit. But I’m so proud of everything that’s gone into it. And the dialogue that’s been had between me and all my friends and family. It feels like it’s not just a moment to step forward as myself but also as a representative of something that means more… It makes me so inspired for what’s to come next. But I want to just be grounded at this moment. Right? And really, truly just put my hands in the soil. I feel like we’ve had a lot of time to develop it and now taking time to reflect on it is a different feeling.  You know, it’s my baby! So I hope people love it and appreciate it in the ways that I do. But also I have to let my baby grow into what it’s going to be and just be out in the world and people experience it for what it is!

Because this is such a community-based project, you've always been very proud of the community. You come from a loud and proud Moreno Valley-ian how does it feel to be reppin’ that?

Asha Imuno: Fire as f***! I feel like so many people come from Moreno Valley that nobody ever knows come from Moreno Valley. And it’s like, or the IE in general, it’s always vaguely California or LA and then they become an Angeleno. No! I’m like, ‘Bro! 951 is my area code. I went to Rancho Verde High School, I used to go to Steve’s Burgers, all of this shit!’ I think it’s cool that kids like me when I was 15, looking at Tyler, The Creator, and Kendrick Lamar, and all of these people who were given an opportunity to be an alternative storyteller that allows you to, in your mind, escape the community that you grew up in. That, being somebody from where I’m from, is so powerful.  Already, there are kids who hit me up like, ‘Yo, I appreciate the f*** out of you. Keep claiming Mo-Vall.’ That’s the ultimate inspiration. It’ll be something that will inspire them to be true to who they are and proud of where they’re from.

Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia
Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia

I think it’s cool that kids like me when I was 15, looking at Tyler, The Creator, and Kendrick Lamar, and all of these people who were given an opportunity to be an alternative storyteller that allows you to, in your mind, escape the community that you grew up in… That, being somebody from where I’m from, is so powerful.

I feel like the pillars of this album are so much you and your community. I know that you said that you play the album for people in your life, what was the best reaction that you got?

Asha Imuno: I played an early version for my oldest brother in November 2022. And we hadn’t talked in a while. He’s in the army, he came home to visit. And he was in tears. He’s really funny. He’s a sweet dude. But he’s not super emotional. And I could just tell he was proud of me. Because he’s seen me from a super little dude, I was always curious and always trying to create something. We’re not blood related but that’s my brother, we grew up together. But he was always one of those people that was just like, ‘Do your thing. Don’t let anybody tell you not to.’ I was always different too. He was one of the people who was like, ‘just be different dude.’ Wear your Ray-Bans with the clear lenses  and your suspenders or whatever I was wearing to elementary school. [laughs] And he was like, ‘You went from being that kid to being this guy now. And those kids who are like what you were like are gonna see you and be like, ‘This is who I want to be.’ Also what it means for my family. My big brother was a rapper before me, not this brother a different brother, and he was on some cool shit. I always wanted to be like him. So when I first started rapping, I was trying to be on some cool shit. And I just found with time that the coolest thing is just breathing and telling your story. And I think he saw that in a way that I had just always dreamed that my family would, which was really fire.

That's so special! You mentioned that you used to be a band kid and you’ve dabbled in all of the things and you're a bit of a music nerd. Was there a song on the album you got to flex that musical knowledge or really spread your wings in composing?

Asha Imuno: “CLEMENTINE.” 100%. That one made my eyes perk up. That one was one of the quicker ones. I made “CLEMENTINE” in one sitting, I wrote, produced it and everything. I’m a super long drawn out process type producer and writer. But that feels like the true middle. The world that I want to encompass, it has melody and harmony from my favorite Brandy songs but it has bounce like my favorite Brent [Faiyaz] songs and bass like the trap music that I love and texture that feels like the film world that I love. I feel like that inspired so much of the world of PINS & NEEDLES thematically.

I love that, I also love how many genres and subgenres you're exploring throughout the LP. Every track on the album feels like it explores a new sub-genre and draws from unique influences. How do you go about selecting and sifting through those sounds?

Asha Imuno: A lot of that has to do with me trusting my team and the conversations that we have internally, because I’ll be like ‘This is a trap song’ and they’re like ‘No, bro, that’s a soul song.’ The reactions from my team and showing it to people is what really [guides that].

I don’t want it to feel too locked to any one style or sound. Like when I dropped “PHONICS” I’m like ‘Hey, I’m still a West Coast guy, I love to rap’ and when we’re getting ready to share these songs that are more intimate and vulnerable, returning back to something that I haven’t done since “PUSHING BUTTONS.” I feel like a lot of it is me getting out of the way of trying to define the sound. Just trusting that gut feelings are like the people who know me the best.

I know you got to return to singing, how was it revisiting that?

Asha Imuno: I was very depressed at certain points. And I was like, ‘I don’t really want to do the hard shit right now. Maybe if I tried to slow it down let’s just see what happens.’ And I think that was where songs like “OOZIN…” and “HOLD A GOOD THOUGHT” and “HONEY” randomly came about with me playing with the ideas of introspection and reflection with melody that contrast, or in analogous ways. It feels like a return because that’s what I used to do when I was little, I wanted to be Michael Jackson when I was eight. But then something happened and my brother showed me Little Wayne and I was like ‘Oh this is the coolest shit ever. Let’s all get perms!’ [laughs] But especially with what I’m creating now it lets me know that this process with PINS has helped me find a true middle.

Do you have a favorite lyrical or melodic moment that you feel reflected that introspection?

Asha Imuno: “BULLSEYE.” “BULLSEYE” is the first time that me and Zach actually made a song together ever. And that was probably the most caught off guard I’ve been by what flowed out of both of us. Especially with what I started writing about. Tonally, that’s the type of rap that I always wanted to make and live with. And for people to appreciate. It feels like- it’s crazy because we made it way before I ever went to New York. But something about it feels like walking the streets at night when the streets are glistening and you can see the light reflecting off of everything.

And you just have this sonder feeling as you see people going about their days and lives and wondering, ‘What about them makes them special? What about them, makes them hurt? What brings them joy?’ and “BULLSEYE” is a song where [I’m] talking about home for me, my family, but also the place and the feeling… It’s like there’s this invisible ghost that I’m running from in the place that made me and it’s one of the few songs that over time I listen to and I’m still trying to understand what the f*** I was feeling that day. Because I was talking about my brother, the period of time when he first got out of jail and then I come back around a few tracks later and I’m talking about my nephew and that’s his son. I think it was a stream of consciousness that was more lucid than maybe any on the album. And it just happened in one go, similarly.

What is one thing people should know about the album?

Asha Imuno: The main thing that comes to mind is that it’s about appreciating the full 360. You can’t  just take one hour of the clock and live that one, you get 24 to live and we have to live them. It’s robbing yourself to run from the difficult moments or to shy away from celebration or whatever it is. PINS & NEEDLES is about dancing through everything. When it’s really high, be really high, and when it’s really low it’s about finding ground to stand on; in hopes that it’s common ground for somebody else you can connect with.

Is that what you took away from the album? Or is that what you want people to be taking away from the LP?

Asha Imuno: That’s what I took away from the album. That’s one thing that’s interesting about playing it for people, people take away different things. And that’s when I feel like we really did some shit. I feel one way about it based on my experiences that are personally baked into it and having time away from it, to live with it, gives me a perspective that I didn’t even think about. But then I play it for somebody else. And they’re like, ‘Yeah, you’re talking about this, this and this.’ I’m like, ‘I hadn’t even thought about that.’ I think gifts that keep giving are like the most precious. So I just hope that it continues to grow with people. I can’t really speak for what people will take away from it, but I would hope that it just makes them appreciate life more, the full picture of it, as opposed to their favorite parts.

Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia
Asha Imuno © Nani Garcia

Any final notes you want to share with us?

Asha Imuno: The first place my mind goes is just giving my friends flowers and like there’s a pretty good list.

Please, go ahead and shout out. Do the Grammys speech.

Asha Imuno: My best friend, one of the closest human beings to me, my manager, Amit. We’re a day in, day out. I’ll come down from being in my room for a day and a half, like, ‘Oh, I just did this thing.’ And we listen to it and we talk through it and not just that side of it, but across everything. I could go on for so long about bro. But so much of this world is our shared thing, our brainchild. Since before PINS was even a tangible thing, he believed in my story. People don’t have that. For artists when they get that [support,] a switch kicks, and that switch has kicked for me. I feel that same way about my team: Sam and Brandon. My friends! Mikhail, my stylist and who directed the visuals for the announcement and more that are coming. I feel like this is a world where I am one component of a full thing. That’s part of why everything comes back to community for me. Genuinely, though! People use it as this buzzword, but it’s my life. And I genuinely would not be anything without the people who really f*** with me and believe in me.  Also people like Solomon Fox, and CONNIE, the hands that are really holding and bringing forth like parts of the music and parts of the world that like otherwise wouldn’t exist at all.

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:: stream/purchase PINS & NEEDLES here ::
:: connect with Asha Imuno here ::

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PINS & NEEDLES - Asha Imuno

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an album by Asha Imuno

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