SPOTTED!!! Ashli Douglas
She describes herself as… “the perfect blend of my parents. I get my style, love of travel (my favourites thus far are the Maldives, South Africa, and Israel), and strong will from my mom, Vivette Douglas, former Air Jamaica flight attendant, and my jovial and warm personality and love of music from my dad, Grammy Award-winning drummer, best known for his work with Toots and the Maytals, Bob Marley and the Wailers, Ken Boothe, and Byron Lee and the Dragonaires, Paul Douglas. My dad is also very stylish, so I can’t leave him out”.
Ash (the moniker she uses for her podcast) was also very close to the late musical icon Toots Hibbert, whom she affectionately called “Uncle Toots” and who in turn referenced her as “Baby Ash”, even into her adulthood.
Her musical pedigree… “Uncle Toots and my dad had the utmost respect for each other… and they spoke often on and off tour, so I have known and been around Uncle Toots my entire life. He never missed a birthday, and from childhood to the year before his passing at the Formula One Race, he would always bring me onstage to sing or dedicate a song to Baby Ash, and always told me how proud he was of me every time we spoke. It’s still hard to believe he is gone; however, I feel comfort knowing that the music he and the Maytals created over the last 50 years has left an indelible mark on reggae music that will live forever.”
Her podcast… “Do not let anyone take your freedom… words my Jamaican maternal grandmother said to me every time we spoke. As a child, I was confused by her statement, as I was undoubtedly free. However, as I got older, I realised she meant not to allow anyone to take away my freedom of choice, freedom of thought, or the freedom to be myself. This mentality was instilled in my mother and thus instilled in me, and was the driving force behind me starting my Spotify and Apple podcast, Let’s Talk Di Tings, in January 2023.
My intention in creating this podcast is… “to create a space for Caribbean millennials in the diaspora to feel seen and heard. To encourage all, but especially women to not let anyone take their freedom and to go after their dreams, even when no one understands. Although the podcast is relatively new, I have already received several messages from Jamaican and other Caribbean millennials like myself saying that they feel seen and find the content relatable, introspective, and joyful.
“Some episodes of the podcast are only me, while others include guests, for some seismic shifting conversations about self-improvement, travel, relationships, music, beauty, and so much more. You never know who will stop by to ‘talk di tings’. Recent guests have included the manager of the luxurious Park Hyatt Milan and AJ Brown of nine-time Grammy-nominated band Third World. With each episode I lean on my lived experience, lessons from my parents and brother, and the wealth of knowledge I acquired obtaining my master’s degree from Harvard University, which focused on global public policy.”