Getting to Know: Haley Vassar

Welcome to PopCulture.com's 'Getting to Know' series! Here, we're talking with up-and-coming artists about their music, influences and more — stay tuned to see who's next!

When you hear the name Haley Vassar, you might first think of her father, country singer/songwriter Phil Vassar, but it won't be that way for long.

Vassar has set her sights on a path to pop music, something she's known she wanted to pursue for years. Speaking with PopCulture.com, she shared that while her choice may be unconventional, her parents have been nothing but supportive as she seeks to make a name for herself on her own time.

"I've always known that I wanted to pursue music," the 20-year-old recalled. "When I turned seventeen, I was about to be a senior in high school, and I came to my parents and told them that I really wanted to purse music full-time. At first, they were definitely a little apprehensive, but they were really encouraging and helpful. It was a crazy experience, and I haven't looked back ever since."

Vassar has so far released multiple singles, all of which are pure pop, fusing her airy and ethereal voice with synthesizers and bass, making for music that would be at home at a house party or during a summer drive. Her latest release, "Can't Fall Slow," is a doo-wop infused track that finds Vassar trying and failing to stop herself from falling for a new love interest, marrying her unique voice with sleek production that hints at big things to come.

"My taste in music is on such a wide spectrum," she explained. "The songs that I listen to are all so different. I think, whenever a song...when you write one, the production just falls into whatever that is. The hardest part for me was putting my music into one genre, because sometimes it feels a bit more pop, sometimes more R&B. I feel like they all have a cohesive feel, in a way."

Vassar names her dad and other stars like Stevie Nicks, Fleetwood Mac, Amy Winehouse and Michael Jackson as influences, and she's been writing in Nashville, New York and Los Angeles in an effort to cultivate her own sound, as well as with her father.

"When I decided to be an artist, I knew from the very beginning that I wanted to write my own songs," she explained. "It's definitely been cool, because I've gotten to write some with my dad and there's no real formula to writing, but he has his creative energy when he's writing, super energetic. We're a little bit more laid back, but it's cool seeing the differences."

Now based in New York City, Vassar is continuing her journey into pop music, but that doesn't mean she wants to distance herself from her famous dad.

"I love my dad, and I'm honored to be connected to him," she shared. "The correlation is cool, because they see his talent, and they're like, 'Oh, she's really talented too.' I kind of wanted to make my own name. I moved to New York to get out of his shadow a little bit, because I wanted to be a little bit more independent and not be Phil Vassar's daughter and be my own self. It's cool, too, because he's so talented, and I don't mind if people are like, 'Oh, your dad is... your dad.'"

She's also picked up a few tips from the "Just Another Day in Paradise" singer, who's penned smashes for artists like Tim McGraw and Jo Dee Messina, along with helming a successful career of his own.

"Watching my dad, in the business, has been really cool," she said. "I've seen how challenging it can be, and he's helped me a lot with dealing with those challenges. It's been cool to write with him and exchange our — the way that we have different music tastes and stuff like that."

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Learn more about Vassar and listen to her music here.

Photo Credit: Derrek Kupish