Kelly Clarkson is hard at work recording her 7th studio album. After 14 years with RCA, she signed with Atlantic Records last summer, and her next album is going to be soulful and urban rather than the pop rock we’re used to hearing from her. She shared plenty of studio updates along the way, and revealed tons of details in interviews. In January, a partial demo of a country song called “Soap And Water” leaked. In February, Kelly also confirmed that she’s in the final stages of her album. Last month, Kelly shared some more studio videos with her fans. We also learned of a song that might be on her album called “It Matters To Me.” This month, Kelly revealed more about the new songs in a Music Biz interview. No news on the single yet, but it can’t be long now.
On Tuesday, May 16th, Kelly Clarkson attended the 2017 Music Biz conference in Nashville. She and Julie Greenwald, the co-chairman and COO of Atlantic Records, spoke with Ann Powers from NPR. They talked about Kelly’s career beginnings, her loyal and diverse fanbase, and her future as a mentor for The Voice next year. Kelly also mentioned some artists she’s currently into (for example, Bruno Mars and Ed Sheeran) and how motherhood has affected her. Of course, Kelly also described her upcoming album.
There are those records in artists’ lives that you’re like, “Whoo! I’ve been waiting to make that one for a while.” That’s what’s exciting about Atlantic, when I met Julie and I met Craig [Kallman, chairman and CEO of Atlantic Records]. Especially Craig going through the music, because he A&Rs a lot of it. Just his feedback on what he likes of me as an artist, and what I wanted to do as an artist, was so dead-on. It’s a beautiful thing, every once in a while, when you have that moment in your career and you’re like, “God, they’re finally going to get to hear what I can really do.”
Kelly then revealed that she’d accidentally dropped a hint about her new music earlier in the interview. Was it about Babyface? Have they worked together for her new album? She won’t confirm just yet. Kelly continued:
It’s so good. It’s very urban, pop, soulful R&B. Even if it’s a full-on anthem, it’s in a soulful, “I might beat you up while I’m singing this with my sound.” It’s just got a lot of sass… My background singers that have worked with my for years are like, “Oh my gosh, this is the first record that’s your full-on personality.” There’s a lot of personality inside me that I don’t think people have really [heard], like sass.
Julie jumped in, saying:
I put the record on and it was like she kicked through the front door. She is coming. And it’s great, because as I say to people all the time, I eat nails. I could eat you. That’s part of my rap, of running a record company. And we all know Kelly has this big voice, but these songs have so much attitude and just the soul of her voice. She’s not walking through the door. She’s kicking it the f–k open.
It’s really fun. All the writers, like how Craig set it up, I’d never made an album like this. It’s just amazing how many singer-songwriters I’d never met before have come together, and we are from totally different worlds, but we are creating this beautiful music for this album. It’s the most involved, everybody’s involved in every little part. Everybody that’s on the liner notes really counts. It’s been amazing working with them.
Kelly confirmed that she’s mainly recorded the album in Nashville (where she and her family live) and in Los Angeles. She tries to do as much as she can in Nashville so she can be with her family.
The next day, Kelly excitedly tweeted about her new music:
I. Can't. Wait. For. Y'all. To. Hear. My. New. Music. ????????????????????
— Kelly Clarkson (@kelly_clarkson) May 17, 2017
Kelly’s first single was originally planned for release in April, though by the end of 2016 Kelly mentioned that it’d be May. Sadly, it looks like those plans were pushed back too, since there’s still no single. With any luck, we’ll get to hear some of the new music this summer. The album will likely be out this fall.
Catch up on all we know about Kelly’s upcoming album, and keep checking back here for all the latest Kelly Clarkson music news, too. She’s nearly done with the album, and we’ll certainly get news about a single soon!