Kelly Clarkson has been teasing the follow-up to her 2017 album, Meaning Of Life, for more than a year. However, it looks like fans will be waiting until next year for that, because this year, we have something else to look forward to: a new holiday album! Today, Kelly shared her single, “Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You),” the first from her forthcoming record, When Christmas Comes Around… The holiday album will be out on October 15th, so we’ll have more than two months to prepare for the holiday. In the meantime, though, her new single is a breakup bop.
“Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You)” opens with a jaunty beat, complemented by jingle bells and low brass. Kelly’s voice lilts as she describes special places and memories she shared with her ex. But they’re not together anymore, and those memories have turned sour. The theme may be sad, but the song put an upbeat spin on things. As she sings on the chorus, Kelly will still go all out this Christmas, living happy and free without her ex weighing her down. He’s canceled, but the holidays are still on.
Fans of Kelly’s previous Christmas album, Wrapped In Red, are sure to notice numerous references to Kelly’s 2013 songs. Look out for mentions of, for example, “Underneath The Tree,” “Winter Dreams,” and “My Favorite Things.” Of course, the tables have turned, and the references reflect that.
It’s a fun song, and it comes with a cute lyric video. You may recognize the animations, redoing Kelly’s Wrapped In Red looks. Here, she always looks happy, while her ex sports a pained, weepy expression. Imagery of candy canes, Christmas trees, and snow keep the holiday theme strong. The video was produced by Toon53 Productions.
Watch the lyric video for “Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You)” below:
You can stream “Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You)” from all the major music providers here. It will also appear on Kelly’s upcoming holiday album, When Christmas Comes Around…, due out on October 15th. You can pre-order the album here.
About the album, Kelly stated:
My purpose for choosing this lyric as the title of this project was to bring forth a sense of reality to the fact that we are probably in very different places emotionally “When Christmas Comes Around…” Some of us are consumed with a new love, some of us reminded of loss, some filled with optimism for the coming new year, others elated for some much deserved time away from the chaos our work lives can sometimes bring us. Wherever you are, and whatever you may be experiencing, I wanted everyone to be able to connect to a message on this album. Each year you may even have a new favorite depending on where you are in your life, but while change can be unpredictable there is no better time of year, in my opinion, to breathe hope into one’s life and let possibility wander.
When Christmas Comes Around… will feature 12 all-new songs, including six originals and six covers, as well as three bonus tracks, all of them previously heard last year and 2017: “Under The Mistletoe” with Brett Eldredge, “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” and “Christmas Eve.” Check out the full tracklist below:
- Merry Christmas Baby
- It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas
- Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You)
- Merry Christmas (To The One I Used To Know)
- Rockin’ Around The Christmas Tree
- Glow (feat. Chris Stapleton)
- Santa Baby
- Santa, Can’t You Hear Me (feat. Ariana Grande)
- Last Christmas
- Jingle Bell Rock
- Christmas Come Early
- Under The Mistletoe (feat. Brett Eldredge) (BONUS TRACK)
- All I Want For Christmas Is You (BONUS TRACK)
- Christmas Eve (BONUS TRACK)
More Holiday Music From Kelly Clarkson
Kelly is no stranger to gifting her fans with Christmas music. Not even close! Going back to her American Idol days, Kelly sang covers of “Oh, Holy Night” and “My Grown Up Christmas List.” In 2011, she covered “I’ll Be Home For Christmas,” later including it on her 2012 greatest hits compilation. Also in 2012, Kelly joined Blake Shelton on his holiday album, singing on “There’s A New Kid In Town.”
In October 2013, Kelly released her stunning Christmas album, Wrapped In Red, filled with both covers and originals. It gave us singles like “Underneath The Tree” and the title track. In 2017, Kelly shared her original holiday single, “Christmas Eve.” Then in 2019, Kelly joined John Legend on an updated version of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” (People needlessly made a controversy out of that one, but oh well.)
Last year, we got two more holiday songs from Kelly. She first released a cover of the seasonal country classic, “All I Want For Christmas Is You,” then dropped an original, “Under The Mistletoe” with Brett Eldredge.
When Christmas Comes Around… marks Kelly’s second holiday album of her career so far, and her second in only eight years.
Kelly’s Upcoming Non-Holiday Album
While we’re looking forward to Kelly’s new Christmas album, it’s not the album fans have been waiting for. Indeed, Kelly has been teasing her 8th (secular) studio album for the past two years. At this rate, it will come out five years after 2017’s Meaning Of Life – the longest gap between standard studio albums in her career. It will also be Kelly’s first following her unexpected divorce from Brandon Blackstock. As such, Kelly has stated her new album will be very personal. In past interviews, Kelly described the new direction, and one song in particular:
This next record… this will probably be the most personal one I’ve ever released. The whole record is basically every emotion you experience from the beginning of a relationship to the end of what it is now. And it’s been very therapeutic for me. It’s very honest. There’s one that my kids sing in the car – cause I’m going through mixes – and I’m just like… this is weird. Like, it’s your relationship! I’ve never written about my life to where… My kids are, like, singing along…
Of course, her kids are only five and seven, so they don’t really understand what they’re singing along to. But it sounds like the lyrics divulge a lot, and Kelly’s fans may notice the song’s meaning. Last December, Kelly also revealed one song title, “Rock Hudson,” which has one line that harkens back to “Piece By Piece.” We can already tell that will be an emotional song!
In late February, Kelly said she has written more than 60 songs for the personal new album:
I have this record that we’re working on. It’s really great and really honest. There’s just a lot of questions that I have to answer before releasing it for myself, you know? Whether that be business-wise or personally or whatever. Whatever happens though, it is such a gift. Like, I don’t know how anybody, I’ll just be real with you, goes through grief like divorce, any kind of grief, any kind of loss, without having an outlet like this.
I have written like 60 songs, it is an insane amount of getting it out. I think that’s a blessing in itself. Anytime you go through some life, it’s such an awesome thing to have that outlet, regardless of whether people hear it or not.
During a chat with Hoda and Jenna on The Today Show last March, Kelly said that, in contrast to most of her albums, she wasn’t accepting songs written by others this time. Usually her tracklists are about 50% songs the she wrote and 50% songs she didn’t write. Only My December features a tracklist made up entirely of songs Kelly wrote. But this time, Kelly had a lot to say and has crafted a very personal album. The only song she recorded but didn’t write on is one from her first The Voice winner, Brynn Cartelli.
Kelly previously released the single “I Dare You” — in multiple languages — in spring 2020, though it’s unclear if that will still be on the album. She had also mentioned recording a mystery duet, and, at least as of May 2020, it was expected to be the next single. But a lot has changed, and the many songs Kelly had recording prior to the divorce may no longer fit with her upcoming album.
So, when will we hear the album? Hopefully sometime next year! Kelly’s a busy woman, but we’re thinking we’ll hear new music at some point in 2022.
Enjoy “Christmas Isn’t Canceled (Just You),” and be sure to pre-order or pre-save Kelly’s new holiday album, When Christmas Comes Around… Keep checking back here for more information on Kelly’s upcoming 8th studio album — expected out sometime in 2022 — and all the latest Kelly Clarkson music news.
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