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Kristen Kelly Sends Out “Smoke” Signals With Her Captivating New Release

Teasing her audience with the latest sonic offering, “Smoke,” touring singer-songwriter Kristen Kelly released new music for the first time in 2022. Hailing from Lorena, Texas, Kristen Kelly has sunk her teeth into her home music scene with a vast amount of tour dates that dip into the hundreds.

“Smoke” has been making waves in the short time period that it’s been out. Featured on the iconic Nashville Sign in Downtown Nashville and performed live for fans at The Local during the single release show, Kristen Kelly has proved that she is no stranger to the stage.

What’s not love with this steaming record that oozes confidence and tenacity? Dipping into a realm that’s boisterous with Rock hues yet remains prevalent on the Country spectrum, what captivates us the most is how Kristen Kelly’s raspy vocalization pulls you into her deeply seated lyrical motifs in a major way.

Silky reverberations and production that drive it home can be found accompanying the intensity that pours from the instrumentation. We’re subject to feel-good grooves that implode upon impact – and to us, that’s how you can feel the passion resonating from a timeless record. From the simmering guitar riffs, resonated bassline, and tightly knit percussion, every component stands out as it fuses in effervescence.

Co-written and produced by Bridgette Tatum, who can be accredited for work with Jason Aldean and Randy Houser, this collaboration has “Smoke” honing in on key trademarks that make a hit track in today's day and age.

Having been named one of CMT's Next Women of Country, Kristen Kelly is on fire with this release, and we urge you to take listen for yourself.

Welcome to BuzzMusic, Kristen Kelly! We’re enthralled with your latest single release, “Smoke.” From the witty lyrics and overall composition of this record, could you please shine a light on what this song means to you?

"Smoke" is a piece of work we went hard in the paint on when pulling from my classic rock influences. It's about a "bad for you, moth to a flame" type of love interest that has you reeled in hook, line, and sinker. As we tap into components of Rock and Country in “Smoke,” is this the first time you’ve fused together genres? How do you feel about mixing it up and conjoining these sounds?

I feel like I have pulled from my classic rock influences before in my music, but my co-writer and producer Bridgette Tatum helped me really channel that sound and kick things up a notch with "Smoke." Touring with acts such as Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, Montgomery Gentry, and more, what has been your favorite performance experience to date? How does it feel every time you go back home to perform?

It's hard to pick one moment as a favorite from touring with so many artists and groups that I respect, as every chance I get to play a show and share my truth through the gift of music is a life-changing and humbling experience. Some highlights have been playing the Grand Ole Opry several times and traveling overseas to perform for the troops. Having cut my teeth on the TX/Red Dirt Scene for many years before having the opportunity to reach a broader audience via my first record deal back in the day with SONY/ARISTA Nashville ... I am always grateful to be able to "go home" and have folks still show up and cheer me on. The continued support from my home state of Texas, the TX/Red Dirt Scene, and all the folks I've met getting to travel the US and other countries is never lost on me. How did the creative process for “Smoke” unfold? Could you please shine a light on it?

I drove out to my friend/co-writer Bridgette Tatum's house to stay the night and write songs. We actually wrote another song that evening, broke to get a bite to eat and went back to her house, and ended up writing "Smoke." A few months later, she pulled me aside and said, "I wanna get in the studio and record/produce "Smoke" with you." I had not budgeted to record new music so soon after releasing my Something Worth Saying 2 part project (2021). I took a chance and launched a crowd-funded campaign to reach a $4000 goal to make the "Smoke" and an unreleased full band version of "The Devil" (a song I co-wrote with Bridgette and Allie Colleen) happen. All of this is possible thanks to the continued support of my amazing fans, friends, and family... aka "Framily CirKKus." What’s next for you in this musical journey?

I launched and hosted a once-a-month songwriters round called "Something Worth Saying" at Live Oak in Nashville from Nov 2020 - Nov 2022.

In addition to continuing to write/release new music and travel all over to play shows, I am transitioning to taking that round on the road and focusing on launching my podcast called "Something Worth Saying" in Jan 2023. Guests will include singer/songwriters, artists, and everyday folks who have inspiring/beautiful truths to share, so stay tuned!


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