On her new LP Kate Kelly weaves together threads of airy jazz, piano-pop, and woozy folk into a tapestry that wraps around the listener like a summer breeze. Possessed of an easy elegance, Kelly’s voice waltzes through verdant fields of melody, all warmth and sunshine. Yet peek beneath the surface, and you’ll see a record that was born of its creator’s quest to find solace in a world of stormy emotional seas.
“It is worth noting that 2017, when this album was being written, was one of the most challenging years I’ve experienced thus far” says Kelly. Retreating into a child-like inner space to find solace from the pain she was feeling, Kelly turned to an exploration of nature and life’s innate beauty as her lyrical thesis. “Each “symbol” in the record (honey, the garden, the moon, etc.) is something in nature that helped me overcome my troubles. Each totem taught me a specific lesson; all because I immersed myself in ‘The Wonder Of It All’.”
While studying music therapy at Belmont University Kelly came to realize that she wanted to pursue music professionally. In 2016 she released her debut EP, New Heartbeat. Upon graduation she had a vision; Kelly would write a record that would serve as a musical antidote to the dark energies circulating throughout the collective unconscious. “I envisioned writing a record dedicated to charting life’s awe and wonder, and finding your truth through it.” She spent the bulk of 2017 doing just that.
Written in parks, greenhouses, and her own cozy living room, Kelly and a crew of top-flight musicians decamped to Iron Oak Recording Studio in Nashville, TN to track The Wonder Of It All. Produced by Iron Oak’s Andrew Conner with Zach Hughes (Lost Harbor Music), the record features Kelly on vocals and acoustic guitar, as well as Andy Cata (keys and synth), Luke Enyeart (electric guitar), David Crutcher (organ), Scooter Spicer (drums), Thomas Altman (bass), Julia Meredith (sax), Chris Baldani (trombone), and Emmanuel Echem (trumpet).
Listening to The Wonder Of It All it’s safe to say Kelly achieved her intention.The Wonder Of It All would pair wonderfully with a cup of chamomile and a purring kitty (or perhaps a garden party and a few bottles of rosé). “I hope this record inspires listeners to wander and daydream, and find a moment to escape from pain, just like it was and continues to be for me.”