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Singer/Songwriter/Keyboardist/Guitarist Kelley Hunt Brings The Beautiful Bones To Life On Her New CD, Coming May 20 On 88 Records
LAWRENCE, KS – 88 Records announces a May 20 release date for The Beautiful Bones, the new CD from Kansas City-based singer/songwriter/keyboardist/guitarist Kelley Hunt. Her magnificent voice fleshes out the 12 original songs all written or co-written by her with a sound that recalls the best of Aretha Franklin, Mavis Staples and others whose roots-based sounds transcend all musical boundaries. Produced by Kelley Hunt and Al Berman and recorded at 16 Ton Studios in Nashville, The Beautiful Bones showcases Kelley’s vocals and scintillating piano work backed by a crack band of Nashville all-stars that includes Bryan Owings on drums, Tim Marks on bass, John Jackson on electric guitar and the wondrous McCrary Sisters on background vocals.
Kelley Hunt will support the release of her new CD with an extensive tour of showcase clubs, as well as concert and festival dates around the country. May concert dates already announced include shows in Kansas City, Missouri (2); Minneapolis, Minnesota (9 and 10); Denver, Colorado (22) and Silver City, New Mexico (25).
“I’ve always loved the recording process, but I have to say that I had the most fun I’ve ever had in the studio working on The Beautiful Bones,” says Kelley about the sessions. “Every day I woke up excited and energized, ready to see what was going to happen that would surprise me yet again. Once we got started in the studio, it felt almost effortless, like the groove was easy to find, my music came to life in an easy way.”
That vibe and comfort level is evident from the opening notes of “This Time,” the funky, rocking opening track, through the gospel-infused “Golden Hour” and “Release and Be Free,” with its hair-raising vocal pyrotechnics; the driving “When Love Is at the Wheel;” the introspective “Gates of Eden;” and all the way through the rest of her new album. The elite supporting cast provides the perfect accompaniment throughout, providing lavish, interwoven support and laying back in the pocket to let Kelley’s soaring melodies take flight.
“The musicians on this record are my dream team,” states Kelley. “Most of them have worked with me before. We have history and they know my music well. Every one of them brought great ideas, stellar musicianship, immediately ‘got’ what I was going for on every song and joyously brought my vision for this record into focus. And recording at 16 Ton Studios was like coming home to a place full of soulful history, new energy, righteous roots and nothing but good vibes. How could I NOT love it?”
The title, The Beautiful Bones, applies several ways - to the message in the title track, which is cautionary, written in the form of a pivotal revelation in a personal relationship but really about this pivotal moment in mankind's “personal” relationship with the planet and also our internal relationship with ourselves. In all aspects it's about cutting through everything else to find and understand what is essential and letting that understanding be your guide. Also, stylistically, the project references the traditional stylistic influences that inform Kelley's artistic identity: the “beautiful bones” of her music and much of contemporary blues, roots, pop and rock. Tracks are not intended to be detailed, exact replications of those traditional forms, but respectful references with a finish of Kelley's identity and contemporary standards.
“The Beautiful Bones album is about acknowledging, embracing and remembering our universal roots,” she says, “not shying away from some tender truths, seeing the beautiful in the everyday-ness of the world, and celebrating the power of the heart of things.
“The title song came about in a surprising way,” recalls Kelley. “I was sitting in my kitchen, looking out at the snowy Kansas landscape, playing a beautiful new guitar that I’d been given for Christmas and all of the sudden the song practically wrote itself. Words, music – everything - came at once. I was so moved by both the experience and the unexpected sentiment of the song I had tears in my eyes.”
The Beautiful Bones is Kelley Hunt’s sixth album release and builds on the critical acclaim and radio airplay from its predecessors. “Kelley Hunt resides among those bluesy, soulful piano players who write great songs,” wrote Vintage Guitar. “A superb live performer, immediately drawing you to the power of her music and her voice,” said Elmore magazine in a review of an earlier album. “This Kansan is a full-blown phenomenon: powerhouse singer, hard boogieing pianist, polished songwriter,” exclaimed the Minneapolis Star-Tribune.
Born in Kansas City, Kelley Hunt’s love of roots music came from listening to early blues, R&B, jazz, rock and gospel, with influences ranging from Aretha Franklin, Dinah Washington, Mahalia Jackson and Ann Peebles to Charles Brown, Johnny Johnson, Professor Longhair and Jay McShann. She grew up around a mother who sang jazz and blues and was also influenced by her gospel singer grandmother who traveled for a while with a gospel choir and sang in New Orleans.
With over 1,500 + live shows under her belt, including prestigious festival stages in North America and overseas, plus six appearances on American Public Media’s “A Prairie Home Companion” nationally-syndicated radio show, Kelley Hunt stands poised on the biggest breakthrough of her career thus far.
For more information, or to place an advance order for her new CD, visit www.kelleyhunt.com
To download a hi-res photo of Kelley (credit: Ann K. Brown), click here: Color photo link
Kelley Hunt Tour Dates
5/2 LIVE! At the Crossroads Concert Series Kansas City, MO
5/9-10 The Dakota (CD Release Concert) Minneapolis, MN
5/22 The Soiled Dove (CD Release Concert) Denver, CO
5/25 Silver City Blues Festival (CD Release Concert) Silver City, NM
6/5 Wichita River Festival (CD Release Concert) Wichita, KS
6/13 Artpark Amphitheatre (CD Release Concert) Lewiston, NY
7/12 ZooFest (CD Release Concert) Lincoln, NE