Hopefully all of it since it’s all true.
This past spring, I was in a movie theater with friends awaiting Dead Pool when a trailer for ‘Whiskey Tango Foxtrot’ took over the screen. Though Tina Fey’s journalistic comedy didn’t appeal to me, the accompanying music certainly did. That was the first time I had heard ‘Ex’s and Ohs’ – a western sounding pop tune srung together by an up and coming artist Elle King.
Elle King’s debut single ‘Ex’s and Oh’s’ immediately took over radio. I remember listening to the song again while on the drive home. The song captured a unique sound with its use of rattling chain themed verses to its Top 40 chorus. King’s crossover sound resonated with me. Based on its success – it did so with the rest of the country too.
Weeks later, country star Dierks Bentley’s released his follow up to 2014’s ‘Riser’ with ‘Black’ Sucessfully mainstream track, ‘Different for Girls’, featured the familiar voice of King. As history has shown, the more outreach an artist has usually makes for larger success. From movie trailers, a Fifth Harmony cover, to grand country duets, Elle King has created a stir in the music industry in a matter of weeks.
Ironically, as I write this, Ex’s and Oh’s just came on the radio – her reach is indeed powerful.
At first, many were skeptical of her potential since she stems from the Schnieder family tree. Rob Schneider, a former SNL member and star of ‘Deuce Bigalow Male Gigalo’, hasn’t done much in the entertainment industry lately – leading many to think that King was also in store for a short lived flash of talent. That notion has since disappeared with two Grammy nominations, a number one single, and a CMA nomination. The promosing twenty-seven year old is proving doubters wrong.
Though numerous elements are factors in her popularity rise, her musicianship makes up a large part – she writes her own music too.
Aside from ‘Ex’s and Oh’s’ I had not heard anything of King’s own music. The other night, I put my headphones on let her debut album ‘Love Stuff’ roll. As my wifi searched for a connection, here ‘s the image I stared at for a good minute:
As I observed the information-less screen, I began wondering what to expect from this new pop star’s album. With no album art, no song durations, no audio for twenty two seconds, I wondered if this album could have been a bluegrass swing record or a hip hop infused pop album. What eventually played, made a lot of sense in retrospect.
‘Good Lord turned his back on me
Lucifer gonna set me free”
A surprising and unexpected arrangement jumped out from nowhere to set the tone for what is ‘Love Stuff’: A well crafted collection of pop songs from diverse influences – each demanding respect to be taken seriously. This makes sense given her reputation as the daughter of a movie star. The beauty is King sheds this reputation more every day as she is no longer just a daughter of a movie star. She is her own artist.
‘Love Stuff’ which was released back in 2015, is constructed of uniquely catchy songs that can find a place in anyone’s pair of ears. Her voice is raspy but romantic and contains sprinkles of southern pronunciation while her music is easy as it is powerful. Listeners will find something to latch to as every song gives off new vibes. Standout Tracks include: ‘Under The Influence’ and ‘Song of Sorrow’.
Keep one hand learning the banjo and one eye on your nearest venue: