Kree Harrison rose to fame as the runner-up on season 12 of American Idol, but those in the know around Music City knew her long before her time in the small screen spotlight. Many of country music's greatest legends -- like Wynonna Judd and Emmylou Harris, just to name a few -- know her as one of their favorite rising country artists.
The Texas-born singer-songwriter has been doing paid singing gigs since she was 7 years old and has collaborated with Keith Urban, Wynonna Judd, Kacey Musgraves and more. Harrison is currently working on her sophomore album and just released the record's debut single, "I Love the Lie."
Written by Chris Stapleton, Morgane Stapleton and Liz Rose, "I Love the Lie" is destined to be a classic heartbreaker.
Harrison says she immediately connected with the song -- and hearing Chris Stapleton sing it certainly didn't hurt.
"We got pitched the song 'I Love the Lie' by a friend and it was almost immediate. Obviously, I love the melody and the whole vibe of it...I feel like it's a very relatable song. It just spoke to me. Also, it really helped with Chris Stapleton singing the demo," Harrison says, laughing.
Listen to "I Love the Lie" below.
"I Love the Lie" sounds like a song that would've been a hit on country radio in the '90s and Harrison says that's not by mistake. The 28-year-old says growing up listening to powerful female voices on country radio -- from Wynonna Judd to the Dixie Chicks -- helped shape her path and musical sound. And just as her debut album This Old Thing celebrated her love of Motown music, her sophomore record pays tribute to a golden age of country radio.
"Sometimes there's too many to name -- We had Faith (Hill), The Judds, Pam Tillis -- so many," Harrison says. "I feel like I have to get that part of my influence out just like I did with the Motown album."
Harrison is currently recording her "90s-infused" sophomore album at Echo Mountain Recording in Asheville, N.C. The album, produced by Jordan Lehning and Skylar Wilson, is set to be released in 2019.
With a new album on the way and support from country legends and peers alike, Harrison's future is bright.
"To do something that's really important to me and to be championed for it is like the cherry on top," Harrison says. "I don't want to do anything else. I can't see myself doing anything else. This is something that I give my all. So to have people go 'Yeah, we're proud of you'...It's crazy."
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