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ROCKWIRED INTERVIEWS KELLY SWEET

THE SWEETEST THING
KELLY SWEET TALKS TO ROCKWIRED
ABOUT
HER DEBUT CD WE ARE ONE
TOURING WITH PAUL SIMON
AND GROWING UP WITH MUSIC

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INTERVIEWED BY BRIAN LUSH
Things are happening for KELLY SWEET. The release of her debut CD WE ARE ONE is garnering interest from radio and has earned her critical acclaim as well as a television appearances. The 19 year old chanteuse was brought up in a musical family and claims to have been exposed to music from inside the womb. Musical performance cam naturally to the young SWEET and she eventually found herself making a CD, touring and opening for PAUL SIMON and singing THE NATIONAL ANTHEM at numerous events.

The CD WE ARE ONE, produced by MARK PORTMANN (JOSH GROBAN) is no mere debut or some calculated attempt by a music industry eager to shove another diva down the listener's throat. WE ARE ONE is a recording 19 years in the making.

ROCKWIRED spoke to SWEET over the phone. Here is how it went.

How does it feel to have WE ARE ONE finished?
It's been done for a while but having it our is a whole other thing. When we finished the CD it was like a piece of artwork, like a a baby going out into the world. Now that it's released, it's like my baby's going off to college.

Your certainly getting a lot of press with this release. Is it a daunting thing? is it terrifying?
This is my first time reading reviews, both good and bad and I try not to get too caught up in it. It's cool to see that most of the people really get my vision and they hear it. Sometimes it's cool. Sometimes it's overwhelming.

You grew up in Cape Cod.
Yes. I was born in Massachusetts and lived there until I was six. I moved to Utah with my mom to this really small town there. I lived there until I was about 14.

What drew your mother to Utah? family?
My mother is an artist. A painter. She always wanted to paint Utah because she thinks it's one of the most beautiful places ever. She lives there to this day. Still painting.

Was it there that you got into music or was that always with you?
I've always been into music. I've been sining since I can remember. According to my Mom, I could sing before I could talk. My Dad was a jazz pianist so I was always hearing great music around the house. Even before I came out of the womb I could hear it. Music comes really naturally to me. For me it's something that I have to do. There was never a moment where I thought "I'm going to be a singer." I always was.

A standout out track from WE ARE ONE is your cover of DREAM ON by AEROSMITH. What drew you to record it?
It's one of the first songs we ever recorded. We were in the studio going through songs to cover. DREAM ON came up. I kind of knew it. I've heard it on the car commercial. I took home the CD and put it in my boom box and listened to it. It's an amazing song so I transposed it to my key. STEVE TYLER wrote it when he was 17 and I recorded it when i was 16. I thought it was a bit fitting.

The time your recorded DREAM ON was a difficult time for you.

It was, my dad was starting undergo chemotherapy for Multiple Myeloma which is cancer of the bone marrow and he was in Boston undergoing treatment and I was out here in LA making this record when he found out about what he had and what he had to go through. He wanted me to stay out here and I felt like I should to because I kept alive his dream of doing what I wanted to do and he would say to me all of the time "I've got to stay alive to see you famous." I felt if I kept going, then maybe he could too.
 
Doing any touring?
I was touring with PAUL SIMON for a few dates and we are working on some tours for late Spring and early summer. It's all by CAA so it's all in the process of getting planned.

You've been touring from a very young age.

I first started performing at the age of four. i was in the CAPE COD CONSERVATORY. I've pretty much been performing ever since. I sang the National Anthem for THE LAKER'S, the first time when I was 15 and I opened for KENNY LOGGINS when I was 14 in Las Vegas so yeah.I've been working at it for a long time.

You toured with PAUL SIMON. What was that like?
That was very very cool. My manager set it up and he was telling me that he (PAUL SIMON)"...is probably not going to come out of the bus. He doesn't really talk to his opening acts, so don't be offended." And I was like "OK, We're just really honored to be here." The first day, I ended up getting a really short sound check because he had a really long one. He waited by the stage while I was sound checking and as soon as I was done, he came right over and said "Tell me your story. You've got a beautiful voice!" and all throughout the day he would find in the hall and ask me questions. It was cool. He'd ask me "When did you start recording your first record?" I said when I was sixteen and he said "Me too. You write your own songs?" I said "yes" and he said "that's good". It was cool.

Have you always written or was that something that some thing that happened because of the process of putting a CD together?
I've been writing lyrics mostly since I was twelve. I've dabbled a bit in melody. I've always been drawn to words and creating pictures in someones mind just using words. I wrote four songs on the record. I actually wrote twenty songs for this record but I chose those four.

Why those four?
They really stick with the vision that I had for this album. and they really just made it a whole.

How did your association with MARK PORTMANN begin?
MARK was introduced to me by a vocal coach I had gone to see. I met with him and I sang couple of songs for him and immediately started working with him for a year and a half.

Was the process intimidating at all?
No. I went into it not knowing anything about his amazing credentials. I just knew what I wanted my record to sound like and ha d a vision for it and it was completely collaborative effort.

Any tracks on this CD that stand out for you as favorites?
Yeah. My favorite song on th e record is WE ARE ONE, that's why it's the title of the CD. Every time I sing it it feels like home. It's probably my favorite song of all time.

Still writing?
Yeah I'm always writing lyrics. I'm learning guitar now and getting better at it and I love. I write all the time everywhere with a notebook. You've got to write it down or the ideas will never come back.

What artists are you listening to now?
I'm listening to a lot JOHN MAYER. I love his CONTINUUM album. I listened to everything from DIANA KRALL to ANDREA BOCELLI to NAT KING COLE to even CHRISTINA AGUILERA. I think she's an amazing songstress.

I think you've got a real hit with the song RAINCOAT.
Thank you. It seems to be doing pretty well. People seem to agree with you there and that's always good.

Any videos for any of the releases?
Yeah for RAINCOAT. You can see it on my website www.kelly-sweet.com

Through music it seems like you've met all these big names and such, is there anyone you would like to work with in the future?
I would love to work with STING. I learned a lot of writing from him. I would just read them and breathe them in. I'd love to work with ANDREA BOCELLI because he's got a beautiful voice. And I'd love to work with JOHN MAYER.

What do you want a listener to walk away with after hearing your music?
I suppose I always felt that music is in this world not be as loud as it can be or about how many notes a singer can hit, it's about making someone feel and taking them out of their day for just a couple of minutes for a song or an hour of an album and transporting them to this whole other place where they can be somewhere e;else for a while. I've always felt that and I hope that people feel that way about this album.