Clarkson’s Album Release

Shannon Livewell

Most of us know Kelly Clarkson as the small-town, season one, American Idol winner. Clarkson, however, has come a long way since her Idol days. Stronger is her newest album, which was released October 24, 2011 in the United States and the UK.

This new album was written while Clarkson was on tour for her last album, My December. She worked hard to combine R&B, country, urban, and soul to create a new form of pop material that would add some diversity to the music industry.

Clarkson states that Tina Turner, Sheryl Crow, Prince, and Radiohead were her main inspirations for this album, as she wanted to make sure the songs were recognizably different from those featured on her previous albums. She felt that the best way to change her musical style would be to combine the many genres that have always motivated her.

This album has an impeccable sound quality that sounds very similar to that of Clarkson’s live performances. This is due to the fact that she refused the studio add any auto-tune to her pieces. Using the same record company as her four previous albums, Clarkson was sure that her requirements for her new songs would cause a conflict with the company as it had in the past.

RCA records have gotten into altercations with Clarkson over every album she has previously recorded with them for one reason or another. Many believe that this is due to the fact that she is such an independent artist, and therefore goes in to record with her own ideas for her albums.

Nonetheless, RCA did not argue with Clarkson over these stipulations, and it’s a good thing they listened to her. The absence of auto-tune gives the album a much more soulful and personal feel that allows listeners to really enjoy Clarkson’s voice without having it fudged by any other technology.

Most of the songs featured on this album are about growth after a relationship (though no sources reveal who the man is that Clarkson is directing these songs too). This is, in my opinion, Clarkson’s best album thus far, and it is only the beginning. She has mentioned in recent interviews that she will be touring this summer, and planning on writing a new album along the way. Until then, pick up a copy of Stronger on iTunes today, and experience pop music in a new way.