“Twin Cities fans – if you thought Kelley’s previous packed shows at The Dakota were special get ready for Kelley on tour version.2012 – a terrific, smoking hot new touring band expanded to 5 pieces on stage. It’s definitely Kelley at The Dakota like you’ve never heard her. And if you’ve not yet caught one of her Dakota shows you’re going to flat out love it – a real music room, great production, intimate vibe and a superb menu and dining experience if you choose to go that way. Get tickets now!“ -From Kelley Hunt’s Own Newsletter.
Kansas City-based blueswoman Kelley Hunt has been defying description for the better part of a decade, and she shows no sign of slowing down. With a commanding, passionate stage presence and superior skills as a vocalist, piano player and songwriter she has earned the respect of critics and fans across North America and Europe.
Kelley makes her way back to the Twin Cities in support of her latest recording, “Gravity Loves You.” This is a remarkable collection of 12 new songs from Kelley’s solo pen and songwriting collaborations with Kansas Poet Laureate Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg, as well as songwriters Sarah Hart and Dwight Liles. “Gravity” weaves its way through roots grooves and arrangements that conjure everything from old-school funk to Philly soul to the intense, Gospel-influenced ballad style that is a Kelley Hunt trademark.
Born in Kansas City, Hunt’s love for her craft was fine tuned listening to early blues, R&B, roots rock, jazz and Gospel influences – artists like Ruth Brown, Mahalia Jackson, Billie Holiday, Ann Peebles, Ray Charles, Dinah Washington, Aretha Franklin, Charles Brown, Wanda Jackson and a cross section of the New Orleans/St. Louis/KC piano traditions of Professor Longhair, Toots Washington, Johnnie Johnson and Kansas City masters Jay McShann and Mary Lou Williams among others. Before that came the sound of her mother singing jazz and blues – her first musical memories – and the influence of her New Orleans Gospel singer grandmother. Reminders of these very traditional influences are evident in Kelley’s live performances and recordings but the lyrics, soul and passion are all her own. Her career path so far has been a story of fierce independence, incredible will, unassailable cred as a blistering live performer and hard-won accomplishment.
What Other People Have Been Saying...
“She sounds like a road-weary warrior with the passion of Aretha and the intensity of Bonnie Raitt. She combines vocal sensuality and sexuality in equal spades.” -Buffalo News
“Kelley Hunt remains an astonishingly well-kept secret on the blues circuit. She’s a powerful singer with a huge reservoir of blues and R&B muscle and can singe your eyebrows with a ballad or full-tilt boogie. She’s also a rollicking pianist…and a superior songwriter with a knack for going for the musical jugular… a swaggering live slab of smokin’ blues, high-energy swing and boogie-woogie.” -City Pages
“One of the best new songwriters in the genre.” -Seattle Times