Blending country, blues, and pop with consummate songwriting, Nashville artist April Kry is the Tiny girl with the big voice getting ready to shake up the music scene with her next release. Her journey began singing in church with her father and sister, with her passion for songwriting developing years later after making the move to the capital of country. Her career to date has seen notable levels of success including the latest milestone of over 3 million streams on the Sink Or Swim EP. Embarking on a new exciting chapter which includes becoming a motherhood April Kry sat down with IndustryMe to discuss her plans for new music, becoming a mum, and all the highlights of what can only be described as a whirlwind journey.
We first came across you in 2017 when you put out “While We’re Young”. Looking at everything you’ve achieved since then what do you think a young April would say to you now?
Interesting question usually, it’s the opposite (laughs). I think the young April would say, take every opportunity that you can. I think the young April was very wide-eyed and bushy-tailed and wanted to be at everything and do everything. I think I’m still that way but I’m also more grounded in the sense that I know who I am a little more and young April was still figuring things out as far as music goes and my sound. I think now I’m a little pickier with certain people that I write with and the things that I’m doing because I know that my time is valuable; especially now that I have a newborn.
And I remember back then you being adamant that you wanted to tour more back then. Would you say that’s something you’ve accomplished and what’s your experience on the road been like?
I played a lot of local shows which I was really happy about and I got to tour Switzerland in 2019 and that was the most incredible experience ever. I met so many talented artists and people there and I am so happy I got to do that before COVID hit and everything kind of got shut down.
Was that your first time in Europe?
I’d been to Europe before. My husband and I had our honeymoon in Italy, so I’d been to Europe before but not Switzerland so it was my first time in Switzerland.
What would you say has been your most memorable moment on tour?
I remember specifically on one of the shows actually in the middle of a song got a standing ovation which has never happened to me before and it’s funny because all of my songs are in English so I guess a lot of them could understand what I was singing about. I was just floored that I got a standing ovation. I think it was to the song “I feel at Home”. We actually incorporated a saxophone solo into the middle of the song and we would just kind of go back and forth. So I would riff and then the saxophonist would go and I eventually belted really high and got down on my knees which is when I got the standing ovation. I was just like this is the coolest thing ever.
If you could have anything on your rider no matter how silly or pretentious it may sound what would be and why?
Oh gosh (laughs). I would put at least 3 different kinds of cheese in my dressing room at all times. I love cheese!
What are your favourite kinds of cheese?
One of my favourites is probably Mozzarella di Bufala, I had that in Italy which was amazing. Then I also love brie…I love the soft cheeses they’re really good. Then I also like a really good cheddar it’s kind of classic
What’s current your pre-show ritual like?
I will always do a voice lesson before my shows and I try to have a very peaceful day. I’ll make sure I do my prayer time and meditate. I drink a lot of water that day and try not to scream if possible. I try to keep it lowkey because I’ve found that if something crazy happens or if I’m stressed out about something it completely affects my voice.
Something I’ve really fallen in love with over the years are your acoustic sessions. They’ve been a very frequent part of your journey and I’d love to hear more about how you put those live sessions together.
The acoustic sessions… I filmed most of those within like two days – which is crazy! I had so many different outfit changes and hair and makeup. We shot it in Franklin at a studio there and I had all of these guests that I wanted on the songs. I chose very wisely and had some of my friends come in. I still have a bunch backlogged that I am probably going to release soon but you know life happens. They were some of my favourite things to shoot but those were probably the longest days. I don’t think that I had a voice after those two days.
I enjoy the up-tempo pop tracks like “Fireflies” and “While We’re Young” but the stuff I really connect with are songs like “Watered Down” with the more sombre lyrics. Does writing in that space require a different approach?
Absolutely! You have to be in a totally different headspace to write a fun upbeat song in contrast to a very deep ballad-type song. I lean more towards the ballads, and I think a lot of artists do. I have to be with the right co-writer to write one of those more upbeat songs. Funnily enough, I didn’t actually write “Fireflies”, but I was a writer on “While We’re Young”. It’s definitely harder for me to write those more upbeat songs.
Why do you think that is?
I don’t know. I have a thing about wanting to write things that people can really connect with and for me, I tend to connect more with the deeper stuff so that’s the stuff that I want to write. But I do know that people love dancing and singing happy songs so I have to write those too (laughs).
The gospel influence definitely shines through here is that something you’re intentional about maintaining?
Absolutely. With this next project that I’m working on I actually have 10 songs that I am going to put out – a full album hopefully this year. (laughs) I’ve been working with some producers out in LA for quite some time now and that is definitely something I want to incorporate those [gospel] backgrounds like in “Watered Down”. That’s what we going for. I kind of grew up in that space in the church and just singing in the choir, so that’s home to me. This next batch of music is going to be more soulful and that kind of vibe.
Going back to something you mentioned earlier about life just happening. After the release of “Watered Down” there was a little bit of a quiet period. What did you get up to during your break from releasing music?
So I had “Watered Down” done. I already had the full tracklist so I already knew which songs I wanted on the album and these producers called 9AM reached out to me. They actually worked with my sister who is also a songwriter out in LA too. I wanted to collaborate with them, this is before I found out I was pregnant, but I was planning to go out to LA and record there but we ended up just doing everything remotely. At that time before the quiet period hit, I really only had “Watered Down” done and they sent me a couple of tracks. Right now though I’d say I have most of the album done. I still have a few vocal stuff to record but you know how that goes. I had a plan to release this like two years ago but you know –
Speaking of life happening, there’s obviously something we can’t go without mentioning which is you becoming a mum. I think that’s a pretty exciting transition in your life. What’s that adjustment period been like, being an artist but also being a mum?
It has been the hardest most rewarding thing in my life for sure. I really had no idea what being a mum entailed but I knew that I always wanted to be a mother and once it happened it just rocked my world completely. I’m still kind of in that adjustment period where I’m trying to balance my music and being a mother. I had no idea what mothers went through and totally took my mum for granted growing up (laughs). Now I really see and I have so much respect for mothers, espcially single mothers, I have no idea how they do it but I have the uttmost respect for them. It’s been quite the journey but I am defitely blessed to have a supportive husband and family.
Has it changed the way you approach music at all?
Yeah, I have such a different outlook on life in general. My actual birthing experience was very traumatic for me and it kind of rocked my whole world. I have such a different view of it all now so that absolutely impacts my writing and my creative process.
And then there was the track “Seven or Seventeen” which I am going to assume is like a love letter to your baby boy – talk to me about the writing process for that.
So that one I started writing while he was still in my belly and I wanted to just write it myself. I was like I really don’t want this to be a co-written song I just want it to be a love letter to my son and I tried to write it for months. Then finally I had a write scheduled with my friends Chris Sly and Mary cutter and they were going to bring in another writer Stone. And so I was like I have a couple of ideas. I wasn’t going to bring up my idea for “Seven or Seventeen” but I was really stuck on it. I was like I can’t finish this, I have this idea but I need help finishing it. So as soon as we got into the room that day everyone just kind of clicked. I think Chris just had this melody idea on the guitar. It was our first write together and we wrote the song in like 10 minutes, it just kind of came out and it was everything that I wanted it to be and more
What are you hoping your baby thinks of the song whenever they’re hoping to understand it?
I hope that he’s proud of me as a mom. That’s really all you can wish. I hope that he feels loved and wanted ‘cause that’s really what the song is about. My husband and I tried to conceive for two years before we had him so it was definitely a journey for sure.
And finally before we wrap what’s next for you?
A full-length album, that I’ve been working on for almost three years now. It’s going to be 10 songs and the basis of it is a growth period and just kind of how a butterfly is in their chrysalis and becomes a butterfly so that whole growth period. So that’s what the album is based off of. The songs on the album kind of range from three years ago up until now.