UPDATE // DECEMBER 13:
Not only is Kelly Clarkson's forthcoming album soul-inspired, she's listing a few of the influences, including Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Aretha Franklin, Annie Lennox, Prince and more.
Watch her new interview with ET below:
EARLIER // NOVEMBER 8:
Kelly Clarkson says she already has "a good batch of songs" slated for her new record.
2016 needed an album from Clarkson to really feel complete, but the stars have aligned for 2017 instead. We'll take it.
Earlier this year, the American Idol alum announced her departure from RCA and signed with Atlantic Records, who she says is allowing her the freedom to record and distribute the kind of record she wants, for once. The culmination of unchartered creativity with a fresh corporate venture has resulted in what Clarkson describes as a "soulful urban pop" album. She's aiming to release the record in June of next year, with the first single slated for April. And don't expect the “rock pop” we're accustomed to.
“I’m working on my new album now,” Clarkson told People. “We are hoping the single will be in April, and then the album in June. It’s my favorite thing I’ve ever done. It’s the first time I got to pick my label, because I just got out of my [American] Idol contract. I’ve been dying to make this record since Idol.”
She adds: “It’s very much my personality. I think it’s very much what people expected from me off of watching me on Idol. I sang all these Aretha [Franklin] things, I love Tina [Turner], I love Mariah [Carey], I love Whitney [Houston]. I think it’s very much what people expected in the first place. I love all my stuff that I’ve done but this is the record that has been in me since junior high. And that music from when I was in junior high is now coming back [into style] — like our 15-year-old listens to R&B that I listened to in high school.”
There's still more work to be done.
“We’re still working on it, but we have a good batch of songs already and I can’t wait to sing them live,” she says. “They’re amazing. After having a career for so long, it’s so weird that nobody knows [my sound] yet, so it’s going to be so good. It’s definitely a different chapter.”