Kellylee Evans Shares Thoughts On Winning A 2023 HER Music Award & Career Highlights

Kat Harlton

The SOCAN Foundation recently announced Ottawa’s Kellylee Evans as one of two grand prize recipients of the third annual Her Music Awards, in partnership with Bandzoogle.  

 Kellylee Evans was awarded a $5,000 cash prize and a one-year complimentary membership from the Songwriters Association of Canada (S.A.C.) and Société professionnelle des auteurs et des compositeurs du Québec (SPACQ).

The Her Music Awards is a program designed to celebrate and support female-identifying Canadian music creators on the verge of taking their creative careers to the next level. The Awards are administered by the SOCAN Foundation, with financial contributions made by SOCAN Foundation and Bandzoogle

JUNO Award-winning Kellylee Evans is a high-octane, chameleon-like performer whose natural charm and improvisational vocal style embody jazz, soul, pop, and hip-hop. The singer-songwriter has been captivating audiences along the way, opening for stars such as John Legend, George Benson and Willie Nelson.

Kellylee offers a distinctly recognizable sound on her brand new, five-song EP, Greenlight, which was recorded during lockdown via video while everyone was in isolation. 

Photo: Socan Foundation

I had the opportunity to chat with Kellylee about how it feels to be honored with a HER Music Award, career highlights and what’s next.

Kat: Can you tell us about yourself and your music journey so far?

Kellylee: I’m a singer songwriter born and raised in Scarborough, ON, but now based in our country’s capital of Ottawa. I had my first solo in kindergarten but I didn’t have the courage to choose music as my path until my mid twenties after a near death experience. Once I realized how important music was to me, I knew this was what I wanted to do with my life. It’s been a wonderful ride, with many ups and downs. But the music still keeps it fresh. 

Kat: You were recently announced as one of two grand prize recipients of the third annual Her Music Awards. Can you talk about the honour of receiving this award recognition?

Kellylee: It’s been such an honour to have been selected as one of the winners of this award, alongside Savannah Ré. To be recognized by my songwriting peers means a lot to me and I feel emboldened to keep creating and keep writing. It’s easy to get bogged down in the day to day of running a business, any business for that matter. But something about this award gives me the strength to keep going. 

Kat: What are you working on now, and what can fans expect next?

Kellylee: At present, I’m working on a new album which I hope to release before the end of the year. My songs tend to mark periods of growth in my life. The last album explored relationships and living with pressures of the pandemic. This album follows that vein but there’s a hint of promise and hope as well. 

Kat: What has been a career highlight so far? 

Kellylee: A career highlight for me was actually taking a step away from my music career last summer for health reasons. That break away and the decision to take it helped me to see that I am more than my music. But also that there are other ways to create and to contribute. 

Kat: What have you learned along the way that you would like to share with other aspiring artists and creators?

Kellylee: What I’ve learnt along the way that I would like to share with other artists and creators is that relationships matter. That it’s important to put in the time and effort into our relationships and to not just focus on work all the time. Even this work that we love. 

Connect With Kellylee

Instagram: @kellyleeevansmusic

Twitter: @kellyleeevans

Facebook: /kleonline


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