Josh Kelley's debut country release, Georgia Clay, is an intriguing collection of songs that serve as a musical interpretation of his life story, a vivid exploration of the people and places that molded him into who he is today. Kelley is co-producer of Georgia Clay with Clint Lagerberg. 'This record is a time capsule, says Kelley, who wrote or co-wrote each of the album's 11 songs. It's by far the best thing I've written and I've never been more proud. I'm finally in a genre where I can write lyrics, tell stones and be a man.His most autobiographical project to date, the album powerfully captures the most important moments of his life, including his marriage to actress Katherine Heigl, their adoption of a daughter, Naleigh, and the family's move to Utah. My life has completely changed, he says. My wife is a very strong independent woman and she allows me my own independence. And from the first time my baby girl brushed her hand against my face, my life was changed. This album reflects those changes.It also describes the defining moments in his early life. Georgia Clay, the project's lead single, recalls the carefree summers of Josh's youth, when he and his brothers would hook up jet skis to their father's 1977 Chevy Silverado and head down to the lake. The whole idea behind 'Georgia Clay' is that we could go back to the garage and look at that truck, which hadn't been driven in years, and still find layers of mud stuck to the tires, Kelley says. That is the mud from our childhood. Those memories are still there.In 2003, he released For the Ride Home, which contained the Top 5 hit Amazing. Two years later, he released Almost Honest and its lead single. 'OnlyYou. But shortly after that, he decided to leave Hollywood Records and start his own label, DNK Records, to have more control over his music. Between 2006 and 2008, he released four independent albums.I wanted the sound to be more rootsy and more organic, he says. That's what I had the power to do releasing my music on my own label. He now has the best of both worlds. He has joined forces with Universal Music Group to record and release his most personal music to date. Finally he is where he feels he has always belonged - Music City.
From the Artist
"This record is a time capsule," says Kelley, who wrote or co-wrote each of the album's 11 songs. "It's by far the best thing I've written and I've never been more proud. I'm finally in a genre where I can write lyrics, tell stories and be a man." Along with writing/co-writing Georgia Clay, Kelley also co-produced the album with Nashville's Clint Lagerberg.
"My life has completely changed," he says. "My wife is a very strong independent woman and she allows me my own independence. And from the first time my baby girl brushed her hand against my face, my life was changed. This album reflects those changes."
The sentimental "Naleigh Moon," a song written for and about his daughter, poignantly depicts the intense connection between a father and daughter. "We'd only had Naleigh for a couple of weeks when I wrote this and I think it's the best song I've ever written," he explains. "The way the chords and the melody intertwine, it really tugs on your heartstrings. When I sang that song in the studio, I really meant it."
"It's funny how if you keep working hard and trying, an opportunity comes around, and thank God it did. We're gonna get to move back here to Nashville, and this is where I'll be the rest of my life."