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Kris Kelli on bridging different musical sounds and new EP, ‘Third World Problem’


When it comes to music, Kris Kelli has yet to find a boundary that she can’t cross. The Kingston, Jamaica-raised artist can superbly capture the essence of reggae, southern hip-hop, soul and pop without ever missing a beat.

Kelli, currently signed to Block House ENT/Bad Boy South, is currently working on the release of her EP, Third World Problem. She recently took a moment to discuss her love for different genres of music and creating new music.

You have a knack for experimenting with different musical sounds. Why is that important for you?

We call it, ‘From Kingston, Jamaica, to Kirkwood (Atlanta).’  Our [Block ENT] studio is near the Kirkwood area. I call my music dirty pop, which is like a street grungy pop music. It’s not too pretty, but it’s definitely real and it’s authentic to dancehall and more of a street pop sound. I think everybody is going to love it. I have some amazing tracks on my EP. It’s just gonna show you a different side. If you listen to all of it, you may think it’s another person on different songs. But I do it all.

How has the Atlanta music scene inspired you?

I’ve always wanted to come to Atlanta. Atlanta has a big music scene. The music scene is crazy here. I decided to go to Atlanta because everybody I want to work with is all here. It was wishful thinking, but one day I was on the internet and Block reached out to me. I sent him some tracks and he loved it. I know God put it together and I was up here one month after that initial conversation.

What can we expect from your new EP, Third World Problem?

 I’ve been getting a lot of love from the  radio stations in Atlanta  and social media. My first single is “Old Yella.” It’s  a catchy song and it’s fun. But I can do a whole lot more than that single and you hear that when you listen to my new EP, Third World Problem. I’m a part of a third world coming from Kingston, Jamaica. I definitely want people to be inspired by the fact that I never gave up coming from Jamaica where people said I couldn’t do it. I don’t listen to what any naysayers have to say. I believe in myself and I have a very good strong support system around me. I hope to inspire people out there that’s really watching my whole movement. I want you to know that it doesn’t matter where you come from, you can make it regardless.