Interviews / Music

April Kry Talks the Rise of Country Music and More

Watch out, boys—the ladies are making a huge statement in music more than ever. Whether it be pop or country, women are constantly showing they’re a force to not mess around with. April Kry is just one of the many ladies who is using her voice (literally) to wow anyone who hears her. According to Kry, strong role models such as Reba and Martina McBride have left a mark on her in a remarkable way. You might be familiar with her latest single “While We’re Young” spinning on Radio Disney and RD Country, but do you really know her? We chatted with this talented artist to learn more about her upbringing, her recent move to Nashville, and what it’s like being a woman in country.

Cliché: Your voice is so strong. Growing up, did you take any vocal lessons to gain the voice you have today? What do you say to those who are completely caught off guard by how much of a powerhouse you are?
April Kry: Thank you so much! I started taking vocal lessons around 12 and found the vocal coach I still use today around 14. He kind of broke me out of my shell and said, “April, I know you have a big voice inside and we’re going to bring it out of you.” I’ve actually been named by some of my co-writers as “the tiny ninja” because I’m 4’11” and can be pretty loud when I sing! That’s one thing I pride myself on and I definitely embrace my tiny ninja label.

You have a strong upbringing being surrounded by so many different genres growing up. Do you think you’ll ever see yourself diving or possibly tapping into other genres to see how it is?
I was so fortunate to have a bunch of different influences musically as a child. I’m always evolving and growing as an artist and I continue to incorporate small nuances into my music. I don’t know that I’ll ever stray from country because I feel so at home in this genre, but I do love incorporating different sounds into my songs. In reality, country music was born from blues and folk merging together and I think people forget that sometimes!

You moved permanently to Nashville at age 20. For you, what’s it like living in Nashville, surrounded by so much up-and-coming talent? Why was this such an important move for you?
Nashville is my forever home and I wish I moved here sooner than I did! It’s such an amazing community of artists and writers that are supportive and genuine. That’s one thing I could never find in New York or L.A. I remember sitting in my boyfriend’s (now fiancé’s) apartment when I was still living in Connecticut and he looked at me and said, “April, you need to move to Nashville. You’re not happy here and you’re not able to excel in your music like you would there. Go. We’ll make it work.” And we did. It was such an important time in my life to make that move and I’m lucky to have someone so supportive.

[Nashville is] such an amazing community of artists and writers that are supportive and genuine.

How or when did you find your voice and know what kind of message you want to convey to your fans?
I always knew I wanted to reach young girls and spread a message of empowerment to them because I was once that young girl, listening to Martina McBride in my room, using my hairbrush as a microphone. I want to be what those amazing women were for me growing up: a solid role model. I always say that what I love about music is that it meets you where you are. Sad, happy, upset…there’s a song for that. I want to be able to reach people on their darkest days and their happiest days.

You talk a lot about lyrics being a huge part as to why you love country music and how it tells a story. Out of all the songs you released so far, what’s your favorite lyric that you’ve put out?
Lyrics are the first thing I listen for when I hear a song for the first time. I think my favorite lyric in a song I’ve released so far has to be from my latest single “While We’re Young.” In the chorus, it says, “loving crazy, running free, being who we want to be while we’re young.” It’s a super simple statement, but it means so much. I feel like there are so many unrealistic expectations you try to live up to as an adult in the working world, or just life in general. Sometimes you just need to step back and realize why you’re doing what you’re doing. Stop trying to conform to be liked and be yourself.

When you perform in front of an audience that either knows of you or doesn’t know you at all, what are the thoughts running through your head?
I try not to think about the audience and what they’re thinking about me or I’d drive myself crazy! I like to just live in the moment while I’m performing and really think about the lyrics of the songs I’m singing and relay them the best I can.

What is it like to be in this rise of strong women country artists such as Kelsea Ballerini, Cam, and RaeLynn? It’s about time women take over country music!
It’s absolutely amazing. I feel so honored to be included in this bunch of ladies. I just saw Lauren Alaina had the number one song in country music last week. It’s the year of the girls in country. I can’t tell you how many insanely talented ladies I’ve met and heard that are in this rise of artists. You’re right. It IS about time!

If you had a chance to create your ideal country tour lineup, who would be on your list?
LeAnn Rimes, Keith Urban, Martina McBride, Tim McGraw, and Faith Hill.

I know your song is currently spinning on Radio Disney, so what was it like for you to officially hear yourself on the airwaves?
It’s always such a surreal experience hearing yourself on the radio. Radio Disney and RD Country have been so supportive of me and they are just the sweetest. I’m so happy they are playing my single!

Social media interaction is necessary more than ever to chat with your followers. Do you ever find it overwhelming or maybe helpful to have this as a tool to get your songs out there?
I think social media is a blessing for independent artists. You basically have an outlet where you can broadcast your music and life for people to hear and see for free. You cut out the middleman. I think it’s so vital to be on social media as an artist today to connect with your audience.

I’m a huge fan of country music myself, but I often hear a stigma about the genre. What do you say to combat the negative remarks?
There’s been a lot of back and forth about what’s considered country and what’s pop recently. To that I say, I am just making music that I like to listen to and hoping that the audience will react to it in a positive way.

Now that you are fulfilling your dreams of becoming a country singer, what else do you hope to accomplish in your career? What more do you want to do?
I have a passion for empowering young girls and being a positive role model for them. I want to get involved in anti-bullying campaigns and programs because I think that is such a problem right now. I also love animals so I’m starting to get involved with local shelters and such. I want to save all the puppies!

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April Kry Talks the Rise of Country Music and More: Photographed by Rae Marshall

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