Just as she was moving to Nashville, Kelsey Rae released FORTUNE TELLER, her first album of original songs that showcases her clear Appalachian sound and speaks to her influences growing up in the mountains of southwestern Virginia and her love for the music of the likes of Patsy Cline, Connie Smith and Kitty Wells, as well as Dr. Ralph Stanley and the Carter Family.
“I decided to call the album Fortune Teller because I am hoping that is just what it does for me. I’m hoping it tells me that Nashville is where I need to be.”
The album tunes range from “Satan’s Toy,” the first song she ever wrote, to “This Old Town,” winner of the 2015 Richard Leigh Songwriters Festival that earned her a performance at Nashville’s Bluebird Café along with Leigh and other Nashville Hall of Fame songwriters.
A nod to today’s world in traditional country style is “Social Media,” her tribute to Dolly Parton and a fun tune she introduced to the Bluebird crowd and got a few chuckles with the lyrics like “make your Twitter tweet the best!” Another upbeat, fun song is “Check Please!” about relying on her girlfriends to keep her in check. And even more fun, “It’s Not Vanilla’s Fault, It’s Velma’s.”
Ideas for songs and influence come from many places, says Kelsey Rae. A chat with a friend. A quick idea jotted on a napkin. Even from the feelings of singing on the stage at the famed Carter Fold or while singing “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” at Mountain Music School in Big Stone Gap, Va., accompanying herself on a mountain dulcimer.
“Mr. Fortune Teller” is a song co-written with talented musician and friend Dorthia Cottrell of Richmond, Va.