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Kelly Aspen 
By: Brianna Nightingale, CSO Staff Journalist

Kelly Aspen is the type of country singer who has big dreams and works hard to fulfill them. “I have wanted to be a singer for as far back as I remember,” she said. Looking back on her first group performance in kindergarten, Aspen said “as the other kids squinted from the blinding spotlight, I stared straight into it and said to myself ‘I need to practice this because I'll need it when I'm famous.’”

Aspen had small solos throughout her time in elementary school, but the first full solo she recalls is when she sang “Lost In Your Eyes” by Debbie Gibson at the seventh grade choir concert. Aspen laughed when she said “The other kids thought I was a geek but I didn't care because I really loved Debbie Gibson back then.”

All that practice must have paid off because Aspen released her second album in early 2007. A Thousand Dreams includes eight cuts that Aspen wrote on her own, one which she co-wrote with her producer and five that were cut from other artists. “I feel a great deal of satisfaction from my latest project,” she said. “It really shows my growth as an artist, writer and in my personal life.”

Aspen chose a John Denver cut to put first on the album since he has had such a positive impact on her life and on her music career; he was the reason her mother was inspired to move to Denver, Colorado. Some other tracks I highly recommend are “Sneakers in the Dryer,” a fun song backed by humor, “I Know I Can” and “Crazy Like That,” which will get your toes tapping. The upbeat “Someone To Love,” which says no matter how much we all want different things, we all need someone to love, and slow, touching “Invisible,” will suck you right in, imperiously grabbing your attention all the way through to the last note.

Many of these tracks include unique instruments such as the mandolin and dobro, which collectively create Aspen’s distinctive sound.

If Aspen were to record a song with another artist, she says although there are many she’d love to work with, her top choice would be Vince Gill. “We have a similar vocal style and I think our voices would compliment each other beautifully, not to mention I would just be flattered to work with such a gifted artist,” she said.

Even though she has performed in Tennessee, Kentucky, Texas and Wyoming, most of Aspen’s shows are in Colorado. Hopefully she will be able to start a country wide tour in the near future so no country fans will miss out on discovering her talent.

Aspen guarantees there will be a third album and even more after that. “I am so consumed in this passion,” she said. “I won't let anything keep me from the passion God has put in my heart.” I hope she means that; the fact that she wrote 8 cuts on this album and they are all wonderful shows that, for the sake of country music fans, she better continue this for many years to come.

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