“The Voice” coach Kelly Clarkson is celebrating the release of her 10th studio album, “Chemistry”, which came out on Friday, June 23. While appearing on “The Today Show” one day prior to promote the release of her long-anticipated “divorce album”, Clarkson caught up with hosts Carson Daly and Hoda Kotb about the album, her relationship with ex-husband Brandon Blackstock (which served as the biggest inspiration for the 14 newly-released songs), and her upcoming move from Los Angeles to New York City.
During the interview, Kotb asked Clarkson, “Do you think about your ex listening to [the new album]?” to which Clarkson quickly and plainly replied, “No. I don’t know if he would care either way,” before going on to share that she and Blackstock did have a text exchange about the record.
Kelly Clarkson Keeps in Contact With Ex-Husband Brandon Blackstock
“I don’t even remember why [it came up] or how it happened,” Clarkson said of her decision to text Blackstock about her newest album, “But I was like ‘Hey, I didn’t just diminish us down to one [thing],’ It’s all in there, the ride. The beauty is in there, as well. Now there’s a lot of pain, but that’s what happens for all of us.”
Clarkson didn’t share Blackstock’s immediate reaction, as Daly asked her if she had any plans to support “Chemistry” with touring shows, something Clarkson confirmed is not currently in the works due to her full-time role as the host of her eponymous daytime talk show, which is moving to New York City in Fall 2023, and a mother to two children, River, 9, and Remy, 7.
Instead of touring shows, Clarkson plans to perform her new music at her upcoming Las Vegas residency, “Chemistry: an intimate night with Kelly Clarkson”, which has a limited run of 10 shows during July and August 2023 and is playing at the Bakkt Theater at Planet Hollywood.
The Bakkt Theater has been home to residencies from many a-list singers and musicians, including Clarkson’s fellow “Voice” coach Gwen Stefani, whose “Gwen Stefani – Just a Girl” show played there for 57 shows between June 2018 and November 2021. Clarkson was previously supposed to play 16 shows at the Bakkt Theater in 2020 with her show “Kelly Clarkson: Invincible”, however the show was delayed and later cancelled as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Kelly Clarkson Reacts to the Label ‘Divorce Album’
In a June 2023 interview with NPR, Clarkson shared her thoughts on whether or not the label “divorce album” is a fair moniker for “Chemistry” or whether that was an unfair generalization of her new record, and while Clarkson maintained that her album explores both negative and positive emotions from her last relationship, “I get why people would say that, because obviously I’m divorced now and I haven’t had music since then. So it’s like, ‘Oh, what is she going to say?’ We’re all guilty of that with any artists we love. And unfortunately, from tragedy and hurtful places, a lot of music that is highly relatable comes out of that. I’m not offended by it by any means.”
Clarkson’s “Chemistry” follows a string of recent divorce albums from big names in the country music world. In February 2023 Kelsea Ballerini released a surprise EP, “Rolling Up the Welcome Mat”, and prior to that artists including Kacey Musgraves and The Chicks released full-length albums (2021’s “Star-Crossed” and 2020’s “Gaslighter”, respectively) chronicaling their own fraught marriages.