03 June 2019 (released)
03 June 2019
Rising pop sensation Keelie Walker has been announced as the support for Westlife on their huge 30 date arena UK tour. At only 15 years old, the Nashville-based pop artist has already performed at Wembley, headlined her own school tour and recently released her fourth single, and first of 2019, ‘This Is What It’s Like’.
Hi Keelie, for those who don't you know yet, give us a quick intro...
My name’s Keelie Walker, I’m 15 and I started performing, acting and dancing when I was 6. I always sang around the house when I was younger, but i didn’t really take after it until my acting coach introduced me to my producer (Bryan Todd). It originally started out as a favour but once he heard me sing, he encouraged me to go after it and I’m really glad he did, because here I am on tour with Westlife and I’m super excited.
You are still only 15, but have already achieved an awful lot. At what age did you know you wanted to be a pop performer?
I’ve always loved to entertain ever since I was 6, but I really started to take the singing side more seriously when I was 13.
Who would you say were your biggest inspirations?
I love listening to all kinds of artists to be honest. Just a couple of my favourites are Beyoncé, Kehlani or Billie Eilish, because I really like how they make their music true to who they are. I know Beyoncé writes a lot of her own songs, so it’s their work drive that inspires me, what they set out to achieve with their music and they always want to go big and go then bigger.
How have you managed to achieve so much at such a young age?
I started young so it’s really been a journey for me. My family are very supportive and so are my friends, they cheer me on.
Is song writing important for you as an artist?
I’ve always wanted to write my own songs and I’m still a beginner at it, but it’s a start. I am really enjoying writing. It’s really fun because it’s a way to express my feelings when I feel like I can’t say anything, but I can put it into a song and most of the time it will help others as well.
If you had to compare yourself to another artist, who would it be?
Vocal wise I’d say, I’ve been told that I sound like Ellie Goulding, so her.
Earlier this year you undertook a school’s tour, how did you find performing in the school setting?
It was really fun! I was super excited to meet new kids and perform my music for them. It was a great tour and everyone was so nice.
You have also already performed at Wembley - what was it like being on one of the most famous stages in the world?
Wembley was AMAZING! It was my first performance ever so I was super nervous. So, when I first found out that I was going to be performing there, I didn’t know why my producer was freaking out so much, so I was like “why is he freaking out?”. Then I looked it up and saw how big it was and I was like “oh” and I started freaking out, so that’s how I found out how big a deal it was to perform at Wembley as my first performance.
How did you prepare?
I gave myself a pep talk, I usually always do that. I pray and just know to go out there and give it my best.
Bigger crowds or smaller?
I would definitely say smaller crowds are harder to perform to, just because there’s fewer people, and you really have to focus on performing for them you know. With bigger crowds you don’t really have to make eye contact so it’s a bit easier.
What stage do you dream of performing on?
That’s a hard one… I would say in the UK I’d love to play Wembley again, but as my own show and back in America, I would say Bridgetown is in Nashville Tennessee where I’m based. A lot of people say that it’s the best crowd they’ve performed to and it’s the best concert they’ve had, so I want to experience that theory.
You are about to embark on a tour with Westlife, who had their first hit before you were even born. Are you daunted by the prospect?
It’s amazing! They’re very talented and I love their songs. One of my favourites is one of their newer ones ‘Hello My Love’, I love that song. It would be really cool to do a duet with them one day.
Have any of the established acts you have supported offered any key words of advice?
The advice I would probably give is: see out your dream, go for it and don’t let anyone tell you what you can and can’t do. It’s your career and down to you what you want to do with your life. If you love it that’s all that matters and just chase it.
Lastly, if you could achieve one thing before your 16th birthday, what would it be?
I would play my own headline concert at Wembley.