Texas-native actress and singer-songwriter, Kelly Monrow made an impressive debut with Southern Rock/Americana album Scars of Venus. The multi-talented artist gives an in-depth interview discussing her latest LP that includes the tracks “Wake Up,” “Ain’t Mine,”
First off, congratulations on the release of your debut album Scars of Venus. How long have you been working on the record and what does it mean to you?
Thank you! I started working on this record October 2021 so it’s been a full year in the making. This album has been such a testament to putting my mind to something and following through on it. I started singing and writing during Covid and when life got back to semi-normal, I promised myself I would keep writing and pursuing music and I am so glad I made that decision. This album is a collection of songs of me stepping into womanhood and owning my past.
The music videos for “The Woman,” “Ain’t Mine,” and “Wake Up” came out recently! Will you be releasing new videos for any of the other tracks from the new album?
I already have a video for both “Mama Said“ and “Jagged Heart” out and I plan to make one more video… I more than likely will make one to “Pain Turns To Love”. I love creating and producing and of course acting in all my videos so it’s super exciting for me to make these music videos.
How did you come up with the narrative of each video? Do you contribute to the creative process of the production or do you allow the team to do their thing?
I know exactly what I want for each video. For “The Woman” video, I teamed up with a dear friend who is a director and owns a creative agency, Lanz Pierce. She came up with the concept and we shot that one. She also helped with “Jagged Heart” but I always know exactly what my vision is for each song. It’s my real joy as an actor to be creating this narrative in the music industry now.
Kelly Dowdle or Kelly Monrow? Which of the arts do you prefer? Acting or singing? When did you first realize that you could have a career as a singer as well as an actor?
I couldn’t pick a lane honestly. They are like having two children and having to choose one. You just couldn’t do it. All of the experience of my acting career has allowed me to sing and perform the way I do and now when I go back on screen to act, the singing has helped me with stage presence and being even more authentic in my approach. Art is art. I don’t think when you are truly being creative there is a lane you ever need to stay in. Kelly Monrow is my stage now for singing because I wanted to create my own path within the music industry and it’s a fun way for me to get out of my own way and be playful and creative through a different channel.
What was it like being in the cast of Lucifer? Can you share a bit more details about that experience? Do you have any upcoming TV or movie projects?
Lucifer was a super fun project to work on. The cast is amazing and television is so funny because it goes so fast. Time is money in television, whereas in film you can do 20 different takes and really take your time making sure you give each scene justice. In the TV sector, you show up and shoot it then go. I actually much prefer films. I have a feature film coming out in 2023 called Three Days Rising starring Mickey Rourke, Peter Greene, Bo Dietl, Vincent Young. I am very much looking forward to doing more TV/film projects.
How would you describe your sound? What are some of the genres you would like to experiment with?
I started out in Country music and that is the roots of my music. I went a little more Americana/Pop with this album but I don’t think I will ever be in one genre. I plan to just write and create whatever comes through me and see where it leads me. I think we get in funk when we try to create ourselves into a particular category or genre.
You’ve won the public’s love and respect, especially after the recent releases! Were you expecting this kind of attention? What are some of the most memorable compliments you have received?
That is so kind of you! Thank you for that! I think if anything, I was super humbled and grateful for any kind words because you have to go into creating with the mindset that not everyone is gonna like you or your music… So to have affirmation that people do in fact resonate with my words and enjoy it is super touching and makes me really happy. I think the best thing I have heard so far is that my voice bleeds authenticity and you can hear my spirit and heart in the words of my music. I think that is the highest compliment I can receive because that is the true reason I am doing music.
What are your plans for the near future? Will there be a tour where you can promote Scars of Venus? How about festival performances? Any upcoming events we should know about?
I am already getting back in the studio December 8th in Nashville and then again in Austin, TX where I am from in late December. I told myself I would take the rest of the year off but I just can’t stay away. Ha! The whole fun of music is the process of making it. The end result isn’t as nearly as rewarding as the creation of the song. I just finished five shows and have more set for 2023. We will be releasing those dates at the top of the year and I would be absolutely honored to have anyone come listen to my band. They are some badass musicians from Austin and we are just getting started. I am really proud of our band and where we are headed. Great things to come!
Listen to the full album here: