, Port Arthur, Texas

January 8, 2014

Southeast Texas 'Idol' visits family in Mid County

Erinn Callahan
The Port Arthur News

PORT NECHES — Life seldom slows down for Kree Harrison these days.

Since the 12th season of “American Idol” wrapped last May, the 2013 runner-up’s days have been dominated by the American Idol Live 2013 tour — which wrapped Aug. 31 in Nashville — back-to-back performances at the Grand Ole Opry and the County Music Television awards, and the release of her new single, “All Cried Out.”

Living in this whirlwind just means that Harrison treasures her free time all the more. Sitting in a salon chair at Nail Cottage in Port Neches, the 23-year-old Woodville native looked perfectly content as she waited for a long-overdue trim.

“It’s desperately needed,” Harrison said, with a laugh.

Harrison was making the rounds in Southeast Texas, where several members of her family still live. On Wednesday, she, along with grandmother Beverly Mire, of Groves, and aunt Mardell Fletcher, stopped by the salon to visit aunt Ann Briggs, who works at Nail Cottage.

“We’ve got some ‘Steel Magnolias’ action going on here,” Harrison joked.

The trip was a way for Harrison to regroup before returning to Nashville to continue work on her new album. No release date has been announced yet, but Harrison said she hopes to release more information by March.

The album will have a more traditional country sound, rather than a pop-country hybrid, Harrison said.

“I appreciate pop country, but I don’t want to put myself in a box,” Harrison said. “I feel like my sound is more traditional country. My team is all on the same page.”

Much of the material will be penned by Harrison, but she said she isn’t opposed to incorporating songs written by other artists.

“It’s ignorant to say, ‘I’ll write my whole record,’ because I may fall in love with someone else’s song,” Harrison said.

With more work on the album and an upcoming songwriters’ festival in Colorado on the horizon, Harrison is not likely to jump off the train set in motion by her “American Idol” experience any time soon. In the meantime, she is soaking up all the family time that she can.

“It’s been good seeing them,” she said. “I may migrate back here one day.”


Twitter: @ErinnPA