American Idol Season 8 winner Kris Allen has teamed with People.com for the premiere of “Waves,” the lead single from his much-anticipated new album, Letting You In. Click HERE to listen.
Beginning midnight tonight, fans can get “Waves” as an instant download by clicking HERE to pre-order Letting You In on iTunes. The album arrives in stores on March 18th.
The platinum-selling singer-songwriter from Idol’s Season 8 recorded Letting You In in Nashville with producers Konrad Snyder (Mat Kearney, Owl City), Ian Fitchuk (James Bay) and Grammy winner Brown Bannister (Amy Grant, Steven Curtis Chapman). Allen will support the album with a headlining tour of North America set to kick off March 31st at the Workplay Theatre in Birmingham, AL. For itinerary and ticket info, please visit http://www.krisallenofficial.com/tour
It’s an understatement to call Letting You In Allen’s most personal work to date. On New Year’s Day in 2013, he and his then-pregnant wife Katy were in a head-on collision that left the singer/songwriter/guitarist with a career-threatening shattered wrist. In the two years that followed, he underwent three surgeries, recorded his third album, and toured relentlessly—including a two-month-long stint that started just one week after his accident. He ultimately retreated from the whirlwind and immersed himself in a songwriting spell that yielded more than 70 new tracks.
“I felt like I needed to sift through my life and try to figure out what really I wanted to say on this album,” he says. “I’m really proud of this record and excited for the fans to hear it! I think they’re really going to love it.”
In the aftermath of his accident, Allen devoted himself to relearning guitar, adjusting his technique to adapt to the lack of movement in his wrist. “At first I thought I’d never be able to play again,” he recalls. “But once I got my cast off, I spent more time playing than I ever had in my life. Through all that I realized that I shouldn’t take my craft for granted, so I really focused on developing it and becoming even stronger as a guitar player than I ever was before.”
Along with rebuilding his guitar skills, Allen revamped his approach to songwriting and soon saw a resurgence in his creativity. “When I’ve made albums in the past, there’ve always been other artists and songwriters that I was using as reference points,” says Allen, who names Stevie Ray Vaughan and Stevie Wonder among his earliest inspirations. “But this time I shut myself off from all that, and just focused on making music that was completely true to me.”
That process proved both thrilling and daunting, but in the end instilled him with a new sense of purpose as an artist. “When I first started making music, it was very much coming from a place of ‘Are people gonna like this?’” he recalls. “But as I was making this album, it really became more about being genuine and writing songs that feel good. My hope is that if those songs mean a lot to me, they’ll mean a lot to the people listening, and that they’ll get some of that hopeful feeling too.”
Allen first picked up the guitar at age 13, after spending much of his childhood singing in church in his hometown of Jacksonville, Arkansas. Writing his first song in his late teens, he self-released an album at age 22 and auditioned for the eighth season of American Idol the following year. Several months after his Idol victory Allen put out his self-titled major label debut, with lead single “Live Like We’re Dying” climbing to the top 20 on the Billboard Hot 100. In addition to releasing his sophomore album Thank You Camellia in 2012, he spent the next several years sharing stages with such artists as Maroon 5 and Keith Urban, as well as landing Billboard, Teen Choice and People’s Choice Awards nominations.