Celeste Kellogg has been on my radar for a couple of years now and the quality of her music has remained strong, her vocals crisp and clear. I get the impression Celeste was born a seasoned musician, songwriter, vocalist and performer. The persona that comes through her songs makes you believe she is strong yet vulnerable but always a genuine happy person. In fact her music is just like her vocals - both are perpetually smiling and you can’t help but smile back when her songs play.
The title track of the EP, “Keep It On Repeat” and in fact the entire EP itself, is full of sass and attitude, attributes that make it clear Celeste is the heir apparent to many artists including Taylor Swift and Shania Twain.
“There’s a Beach Somewhere” not only mentions country artist Kenny Chesney in the lyrics but also seems to channel the spirit of Chesney’s music with a dash of Alan Jackson for seasoning. With wonderful instrumentation “Beach Somewhere” is a great summertime tune that hints at innocent mischievousness and will definitely make you look for your sandals and sunscreen and get away to the waves, wind, sun and sand.
“Carolina,” in contrast, is a wistful tune with lyrics to match that bemoan the waning of both summer and summer love that ends with the approaching fall. The song speaks of the desire to not be forgotten but to always hold onto the memories of a Carolina summer.
“Last Chances” has poignant direct lyrics that reflect the angst of a love that has come to an end. The song along with “There’s A Beach Somewhere” and “Carolina” were all co-written by Celeste and Aaron Goodvin.
“La Di Da Da” is a song Celeste wrote in 2016. When Celeste played it for EP producer Sal Oliveri he wondered why she had never recorded it. Celeste likely wondered the same thing once the track was completed. The tune begins with a sound that brings pop superstar Lady Gaga to mind but quickly melts into pure Celeste, again complete with the same sass and attitude that is prevalent throughout Celeste’s music.
It would be neglectful if I didn’t also mention that Celeste plays the guitar like a master artist but she did have abundant accompaniment on this EP. In addition to producer Oliveri (who has produced for PiNK and Stapleton), Danny Rader, guitarist for Keith Urban, and Jenee Fleenor, fiddle player for Blake Shelton, also added their touch of perfection to the EP.
Perhaps it is wrong to liken Celeste to superstars like Taylor Swift, Shania Twain, Kenny Chesney and Lady Gaga. Perhaps. But then again this young lady has the talent, the twang, the charisma and the stage presence to stand along side each of those great names as an equal and quite possibly far superior to them. “Keep It On Repeat” is an EP that in years to come will be referenced as the point where Celeste Kellogg made the music world stand up and take notice.
—By Charlton Wiggins