“My songs tell my experiences, growing up in the public eye means that a lot of people don’t know my real story and I want to share it, I want people to get to know me on a different level.”
Kenzie spent a lot of her childhood performing on Dance Moms, alongside her sister, Maddie, and her mother. However, away from the cameras, there is a deeper talent within Kenzie, a raw passion for storytelling through her music.
Anatomy, her latest creation, is releasing July 21st, and tells her vulnerable story of growing up without a father figure and the impact that has had on her relationships and mental health. “For a long time, I didn’t realise just how much it affected me. My parents got divorced when I was young, growing up I never realised that it is actually very hard,” intwined in the emotion evoking lyrics is an apparent inner dialogue between her younger and current self, her past talking to her present, “the first few times I listened to Anatomy, I would bawl my eyes out. I can finally be at peace with that chapter of my life. I want people to know it is okay to be vulnerable.”
Vulnerability is a major theme throughout Kenzie’s creations, “music is therapy for me. It’s a way for me to share my stories”, and within the story of Anatomy are some incredibly meaningful lyrics.
It’s just anatomy, you’re only you’re half of me. And still you don’t know me at all You’ve been my missing piece so why aren’t you missing me
Talking to Kenzie, she mentioned how special this lyric was and that her and her team “tried to portray that in the best way” they could. She explained that this lyric has a parallel meaning, that she finds it “crazy” that her dad doesn’t really know her, “but that’s the play of the song, it is just anatomy and it’s not a big deal, but also, how do you not know me?”
As for Kenzie’s creative process, comfort comes first, “It’s really awesome working with people you trust, I don’t think this song would have ever been made if I was in a random writing session”. She became inspired by the vulnerability of the new era of artists emerging, Sabrina Carpenter, Lizzy McAlpine, Olivia Rodrigo were a few names that rolled off her tongue, “it’s amazing how vulnerable they all are when they tell their stories, they are authentic. I commend them for that, it’s difficult to put your whole life story out into the world”.
“I’m all about female empowerment, I try to incorporate as many women as possible, men predominately take over the music industry, especially in writing and producing. It makes me feel at home, it’s really empowering.”
One notable woman working alongside Kenzie is her sister Maddie, known for her choreography on music videos like “Chandelier” and “Elastic Heart”. Maddie has joined to choreograph the music video for Anatomy, “working with my sister feels so magical, it’s very personal to me and she knows that. She’s so special, she’s my best friend”. There is one simple goal for the music video, “I want people to sob!” Portraying the lyrical dialogue between her two selves, Kenzie has a meaningful message, “I’ve been healing my younger self…I want people to relate it to something they’ve been through. I want people to know that they aren’t alone, and that we are all going through something.”
Anatomy is Kenzie’s perspective of her development through childhood and how she dealt with these feelings of “abandonment”, so when she sent the song to Maddie via text message, she wasn’t sure on how her sister would react. “She FaceTimed me, bawling her eyes out! She couldn’t speak, she didn’t say one word, I thought that’s a really good sign!”, she mentions how awesome her support system has been from her mother and sister. But she makes a notable statement, “my stepdad took on the role, and that’s really awesome. Having a father figure in your life is so special. It helped me close a chapter and be at peace”.
Kenzie reminisces on the journey she’s been through, “I am scared of letting people down, and I have a lot of trust issues. But I’m in a great relationship, I’ve overcome a lot in that time”. The storytelling doesn’t stop there, Kenzie gave us a hint at what’s to come, “I will be in music for a very long time, I have a lot more songs coming out soon and they all tell my story”.