Punk Angst and Country Soul Collide on Kalie Shorr’s Headlining Tour

Photo by Catherine Powell

On Friday, January 31, punk-rock-meets-country goddess Kalie Shorr made her debut at Nashville’s famed rock club, Exit/In, for the opening night of her first headlining trek, the Too Much to Say Tour. Throughout her 90-minute set and two-song encore, Shorr treated the room to covers of My Chemical Romance and Nirvana, sandwiched between emotion-packed originals from her critically acclaimed 2019 album Open Book dealing with exes, angst and poignant thoughts about what it means to move forward after the loss of a family member. Here are the top moments from the show:

“The World Keeps Spinning”

After delivering a collection of powerful songs that reflect her no-holds-barred attitude about life, one of the best songs in the set came in the form of “The World Keeps Spinning.” Shorr and her co-writer Skip Black have both lost family members to overdoses – Shorr’s sister Ashley passed away in 2019 to a heroin overdose, while Black’s niece also died of an overdose at the age of 25. The chatter in the room went completely silent as Shorr began to share their stories, speaking as vulnerably as possible about the perspective that comes with losing a loved one in such an intense way.

“Glossing it over doesn’t help me, it hurts me,” she reflected. She’s turned this pain into a stirring song that recalls the tone in her father’s voice the day she got that dreaded call and puts listeners in the seat next to her as they drive by a wedding on the way to her sister’s funeral. Though filled with raw emotion and reflection, Shorr delivered it with poise and confidence, making for one of the most striking moments of the night.

Bold and brash Alanis Morissette cover 

Introducing the track as one she wholly identifies with, Shorr did Alanis Morissette justice with her cover of “Right Through You,” featured on one of her favorite albums of all time, Morissette’s iconic Jagged Little Pill. Morissette wrote the song about the qualms of the music industry and someone who wronged her along the way. “Someone who says something really shitty…we all have that one person,” Shorr prefaced before delivering a fast-paced, high-energy performance of the song that throws a metaphorical middle finger to the dark side and politics of the music industry. Shorr rocked out all over the stage, and it was clear even from the back of the room that Shorr felt the song’s message in her bones – Alanis would’ve been proud.

“He’s Just Not That Into You”

We’ve all heard this famous line from friends and family when you’re in a relationship where the other half is clearly not as invested. But Shorr has turned this unfortunate situation into an anthemic jam where she exudes all the sass, dancing around the stage like a teenage girl singing into her hairbrush in her bedroom. A highlight of the performance, and the show overall, came when she took to the crowd almost mosh-pit style, charging into the center of the room and head-banging to her heart’s content as fans surrounded her, making for the rowdiest moment of the evening.

“F U Forever”

Shorr picked the perfect way to end the show with “F U Forever.” “If you’ve ever had a garbage ex, sing along real loud,” she encouraged, her sharp wit and sense of humor coming out full force as she unabashedly shamed a low-life ex with unadulterated attitude and her middle fingers in the air. Shorr oozes with confidence, even when admitting her own flaws. The song is custom made for a live show and a guaranteed crowd pleaser, and Shorr delivered on both fronts, bringing her monumental set to a thrilling close.

Shorr will make stops in Los Angeles and Las Vegas, and play two shows in Conneticut, before wrapping the tour at the Mercury Lounge in New York City on March 16.

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