A New Force in Pop Music: Kiley Dean

by

Charles White

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If you tune your radio to your favorite pop radio station, odds are that you are going to hear the voice of an amazing new singer. Her first single, “Who Will I Run To”, is skyrocketing up the charts and finding new fans throughout the country each week. Who is this amazing new singer? Her name is Kiley Dean. Although only twenty years old, Kiley is making a name for herself as both a powerful performer and an incredibly grounded young woman.

Kiley Dean started out from humble roots. She was born in the small Alabama town of Alma, population 4000. She had what she considered a normal childhood surrounded by her extended family and friends.  At a very early age, Kiley showed a strong interest in music, performing in her local church choir. “I've been singing since I could talk,” Kiley remembers.  “I knew since I was little that this is what I was gonna do with my life.  I just feel so blessed that I’m able to do it!”

When she was still very young, Kiley Dean’s life took a dramatic change. At the age of eight, Kiley’s parents made the decision to move from their small Alabama town to the bustling city of Orlando, Florida. This did nothing to dampen Kiley’s love of music and performance.

By the time Kiley entered High School, she regularly performed at her local church as well as in school and local community events. In 1999, she became a member of the national anti-drug organization PRIDE and their performance team based in Orlando. That same year, Kiley was hired to sing background vocals for a hot, new singer, Britney Spears. For the next year and a half, Kiley’s life revolved around the rigors of performing and living out of a suitcase as she continued to tour the world with Britney, appearing on both the MTV Music Awards and the Grammys.

In 2000, Kiley Dean began work on her demo, image and stagecraft as she prepared to launch her own solo career. After 2 years of hard work, Kiley was signed by Tim Timbaland’s label, Beat Club Records. A force in the music industry himself, Timbaland was blown away by Kiley’s voice and strength. “I think Tim saw something special in me,” She recalls.  “Someone with personality and talent and somebody who was willing to work really hard for what they believe in."

Kiley Dean is very excited to branch out on her own and share her music with the world. Her latest single, “Who Will I Run To”, proves to the world that she is a musical force to be reckoned with. “I feel so good to be on my own,” Kiley states with pride. “I know that you have to start somewhere and I wouldn't have wanted to start anywhere else than with Britney. I watched Britney for so long and now I get my chance!  I’m so excited!”

My sound is fresh!  No one that I have heard has an album that sounds anything like mine.  I am so proud of what I have brought to the table.  I believe that we are taking music to another level.  They are gonna love it!”

As an up and coming pop star, it would be easy for Kiley to turn her back on the things that were important to her before she found success. However, she remains firmly grounded in her love for her family and is always quick to give God all the glory.

“GOD is THE most important thing to me in my life,” Kiley emphatically states. “My parents always kept me and my older brother in church and I thank them so much for that. I thank God for everything that has happened to me. I feel so lucky because there's so many people that want to be doing what I'm doing, and I'm able to do it."

It is this feeling that carries over into Kiley’s definition of success. For her, success isn’t measured by her new single and it’s position on the charts. Instead, success is simply making people smile.

“The greatest joy I get from life would have to be seeing people happy.  When they listen to my music, they smile, laugh, dance, and sing along.  There is so much negativity in this world these days.  I’m not gonna join that club.  I’m gonna go the other way and put a smile on as many faces as I can!”

Kiley’s journey has already taught her many different lessons. The greatest piece of advice that she can offer anyone is not to be satisfied with only being a part of the crowd. “Be a leader,” Kiley suggests.  “When you’re young it is so easy to follow the crowd and do whatever it is that the people around you are doing.  Be strong and be young while you can.  Don’t try to grow up to fast!”

We’ve all seen it before. Celebrities get a taste of success and turn their back on their families, friends and everything else that they used to think was important. However, even with the success of her latest single and her soon to be released album, Kiley Dean has never forgotten that the important things aren’t those that can be seen, touched or spent. She realizes that love is the most important thing in the world. She remains grounded in the greatest gift anyone can have: the love of family, friends and Christ.