Imagine: An 11-year-old New England kid singing to Alanis Morrisette in her bedroom is suddenly uprooted and raised in the Dominican Republic through Jr and High School. Puberty and a culture-shock to an already unpopular Kimberly June was the Petri dish where her artistry was cultivated. Poetry turned to songwriting after learning three chords on a fat-necked nylon-string guitar, and her boiling teenage angst finally had an open steam valve. Then she attends both Berklee College of Music in Boston and Belmont University in Nashville.

Upon graduation she signs a Publishing Deal on Music Row at the age of 22. A couple years into the journey, her personal life is falling apart with a failing marriage, excessive partying, drug use, anxiety and depression. Hawaii was the haven calling her in for some deep soul-searching, and a vacation turned into a new chapter in KJ’s life. The mixture of influences throughout her life create her unique sound, incorporating Folk, 90’s rock, Latin, Blues, Country and Island feels. Kimberly June captures your attention with rich, percussive guitar playing and catchy, relatable songs, which are mostly written by herself. She independently releases new music and plays all over Hawaii and the mainland USA, opening for artists such as G. Love, Donovan Frankenreiter, Kimie Miner and Kenny Loggins.

As a writer, she has had songs featured on TV shows “Nashville” and “Degrassi High” and continues to travel frequently to LA and Nashville for collaborations. Only life-experience can produce the soulful sounds coming out of this tiny girl, a small package that packs a punch. Her Instagram page is more than just musical updates, its a self-evident portrayal of her interesting lifestyle, character and outlook on life. Follow her: @JustKJ.Love and make sure to listen to her newest single “Someone Who Gets Me”.

What do you want your music to communicate?

Truth, emotion and a feeling of belonging and connectedness. 

What are some sources of inspiration for your storytelling?

My own life experiences and the desire to bring people closer to themselves. 

Who is an artist that you look up to more than others today?

John Mayer inspires me with his honest, creative lyrics and ever-changing styles. 

What’s the record or artist that made you realize you wanted to be an artist?

Bonnie Raitt was a huge inspiration for me. She got a later start than most artists, and is a bad-ass guitar player with a super-soulful voice. 

Tell us about your latest release and how it came about

I wrote this song toward the end of a relationship, feeling defeated but hopeful knowing that there was a better match out there for me.

What inspires your sound?

I think I’ve always been drawn toward folky music but grew up loving blues, Jazz, Latin and country music.. my sound falls somewhere in the middle of all that.

What’s your favorite tune of yours?

I think right now it is this new single!!

Where are some things you really want to accomplish as an artist?

I’ve had some songs placed on TV shows but I think the ultimate goal right now is to write a song that is played on national radio.

Favorite lyric you ever wrote?

“There’s a hole in your half-empty glass, keep filling it up but it never lasts… don’t you want to love and be loved?’ from my song “Love and Be Loved”

Was there ever a moment when you felt like giving up?

yes, after leaving my publishing deal in Nashville when i was 24. I had a bad taste in my mouth from my country music-industry experience. Looking back now it was just the wrong genre for my soul. 

What is the best advice you’ve ever gotten?

To Sing my lyrics with conviction. I feel like I’ve always done that naturally, but it helps me sing bravely. No one is going to believe you unless you truly believe yourself.

Where do you think the next game changer will be in the music industry and entertainment scene?

Finding the right producers and co-writers for my music. There are so many out there but only a small percentage that really have it figured out and know how to keep things truly authentic and high quality.