Pop singer-songwriter Bonnie McKee is taking her voice back. McKee wrote several hit pop songs for other artists throughout the early aughts and 2010s. Notably, McKee is a close friend and collaborator to Katy Perry. She co-wrote Perry’s “Last Friday Night”, “Teenage Dream”, and “California Gurls.” McKee’s debut album “Trouble” dropped in 2004, and while critically successful, flopped commercially.
The singer turned to songwriting after a battle with addiction, and a disagreement with a Warner Records executive that led to her defacing his car with lipstick. McKee left her CD stabbed with a dagger in front of his home, and wrote “Platinum Baby!” on his car. This incident cost her much of her career as a solo artist.
In 2013, McKee released “American Girl” as a single with Pulse Recording, after the Warner incident. That same year, she opened for the Jonas Brothers on tour. A decade after its release, fans on TikTok made the track a hit. The singer-songwriter went on to release an EP in 2015, titled “Bombastic.” McKee now announced that she will officially release her second album, “Slay”, from the vault due to popular demand.
Replying to @d_orellmusic It’s finally happening! Thank you to everyone who’s stuck with me all these years. I am truly doing this for you. ????#popmusic #musicindustry #storytime #songwritersoftiktok #newmusic #prideanthems
The “American Girl” Effect
The pop anthem references McKee’s own teenage years, and the universal experiences of American teens across the country. The upbeat track has rapidly become a Pride Month anthem, with several drag queens using it to soundtrack transition videos of their makeup looks. McKee herself identifies as bisexual.
Hot blooded and we’re ready to go????????
Thousands of fans dedicated Reddit threads to deep cuts from McKee’s catalogue. It was the dedication from listeners that convinced the singer to “pull a Taylor Swift” and re-record her masters on her own terms.
Some things will haunt you. And this album was one of them. I locked it away for a decade thinking nobody wanted it, but that little voice inside me kept singing. And against literally everyone in the industry’s advice, I said f*** it- Im putting it out. For you guys, for myself, and for anyone else who’s waiting for permission to express themselves- this is it. Permission to SLAY! ????️????#newmusic #Popmusic #Slay #prideanthems #foryoupage #songwriter #aestheticvideos
Several other TikTok creators turned musicians voiced support for McKee’s work in the comments. Notably, fellow pop singer-songwriter Chrissy Chalpecka cheered her on. Fans of the singer spread the news of her upcoming release across Twitter.
— Body Ache #1 Stan (@Joshneyy) June 6, 2023
The release date for “Slay” is to be announced, but McKee wants everyone to know that it is coming “sooner than they think.”