After years in the spotlight, singer-actress K. Michelle is headed in a new direction. One that focuses on farm life, country music and helping others find their way.
If there’s one thing K. Michelle is known for, it’s speaking her mind. On an early afternoon in late October, she’s doing just that as she rides through Tennessee on the way to look at some farmland she’s considering to purchase. After years in the limelight, she’s ready to switch directions and put her life on a completely new path. “I’m looking to create my own little world,” she says, a trace of wistfulness in her voice. “Like Dollywood.” K. Michelle, born Kimberly Michelle Pate, is like a lot of other people—forever changed by the pandemic. The isolation and tension put things in a new perspective for her, and her living situation isn’t the only thing she’s reevaluating. She’s also rethinking her music.
Specifically, she’s ready to pivot into country music. “I think any time you go through a traumatic experience, you rethink how you want to live your life,” she reasons, adding that she grew up in Tennessee, and she’s intimately familiar with the country-girl lifestyle. “This is something that I’ve always wanted to do. And just from what I’ve gone through and the scrutiny and the judgment that you have to go through a lot of times with media and people telling you how to be, I would prefer my own world, my own land.” She says the idea to start a farm was sparked in part by her friend, country superstar Billy Ray Cyrus.
“When I went over to his house, he has like 300 acres, a crazy amount of acres—and he told me, we were talking about my car, I had a very expensive car, and he was like ‘I never had that kind of car.’ And I said ‘why?’ And he said, ‘Because I made a vow to myself that once I got money and I wasn’t poor, I was going to put my money under my feet. So I always own it, and it was mine.’”
That conversation made her think about her own life and what she truly wanted from it. She’s been on the entertainment scene for years, getting her start at Jive Records in the mid-2000s, though she left before ever releasing an album. However, she gained attention a short time later as the breakout star on VH1’s Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta in 2012 before signing to Atlantic Records and releasing her debut album, Rebellious Soul, in 2013. She’s since released four more albums, scooping up nominations and awards along the way and has starred on several reality shows, including both the New York and Hollywood versions of Love & Hip Hop. She also had her own series, K. Michelle: My Life.
Embracing a new lifestyle has been a long time coming. Now, she’s arrived at a place of conviction, and she says it’s freeing. Currently, she’s looking to share some of her realizations about the importance of being true to yourself with her new unscripted transformation series, My Killer Body, which will have a special sneak premiere on Jan. 28 at 10 p.m. and begin regularly airing on Thursdays at 9 p.m. starting on Feb. 3, 2022. For years, she’s been open about how silicone injections nearly took her life and the toll they had on her health, both physically and emotionally.
My Killer Body will capture her personal struggles with the after-effects of surgery, as well as document the singer helping other women and men who want to reverse their surgeries. “I felt like it was important to do something different. And, to be honest with people who were looking up to you,” she shares. She came up with the idea for the inspirational series while she was on bed rest, recovering from her surgeries. And teamed up with producer and friend Jessie Collins to bring the show to life.
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