Kelly released her fifth studio album, “Stronger,” in October 2011. The album release was delayed several times due to logistics and leaked demos. But the wait was worth it! “Stronger” drew on Kelly’s country roots, receiving massive love from fans and critics.
This empowering anthem is still being sung and listened to by anyone who needs a little courage on rough days. She was already a mega-successful star by then. Kelly has sold over 10.7 million albums in the United States. Her album sales were second only to Carrie Underwood (12.4 million in sales) from among the “American Idol” franchise.
A Challenging Year
2007 proved to be the most challenging year in Kelly Clarkson's career. Tensions had been rife between her and her manager, Clive Davis, who tried to steer her away from the darker direction she took while working on her album. She ended up firing him and canceled her album tour for "My December" that year.
Although the album eventually had a late release in June and performed reasonably well, the bad blood between her and Davis had cost the project. The singer later expressed regret at how things went down between them, saying things had been blown out of proportion.
A Duet With Jason Aldean
While Kelly Clarkson was known for her singles in the pop and rock genre, country music was never off the table for her. Kelly and Jason Aldean performed a duet of Aldean's song "Don't You Wanna Stay" at the 2010 Annual Country Music Association Awards.
The performance received so many rave reviews that the artists recorded a studio version of the song, which fared even better – no surprises there! It received several nominations and won the Academy of Country Music Awards for Best Vocal Event of the Year in 2011. The duo also performed the hit song at the 54th Annual Grammy Awards.
Kelly Sings at the Super Bowl 2012
Singing the National Anthem at the Super Bowl is a nerve-wracking task that can make or break careers. But Kelly Clarkson pulled it off flawlessly at the Super Bowl XIVI in 2012. To be fair, no one doubted that she had the vocals to successfully carry her through that experience.
Kelly's delivery was so spot on that it only elevated her reputation as one of the most powerful vocalists this generation had seen. Backed by a choir of children, the pop legend and O.G. American Idol winner gave a superior, lyrically-correct rendition of the song that won't be forgotten for decades.
Do You Feel the Love in the Air?
Things were going great for Kelly professionally, but what about the romantic front of her life? Well, romance had its turn too. Kelly began dating talent manager Brandon Blackstock in 2012. The couple grew deeper and more quickly in love, and a year later, in October 2013, they exchanged wedding vows in Walland, Tennessee.
Brandon became her manager, and she became stepmom to his two children from his previous marriage to Melissa Ashworth. Kelly legally adopted the kids — Savannah and Seth. “Wrapped in Red,” her first Christmas album, was released the same month as her wedding. Sounds like a busy month!