EP Review

Kelleigh Bannen Makes History On Sirius XM ‘The Highway’ With 3 New Songs!

It’s so hard to keep calm because finally, Kelleigh Bannen is getting the attention she deserves. Bannen has been in the country music scene for over a decade and it has been one heck of a ride so far. She’s one of the most talented singer/songwriters out there and maybe now, others will finally get to discover her music and talent.


Bannen was previously signed to EMI Records Nashville but parted ways with the label and her management team and has been releasing music independently, along with a podcast series called This Nashville Life. Her previous EP Cheap Sunglasses came out two years ago this month. Since then, she has released three singles including the powerful “Church Clothes” and two Christmas songs “O Holy Night” and “Deck The Halls.”

Her new release The Joneses is listed as a single, but it’s a three in one! There are three songs (“The Joneses” “Happy Birthday” “John Who”) and Bannen has become the first artist to ever have all three songs in rotation as a “Highway find” on Sirius XM’s The Highway.

Although Bannen has been completely overwhelmed with this honor, she is completely deserving as she has been working hard and dealt with so many of the hardships that come with being a female artist in the country music industry. Her music now has a chance to be heard, to be found, to be appreciated. Our hope is that the new listeners will take the time to invest and get to know not only these songs but the essence of who she is.

She is so much more than she could ever reveal on social media, but she has the purest heart. Variety Beat often features artists we might not know well to help get their music out to the world, but we only champion artists who have not only an incredible talent but an incredible heart.

Bannen told RollingStone: “These three songs are personal and my favorite kind of storytelling: detail oriented, intimate, and, ultimately, hopeful. Ten years in, I’m just overwhelmed that each of these three songs will get the exposure they will get from being Highway Finds. It’s incredible, and, to be honest, I’m just shocked to be the first artist to have three songs in this program simultaneously. I hope music fans love the storytelling in these songs as much as I do.”

“John Who” is the first song in The Joneses  that starts off with a reflection of all the nice things this man did in the relationship and then things take a turn when he up and left, inspiring the chorus

I need a clean slate from this heartbreak

I need a reason to forget, get you the hell out of my head

I need a don’t look back kiss that stops me in my tracks

Someone that makes me say, anytime I hear your name

John Who? John Who? John Who?

John Who? John Who? John Who?

John who, I shouldn’t think about, but who wouldn’t think about someone they thought about for so long?

Every other memory. John who are you with right now? Are you kissing her now? Is she prettier than me? What do you see in her that you didn’t see in me?



“Happy Birthday” is an emotional ballad about missing someone and thinking of them when their birthday comes around and not knowing how that phone call is going to go. It starts out with questions that come to mind when thinking of someone you still care about but who aren’t really a part of your life anymore, even though you wish they maybe still were.

“Did you get to sleep in? Did your grandmother send you a card with twenty in it? Did your boss say 30 is old? Did your nephew sing on the phone?

You’ll either pick up or you won’t. Hey it’s me, I know it’s kind of late but I had to call ya. Just to say hello, catch up, you know I was thinking of ya. Another year older, another year wiser. Bet you’re out with the guys, low-key drinking Budweiser.

I learned a little too late, you know what they say, I can’t have my cake and love you too. Anyway, Happy Birthday

Ever think about an ex and wonder if you should say something to them on their birthday? If they’re with someone now? What they are like?

…Maybe you’re out with a girl, if I say I don’t care, I’m a liar.



If you’re too busy living in the moment to keep up with ‘The Joneses” then this song is your jam! It really kicks in with the chorus once we stop caring about not having the white picked fence and fancy car. Plus, Bannen finds a way to use “shut the front door” in a song so she’s basically the coolest person ever.

We don’t got what they got, they don’t got what we got. When it comes to the haves and the have-nots, we’d rather not keep up with the Joneses, what the hell for? Mind your own business, shut the front door. We ain’t rich but we own it, work all week just to blow it on a back yard tab, high-class, white trash, party on the patio. Too busy living in the moment to keep up with the Joneses.



The RollingStone also revealed that Bannen will be releasing tour dates soon, so we are basically freaking out over here and ready to jump on a plane to the nearest show! Be sure to check out her music wherever digital music is sold!

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.