Kelly Clarkson has written songs about the deep pain she felt after her father left her family when she was a young girl, but the singer has been less open when it comes to her beloved mother who raised her and her two siblings, whom she didn’t get to know while growing up. Fans are curious about Kelly’s family, as she rarely speaks about them in interviews.
Who Was Kelly Clarkson’s Father Stephen Clarkson?
Kelly’s late dad Stephen Michael Clarkson left his family when the daytime talk show host was six years old. She detailed his departure in her 2015 ballad “Piece by Piece.” The song included the lyrics, “And all I remember is your back/Walking towards the airport, leaving us all in your past.” The former engineer moved to California and broke up their family, leaving Kelly with abandonment issues she’s detailed in several songs.
Over the years, Kelly tried to reach out to her dad and form a relationship but was rejected. In a 2018 interview with the Scandinavian talk show Skavlan, she revealed about their strained connection, “I know a lot of people go, ‘Aww,’ but it’s not really that situation. I think if you don’t grow up with it, it’s hard to miss something you never had.”
Kelly explained she tried so many times to reach out to her dad that it bordered on being “humiliating,” sharing, “You’re like, I shouldn’t have to work this hard for someone’s love. Like, that’s a little ridiculous. And at that point, too, you grow up so much to where you go, okay, I don’t even think you’re capable of love.”
During a February 2019 interview with Forbes, Kelly revealed when discussing “Piece by Piece” that her father died. “That song for me, personally, behind the scenes, it’s evolved mostly for me. So like from the moment I wrote it, just being pregnant with my little girl and then you know all the moments that I really did try and make it work with my father and life and just get completely let down to where…,” she said before adding, “You know he passed away months ago. So that’s why.”
Who Is Kelly Clarkson’s Mother Jeanne Taylor?
The Grammy winner is still close with mom Jeanne Taylor (née Rose). After Stephen left the family and the pair divorced, Kelly was raised by her mother in Texas.
Jeanne appeared on Kelly’s eponymous daytime talk show in September 2019, and discussed why she became a teacher. “As I was growing up, I had good teachers and I had some that were not so good teachers,” she explained. “I felt so bad for … not so much for myself because I behaved, but [for] some of the kids who had a hard time sitting still and doing things. Some of those teachers were really rude and they were mean and I thought, ‘I don’t ever wanna be that way.’”
She continued, “I want kids to want to come to school, I want them to love learning. I want them to be a life-long learner, because I am. And I want it to be fun. I want to meet them at the door and welcome them in … I want them to love it!”
Being an English teacher, Jeanne encouraged Kelly to write down her feelings. “I kept everything in, and I bottled it, and then I blow up,” the Emmy winner said in an October 2023 interview with Audacy. “The best thing, and greatest thing, my mother ever did for me was shove paper and pen in front of me and go, ‘If you’re not gonna talk about it, you need to write about it…’ and that is how I became a writer.”
Who Is Kelly Clarkson’s Brother Jason Clarkson?
Kelly’s oldest sibling is brother Jason Clarkson, who was born in 1973. Unfortunately, they didn’t grow up together, as he moved to California to live with their father.
The pair reconnected in 2001 at Jason’s wedding. “The year before I actually auditioned for Idol, my brother got married in Alaska and we all met up there and it was kind of then [that] we kept in contact,” the “Stronger” singer revealed during a SiriusXM interview in August 2019. The pair are now close, and Jason even appeared in Kelly’s 2006 music video for Walk Away.
Who Is Kelly Clarkson’s Sister Alyssa Clarkson?
Like Jason, Kelly didn’t grow up with sister Alyssa Clarkson, who was born in 1976. “My sister grew up with my aunt and uncle in North Carolina and my brother grew up with my dad in California and I grew up in Texas with my mom,” the hitmaker explained in her 2019 interview. Visiting each other was hard because they “were all very poor” and “spread out” over the country.
Even though Kelly barely knew her brother and sister until they were adults, they had a familial bond that was unbreakable and remained close after reuniting at Jason’s wedding. “We all met up and everything, and then they got really excited because [American] Idol happened. Which is really weird if you saw them — we’re exactly the same. It’s like we grew up together, it’s really weird,” she revealed.
In 2009, Kelly revealed how all three siblings lived down the street from each other. “We have a lot of land — we all live on the same land,” Kelly said, joking, “My land kind of slopes — I live up on the top part, my brother lives at the way bottom and my sister lives on the side. It’s cool though!”