Alexandra Kay's tortured vocals tell a story beyond the lyrics as they're written on paper. "I Kinda Don't" describes the worst kind of post-relationship blues.

It's one thing to get dumped cold, because at least then you know how to feel, but during "I Kinda Don't" (written by Kay, Ryan Robbinette and Tana Matz), the singer describes meeting an ex's new flame and immediately recognizing she's perfect for him. It's that state of emotional limbo that keeps people awake at night.

Kay — who first gained notoriety when her cover of "Jolene" went viral in 2016 — sings the song so well because she lived it. She tells Taste of Country about meeting an ex-lover's new significant other, recognizing how uncomfortable it is despite the pleasantries.

"As I’m telling Ryan and Tana the story about how wonderful my ex’s new girlfriend was, Tana looked at me and said, 'So you’re thinking, I kinda wanna hate you, I kinda wanna be you,'" she recalls of their first co-write together. "And we all just looked at each other and we started writing 'I Kinda Don’t.'"

"I kinda wanna hate you / I kinda wanna be you / I kinda wish I never had to meet you in this bar / Cuz now I see what he sees / You're everything I can't be / I can't pretend I'm over him and seeing you ain't hard," she sings before the very honest chorus closer: "I kinda hope it works out for you both / But then again, I kinda don't." 

Andrew Carpa produced the song, adding the right amount of traditional instrumentation for a vocalist who's solidly in that lane. The lilt one hears early in the song recalls her moving performance of Dolly Parton's famous song. She patiently takes fans through her journey, never letting up on her attachment to the story.

“I started playing this song live and the reaction from the crowd was unreal," Kay says. "I knew I had to put it out. It’s such a real, raw song and I can’t wait to show fans this side of me and my music.”

Keep track of Kay at her official website.

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