Kristi Hoopes is a young, budding singer-songwriter hoping to make it big in country music. She was able to record her debut single, “At Least It’s Something” at RCA Studio A in Nashville after winning a songwriting contest through Lyricord, a social songwriting app. However, Kristi has been a performer pretty much her whole life, and has won awards from the Colorado Country Music Association and North American Country Music Association International. And here’s the kicker: Kristi Hoopes is 17! In her young singing career, Hoopes has accomplished quite a bit, and it’s only the beginning for her.
“At Least it’s Something” is decidedly country in sound and subject manner. It’s an acoustic, slow tempo song with a prevalent fiddle and a bit of a steel guitar ring within the chorus. In fact the fiddle leads the instrumental solo of the song. It might be just a tad over produced in some areas, but overall the production and instrumentation of this song is excellent. It’s not a pop country anthem; it is a tried and true country heartbreak ballad.
Hoopes sings of a broken relationship. He said he’ll always love her and then he left. She’s left holding onto the hurt and the pain caused from the relationship’s memories. These painful memories come and go, and she knows that the pain here means that there was something in the relationship that was true and real. “Something in the way you kissed me and the way you whispered sweet nothings all night. But holding onto memories won’t bring you back to me, hurting’s better than nothing; at least it’s something.” Emotions make us human. Good or bad, emotions make us real. The songwriting in this song is quite good, and not only tells of this heartbreak well, but shows great maturity, especially for a teenager.
My only minor complaint with the song lies in the vocal performance. There aren’t much, if any, vocal inflections throughout the song. To me, some of the emotional triggers of the song get lost because it isn’t sung with the same despair and pain that the lyrics depict. However, that’s not to say Hoopes is a bad singer. Just the opposite in fact, she has a wonderful voice. I would have just liked to hear her sell the feelings more with her vocals. Overall though “At Least it’s Something” is a great debut single for Kristi Hoopes. It’s the type of mature, reflective music that country radio needs more of. You can’t ask for much more in a debut single, and I can’t wait to hear more music from Kristi Hoopes.