Kristine Flaherty, professionally known as K.Flay is a singer, songwriter, and multi-instrumentalist from the midwest. As a teenager, Flaherty moved across the country to enroll at Stanford University where she first picked up a mic and dubbed herself K.Flay. 



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After multiple studio albums, two GRAMMY nominations, and sold-out shows across the world, Flaherty was faced with one of her biggest roadblocks to date. 

During Summer 2022, Flaherty traveled to Tanzania for a week of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro – a bucket-list adventure she added to her journal seven years prior. Within a week of returning home, the two-time Grammy-nominated artist woke up one morning with complete hearing loss in her right ear. The freak occurrence was deemed permanent by doctors, ultimately causing K.Flay to question whether she’d ever make music again.

In her early touring career, K.Flay used alcohol as a way to escape reality but she always knew that lifestyle was not sustainable. The multifaceted artist saw value in viewing alcohol and mental health as an ever-changing relationship. From there K.Flay asked herself, “Is alcohol serving me?” and then she made the decision to quit drinking. 

In Sound Mind’s latest episode of Unmasked, K.Flay shares why she chose to stop drinking, how that and her sudden hearing loss affected her mental health, and how her song, “Perfectly Alone,” is a culmination of the journey.

K.Flay told Billboard, In my experience, shame is almost always at the root of angst and misery. I think the goal for all of us is to dismantle shame through vulnerability and openness; once you’ve taken a shameful experience and brought it into the light, you defang it, you strip it of its harmful power.”

Instead of allowing this life-altering experience to defeat her, K.Flay created the forthcoming album, MONO. Her first release for Giant Music, MONO in many ways marks the start of a new era for K.Flay. 

The album’s closing track “Perfectly Alone” is a nod to her entire mental health journey and a message to the world that it is okay to embrace solitude. MONO is K.Flay’s most introspective album to date and she wants listeners to know that your entire experience of the world is within.  

Check out K.Flay’s episode of Unmasked and stream her new album, MONO, on September 15.

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