Kelly Clarkson Explains Why She’s Changing Her Name

The Kelly Clarkson Show / YouTube

The past two years have brought a lot of changes for Kelly Clarkson. From a new talk show to a split from her husband of seven year, the American Idol champ’s biggest change may be that she has chosen to change her name.

Following Kelly’s divorce from Brandon Blackstock she requested that her last name be restored to Clarkson. In February, the “Since U Been Gone” singer petitioned the court to remove Clarkson from her name, instead using her middle name, Brianne, as her legal last name.

In a new interview with PEOPLE, Kelly clarified the new name change.

“I just got divorced, so I had to drop my married last name,” the 39-year-old told PEOPLE, adding that Kelly Brianne will just be “for my personal life.”

“I’m still Kelly Clarkson,” she said.

And, it’s clear that after two decades in the spotlight it would be a challenge to get everyone to call her by a new name.

“I don’t think I can change Clarkson [professionally] at this point. I’m 20 years in!” Kelly said.


In the formal petition to have her name changed to Kelly Brianne, the singer said that she had personal reasons for wanting to change her name. “My new name more fully reflects who I am.”

Clarkson filed for divorce from Brandon Blackstock in June 2020, and the split has been anything but amicable. Earlier this month the two reached a settlement that left Kelly with a majority of the assets, but Blackstock is getting his fair share. Blackstock will get spousal support to the tune of $115,000 a month until January 2024. He will also receive $45,600 a month in child support, despite the fact that Clarkson was awarded primary custody of their two children, River Rose, 7, and Remington Alexander, 5.

The Montana ranch where Blackstock currently lives belongs to Kelly and she will get to keep the property, although her ex is allowed to stay there until June 1 while paying $12,500 a month for rent.

The pair welcomed daughter River in 2014 and son Remington in 2016. Blackstock is also father to daughter Savannah and son Seth, his children from a previous marriage to Melissa Ashworth.