It’s a long way from the suburbs of west Ottawa to trend-setting dance clubs across America.

But the divide has been no problem for Kourtney Kelly. The 20-year-old actress, model and singer is currently tearing up the clubs with her hit single, Solid Ground.

It has been a fixture on the Billboard Dance Club Songs chart for 8 weeks and counting, with a peak position of #12. The chart is based on a national sample of club DJs in the U.S.

“It feels amazing,” says Kelly. “I mean, I didn’t even think anyone was going to really hear this song.”

Probably because Kelly didn’t think she was going to be a singer.

A graduate of Canterbury High School’s Drama Program, Kelly was in New York City continuing her studies as an actor.

One fateful day, she accepted a friend’s invitation to a party. The party turned out to be at famed Premier Studios. “This is where Mariah Carey started her career. This is where Britney recorded Toxic. The studio is just incredible,” says Kelly.

She ended up spending hours watching a music producer at work, not realizing it was acclaimed record producer and entertainment consultant, Chris Young.  “He turns around to me and he’s like, oh, do you want to get in the booth?” recalls Kelly. “I’ve never been in a recording studio before. I used to sing in my mirror, you know?”

Kelly admits she didn’t exactly “knock it out of the park” on vocals, but Young was patient. And soon they, along with other contributing writers, had the makings of the song.

And just like that, Solid Ground came into being. What started by chance turned into a project. And the project turned into a hit. Kourtney Kelly the aspiring actor became Kourtney Kelly the red-hot recording act.  

Even her always-supportive parents are surprised by how quickly Kelly’s fortunes have changed. “I have to say, although we always hoped and believed in Kourtney, we’re still very amazed at how well she’s done in the short time she’s been in the entertainment industry,” says her father, Alan Shayanpour.

“It’s absolutely insane,” echoes Kelly.

The goal now is to keep the success going. Guided by Young, Kelly has been hitting the red carpets at events like The Grammys and the MTV Music Video Awards. The team has a second single in the works with an accompanying music video. And Kelly hopes to do some live performances this summer, something she feels her stage training has prepared her for.

And about that acting career? Kourtney Kelly’s ultimate goal is to do both, but she can put acting on hold while she pursues the opportunity of a lifetime. “Right now I’m feeling the singing. Yeah. That’d be pretty cool.”