Breaking News
More () »

Teenager learns guitar by watching Tori Kelly videos then releases first album

17-year-old Kieler Avery's album "Punchline" is no joke.

BONITA, Calif. — Bonita teenager who taught herself how to play the guitar by watching Tori Kelly videos has just released her first album. 

In this Zevely Zone, I met the 17-year-old rising star and headed to the South Bay to listen new music in a new year. 

These days you can learn just about anything by watching a YouTube video. 

"My favorite singer is Tori Kelly," said Kieler Avery. "I watched guitar videos of her singing just like on YouTube and stuff and I would copy her hand placements until it sounded right,"

Credit: Kieler Avery

Open mic nights opened doors for the 17-year-old. She just released her first album titled "Punchline" and heard one of her songs on the radio. 

"That was surreal," said Kieler, with a big smile. 

The Bonita Vista High School junior is a singer songwriter who digs deep into rock, pop, and country. Kieler loves to lock herself in her music room where she finds inspiration from her favorite artists. 

"This is like my favorite place. I love Amy Winehouse. Harry Styles," said Kieler.  

Credit: Kieler Avery

For years, Kieler's mother Kerie wasn't allowed to listen.  

"She would write stuff and play it for her friends but she would never let us listen, but I think it was two months ago she said mom do you want to hear a song I wrote, and I said yes, yes, let me come in right now, ha, ha," laughed Keiler's mom Kerie.  

Credit: KFMB

Kieler started performing at 3-years-old. 

"When I first started doing musical theater I was attached at my mom's hip," said Kieler. 

These days, she goes alone playing solo on any stage with a spotlight. 

"I'll sing pretty much anywhere you'll let me. So that's where I'm at right now," said Kieler. 

She was voted one of the Top 25 Most Remarkable Teenagers in San Diego. 

"Yeah, that is still such an accomplishment to me it means more to me than anything," said Kieler.  

RELATED: 'The Beat Farmers' release classic deluxe album from 1985

In her song "Joke," Kieler's anthem starts with these words, "Don't screw over a songwriter,"   

"I stick by that," said Kieler.

I asked for the back story on the song. 

"I think my stories can be about whatever you want them to be about," said Kieler. 

She told me the song was written for a friend and she has made plenty of those in the music industry including meeting her idol, Tori Kelly. 

"She was so sweet I was 12 or 13 and I broke down in tears," said Kieler.  

Ever since, Kieler has been chasing her dream. 

"I am on Instagram, I am on TikTok, I am on Twitter, I am on Facebook," said Kieler.

RELATED: Childhood garage band in Pacific Beach is all grown up

Type in the name Kieler Avery and then? 

"Oh yeah, download my music!" laughed Kieler. 

For more information about Kieler Avery or to download her music click here.

WATCH RELATED: San Diego teen giving plants and people a second chance (January 2022)

Before You Leave, Check This Out