The Because of You hitmaker recently dumped the deal she signed with Sony Music's RCA Records after winning the first season of American Idol back in 2002, and joined the roster at Atlantic Records.

At the time of the June (16) announcement, Kelly revealed the album she had started working on drew on her love of soul and R&B music, confessing "it's a record that I have been wanting to make since I was a little girl, and a record that fans have been asking me to make for years".

Now the singer has revealed it was actually Harvey who encouraged her to embrace the more soulful side of her vocals, which she had become known for while on the hit TV talent show, before embarking on a more pop/rock career path for her album releases.

The pair met at U.S. President Barack Obama's second inauguration back in 2013, when Kelly performed a moving rendition of My Country, 'Tis of Thee, and a chat with Harvey got her thinking about the direction of her future projects.

"I sang at the Inauguration... and Steve Harvey, one of my favourite people, came up to me and was like, 'Oh my gosh, I didn't know you could, like, sing!'" she laughed during an AOL BUILD event in New York on Tuesday (04Oct16).

Kelly confessed she was initially taken aback by the comment, but she soon realised he meant it as a compliment.

"I was like, 'What the hell?'" she recalled. "I was like, 'What have I been doing for 14 years?' He goes, 'No, no, no! I like your stuff, but you should be making an album like that. Where's that record?' I was like, 'It's coming! You're going to know it.'"

She added, "It's true, I don't feel like I've done a record that's shown my potential."

Kelly will release the follow up to 2015's Piece by Piece next year (17).