Adley Stump has come a long way since "The Voice." The singer was featured on the show during its' second season, and says that she is proud to include the NBC series on her resume.
"Overall, I feel very lucky to have been on the season that I was on," she tells Billboard. "It was the number one show in America, and the teams were twice as small. Fans really got attached to us, and they stuck with us. I'm proud of the show, and I'll be a believer in it for as long as I continue to make country music."
That country music career seems to be growing a little more each day. The Oklahoman has just released a new EP, "Like This," which has found a home in the Top 40 of the iTunes chart. It seems that a lot of good things are happening for Stump – and in many cases, she's setting the tone for her career in true DIY fashion – and she wouldn't have it any other way, as she is trying to build her career from all angles.
"I'm working my butt off," she says. "I wake up at 5:30am, feed my pet pig, Fancy, and I work hard. I write the best music that I can. I have a great group of friends and relationships in this town that believe in me. We are very diversified as far as what I'm getting involved in – from shooting a pilot for another reality show to going on tour. There's the ‘Get Stumped' webisodes that we are doing, and they are turning into newspaper columns across the U.S. We're releasing four songs every four months, and getting some good traction there. iTunes is helping is promoting that. We just shot our first music video, which will hit CMT in February for 'Like This.' My overall goal is to stay focused, surround myself with a good team, and continue to move forward."
That career focus is something that comes natural for Stump, but also something that she learned a lot from her "Voice" judge, Blake Shelton.
"He is a smart man. I learned a lot from him in a short amount of time. To get to hang around the likes of him, and be mentored by Kelly Clarkson, Miranda Lambert, and people of such quality in the industry that know how to leave a legacy, it left a big impression on me. He always put other people first. He never made anybody feel bad. He was always quick to compliment, and his realness and genuine care about people really comes across strong. It was really refreshing to see someone on top of the world in the country music industry treat people who are just starting out as well as he treated us."
What can fans expect from her EP?
"It's a mix of the darker pop production of Rihanna and the upbeat Florida Georgia Line / Carrie Underwood style of pop melody," she says. "I call it Carrie-ana! That's where I live – hooky rock riffs under really pop melodies – which is a lot different than what you're hearing on the radio today. That's something you have to strive for," she says, adding that she is not wanting to copy anyone. "Miranda's neighborhood is built. People have what they do. If I'm trying to copy what's on the radio now, I'm in big trouble, and I'm two steps behind.. Staying true to myself and my natural sound -which is a little more pop driven, but I get fired up. I grew up with rock music, and I love infusing that in my performances."
Stump is thrilled with how 2013 has progressed, and is looking forward to the coming year. She knows she has a lot of people in her corner, and she hopes to justify their faith. That's why she is so driven to be the best.
"To be handed so much so early instilled a different type of gratitude in my heart to make me work as hard as I do. I have friends who have wanted to sing since they were two, and they would give their left leg to have half of what I've been given in a four-month period. I don't take it lightly. I was blessed with a lot, so if I don't work my butt off to make the most of it, then the fault is on me if I don't get where I want to go."