Cassadee Pope is opening up like never before.
Fans have seen Cassadee over the years as a member of rock band Hey Monday and then win season three of NBC's The Voice. And now, with her new album Rise and Shine, she is ready to reveal her most personal side yet.
The hope is for music lovers to "get a closer look into the things I have gone through and the obstacles that I have overcome," she shared exclusively with E! News. "There are songs that hopefully will stitch you back up and make you feel good and help send you on your way into a happier headspace."
It'll be an emotional roller coaster, she warned. "A lot of people aren't as open with their feelings as I am," Cassadee added. "I love feelings, I love talking about them and letting them out and I know a lot of people aren't like that. So, I am hoping this record can help aid them into an emotional session with themselves."
For the 30-year-old, finding her voice wasn't easy. "The pauses between projects, the songs that came out of nowhere, that were different from what I had been doing and that had missed the mark—those were decisions that were happening during a time where I didn't know myself," she recalled. "I was really insecure. I was looking to everybody else to let me know what I should do."
But eventually, she discovered it's her opinion that matters most. "I've just grown in that respect of learning to trust myself and trust my gut," Cassadee said. "I know I actually have the answer of what to do inside of me instead of always looking outward to people I think are more successful."
Her journey to become "more enlightened and more awake," as she described it, included going to therapy, reading necessary books and learning to ignore the haters. "I just have a different mindset now," she admitted. "I know that if somebody is saying something with my best interest at heart, I will listen. But if I hear a critique from somebody that really doesn't have my best interests and is essentially a stranger…that kind of feedback doesn't affect me anymore. I need to love and respect somebody to take their opinions to heart."
And it certainly shows on Rise and Shine, out now. For the first time, she had a hand in writing all the songs and she is listed as a co-producer, another first. There to help along the way, of course, was boyfriend Sam Palladio.
"We haven't really talked about it, but he knows who the songs are about…he knows the story behind them." Cassadee added. "He's a songwriter as well, so he'll write something and show it to me and I will be super curious about who it's about." But her so-called "morbid" mind will run wild and assume that love song isn't for her. Freaking out internally, she'll put on a cool act and "and be like, ‘Hey, this is so nice. Who is it about?'" she said. "And he's like, ‘Obviously you.'"
Fans will get a special look into their romance later this year: The duo recorded a Christmas song for Netflix's upcoming sequel The Princess Switch: Switched Again. "We're the best at starting a song, not finishing it," joked Cassadee. "It takes a lot for us to finish it or like dedicate a few hours to writing a song because we're usually hungry or the dogs are barking."
And there's plenty more in store: She's here for the long haul, ready to evolve and grow as an artist. "I want to keep reinventing," she told E! News. "I don't want to sound the same for the rest of my career, but I also want there to be this thread of me through all the projects."
"I hope to have another project out after this that's a full band and that is a little bit more pop rock," she continued. "That will be a breath of fresh air that's not been happening as far as the pop rock sound in country music. I want to bring this new lane, so that's what I'm excited about."