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  1. #1
    Ultimate Carrie Fan Ann055's Avatar
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    Jul 2011

    Carrie Underwood's Grunge Rock Past: 'I was all about Pearl Jam'

    In addition to her powerful pipes and "Good Girl" demeanor, Carrie Underwood is known for her flirty dresses and sexy hotpants, but there was a time back in the '90s when the "American Idol"-winning singer was far more likely to be found in grunge rock-approved attire.

    "You know those stupid school pictures that you'd always forget about until you got there? I wore those wide-legged jeans, like skater wide-legged jeans and a black and white oversized plaid shirt," Carrie confesses to The Boot. "And I remember when I got my picture back, one of my friends saying I looked like I was going to go rob somebody. Like I was a menace!"

    Carrie's grunge past goes a lot deeper than the collection of Seattle-inspired plaid shirts she still keeps in her closet. As it turns out, the Oklahoman country crooner was raised on rock 'n roll.

    "I grew up listening to '80s glam hair metal. Then, when I got older in the '90s, the whole grunge thing was huge and I was totally into it. I was all about Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains, Nirvana and all of that stuff."

    Now Carrie's tastes run about as wide as her old skater jeans and, even though the recently released Blown Away is still very much a country album, she thinks it reflects the fact that she listens to a little bit of everything.

    "People don't listen to one genre of music. They don't listen to one specific kind of artist. My iPod is rannn-dom," she says, practically stretching 'random' into a four-syllable word with her emphatic drawl. "I would guess everybody else's is, too. It's OK to listen to random things back to back, and I definitely feel like I'm influenced by that."

    At this point in her career, the country superstar says she feels comfortable and confident enough in her abilities and tastes to follow her musical muse wherever it takes her.

    "I feel like, with my fourth album, I can really do what I want," says Carrie. "It's not like I need to appeal to and appease this certain group of people. I want to go what feels good to me and what's best for the song and for the album."

    In the case of Blown Away, doing what was best for the album meant going into the songwriting and song selection process with a completely open mind.

    "I try not to put parameters on things when I'm writing or when I'm listening to things," she says. "I don't want to be like, 'I need a big power ballad and that's all I'm looking at!' and ignoring everything else and potentially missing out on really great writing opportunities because I'm trying too hard to write one kind of song."

    She didn't try too hard to force one type of vibe or feeling on the album as whole, either. Although Blown Away is already earning a reputation for being Carrie's "dark" album, and it does take the singer through some previously unexplored territory filled with revenge and murder plots, the singer is quick to point out that there's a lot more to it than unrelenting morbidity.

    "We definitely take some of the songs in a darker direction," she says. "That said, I also have light, happy songs and have songs that are more traditional country than I've ever done before, so we take the album in a lot of different directions."

    Carrie hopes that people like her musical and emotional hybrid, ("If there's nobody out there to hear my music, does it really matter that I'm making it?" she muses) but also displays a bit of that old school picture day attitude when it comes to Blown Away's critical and commercial success.

    "It could totally backfire," she shrugs. "But at least I've done something that I really want to do."

  • #2
    Carrie Guru rainbow1's Avatar
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    Nov 2005
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    Thanks Ann, wish I had a picture of the "menace"!!!

  • #3
    Carrie Guru
    LouisaJessie's Avatar
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    Feb 2012
    United Kingdom
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    I'm surprised to discover Carrie liked grunge. It's cool that she appreciates all types of music though. She has a lot of different musical influences. Good Girl has a rocking guitar riff. You can definitely hear the influence of rock music in that song. I think Carrie's music in the future will have a wider appeal and a varied sound, much like her new album, Blown Away, but I think Carrie will always remain true to her country roots. She's country to the core.

    Thank you for posting, Ann055.

  • #4
    Carrie Guru epicamends's Avatar
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    Dec 2008
    Now that I know Carrie was a fan of Nirvana, I compiled a few songs I think she'd do great covering.

    -About a Girl
    -All Apologies
    -Come As You Are
    -Drain You
    -Heart-Shaped Box
    -In Bloom
    -Pennyroyal Tea
    -Something in the Way

    My preferences are: About a Girl, All Apologies, Drain You and Dumb. I'd love to hear her do Where Did You Sleep Last Night too.

    As you can tell, this article made me very happy.

  • #5
    Carrie Fans Maniac kewlie78189's Avatar
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    Aug 2005
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    I love this article...she was so normal back then the plaid comment!

  • #6
    Carrie Fans Legend teesharky's Avatar
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    Apr 2005
    Saratoga NY
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    omg i love that she loves nirvana and grunge. lol

  • #7
    Obsessed Carrie Fan diva101's Avatar
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    May 2010
    gosh, she likes Pearl Jam! \m/ now I wanna hear her sing Jeremy or Even Flow xD


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