Season 3 Voice winner Cassadee Pope ain’t messing around! After announcing last week that she’ll spend the summer opening for labelmates Rascal Flatts and The Band Perry on the summer leg of the Changed tour, The Hollywood Reporter reports that CMT picked up 4 pilots for its upcoming season, including The Cassadee Pope Project, a “a docudrama following the aspiring country singer.”

CMT Executive VP of programming and development Jayson Dinsmore tells THR of the series, which is being developed internally by CMT:

“We think there’s something really valuable about a first-person account of the process of becoming a country star.

In an interview a few weeks ago with Pop Sugar, Cassadee previewed her album, which she says does the same thing she did during her winning run on The Voice which is taking “country songs and making them a little more pop/rock” and “contemporary.” Why do that in the country world? Because, according to Cassadee, songs that tell stories and make you feel something belong in country. Check out her comments here:

In the interview Cassadee confirms she has been writing with Liz Rose (best known for her collaborations with Taylor Swift, Nathan Chapman (the producer of Taylor’s first 3 albums and some of her current album), Busbee (a frequent Idol collaborator who has cowritten with/for Kelly Clarkson, Daughtry, Haley Reinhart, Lee DeWyze, Danny Gokey, Casey Abrams, and more), Hillary Lindsey (who has done a lot of writing for/with Carrie Underwood), Cary Barlowe (who cowrote Carrie’s “Do You Think About Me” with Hillary Lindsey and Shane Stevens), and JT Harding (who cowrote Kenny Chesney’s #1 hit “Somewhere With You” and Jake Owen’s #1 hit “Alone With You”).

As she points out, she had written with some of these songwriters before she appeared on The Voice. In fact, you can check out a Cassadee’s collaboration with Liz Rose and Emily Shackelton plus a Cassadee collab with busbee and JT Harding HERE.

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  • cheese1

    I guess this seems like a smart way to convince country music listeners that she’s a country music act and not, say:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8R048sqs8BM

    I don’t get the idea that “telling stories” is somehow unique to country music?

  • Incipit

    …according to Cassadee, songs that tell stories and make you feel something belong in country.

    Really. That’s an unfortunate quote. She’s welcome to her opinion, misguided as I may think it to be. And that’s My Opinion.

  • standtotheright

    Eh, I think that’s a case where the inflection in the video makes a difference. “I like writing songs that tell stories and I believe that belongs in country, so I’m going that route.” I think she’s saying that her approach lines up with country writers and country listeners, not that it’s the only place where such an approach would.

    It’s not like she can run out there and say “Well, my backers from the show were country artists and my pop-rock band never hit the big time so I’m thinking odds are better here.”

    I did like that she was focused enough to point out that she had worked with some of those writers pre-Voice. It makes her sound like she’s part of the community already.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1638805698 Jason Scott

    Ugh.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    Who is Cassadee’s manager?

  • tripp_ncwy

    She is managed by Irving Azoff .

  • fuzzywuzzy

    Thanks. I was wondering if she had the same manager as Blake and that was helpful in getting this CMT docudrama.

  • windmills

    standtotheright: Eh, I think that’s a case where the inflection in the video makes a difference. “I like writing songs that tell stories and I believe that belongs in country, so I’m going that route.” I think she’s saying that her approach lines up with country writers and country listeners, not that it’s the only place where such an approach would.

    That may be what she was trying to say. My problem with that is I’ve heard some of the songs Cassadee wrote with those Nashville writers (linked them in my post) and they didn’t tell stories in any way that made me think of country music. Maybe you stick a mandolin and some banjo on a couple of them and they *sound* like a Taylor Swift pop song dressed up for country. 

    So I think her statement is just her way of trying to cover for her sound not being country. I don’t see it working in the long run but I am semi-impressed by her chutzpah going for it. 

    standtotheright: It’s not like she can run out there and say “Well, my backers from the show were country artists and my pop-rock band never hit the big time so I’m thinking odds are better here.”

    LOL. True.

  • adamland1

    I’m confused why people think Cassadee can’t change genres. People have crossed genres before. Some go back and forth and some make a permanent change. Funny I don’t remember anyone in country music questioning why when Darius Rucker the former lead singer for the very successful band Hootie & the Blowfish signed with Sony Records Nashville in 2008 and began singing only country. He went on to be named Best New Artist by the CMA in 2009. He’s had 5 #1 country singles.  People change genres, always have. Kenny Rogers started out singing rockabilly, then jazz, then  pop  before settling into country music. Shaina Twain carved out a successful cross genre career putting out simultaneous country and pop album versions. Our latest cross genre is the much derided Taylor Swift. She is just following what others have done.

  • adamland1

    double post

  • windmills

    adamland1: Funny I don’t remember anyone in country music questioning why when Darius Rucker the former lead singer for the very successful band Hootie & the Blowfish signed with Sony Records Nashville in 2008 and began singing only country. He went on to be named Best New Artist by the CMA in 2009. He’s had 5 #1 country singles.

    There were reasons for the country world accepting Darius. Among those reasons were the fact that he’d written and turned in an album of country so traditional, his label told him George Strait couldn’t get those songs played on country radio. He played the Opry and did a great cover of Josh Turner’s song with Ralph Stanley, Me & God. He proved he knew and respected the roots of country music, then he released his own music, it worked on country radio, and it worked. 
    Shania took plenty of heat for her crossover songs but she didn’t do the simultaneous country/pop releases thing until she’d already established herself somewhat in the country world. 

    The idea of Cassadee going country is LOLzy because unlike the people you named, she has no credibility in the genre. It’s obvious she’s got people who are taking care of the promo side though so she’ll get plenty of exposure to reach out tocountry fans who like pop/rock music.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    “It’s not like she can run out there and say “Well, my backers from the show were country artists and my pop-rock band never hit the big time so I’m thinking odds are better here.”

    lol Yes, that would be too honest. I think that the reason that I question Cassadee’s sincerity in her new direction in country music has more to do with her statement about craving huge commercial success (selling lots of CDs and concert tickets), rather than making any statements having to do with her actual preferred music itself. She gave me the impression that it really didn’t matter what kind of music she made as long as she was tremendously commercially successful.

  • standtotheright

    I think that the reason that I question Cassadee’s sincerity in her new direction in country music has more to do with her statement about craving huge commercial success

    To be honest, I’ve never bothered with the Voice and really only remained aware of her from having seen Hey Monday as an opener a couple of times (a band I thought was a pleasant enough diversion but not one that would ever eclipse the headliner). I don’t disagree at all that she’s primarily interested in commercial success and thinks this is the most open path.

    I just don’t think she was slighting other genres by saying that storytelling is something that is often a hallmark of country music and therefore something she could use to bridge from her own catalog. If  windmills says her attempts haven’t been convincing, that’s fair enough; I likely wouldn’t disagree if I took the time to hear them.

    But I just don’t think she was slamming pop or rock or hip-hop with that statement so I see no real reason to take exception to it. Unless, of course, people object to most forms of PR gloss. For me, as I’ve said before, I’d rather hear people bring that to bear than not bother selling themselves at all.

  • Last Laugh Lane

    I think what she’s doing musically is smart but any way she approached the situation, there were gonna be naysayers.

    The reason some people weren’t thrilled after her win is because they believed she was simply “Avril 2.0″ because that’s what she mostly stuck to on the show, but she also tampered with country and even went #1 on iTunes with it (Over You).

    I think meshing those two extremes (almost like a Paramore/Landy Antebellum middle-ground) CAN sell her songs on iTunes and CAN sell her concert tickets and to be frank I like that attitude from a new mainstream artist that wants to ride on their exposure rather than thinking it can continue off on an indie path because it never has before. 

    Cassadee’s not a newcomer to recording music and her team are mostly country so do I think it can gain her new fans, but not any notoriety in the dog-eat-dog country world, and at the moment that’s perfectly fine because she’s a pop artist first and foremost.

  • fantoo1

    I wonder if Cassadee even knows who George Strait, Waylon Jennings, Conway Twitty, Willie Nelson, or Alan Jackson are.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1638805698 Jason Scott

    Exactly.

  • fuzzywuzzy

    “I don’t disagree at all that she’s primarily interested in commercial success and thinks this is the most open path.

    But I just don’t think she was slamming pop or rock or hip-hop with that statement so I see no real reason to take exception to it. ”

    No, I don’t think so either, but I think that Cassadee wants to be really, really commercially successful, so I doubt that she would intentionally slam any kind of music or any artist. That’s why I wrote that she “gave me the impression that it really didn’t matter what kind of music she made as long as she was tremendously commercially successful”.

  • girlygirltoo

    I just laugh every time I read something about this girl. All she seems to care about is becoming famous and commercially successful, and she doesn’t seem to care that she is making a mockery of everything she said while she was on The Voice.

    But hey…it may work out for her.