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Jana Kramer Was Intimidated by Carrie Underwood, Martina McBride When She Started Music

Carrie Underwood, Jana Kramer, Martina McBride
Jason Merritt (3), Getty Images

Jana Kramer is just now making herself known on the country music scene, but the 28-year-old actress — known for her work on ‘One Tree Hill’ — says that music was always something that filled her heart.

“I grew up in a very musical family, so I started singing at a really young age,” Kramer tells Taste of Country. “I kind of fell into acting, I think, and I always wanted to be a singer, but I didn’t think my voice was good enough.”

Part of the reason she questioned her talent was because ultimately, she would be thrown into the circle with the likes of the biggest powerhouse female vocalists, which was an intimidating thought. “When you listen to country music, you hear Martina McBride and Carrie Underwood with these big, beautiful voices,” notes Kramer. “But then, I finally started to believe in myself.”

And so did Nashville. Kramer linked up with famed producer Scott Hendricks and began making her first album on Warner Bros. Records. “At first I was really timid and scared,” she said of going into the studio as a singer. “Scott was like, ‘Just be yourself. We signed you because you’re you and not like anyone else.’ He said, ‘You’re going to have to believe in that, or we’re not going to get the best product we can get.’”

She adds, “Once I believed in my voice enough, I said, you know what? He’s right. This is who I am. It’s different and unique, and now I’m like, ‘Let’s go!’ I don’t care if I hit a weird note – whatever, we’ll do it again [laughs]!”

As far as her loyalty to country music, Kramer says she’s here to stay. The star recently finished her commitment to ‘One Tree Hill’ and is now putting all of her energy into music. Her self-titled debut album hit the shelves on June 5, and her first single, ‘Why Ya Wanna,’ is already making big waves on the charts.

“I want to be known as a country singer, not that I’m quitting acting, but my focus now is on music,” Kramer says. “I’m not just going to put one song out and then say alright, peace out! I’m going to stick around. This is where I want to stay. I’ll come in and out of the acting world. I’ll only do things that I’m passionate about.”

Listen to Jana Kramer, 'Why Ya Wanna'

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