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"Country music fares much better in the US than it does in other countries," the superstar tells London newspaper, The Independent. "I have always wanted to take country music to other places, and to perform in other places. But I felt it was most important to make sure that I felt comfortable at home, and had established a career here first. Now that I have, I think, done that, I'm ready to go overseas. I'd like to consider myself someone who can potentially reach an audience outside of normal country music fans."
Carrie's big break on "American Idol" came more than seven years ago, when she was crowned the season four winner in 2005. On the heels of her multi-platinum-selling debut album, Some Hearts, she began to score hit after hit -- a success she credits largely to the reality TV talent show that started it all.
"First of all, I've been very lucky," she tells. "Secondly, the best people in the music business really do work with the TV show, so I have got to work with them ... It means I've had very talented people around me from the start."
Not every "Idol" winner has fared as well as Carrie, and few sing the show's praises more than she has since her win. "Maybe some of the other winners who've come off Idol have, kind of, deviated from that a little bit, and tried to do their own thing," she speculates. "But I've always loved the show and still love everything about it."
Carrie was an instant favorite among the three judges (then Simon Cowell, Paula Abdul and Randy Jackson), but has advice for those who audition, should their vocal chops not be up to par. "Sometimes I do wonder why these people don't have friends, or family members who will tell them, 'Maybe this isn't the best idea," she notes. "Maybe you should stay home rather than going to try out for the show. Let's go get ice cream instead'."
While she's had several years to adjust to being a superstar, Carrie admits she still isn't used to her celebrity status. ""I love it when a fan will just say, 'Hi!'," she explains. "What I don't like is when they'll secretly follow you around, taking pictures, slyly sneaking around the corner."
One thing the "Good Girl" singer doesn't have to worry about is seeing her face splashed across the tabloids for outlandish behavior. "Even in high school, I was an angel," says the Oklahoma native. "Never went to parties. Never snuck out. Didn't drink alcohol. None of that."
Carrie's album, Blown Away, has stayed at the top of the country charts for an impressive five weeks. Her upcoming tour will include Hunter Hayes serving as her opening act. Keep track of her tour schedule here.