Friday, April 15, 2011
– Ashton Shepherd is set to release her sophomore disc, "Where Country Grows," on July 12 via MCA Nashville.
Look It Up, the album's debut single and the first song she recorded for this project, has become the fastest-rising hit of her career and currently sits at 21 on the Billboard country singles chart. Shepherd released an EP in March in anticipation of the full-length.
The new disc is follow-up to her 2008 debut, "Sounds So Good." She wrote or co-wrote 8 of the 10 songs on the new album, which was produced by Buddy Cannon. "I felt like I had a basic plan for this record," she said. "You've got your first record behind you; you've learned some things. Your sophomore record - I heard from all these people - is supposed to be different. It's supposed to be another factor and define you a little more. I'm thinking, 'How am I going to do this?'"
Shepherd wrote songs with Dean Dillon, Dale Dodson, Bobby Pinson and Troy Jones. "I was just a little scared of it, since I'd never co-written before," Shepherd said. "Once I started, I really, really enjoyed it. I felt like we had plenty of songs to choose from. So the angle on this record was trying to define Ashton Shepherd in a different way, maybe dig just a little bit deeper and try and put some different kinds of songs on it.
"I was listening back to the record, thinking, 'This has something for everybody on it.' I think we've accomplished that," said Shepherd, who wrote two songs alone, I'm Just a Woman and Rory's Radio.
"This record is more tempo-heavy. The first record was very country with all the ballads," she said. "It made it kind of hard to do live shows, because you had 11 songs and 6 of them were ballads. Now, we've got a good little handful of spunky songs that I think people will really like to sing along with and enjoy on this record."