On This Day: Miranda Lambert’s Career Got Kickstarted Signing First Record Deal in 2003

by Lauren Boisvert
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On this day 18 years ago, Miranda Lambert signed her first record deal with Epic Records. Before that, she was just another reality TV star, placing third on the first season of Nashville Star. She’d released a self-titled independent album in 2001, and in 2005 released the album Kerosene, which reached number 1 on the country charts and 18 on the U.S. charts.

In 2007 she signed with Columbia Nashville, releasing Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Revolution under the label. In 2011, she signed with RCA Nashville and has released her subsequent albums with that label since then.

Miranda Lambert: “I’m Only Wearing Jeans”

When Miranda Lambert first signed with Epic, she made sure she called the shots. In a 2015 interview with Elle, she said she told the label, “I’m only wearing jeans. I’m not wearing frilly dresses.” She continued, saying, “Dancing around in sequins is just not who I am. I wanted to be heard, not seen.”

She stuck to her guns and made a name for herself as a tough, yet tender, country singer. In her music, she writes a lot of stand-up-for-yourself tough girl revenge anthems, but she also has very vulnerable moments. What comes to mind are 2008’s “Gunpowder and Lead” and 2010’s “The House That Built Me.”

“Gunpowder and Lead” peaked at number 7 on the Billboard country charts, giving Lambert her first top 10 single. She has had 7 albums hit number 1 on the U.S. country charts. Her 5th studio album, Platinum, debuted at number 1 on the country charts, as well as reached number 1 on the Billboard 200. Miranda Lambert was the first artist to debut at number 1 on the Top Country charts with 5 albums in a row. Platinum won Lambert the Grammy award for Best Country Album, along with the CMA and ACM awards for the same category.

On Being a Role Model

“It’s a scary thing to put on yourself,” Lambert told Elle in 2015, “but it’s also okay to make mistakes and it’s okay to admit that you have insecurities because we all do. It’s okay to be a little rough around the edges.”

Miranda Lambert is all about being genuine, authentic, and true to yourself. When asked about her advice for young girls, she said, “Just start figuring out what you love, and what you’re about, and don’t ever stray from it because people will try to pull you in a million directions.”

Specifically, Lambert never let a record label pull her in a million directions. She puts out the music she wants to, and plays the guitar on all her albums, instead of letting her tracks get recorded over by session musicians. She lets herself be vulnerable in her music, lets herself be a real person, and that’s why people of all ages flock to her and her music.

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