'The Voice' Winner Cassadee Pope Was In A Pop-Punk Band Before Turning To Country

Cassadee Pope burst on the country scene after her win on season three of NBC's The Voice in 2012. Pope chose country star Blake Shelton as her coach and performed many country songs on the show. After her win, Pope signed with a major country record label in Nashville and released her first album, Frame By Frame. Her debut single, "Wasting All These Tears On You," showcased Pope's powerful voice and featured banjo and electric guitar instrumentation. Some fans may have noticed that the song had a slight pop-punk vibe, and that is because before Pope made her way into country music via The Voice, she was the lead singer of the pop-punk/rock band, Hey Monday.

Hey Monday was formed in 2008 by Pope and Mike Gentile in Florida. After enlisting the rest of the band, such as Elliot James, Alex Lipshaw, and Michael Moriarty, they were discovered by Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz and signed a joint record deal with Decaydance and Columbia Records. They released their debut album Hold On Tight later that year and toured with bands such as Fall Out Boy, All Time Low, and many more. After the departure of their drummer, Elliot James, the band continued on, releasing their six-song Beneath It All EP in 2010.

The band performed on The Warped Tour and on Jimmy Kimmel Live! during this time. The group then said goodbye to another band member, bassist Michael "Jersey" Moriarty. Hey Monday released another EP, Candles, in 2011, and in December of that year, they announced they were taking a hiatus. Throughout their four-year career, they released singles "Homecoming," "How You Love Me Now," "I Don't Wanna Dance," and "Candles."

Read More: Blake Shelton's Net Worth: 'The Voice' Coach is One of Country Music's Highest Earners

After the band went on hiatus, Pope immediately began her solo career by appearing on the third season of The Voice in 2012. The singer-songwriter soared on the singing competition show, completing round after round and performing songs by Gavin DeGraw, Avril Lavigne, Kelly Clarkson, Miranda Lambert, Rascal Flatts, and more. She went on to win the show and signed with Big Machine Records. In May, Pope spoke with Music Row about the transition from pop-punk singer to country singer during her early days in country music.

"I already had a lot of proving to do to show everyone that I'm an artist. I'm a songwriter—I didn't just sing covers on a reality singing competition show," said Pope. "The show really highlighted my story about being in Hey Monday, so people didn't realize that I sang country as a kid... It was almost like I had to prove to people that I'm a country artist."

She has released various singles over the years and found a hit in 2016 with "Think Of You," a duet with Chris Young. In August 2020, she released an 8-track album, Rise and Shine, on Awake Music. In May 2021, Pope released a new single called "What The Stars See," featuring Karen Fairchild, which marks a new milestone in her musical journey. The song is part of a new batch of music that finds Pope marrying her pop-punk past with her country present. She collaborated with past artist friends on the project, such as Stereo Skyline's Kevin Bard, Boys Like Girl's Paul DiGiovanni, and The All-American Rejects' Nick Wheeler.

"I think the project as a whole, the way it's shaping, is an album that really confronts things from my past that I've shied away from writing about until now and letting myself feel sad about it," Pope told Music Row. "The songs that came out of just that acceptance... I mean, they're the most powerful songs I've ever written, so I think the gist of the album is just letting yourself feel whatever those feelings are and not just surviving but thriving from those experiences."