It’s only been five months since HunterGirl ended her journey on American Idol, where she finished in second place, but she’s already making big moves in her country music career! Hunter will be dropping her song “Hometown Out Of Me” on Oct. 21, marking her first release since the show ended. Plus, at the end of October, she’s also hitting the road with Noah Thompson, the winner of her season, and she dished all about it EXCLUSIVELY with HollywoodLife.
Hunter and Noah have remained close friends since their time on the show ended, and she said that it’s been so special to have that as she’s navigated her newfound fame. “I was really blessed to be on a season where everybody was so close,” Hunter said. “Even from the beginning of auditions to the end. I was just so happy to have people. It’s scary going onto a TV show. I never thought I’d be on TV in my entire life. So I’m so excited for the tour with Noah coming up. It’s good to have a really good friend throughout this process and coming back and trying to figure out life again.
The bond between these two is so strong, in fact, that fans have even speculated that they might be dating. However, both Noah and Hunter have shut down the rumors. “My mom told me when I was little, ‘People are always going to say something,’ so I just kind of live my life [and ignore it],” Hunter admitted. “I am who I am. I’m just happy to have someone who’s a friend that I can count on. I definitely had that with so many other contestants, too. Leah [Marlene] just moved to Nashville and I get to hang out with her, so it’s been a really incredible experience. I have friends I’m going to have forever.”
On the upcoming tour with Noah, Hunter said she plans on playing some new music, as well as songs from the EP she released before Idol. She also teased some potential duets with Noah onstage, and said that the two are trying to work on a possible collaboration in the future. See more from our interview with Hunter below:
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On “Hometown Out Of Me”: My hometown has just supported me so much throughout the show and since I was a little girl playing music. I went home the weekend after Idol and my mom and I went to the supermarket back home. I looked around and my mom goes, ‘Oh my gosh,’ and I look over and I go,’ Oh my gosh, it’s my face!’ My hometown bought newspaper ads congratulation me and cheering me on and I’m just trying not to cry in the supermarket. I got back to Nashville and the next week and I was like, ‘I’m writing a song about my hometown.’ So this is definitely how I wanted to introduce myself to the world and say thank you to my hometown.
On the most surreal part of life after the show: I remember when I was little I thought it’d be so cool if someone knew who I was when I was going to the store or something. So people recognizing me now has been surreal. I was at the airport and someone came up to me. My single coming out of the show was “Redbird,” and it was extremely personal to me, and they were talking about how it connected to them. That’s what I always wanted to do with music — help people. So that’s been cool. Sometimes I’m wearing a t-shirt and jogging pants and I’m looking pretty rough, but getting to hear stories from people is the best part.
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On getting to work with Katy Perry, Luke Bryan and Lionel Richie on the show: Going in, I didn’t really know how much I’d get to talk to the judges. We actually got to talk to them a lot. Luke has been so awesome since the first audition, cheering me on and telling me to stay true to myself and keep working hard. Katy and Lionel were the same way. I got to meet Katy’s family on the show. Her little niece’s came and it was so cool. Getting all this positive reinforcement from people I’ve looked up to forever…little Hunter would have lost her MIND! It’s been a full circle year and I’m glad I got to experience that and get some words of wisdom from some of the biggest people in the music industry.
On what she’s working on next: Definitely more new music after this and playing so many shows, which I’m really excited about. I think I’m just working on my socials and trying to balance that and figure that out, too. I love staying engaged with everyone and showing them my journey. I definitely want to share my life with people and connect.
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