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Carrie Underwood says country music has 'broadened itself': 'There really is something for everybody now’

"If you like things that are more traditional, you can find those. If you like things that seem more pop, you can find that," Underwood says.

Carrie Underwood performs onstage for
Carrie Underwood performs onstage for "Carrie Underwood REFLECTION: The Las Vegas Residency." (Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for AEG Presents)

Carrie Underwood’s journey from winning American Idol in 2005 to being one of country music’s most influential voices didn’t come without challenges, despite how easy she made it look.

“The biggest thing is cutting myself some slack,” the singer, 41, tells Yahoo Entertainment about finding balance on the road while raising two sons, Isaiah, 9, and Jacob, 5, whom she shares with husband Mike Fisher.

“The juggle is real for parents,” she says. “We’re running around trying to take care of ourselves. We're trying to take care of our kids. We're working, we're juggling. But that’s all of us at the end of the day, right?”

Underwood knows a thing or two about juggling. With eight Grammy Awards under her belt, the singer has achieved success across several musical genres — a rare feat for any artist.

The singer’s debut 2005 album, Some Hearts, which blended elements of country and pop, became the bestselling album of all music genres that year, according to Forbes.

She thrived in those musical intersections and dabbled in new sounds before releasing 2022’s Denim & Rhinestones, marking her return to country.

Country music, Underwood says, has embraced a diversity of new sounds and well-known artists from other genres.

“There really is something for everybody now,” Underwood says of the genre. “One of the great things about country music, and this is true for music in general, is that every genre has really just broadened itself. If you like things that are more traditional, you can find those. If you like things that seem more pop, you can find that. If you like things that can cross over into other genres, you can find something that you love — and it's all part of the same family. I always welcome that.”

She continued, “I love that people like Post Malone and Beyoncé and Jelly Roll, and people like that are artists first and foremost. They kind of weave in and out of different genres of music, and I think that's really cool.”

Underwood is gearing up for a big year ahead. She added more 2024 dates to her Las Vegas residency, "Reflection," and has upcoming concert stops as well. She also launched Carrie’s Country, an exclusive year-round channel with SiriusXM. She recently added two additional channels, Carr-Dio and Savior Sunday Daily, both by Carrie's Country, which stream exclusively on the SiriusXM app.

Even with the busy schedule, she tries to unwind by working out and staying hydrated. One of her secrets is to carry BODYARMOR Flash I.V. Sticks everywhere she goes, which are flavored powder packets filled with electrolytes that you can pour into a water bottle.

Carrie Underwood says
Carrie Underwood says she keeps BODYARMOR Flash I.V. sticks with her to help boost her energy. (BODYARMOR)

“You can keep them in your purse, in your bag, at your desk or whatever it is you're doing,” says Underwood, who’s partnered with BODYARMOR since 2021. “It's all about fitting things in how I can whenever I can. Like anybody else, it's about making good choices as easy as possible and as convenient as possible.”

That’s easier said than done, especially when Isaiah and Jacob are on the road with her when they’re not in school.

“We try to keep them a little more stationary because I feel that’s where the bigger life lessons will occur. I want them to have a quote-unquote normal life, whatever that means,” she says. “But that's one great thing about my job. I may be away for a minute, but then I'm home for big chunks of time, too.”

Family traditions are important in her household, she explains, and they sometimes include watching new episodes of American Idol.

“I try to keep up as best I can,” she says of the singing competition show, now in its 22nd season. “I think it’s all great. At the end of the day, it's giving people a shot at their dreams.”