How Miranda Lambert Became Famous

Miranda Lambert is one of country music’s biggest stars. Her success in country music has been gradual, and nowadays Lambert is considered an A-lister in the genre. The singer-songwriter made her major label debut in 2005 with the album Kerosene.

Miranda Lambert attends the 2022 Time 100 Gala
Miranda Lambert | Taylor Hill/WireImage

Miranda Lambert released ‘Kerosene’ in 2005

Lambert released her first self-titled album in 2001, but Kerosene marked her debut with a major label. Released in 2005, a song of the same name is the studio album’s title track.

“Kerosene” served as a breakout song for Lambert as it was the first major hit on music charts from Lambert’s album.

Because of Lambert’s past experience writing music and performing back in her home state of Texas, Lambert told the Los Angeles Times she was not intimidated by the release of Kerosene.

“Knowing that I’d been doing pretty good at home gave me the confidence to say, I’ll always have a place to sing and play my music,” Lambert said.

She continued, “I didn’t have to change my appearance or lose 80 pounds — whatever Nashville was gonna ask me to do to make it — because all my heroes made careers out of playing Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana.”

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Miranda Lambert later felt ‘pigeonholed’ in her career

Following her 2005 debut, Lambert became known for breakup songs that incorporated revenge-filled messaging. In an interview with Esquire, the singer admitted that she felt “pigeonholed” in the early years of her career.

“I was pigeonholed… like, ‘Oh, she’ll just burn your house down or shoot you,’” Lambert said.

She released the song “White Liar” in 2009, and over the course of weeks, it began to gradually climb music charts. Lambert told Esquire that she had a gut feeling “White Liar” could be her next big breakthrough song.

“The town was watching,” Lambert said. “Like, ‘Is she ever gonna have a hit or she just gonna be one of those other kinds of artists?’ I was frustrated—at some point, I wanted to move up. I wanted to get the middle slot on tours instead of the opening slot, and ultimately headline, and in country music, radio is that vehicle.”

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Miranda Lambert ended up winning Entertainer of the Year

In early 2010, “White Liar” achieved success on country music charts, launching a new phase of Lambert’s career.

Over the years, Lambert’s career steadily grew, culminating with her winning Entertainer of the Year at the 2022 Academy of Country Music Awards.

“To be honest, I had given up a little bit on winning Entertainer because females win so few and far between—and not just because of the female thing, but because all the winners pretty much deserve it,” Lambert admitted to Esquire.

She continued, “I had a few years when I really felt like I worked my a** off, like I might have deserved it, but it’s not something you just win out of the blue. It’s your peers going, you did it big this year.”

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