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Riding high: ‘It’s been really crazy,’ Ashley Wineland says of rise to stardom

Ashley Wineland is in the middle of preparing for a tour.

This means getting all essentials in order to be away from home for nearly a month.

Oh, and plenty of rehearsal.

“I’ve been putting together my set for this leg of the tour,” Wineland says during a recent break from rehearsal. “It’s been really crazy getting to this point.”

Wineland is a rising star in the country music scene.

She’s getting plenty of national attention with her sophomore album, “Simple Life.”

This has helped her headline a benefit for The Ryan Seacrest Foundation, as well as having her single “No Prince Charming” debut at No. 2 on iTunes’ best new country charts.

Wineland is a do-it-yourself kind of woman.

She writes all of her music.

It took her two years to complete “Simple Life.”

“It’s kind of crazy to see the progression from the first album to this one,” she says. “With this album, because it was more spread out, there are two years’ worth of experiences. Just being able to sit down and really explore some new sounds and melodic ideas. I also took on some more independence in my songwriting.”

When it comes to writing, Wineland likes to think she’s an open book.

“There are times I’m in a dark mood and really diving in deep,” she says. “Then I’ll take a step back and see how I can make it a little more lighthearted. The initial intent is still there; it’s just finessed a bit.”

As a rising star in the country music scene, Wineland has been touring constantly. She found her niche in music when she was in high school.

“I always loved performing, and I think that’s where everything falls together,” she says. “Starting my music education through band and being to explore the more creative sides really helped me. My parents got behind me with their support, and that’s part of my driving force in music.”

Wineland’s tour will run through July, and then it’s back to the recording studio to get another album put together in the fall.

“It’s all about balance and taking care of yourself,” she says. “This type of career is tough, and there’s a lot of work going on behind the scenes. The performance is what makes it all worth it.”

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