ESPN Music: Ashley Monroe

Ashley Monroe talks music and baseball

March, 26, 2013
3/26/13
6:00
AM ET
Ashley Monroe of Pistol AnniesRick Diamond/Getty ImagesAshley Monroe, right, has quite the busy career. But she still gets to see baseball from time to time.
Just 26 years old, country singer Ashley Monroe has had her fair share of struggles in the music business. Having inked her first deal as a teenager, her debut album was set to be released in 2006, but didn’t see the light of day until 2009 as a digital exclusive with little fanfare. With a fledgling solo career, Monroe made her name as a songwriter, working with some of the biggest names in country. In 2011 she teamed up with pals Miranda Lambert and Angaleena Presley to form the Pistol Annies. Since their critically acclaimed debut album later that year, Monroe’s career has skyrocketed.

Earlier this month Monroe finally released a solo record. "Like a Rose" has already garnered rave reviews and impressive sales. With a new Pistol Annies record set for a May release -- and a recent engagement to Chicago White Sox pitcher John Danks -- it seems like Monroe is on top of the world both professionally and personally.

We chatted music and baseball with Monroe over the phone earlier this month, in between performances at SXSW in Austin.

Playbook: Congrats on the album! How does it feel to be getting such positive reviews and acclaim?

Monroe: I can’t believe it. It’s really overwhelming. At first I thought my mom was just sending me the good reviews ...

Playbook: After the disappointment of your first record never getting a proper release, how did you manage to stay focused and not get discouraged?

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