She's one of the most successful country singers of her generation and one of the genre's most polished performers, but on June 10, 2005, Carrie Underwood was just a shy kid who was about to debut on the Grand Ole Opry.

The singer was nervous. She had just won Season 4 of American Idol on May 25, and after taking a couple of weeks to see her family in her native Oklahoma, she came to Nashville for her big debut.

She performed two songs on the hallowed stage that night; "Inside Your Heaven," which she released as her debut single after winning Idol, and the Roy Orbison classic "Cryin'," which she had performed on the show.

Underwood wasn't sure how she'd be received at such a country music institution, but she won over the crowd immediately, earning thunderous applause.

"It's kind of magical," she said on the side of the Opry stage after finishing her set. "I don't feel like I deserve this at all."

It was a moment Underwood had dreamed of since she was a little girl, even growing up in Checotah, Okla., without cable television.

"I don't even know how, but I always knew what it was," she says of the Opry. "You don't have to see it or hear it, you automatically just know what it is. That's how legendary it is."

The singer's debut album, Some Hearts, became the best-selling album of 2006 across all genres in the U.S., powered by hits including "Jesus, Take the Wheel" and "Before He Cheats." Her sophomore album, Carnival Ride, placed four No. 1 singles, including "So Small" and "Just a Dream," and on March 15, 2008, Randy Travis surprised Underwood with an invitation to join the Opry. Garth Brooks inducted her on May 10, 2008.

"It means a lot to me because it’s the heart of country music," she observes. "The church, the sacred place, the super-elite club that says you love this music."

Sterling Whitaker is a Senior Writer and Senior Editor for Taste of Country. He focuses on celebrity real estate, as well as coverage of Yellowstone and related shows like 1883 and 1923. He's interviewed cast members including Cole Hauser, Kelly Reilly, Sam Elliott and Harrison Ford, and Whitaker is also known for his in-depth interviews with country legends including Don Henley, Rodney Crowell, Trace Adkins, Ronnie Milsap, Ricky Skaggs and more.

PICTURES: See Inside Carrie Underwood's Breathtaking Nashville Mansion

Carrie Underwood and her husband, Mike Fisher, owned a 4-bedroom, 4-bathroom, 2-half-bathroom home in an affluent Nashville suburb called Brentwood. The 7,000-square-foot mansion features a wet bar, fitness center and tennis court, as well as a four-car garage, walk-out basement with heated marble floors and extra appliances, including a sub-zero fridge and wine fridge. That house is where Underwood suffered a devastating fall in 2017.

The couple sold the luxurious home for $1,410,000 in March of 2019, after they moved into the massive dream home that they had spent several years building from scratch.

Gallery Credit: Sterling Whitaker

PICTURES: See Inside Carrie Underwood's Beautiful Post-'American Idol' Home

Carrie Underwood invested her money wisely after winning American Idol in 2005. One of her first big purchases was a 3,099-square-foot home in the well-to-do Nashville suburb of Franklin, Tenn. Underwood paid $384,000 for a luxurious 3-bedroom, 3.5-bathroom stone and stucco home in a private gated community.

The house features a library, a vaulted ceiling and lovely amenities throughout, but while it's very nice, it's certainly not the kind of home you'd picture for a budding country superstar. Underwood wound up being a huge success right out of the gate with her debut album, Some Hearts, and she sold the home in Franklin for $372,500 in 2007, when she purchased the Brentwood mansion that she would later share with her husband, Mike Fisher.

Gallery Credit: Sterling Whitaker

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