Youth Impact Report 2010: Up Next

These days, plenty of kid stars have record deals, though 18-year-old multitalent Jennette McCurdy is mixing things up by taking her music career the Nashville route. The less Radio Disney-friendly avenue of country music means the “iCarly” co-star will have to build her music fanbase from scratch. “I have a great, active following from ‘iCarly,’ but we’re going to just shoot the single straight to country radio, which is typically an older crowd,” she says.

It’s been a fast-paced year for the Nickelodeon star. On a lark in 2009, she independently wrote, recorded and released songs and became an iTunes success story. McCurdy signed with Capitol Records Nashville on her 17th birthday, released her first EP in August, and her first video, “Not So Far Away,” is currently in heavy rotation on CMT. Next summer will see the release of her first album, for which she wrote most of the tracks.

But McCurdy’s still committed to her first career. Following her role in cable’s top-rated “Fred: The Movie,” she’ll co-star in next year’s made-for-Nickelodeon movie “Best Player” as well as continue on “iCarly.”

“Acting is never on the back burner,” McCurdy says. “I hope I can do it until I’m in the rocking chair.”

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