In 2010, singer/songwriter Jerrod Niemann became one of the breakthrough stars of country music. It certainly didn't happen overnight -- the success followed years of hard work and dedication.
As a young boy, Niemann took an interest in country music. He learned how to play guitar and started writing. At just 10 years old, he began performing his own work in local talent shows. In 1999, while in college, he collected some of his favorite songs and self-released his debut album, "Long Hard Road."
In 2000, Niemann moved to Nashville. A year later, Garth Brooks asked him to collaborate on several songs. He followed that with a U.S. tour, then joined the band Kane on their European tour. Then, in 2004, he self-released his album, "Jukebox of Hard Knocks."
Niemann signed with Category 5 Records in 2006 and set to work on an album. He released a single, "I Love Women (My Momma Can't Stand)," but the label folded soon after -- along with his upcoming album, but the single from it earned him attention in the industry, and in 2009 he signed with Arista Records. In March 2010, the first single, "Lover, Lover," was released and became his first #1 hit -- ending the six-month streak of Lady Antebellum's "Need You Now." Following the success of "Lover, Lover," Niemann's debut album with a major label, "Judge Jerrod & The Hung Jury," was released in July to rave reviews and was named one of the New York Times Top 10 Albums of 2010. He earned a CMA nomination for Best New Artist and three ACM nominations in 2010, including Breakthrough Artist.