Cassadee Pope returned to The Voice Tuesday (May 23) for an emotional goodbye to her former coach Blake Shelton, who is retiring from the singing competition show after 23 seasons.

Since joining Shelton's team and winning Season 3 of The Voice in 2012, Pope has won a CMT Music Award, earned a Grammy nomination and has been certified Platinum by the RIAA a number of times, so it's safe to say Pope is one of Shelton's most successful protégés.

In an exclusive chat with PopCrush Nights hosts Lauryn Snapp and Donny Meacham, however, the former Hey Monday singer reveals she would have picked Kelly Clarkson had she not joined Team Blake.

"She’s just so cool and talented," Pope says.

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Reflecting on her time spent on The Voice, Pope says she discovered who she was during her time on the show.

"Going back is amazing because it’s like, you know, I found myself on that show. It’s just the most surreal experience. To go back to congratulate Blake and know all of the artists that are there, it’s really amazing that they asked us to come back and honor him like that," she says.

Listen to Cassadee Pope & Jax's "People That I Love Leave":

Pope tells PopCrush Nights that before auditioning for The Voice, she believed reality singing competitions were the "easy" route.

"It’s a lot of things behind the scenes. The hours are definitely crazy. Full days. Like, six days a week and just a lot of nerves. You’re on national television. You have to remember the words while wearing heels and walking down slick stairs. It’s just a lot to think about," Pope shares.

"If you aren’t an innately competitive person, it feels really uncomfortable and weird, and that’s how I felt the whole time. Very, very nerve-wracking," she adds.

Tune in to Cassadee Pope on the radio Wednesday (May 24) when she drops in with Lauryn and Donny. Listen to PopCrush Nights every weeknight starting at 7PM by downloading the PopCrush App, or listen online 24/7 here!

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