Danny Gokey had to figure out who he was as a musician.

The singer (and now songwriter) who first appeared on "American Idol" signed a country record deal after the show, but had no idea what he wanted to say or who he wanted to be. He let the professionals tell him what to do. He's not bitter about that, it just led to an album that wasn't authentic to who he was.

I sat down with Danny to talk about his new album, Rise, which is the end of his journey to find his voice. His voice, which was born in church, has come to light largely through songwriting. The singer co-wrote 10 of the project's 12 tracks and focused on one message: hope. Some might call this album of faith, but Danny acknowledges that hope is the universal message that everyone can relate to.

Hear Rise:

Danny Gokey - Rise