Priscilla Block Revisits a Time When Her Confidence Was Hard to Find: 'I Always Felt Not Good Enough'

"I'm in such a better place in my life when I can unapologetically be myself," Block tells PEOPLE of her newfound confidence

Back when the world didn't know the name Priscilla Block, the girl with the ever-present high pony spent her nights working in Nashville at The Listening Room, a venue where songwriters would often stop in to play a set.

And on many a night, that songwriter would be Hillary Lindsey.

"I would be dropping plates all the time because I was so nervous that she was there," remembers Block, 26, of the accomplished songwriter who has written chart-toppers for everyone from Carrie Underwood to Little Big Town.

And that nervous feeling rushed back into Block's soul in 2020, when the aspiring country artist found herself on a Zoom write with none other than Lindsey herself, writing and singing alongside her on a song titled "I Know a Girl" and a song what would end up being track No. 5 on Block's debut album Welcome to the Block Party.

priscilla block
Priscilla Block. Logen Christopher

Call it what you will — but Block chooses to call it fate.

Certainly, the collaboration serves as yet another entry onto the ever-growing hype reel of Block, who in a span of just over two years has gone and made an epic career for herself. From losing her job and her apartment in 2020 to going viral later that year to standing on the stage of the Grand Ole Opry, the North Carolina native is the first to admit that even she is shocked in many ways.

"'Just About Over You' was the song that completely changed my life," she tells PEOPLE of the song that became a massive viral hit in 2020. "It's the song that this whole album is built around. Every song on this project is shaped around that time in my life and the highs and the lows that I felt."

Seemingly bursting with self-confidence at the moment, Block is the first to admit it hasn't always been this way.

"Growing up, I actually was really hard on myself," remembers Block, who revisits those days on the heartbreakingly honest "Peaked in High School.". "High school was some of the worst years of my life. When I hit puberty, my body completely changed and all of a sudden, I had big boobs and a big butt and that wasn't cool back then."

Priscilla Block
Welcome to the Block Party Cover Art. Courtesy Warner Music Nashville

She lets out a laugh, but then turns serious again.

"I always felt not good enough," says Block, who moved to Nashville right out of high school. "I never felt comfortable with my body. But then, I got away from my hometown and I was paying my own bills and I was trying to live out my dream, and there's something in that that builds confidence."

Block kicked off her career living out those dreams on TikTok, and quickly gained the attention of many with songs such as "Thick Thighs," which now also finds itself on the tracklist of the groundbreaking debut album that she could once only dream about.

Priscilla Block
Priscilla Block. Logen Christopher

"When I was choosing my team and my label, if I went into any room and they would say, 'We think that you should maybe do this differently,' I knew they weren't for me," remembers Block, who has gone on to take the same stage as artists such as Dierks Bentley, Kelsea Ballerini and Jon Pardi. "I think that this has worked because I've truly stayed authentically who I am."

"I've tried being somebody that I'm not," says Block, whose current single "My Bar" tells yet another relatable story to her growing fanbase. "And let me tell you, that doesn't work. I'm in such a better place in my life when I can unapologetically be myself versus trying to be something that everybody wants me to be."

That's easier said than done sometimes though.

Scheduled to head out on her first headlining tour come spring in support of the 12-track album that follows last year's self-titled Priscilla Block EP, Block finds herself at this point of her career feeling thankful not only to her team, but the fans that accepted her from the very beginning.

"I wish I could thank every single fan that has been a part of this," she says. "I've been in Nashville for almost eight years now and the fans are what made this happen for me."

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