Holding the cold microphone in my hand for the first time at age 6, I looked out at the crowd and I was hooked. I knew I wanted to sing and entertain people for the rest of my life. Hi, my name is Amanda Jo and I am a country music singer and songwriter from Nashville, TN.
Music has been a huge part of my life since I was a young girl. My mom tells stories of me standing on picnic tables at age 2, singing for everyone who would listen. At age 8, I stood in front of 29,000 people to sing The National Anthem for a Minnesota Timberwolves game. At age 11, I was one of the youngest performers hired by The Minnesota Opera Company. Music is in my blood, in my heart, in my soul. It's not what I do. It's who I am.
I was 15 years old the day I found out I had Type 1 Diabetes came as a complete shock to me and my family. I was still recovering from an appendectomy but I was an otherwise healthy kid. I had no symptoms of diabetes just yet. My doctor ran a full blood work panel and found my blood sugars to be slightly elevated. I came back in her office and did a two hour glucose tolerance test. My heart
sank later that afternoon when the phone rang and it was my doctor herself on the other end of the line saying, “I need you to come back into the office immediately.”
We left her office that day armed with syringes, insulin, and a glucose meter. I was off to start a new adventure full of low blood sugars, 3 am blood sugar checks, and the roller coaster of highs and lows that people with Type 1 understand all too well. My family and I were overwhelmed but resolved not to let diabetes determine my future.
I quickly decided not to let diabetes stop me from following my dreams of being a country music singer and songwriter. I moved to Nashville with a dream in my heart, a car full of belongings, and an insulin pump on my side. Since that time, I've recorded an album full of my stories, travelled all over the United States and performed on hundreds of stages. Managing Type 1 Diabetes while dealing with performing, long periods of travel, and stress has been far from simple. But I refuse to let it stop me from doing what I truly love. Why would I?
In the spring of 2015, I was contacted by Dr. Mack Harrell (past president of AACE) and Dr. Claresa Levetan to help write and record a song called Needle Free. Dr. Levetan is highly involved with research projects to find a cure for Type 1 Diabetes and wanted a song to promote her research and inspire hope for the millions around the world who live with Type 1 Diabetes everyday. I recorded the song along with fellow Type 1 Adam Lasher from American Idol. You can find out more about the song and download it for free at www.needlefreesong.com
I am incredibly blessed to do what I love and what I've always dreamed of doing. I truly believe that people with diabetes can do anything, and it's my passion to spread that message. If you would like to find out more information about me and my music, please check out my website: www.amandajocountry.com You can also follow me on social media: