Drake White's debut album is a long, long time coming. Three singles and two record label deals led to Spark, and yeah there were some frustrating days and nights. His punching bag knows all about it.

White tells Taste of Country he learned to channel negativity into a good workout. "That's what art does to you," he says. "Iron sharpens iron and you just keep on punching, keep on punching until your product comes out."

A song called "Elvis" on Spark speaks to that fight. It's a positive reminder that "Rome wasn't built in a day and Elvis wasn't born the King." Optimism rules on White's 12-song mix of country-rock and soul. Fans get a sense of who he is as a live performer early, and who he is as a person late. The women in his life also shaped this music. During the same interview at Country Jam in June, he talked about how he gained confidence talking to the women waiting in line at his mother's beauty salon.

"It taught me to not be shy, and to not fear anybody," he says. "Everybody puts their pants on one leg at a time ... be a positive light out there and ask people what's going on."

Look for "Elvis" on the just-released album. You'll also find the singles ("It Feels Good" and "Livin' the Dream") and "Back to Free," a song White recorded with Zac Brown.

Watch: Drake White on How the Women in His Life Influenced Spark