James Dupre has just released a new single, and he's sharing a very special acoustic performance of the song with Taste of Country readers.

Dupre gained quite a following during his run on Adam Levine's team on The Voice in 2015, but he was already familiar to many fans prior to that. The former EMT and paramedic from Bayou Chicot, La., had already built an impressive and devoted fan base via YouTube, where he has racked up nearly 10 million views. He garnered enough interest to perform on Ellen in 2010, and signed a deal in 2011.

The singer-songwriter also co-stars with Randy Travis in The Price, which turned out to be the final role of his career before he suffered a debilitating stroke. Dupre is readying the release of his sophomore album, Stoned to Death, and the album's lead single and title track is already available via all digital outlets.

"I love this song so much because I immediately get sucked into the story. It's like a movie, when the music and production builds with intensity over the course of the song. I really want people to feel something as they're listening, just as I do every time I hear it," he tells Taste of Country. "'Stoned to Death' is a strong song and makes a strong statement about who I am as an artist, which is especially important as a newcomer.”

In the clip above, which is exclusive to Taste of Country, Dupre performs a stripped-down acoustic version of the song, which was written by Jessi Alexander, Jeff Hyde and Clint Daniels. "The first time I heard this song, I wanted to cut it," he says. "I fell in love with it, just lyrically and musically. It just sounded like one of the really great, traditional country songs that I grew up loving."

Dupre worked with producer Jordan Lehning — who has worked with a wide range of artists, including Kacey Musgraves and Kree Harrison — on Stoned to Death, and co-wrote seven out of the album's 10 tracks. Find "Stoned to Death" on iTunes and Spotify, and visit Dupre's official website for more information.

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