In the seven years since Carrie Underwood took home the crown on ‘American Idol,’ she has made platinum albums, racked up tons of No. 1 hits and gained hundreds of thousands of new fans. The secret to her big success? In a recent interview, the blonde bombshell credited her fans as the driving force for making her the country star she is today.

According to CMIL, Underwood still has plenty of fans mention her ‘American Idol’ win to her — even small children who tell her they have been listening to her music since they were born. Of course, hearing something like that would make anyone feel old, but Underwood says it also makes her feel honored.

“It’s been really, really great to have that support from the beginning,” she says (quote via CMIL). “They made me. They put me where I am, literally, through their votes and through their support and through them buying the albums afterwards. And I know there have been so many that have really hung in there and really been there since the beginning.”

The ‘Good Girl’ singer’s most devoted followers are likely the members of her fan club, which has been around since shortly after her ‘Idol’ victory. A lot of Underwood’s fan club members have been around since the very beginning, which, of course, warms her heart.

“This is the sixth year of the fan club,” she says. “There are people, a big chunk of people, that have been there since the first year, and that means a lot.”

Underwood’s amazing fans will no doubt stand by her side in a few weeks when she releases ‘Blown Away,’ her fourth album in the seven years since her big break.