She gained fame in May 2006 as the runner-up on the fifth season of American Idol.
Her self-titled debut album was released on RCA Records on January 30, 2007, and debuted at number two on the Billboard 200, selling 381,000 copies (as of December 2010). The album’s first single, “Over It”, was a Pop Top 30 hit and was certified gold in 2008. Her second album, Unbroken, was released on Verve Forecast Records on January 5, 2010, and debuted at No. 27 on the “Billboard 200”. The album featured the single “Had It All”, which peaked at No. 22 on the AC chart. It has sold 45,000 copies as of January 2011. Her third album, the holiday-themed Christmas Is the Time to Say I Love You, was released on October 12, 2010. The album debuted at number eleven on the Billboard Top Holiday Albums chart while the single “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” peaked at number sixteen on the “Billboard” AC chart. As of January 2011, this album has sold 23,000 copies. McPhee released her fourth album, Hysteria, on September 18, 2015.
McPhee has also established an acting career, co-starring in The House Bunny and Shark Night 3D. She has played Karen Cartwright, one of the lead roles on Smash. Since September 2014, she has starred in Scorpion as Paige Dineen.
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