Darius Rucker and Kara DioGuardiDarius Rucker enjoyed something of an 'American Idol' moment recently, meeting up with show judge Kara DioGuardi for a songwriting session in Music City.

Kara says she always enjoys writing with new people, though it can be a little daunting at first. "I have such a strange job," she tells Billboard.com of her first meeting with the singer. "We had that commonality because he's seen me on TV and he can [say], 'Oh you're cool,' and I can [say] 'I love your records.' But it's basically, 'Hey, nice to meet you, now take your clothes off!"

Of course, she's speaking metaphorically about the "stripped-down" process of songwriting, and finding common ground from which to create.

"You have to look for where we can come together as two people who have experienced similar things. There isn't a person in this world who hasn't had their heart broken or fallen in love, or been hurt by or helped a friend. So you find that common denominator and you build from that."

Kara says her Nashville trips writing with country artists have really helped her become a better songwriter. "Country is lyrically heavy in a way that pop music isn't. It really tests me. It makes me go back to Songwriting 101. I'm very drawn to the genre because I feel like I've become a better writer by going down there, and I'm always learning in the sessions."

In addition to Darius, Kara spent time crafting tunes with Rascal Flatts and Dierks Bentley during her Nashville trip. The new season of 'American Idol' begins next week on FOX.