Lea Michele covers the March 2014 issue of Teen Vogue, looking lovely, soft and spring-ready. She was interviewed by actor Jonathan Groff, her longtime friend, so she was comfortable as she opened up. She was supremely honest, especially about her upcoming solo debut 'Louder' and how her late boyfriend and co-star Cory Monteith is still in her heart.

The issue hits stands Feb. 4

How she perceives herself + her album: "During 'Glee,' I felt like I was scratching that itch of being an artist. I was at a great place in my life and I was so unbelievably happy—my relationship with Cory made me feel like I could reach for the stars and more. So I was like, 'I'm going to challenge myself and do this record now.' It's obviously pop, but I think it shows me off as a singer."

Her album is not Rachel-on-record: "It's me. It's Lea. It's not Rachel Berry. It's not Lea on Broadway.... 'Louder' is like me. I'm loud, I come from an Italian family, I don't stop talking."

Her favorite song on the record: "My favorite song is, 100 percent, 'You're Mine.' I listened to it the other day—it was the one song I had the most emotional reaction to, just because that's my relationship with Cory."

How Monteith reacted to her album: "He was such a fan, you don't understand. He would be like, 'You're going to be a pop star! What are we going to do? Are we going to, like, go on the road?' He would say, 'This is going to be big!' And I'd be like, 'I don't know.' He heard every song and gave me his notes on everything. He loved "Battlefield.' I'm getting chills thinking about it. I would say 'Burn With You' was his favorite. He came into the studio that day."

How he makes her feel today: "I somehow feel the insane love Cory and I had for each other morphed into this strength that I have right now. There's just something about knowing he's watching everything I'm doing and feeling like I have to do everything now not just for me but for him. I also have a safety net below me—if I fall or if it's too much, my friends and family will be there to catch me."

Did you grab a tissue yet? That was such a beautiful