“My first artist bus was Jason Aldean’s old bus, with deer antlers over the lights and cowhide on the back of the couches,” she says. “It was such an absolute dude bus. The one I’m in now is more of a girl bus, so I have a bedroom in the back and the right lighting over the mirror, which makes getting ready for shows so much easier.”
Ballerini starts Thomas Rhett’s Home Team Tour on Feb. 23 in Saginaw, Michigan, and after four major tours, including her own headlining run, she has living out of a suitcase down. Her fridge will be stocked with healthy comfort foods (hummus is her favorite), customized meals by Vibe Chefs and lots of LaCroix. And if there is a Whole Foods on the way to a gig, she’ll always make pit stop for their California chicken salad with grapes, pita chips and kombucha.
“It took a while to learn to eat healthy on road,” she admits. “It’s really hard. Really, really hard. But on the bus, I can use the stove top in the morning to make a veggie scramble. And have lots and lots and lots of coffee. I try to have protein for dinner so I have energy for the show.”
In the bus she’s riding in now, there’s a back room with a bed that’s closer to full size for random naps when she can squeeze them in her daily schedule.
“I am really aware of my sleep, because if I don’t get enough, I’m not at my best. So I’m not scared of a good nap now and then,” she says. “If I have a two-hour chunk of downtime during the day, you better believe I’m napping.”
The bus vanity also sounds like a beauty guru’s dream. Her makeup is organized in little drawers and every little sparkle, lip color, foundation and powder has a home. And she doesn’t rely on a pro to do her looks every show — she does it all herself.
“When it’s time to get ready, I shut the door, crank music and just do one thing at a time,” she says. “When I’m doing my hair, I lay the curling iron in the sink — the water’s off, obviously — and that way it doesn’t fall off the small counter.”
Her killer threads also have homes.
“My wardrobe for the concert is in the bus closet, and then I pack my regular clothes and meet-and-greet outfits separately, and I kind of live out of suitcases,” she says.