It’s one thing to meet the people you idolize. But it’s quite another when they offer you something that will help get your own career off the ground. And that’s how Kelsea Ballerini feels right now about a few of the big country stars who came before her.
“The people that I look up to the most in country are Shania Twain, Hillary Scott of Lady Antebellum and Taylor Swift. Those were my three that I really studied,” Ballerini told Parade.
“To not only have them acknowledge what I do, but literally turn around and reach out their hand to me and be like, ’Hey, come sing with me onstage,’ or ’I’m going to post about your album because I want you to work,’ to have those moments where people that I learned from and look up to and think are not only talented but graceful do that, it makes you feel like you’re doing something right.”
In the new interview, Ballerini also talks about being honest — and being herself — when she was writing for her new album Unapologetically (out Nov. 3). “I decided that I wanted to be the same person on my albums as I was on social media, as I was out to dinner with my mom, as I was out having a glass of wine with my friends. I wanted there to be a consistency between artist and person. I think that I tried to write this album that way too, just being very open and honest,” she explained.
And right now, being herself means occasionally taking time to realize that what’s been happening for her in life and in work is really, really special. Ballerini says that she tells herself, “This is cool. This doesn’t happen all the time. Take it in.”