Kelsea Ballerini Reveals Taylor Swift's Best Advice & Talks Releasing Albums One Week Apart: 'We Root Each Other On'
With a knack for writing hit songs and the current title of country's sweetheart, Kelsea Ballerini is comparable to Taylor Swift in many ways (and has subsequently been compared to the once-country princess many a time). Naturally, the two became close as Ballerini's career began to take off, remaining close to this day.
"I was just texting with her today!" Ballerini tells Billboard backstage at the iHeartRadio Music Festival, where Ballerini played an afternoon set at the fest's Daytime Village Saturday (Sept. 23). "She’s amazing and she’s supportive. We’re obviously in different genres now, but we’re both songwriters at heart and root each other on."
Coincidentally, the girls will be releasing their forthcoming (and both highly anticipated) albums just one week apart, with Ballerini's Unapologetically arriving Nov. 3 and Swift's Reputation coming Nov. 10. With such close ties to T-Swift, has Ballerini gotten a sneak peek of what's coming after the Billboard Hot 100-topping "Look What You Made Me Do" and follow-up release "...Ready For It?" Nope.
"I haven't heard it," Ballerini admits. "She’s the biggest superstar in the whole world, so I'm stoked."
As Ballerini's new album title suggests, she held nothing back in the songwriting process, divulging the story of the last two years of her life from a bad breakup to getting engaged to fellow country singer-songwriter Morgan Evans. While she's always been honest in her songwriting, part of Ballerini's confidence in being so open may be attributed to the advice she received from Swift once upon a time.
"[Taylor]'s just really good at being yourself," she says. "That’s always been her advice — go with your gut, go with your heart, follow that and not anything else."
Watch a clip of our interview with Ballerini above.