Everything We Know About Kelsea Ballerini’s Sophomore Album, ‘Unapologetically’
Two years after the launch of her chart-rocking debut album The First Time, Kelsea Ballerini is set to release her sophomore album in 2017. The country star says her second project will be a defining one for her.
“It's totally capturing the last two years of my life, which involved both a big breakup and a lot of pure growing up,” Ballerini says in an interview with Billboard; she also offers up her star-studded collaboration wishlist, which includes Hillary Lindsey, Ross Copperman and Josh Osborne, among others ... and which isn't so much a wishlist anymore.
“That’s basically my wishlist of people to collaborate with, and they’ll be on my album," Ballerini adds, "so I’m stoked.”
Ballerini has been "fully immersed" in creating her sophomore album for more than a year. Here's everything you need to know about the disc.
On July 25, during an appearance on Good Morning America, Ballerini shared that her sophomore album will be titled Unapologetically. In early 2017, she hinted that a song on which her fiance, Morgan Evans, sings background vocals might just be the album's title track; "Unapologetically" is about their relationship and, according to Ballerini, "it's cheesy and I like it."
The Release Date
Unapologetically is due out on Nov. 3. Ballerini revealed that news during her Good Morning America appearance on July 25 as well.
The Record Label
Ballerini is signed to Black River Entertainment. She also released her debut album with the label.
The Album Cover
On Aug. 5, Ballerini revealed Unapologetically's album cover on social media. It features the singer, in an ornate dress, curled up on a plush-looking chair, a lush garden behind her.
Forest Glen Whitehead and Jason Massey produced Unapologetically. Additionally, Shane McAnally helped produce the album's first track, "Graveyard;" Lindsay Rimes helped produce Track No. 8, "End of the World;" and Jimmy Robbins co-produced "Music," Track No. 11.
On May 29, Ballerini teased a clip of her sophomore album's first single, titled "Legends." She debuted the studio version of the track on The Bobby Bones Show on June 7, though fans who had seen Ballerini live had been able to hear the song already.
“Legends” is an upbeat, peppy song that finds the singer reflecting back on the glory days of a relationship: “Yeah, we were legends /,Loving you, baby, it was Heaven / What everyone wondered, we’d never question / Close our eyes and took on the world together / Do you remember?” Ballerini sings. The song’s lyrics talk about an all-consuming love story that seemed invincible: “We were crazy / Tragic and epic and so amazing / I’ll always wear the crown that you gave me / We will always stay lost in forever / And they’ll remember / We were legends.”
In her trademark sparkling country-pop style, Ballerini sings about the bittersweet memories of a love gone by, but “Legends” isn’t a downer; rather, the tune will make for a catchy summer sing-a-long.
“When I wrote this song, I knew it was the beginning of the next chapter,” Ballerini writes on Instagram. “And while I hope you hear your own story of love or loss and the lyrics bring you to your own place of nostalgia, I also hope you hear our story … [Y]ou and I have fought for each other. We’ve shown up for each other. We’ve been neon in grey crowds. We’ve written our own story. We were legends. And that is why it only makes sense that we start chapter two together, you and me. Thank you for everything.”
Ballerini released her "Legends" music video at the end of June.
In addition to "Legends," Ballerini has been performing unreleased songs titled "Unapologetically," "I Hate Love Songs," "Roses" and "High School" live recently. In 2016, the artist promised that she would include the latter song on her next album.
“I really want people to know I’m a songwriter," Ballerini explained at the time.
Ballerini's co-writers for her sophomore album include, among others, McAnally and Luke Laird in addition to Lindsey, Copperman and Osborne.
“I’m so excited about [this album],” says Ballerini. “I thought that I was attached to my first one, and this one is even more so; it’s, like, me in music form. I think it’s going to be a lot more bolder, a lot lighter and a whole lot darker than my first album.”
Kelsea Ballerini, Unapologetically Track Listing:
1. "Graveyard" (Kelsea Ballerini, Forest Glen Whitehead, Shane McAnally)
2. "Miss Me More" (Kelsea Ballerini, David Hodges, Brett McLaughlin)
3. "Get Over Yourself" (Kelsea Ballerini, Ross Copperman, Shane McAnally)
4. "Roses" (Kelsea Ballerini, Zach Crowell, Ashley Gorley)
5. "Machine Heart" (Kelsea Ballerini, Greg Wells, James Abrahart)
6. "In Between" (Kelsea Ballerini, Jimmy Robbins, Shane McAnally)
7. "High School" (Kelsea Ballerini)
8. "End of the World" (Kelsea Ballerini, Hillary Lindsey, Lindsay Rimes)
9. "I Hate Love Songs" (Kelsea Ballerini, Trevor Rosen, Shane McAnally)
10. "Unapologetically" (Kelsea Ballerini, Forest Glen Whitehead, Hillary Lindsey)
11. "Music" (Kelsea Ballerini, Jimmy Robbins, Nicolle Galyon, Jennifer Denmark)
12. "Legends" (Kelsea Ballerini, Forest Glen Whitehead, Hillary Lindsey)
In 2018, Ballerini will headline her own Unapologetically Tour. She hints that she will also be opening for another artist in 2018, although those details have yet to be announced.
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