Kelsea Ballerini has added a couple more songs to her scathing Divorce EP Rolling Up the Welcome Mat, insisting she’s ready to put her tumultuous split from country star Morgan Evans behind her — even as she drops a FEW MORE BOMBS LIKE, “I hope you sleep better at night now that you got an army/Of people that believe I’m the word that you used to call me.”
This lyric can be found on “Interlude (Full Length),” a powerful expansion of the previous EP’s “Interlude,” a considerably shorter but nonetheless quite honest rumination on the divorce. With lyrics like “The rumors going around, but the truth is kinda nuanced/I wanna set it straight, but my lawyer says I shouldn’t,” and “We really turned goodbye to a game to a hobby/You collected bones, but I buried the bodies,” the new version sounds like a survey of the still-burning aftermath of their breakup.
“How Do I Do This,” the other new song on Rolling Up the Welcome Mat (For Good), is comparably less incisive in that it isn’t specifically about the divorce but rather Ballerini’s attempts to re-enter the public eye after such a torturous heartbreak. “I think it’s probably time to keep it moving,” she sings on the chorus, “I talk a big game that I’m scared of losing/Everything I knew about love is ruined/It’s so confusing/So, how do I do this?”
The choice to release “Interlude (Full Length),” which she had been singing live on tour (and which fans had been yearning for), was one of the few comments Ballerini made about the enlarged EP on Twitter.
Hearing you very loudly express that the INTERLUDE NEEDS TO BE A FULL SONG KELSEA COME ON, the additional outros that we ended up screaming-singing nightly on tour, and the lyric modifications along a therapeutic path.
Ballerini added that this extra present also comes with a “favor.” “I ask that you help this be ours and let the music simply be the music, not dig back into the experience that it was written about nearly a year ago,” she wrote in her letter. I’m proud and protective of this EP as a writer, producer, and musician, as well as of the fresh, joyful season of my life that I’m in as a woman and a person.
She continued: “My real hope is for us to continue growing, healing, and evolving together with acceptance and kindness (even when we unleash our inner fire breathing dragon singing the new versions of these songs). Am I right?”
Ballerini’s Rolling Up the Welcome Mat (For Good) will ostensibly be her last statement on the subject, but it’s unclear if Evans will make one final argument. The musical back-and-forth may have begun with Evans’ viral debut performance of “Over for You” in September 2022, just before the divorce was formalized.
On Valentine’s Day of this year, Ballerini released the original Rolling Up the Welcome Mat EP, and on his April 2023 EP, Life Upside Down, Evans added a few break-up songs.