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 detonates 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.”
That line appears on “Interlude (Full Length),” an explosive extension of the original EP’s “Interlude,” which was a much shorter, but already pretty raw meditation on the divorce. The new version feels like a survey of the still-scorched earth of their split, with lines like, “The rumors going ’round, 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 other new song on Rolling Up the Welcome Mat (For Good), “How Do I Do This,” is comparatively less pointed, in that it’s not specifically about the divorce, but Ballerini’s efforts to get back out there in the wake of such a tormenting 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?”
Ballerini offered a few words about the expanded EP on Twitter, specifically her decision to release “Interlude (Full Length),” a version of which she’d been performing live on tour (and which fans had been clamoring for). “The added outro’s that we ended up screamsinging nightly on tour, the lyric changes along a healing journey, hearing you very loudly explain that the INTERLUDE NEEDS TO BE A FULL SONG KELSEA COME ON.”
At the same time, Ballerini said this bonus gift comes with a “favor.” She wrote, “From the deepest and purest part of my heart, 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. As a songwriter, producer, artist I’m proud and protective of this EP, and as a woman and human also proud and protective of the new, happy season of life I’m in.”
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?”
While Rolling Up the Welcome Mat (For Good) will ostensibly be Ballerini’s final say on the matter, it remains to be seen if Evans will have one last salvo. It was Evans who arguably kicked off the musical back-and-forth with his viral debut performance of “Over for You,” back in September 2022, a few weeks before the divorce was finalized. In turn, Ballerini released the original Rolling Up the Welcome Mat EP on Valentine’s Day of this year, while Evans included a few break-up songs on his April 2023 EP, Life Upside Down.