“LOOK AT OUR ALBUM GO,” she captioned an Instagram video on Friday, November 10, tagging the Recording Academy and collaborator Alysa Vanderheym.
In the clip, Ballerini is cozied up to boyfriend Chase Stokes and surrounded by a group of friends as the Grammy nominations ceremony played on television. When the announcer revealed the Best Country Album nominations, Rolling Up the Welcome Mat was the first record listed.
Ballerini and her friends immediately burst into cheers — and tears. Stokes looked relieved as Ballerini hugged one of her pals. Eventually, the Outer Banks actor wrapped his arms around his girlfriend and gave her a kiss on the cheek.
Rolling Up the Welcome Mat was released as a six-track EP in February with music inspired by Ballerini’s split and eventual divorce from ex-husband Morgan Evans.
Ballerini filed for divorce from Evans in August 2022 after nearly five years of marriage. The proceedings were finalized that November. Ballerini broke down what went wrong between them on her EP with emotional songs like “Penthouse.”
“It hurts putting s—t in a box / And now we don’t talk / And it stings rolling up the welcome mat / Knowing you got half,” the song’s lyrics read. “I kissed someone new last night / But now I don’t know where you’re sleeping, baby / We got along real nice, until I wanted out, now I know you hate me.”
Following the success of her EP, Ballerini rereleased the record in August as Rolling Up the Welcome Mat (For Good), which featured a “healed version” of “Penthouse” with new lyrics.
“I kissed someone new last night / But now I don’t care where you’re sleeping, baby,” she sings on the updated version — changing “know” to “care” — proving that she’s officially moved on from Evans. (Ballerini started dating Stokes in January.)
The For Good EP also included a “full length” version of “Interlude,” the “Yeah, Sure, Okay” version of “Blindsided” and a new song titled “How Do I Do This.” While chatting with Us Weekly exclusively in August, Ballerini reflected on the “unexpected” fan response to the album.
“It’s not mine anymore, it’s just not. Like, it’s very much so an ‘ours’ thing. And so [the fans have] been very vocal from the very beginning — as soon as I played ‘Blindsided’ on SNL, they were like, ‘We need the ‘Yeah, Sure, Okay’ version,’” she said at the time. “And then when I started singing ‘Penthouse’ live, it kind of just changed and evolved every night. And then one day, on a whim, I just changed one word and it took on a whole new life and [the fans] were like, ‘We need that version.’ It’s called ‘The Healed Version.’ I never made that up! That was them.”
While “the songs and what they were about” will “always be a chapter” of Ballerini’s life, she’s closed the book on the past.
“Now, it’s just this thing that has connected me to people and I wanna be able to say thank you by giving them what they’ve asked for through this music,” she told Us of her fans. “So that’s why I’m so excited about it. My only feeling toward it is gratitude.”