Kelsea Ballerini Performs ‘Make the World Go Away’ at the Opry [Exclusive Premiere]
Kelsea Ballerini is one of the freshest voices in contemporary country music, but she demonstrated her connection to the roots of traditional country with an acoustic performance of "Make the World Go Away" at the Grand Ole Opry recently.
Ballerini was joined by two acoustic guitarists for a casual performance that took place in one of the alcoves in the backstage lounge of the Opry and is debuting exclusively at Taste of Country. The 21-year-old singer-songwriter revealed a more soulful side to her voice with the performance, which is very different than the uptempo fun of her debut single, "Love You Like You Mean It," or the flirty "Dibs," her current release. One of the guitarists joined in for a harmony vocal to flesh out the bare-bones arrangement, which relies on the melody, lyrics and Ballerini's voice to carry the entire weight.
Legendary country songwriter Hank Cochran wrote "Make the World Go Away," which reached No. 2 on the Billboard Hot Country Singles charts in 1963 for Ray Price, and then hit No. 1 in 1965 in a different rendition from Eddy Arnold. Ballerini moves the song to a higher register and pulls out all of the strings and other production elements for her version, pulling together the past and present of country music.
Ballerini is one of the hottest young artists in the genre; "Love Me Like You Mean It" became the first debut single to hit No. 1 for a new female artist in many years, and she is continuing that momentum with "Dibs." She is set to embark on the Just the Right Kind of Crazy tour with Dan + Shay this fall, beginning in Louisville, Ky. on Oct. 1.
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