Kelsea Ballerini Recalls Crazy First Encounter With Keith Urban at CMT Music Awards

With 2024 marking a decade since Kelsea Ballerini first stepped into country music, many fans know her as the singer behind hit songs like “Love Me Like You Mean It”. Besides winning numerous awards for her contributions to music and releasing four studio albums, the country star will take the stage on Sunday to host the 2024 CMT Music Awards. With the night promoting top singers and a tribute to Toby Keith, Ballerini recently discussed her life before stardom and getting the chance to meet Keith Urban for the first time. 

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While touring the country and singing in front of thousands, Ballerini never forgot her life before the spotlight. Like all aspiring artists, Ballerini once stood on the outside looking in. Recalling a special moment she had while in Nashville, the singer told Billboard, “When I was in high school I had just moved to Nashville. We waited outside the barricade at the CMT Awards when they were still in Nashville. We just waited for artists to come over because we wanted to take pictures and meet them and, I remember Keith Urban came over and I have a picture with him as a fan. Just like one of the craziest moments of my life.”

[RELATED: Kelsea Ballerini Shares Details Surrounding Toby Keith Tribute at CMT Music Awards]

Kelsea Ballerini Shocked That Hit Song Is Ten Years Old

From standing outside the CMT Music Awards to now hosting, Ballerini considered the honor a full circle moment. “It feels very full circle obviously to go from, like the kiddo outside the barricade to now being the host of the show.”

Although preparing to host the CMT Music Awards, Ballerini also remembered her hit song “Love Me Like You Mean It” and how it has been a decade since its release. “Someone was like hey ‘Love Me’ is a decade old next summer and I was like that doesn’t feel real.” She continued, “I wanted to find a way to say thank you and also challenge myself to like reconstruct it as a 30 year old. How I would sing it now sounds very different than how 19 year old me recorded it and it was really fun to to figure that out and I’m proud of it and it’s also very much so a reflection of the new music to come.”

Don’t miss the 2024 CMT Music Awards, airing live on CBS on April 7, starting at 7:00 p.m. ET/PT on CBS. Fans can also watch the awards on Paramount+. 

(Photo by Jason Davis/Getty Images)

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