There’s not going to be a sophomore slump for Kelsea Ballerini, not even when it comes to the song, “High School.”
Ballerini’s “High School” is a songwriter’s song– a bittersweet, slow, nostalgic tune written solo by Ballerini. It’s her “Better Man.”
Ballerini wrote the song in her hometown bedroom to make sure she should could still do it on her own, “”When you write a song by yourself, there’s a different level of vulnerability that you can tap into…I started relying on other people’s creativity so much that I stopped believing in myself enough to write a song by myself,” she told Time.
Though much of Unapologetically is about a rough breakup and finding love with Morgan Evans, “High School” is more of a reflection on how much Ballerini has changed since moving to Nashville, getting a record deal and racking up three No. 1 singles, “it’s not necessarily about the boy that the song is referring to: it’s about that moment when you realize you’ve outgrown your young self. You’ve changed, and you’ve evolved and you don’t fit somewhere anymore.”
At the same time, almost every single person who went to high school and has evolved into a self-aware adult knows the guy Ballerini is singing about. It won’t be hard to picture him while listening to the song either.
Ballerini performed a special acoustic version for this release, which is what songwriters do, after all.
“High School” Lyrics: