She needed an escape. On July 20, 2015 — as news broke that she and Blake Shelton had ended their four-year marriage — Miranda Lambert raced to her Nashville recording studio. “I walked in with guns blazing,” the country star recently recalled to Billboard. Within five minutes, she and Grammy-winning producer Shane McAnally had churned out the words to “Vice,” a single she’s said is about enduring hardship and running “to some things you shouldn’t.”
The 23 tracks that followed were equally as raw. Not wanting The Weight of These Wings, her sixth studio album, to be a basic breakup record, she made music about every emotion she experienced. “I was like, ‘Let’s feel it all,’” she explained. “I was ready to have the days where I can’t even stand up and the days where I’m celebrating.”
Two years on, she’s enjoying more of the latter thanks to her romance with fellow singer Anderson East. The pair, who first connected in September 2015, “are very much in sync,” a close Lambert insider reveals in the new issue of Us Weekly.
And the 33-year-old country music sensation (she’s nabbed 13 Country Music Association Awards and spent a record eight straight years as the Academy of Country Music’s female vocalist of the year) isn’t shy about singing the Alabama native’s praises. She marked his 30th birthday on July 17 by gushing that the R&B musician “owns my heart.” Calling him “a light that could outshine the sun,” she added, “I love making memories with you.”
And the next one could be big. One pal predicts East will soon get down on one knee. “He’s crazy about Miranda and she’s so smitten with him as well,” explains the pal. “Their friends can definitely see them getting engaged in the near future.”
The Lambert insider says the couple are always in step: “They love to play music together, drink, have fun and hang out.” Take their unplanned road trip to the Academy of Country Music Awards on April 2. Forced to make the 90-minute drive to Las Vegas when her private jet was grounded due to weather concerns, they scrambled to put together a playlist. “We were rocking out to some ‘90s country,” Lambert recalled to music outlet Sounds Like Nashville, “and we had a suitcase of booze with us.” No matter the situation, the twosome are able to find the joy, says the insider, “They have so much fun together.”
That’s not to say their romance is just liquor and laughs. Lambert confessed in Cosmopolitan’s August 2017 issue that the Middle Tennessee State grad is the person she calls when she’s on the verge of a meltdown. And he always rises to the occasion, says a source: “He’s so attentive to her and is always playing her compliments. They just balance each other out so well.”
That’s why the Lambert insider says the couple “could go the distance” and the reason the singer is gushing about the restorative power of love. As she recently explained, “It’s big and it’s worth it.”
For more on Lambert’s romance with East, pick up the new issue of Us Weekly, on stands now!