No way around it. Miranda Lambert is an open book on her upcoming album, which she wrote following her divorce from Blake Shelton. The country superstar opened up about her music and her latest single, “Vice,” in a new interview with Billboard magazine.
Lambert, 32, released the emotional track last month. She’s never revealed if it’s actually about Shelton, but described it as a “tear-in-your-beer.”
“[It] takes a lot of confidence and strength to be willing to be vulnerable,” she told the mag. “And I feel like when you listen to this song, there’s really nothing to read into. It says what it says. Everybody has a vice. Everybody goes through a time in their life when they run to it a little bit more than when they don’t. When I’m journaling my life and putting it on paper to a melody and then allowing people to hear it, I can’t worry about what somebody might twist it into, because it’s not like I’m hiding anything.”
“Every record I’ve ever made has been a reflection of where I am right then in my life, however old I am. And I’ve never held back at all,” she continued. “But this time with what I happened to be going through in my life, being honest was never really a choice. Everybody knew anyway. So I just said, I’m gonna journal it, and — good days and bad days — use it for my art.”
Lambert went back to the studio following her split from Shelton, 40, in July 2015. She’s previously documented some of her writing sessions on Instagram, which often took place in Nashville. In February, she notably spent a weekend making music with her new boyfriend, Anderson East, who she’s been dating for seven months.
“You run to things more and you lean on things more than you normally do when you’re hurting. I was off the road last summer, and a really positive thing that came out of the hard time in my life was that I grew as a songwriter,” she told the mag. “[And I] got to be better friends with the people that I write the songs with, just really getting that honest with each other and sitting there on a porch drinking wine. And I did spend a lot of time being quiet and being by myself. That’s part of a journey anyone has to take in their life, and sometimes we don’t slow down enough to take it. I’m glad I did, because now I have stories to share.”
Stories that have made her a bit wary. Lambert admitted that she’s “nervous as hell” to release her upcoming album because she’s been out of the spotlight trying to live “a normal life” in recent months.
“No one’s heard from me,” she said. “But I’ve never hidden anything or tried to be too mysterious. I’m pretty straightforward in my music. I always have been, and that hasn’t changed. With my songwriting, it’s taking a journey with what’s been going on in my everyday life — good, bad, ugly and everything in between. I feel like the right thing to do was just come out with something really honest.”
That doesn’t mean all of the tracks will be about Shelton and their failed marriage. “I’m never gonna have an album that’s quote-unquote a ‘heartbreak album.’ Because everybody has bad moments, and then you come out of it and you have a great moment, and then you have some somber times,” she said. “I want an emotional journey, because that’s what life is, and I want to document that.”
Shelton, meanwhile, has written about heartbreak on his new album, If I’m Honest. He released the song “Came Here to Forget” and “Go Ahead and Break My Heart,” which he collaborated on with girlfriend Gwen Stefani.
“I’ve had a lot of music over the years, but I don’t think I’ve ever had a song before that’s such a direct look into my life,” he said of the solo track in a March press release. “That’s why I’m so excited about this particular song.”
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