The country singer opens up about insecurities on her new album kelsea
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Kelsea Ballerini is airing out some insecurities on her new album.

“This one is just me trying to figure my s— out, like ‘Who am I now?’ It’s a little more personal — that’s why we called it kelsea,” the country singer, 26 says of her third album, which drops Friday.

The Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter adds that “dealing with my massive social anxiety that I’ve never addressed before” informs the record, on songs like "LA."

“Part of it is I don’t know where I fit in the celebrity culture because [I think] I’m a D-list country singer and I find myself in a room with A-list people and I don’t know how to navigate it or how to talk to them,” Ballerini says. “It makes me go in my head.”

For more on Kelsea Ballerini, pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands everywhere Friday.

Kelsea Ballerini
Kelsea Ballerini
| Credit: Peggy Sirota

For this genre-bending LP, Ballerini worked with a slew of writers and producers in both Nashville and Los Angeles. And the "Homecoming Queen?" singer says she was worried, at first, about how fans would receive her more pop-leaning tracks.

“There are a lot of pop and country elements on this record. It made me scared; I was like, ‘If there’s as many beat drops as there are banjos on this album, are people going to think that I’m not a country artist anymore? Are they going to lose respect for me in this journey that I’ve built in Nashville?'” she says. “But I never will jump ship. I am rooted and I’ve built my foundation [in country], but I’m allowed as an artist and a musician to explore and create.”

Ballerini’s third album kelsea — which includes collaborations with Halsey and Kenny Chesney — drops Friday, March 20.