Kelsea Ballerini Claps Back After Being Accused Of Lip-Syncing At People’s Choice Country Awards

“One of the cameras was off,” Ballerini explained.


Lauren Jo Black

| Posted on

September 29, 2023


10:40 am

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Kelsea Ballerini; Photos by NBC

Kelsea Ballerini is setting the record straight after being accused of lip-syncing during her “Mountain With A View” performance at the 2023 People’s Choice Country Awards on Thursday evening (Sept. 28). 

She Addressed The Rumors

Following the show, the country superstar took to her Instagram stories to clarify that she was not lip-syncing and was in fact singing live. 

“I just want to say if I was lip-syncing, I would’ve sounded a lot better. One of the cameras was off, thank you and goodnight,” Ballerini said. She also added a photo giving a “bombastic side eye” to the people who criticized her performance. 

Kelsea Ballerini Instagram
Kelsea Ballerini Instagram

“Me singing live watching people thinking otherwise,” Ballerini wrote. 

NBC and People’s Choice also confirmed that her performance had a glitch on the live broadcast. 

Glitch-Free Performance

“@kelseaballerini’s FLAWLESS glitch-free performance 🤩 nobody does live vocals like her!” NBC and People’s Choice captioned the raw footage that featured Ballerini’s live vocals. 

Live from Nashville’s iconic Grand Ole Opry house, the four-time People’s Choice Country Awards nominee delivered a stunning performance of “Mountain With A View” while sporting a sleek gold dress.

“Mountain With A View” was written solely by Ballerini and finds her recalling a tumultuous time in her relationship with Morgan Evans. 

“You’re across the pond at a show, I think, in Amsterdam/ And the pictures look pretty, at least they do on your Instagram/ We say good morning, then goodnight/ I wonder if you even know where I am, where I am,” she sings. 

Kelsea Ballerini; Photo by Katherine Bomboy/NBC
Kelsea Ballerini; Photo by Katherine Bomboy/NBC

On the chorus she appears to come to the realization that their marriage is over as she sings, “I’m wearin’ the ring still, but I think I’m lyin’/ Sometimes you forget yours, I think we’re done tryin’/ I realize you loved me much more at twenty-three/ I think that this is when it’s over for me.”  

Rolling Up The Welcome Mat

The track appears on Kelsea Ballerini’s latest project, Rolling Up The Welcome Mat, which was released on Valentine’s Day of this year. The collection details the downfall of Ballerini’s marriage to fellow country singer/songwriter, Morgan Evans.

Ballerini originally wrote the songs to help her heal in the aftermath of her divorce in the public eye. She brought them to life through the Rolling Up The Welcome Mat short film, which made its debut alongside the release of the EP. 

Kelsea Ballerini; Photo by: Todd Williamson/NBC
Kelsea Ballerini; Photo by: Todd Williamson/NBC

The project took on a life of its own when Ballerini began performing the songs during her live shows. 

Due to the overwhelming demand from her fans, Ballerini later released Rolling Up The Welcome Mat (For Good). The expanded recording finds Ballerini once again teaming up with co-producer Alysa Vanderheym and includes “Interlude (Full Length),” a live rendition of “Penthouse (Healed Version)” that encapsulates the dynamic atmosphere of her live shows, an enhanced “Blindsided (Yeah, Sure, Okay)” incorporating the lyrics introduced during her Saturday Night Live appearance, and the brand-new track, “How Do I Do This.” 

Closing A Chapter

“There’s just been so much that’s happened and it’s because of you guys telling me to sing these songs and you guys showing up over and over again for the process of the lifespan of this EP. So yeah, it is the end of this chapter,” she shared during a screening of her Rolling Up The Welcome Mat short film in Nashville. “It is my thank you to you for showing up for this chapter.”

Kelsea Ballerini; Photo by: Todd Williamson/NBC
Kelsea Ballerini; Photo by: Todd Williamson/NBC

Hometown Concert

Soon, Ballerini will make her way back to her hometown of Knoxville, Tenn. for the biggest headlining concert of her career. Taking place on November 2, the “bucket list” concert will take place at Knoxville’s Thompson-Boling Arena at Food City Center. 

The one-night-only event will feature special guests Ingrid Andress and Georgia Webster.   

“Throughout the last decade and four albums, there has been a consistent ode to my hometown. Whether it be lyrically like in ‘half of my hometown’ or celebrating milestone moments in venues like my high school, the Tennessee Theater, or the Civic Center, it’s always been incredibly important to me to go back to the place that let me go to chase my dream. Playing Thompson-Boling has been on my bucket list since I was a little kid watching my favorite musicians come through town and is the perfect place to celebrate such a bookmark year and kick off a new level of touring.”

The show sold out almost immediately.

People’s Choice Country Awards

The first-ever People’s Choice Country Awards took place at the iconic Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, Tennessee on Thursday (Sept. 28).

Throughout the show, awards for 12 categories were given out, including People’s Artist of 2023, Male Artist of 2023, Female Artist of 2023, Group/Duo of 2023, New Artist of 2023, Social Country Star of 2023, Song of 2023, Collaboration Song of 2023, Crossover Song of 2023, Album of 2023, Music Video of 2023 and Concert Tour of 2023.

Toby Keith was honored with the Country Icon Award, which was presented to him by Blake Shelton. Wynonna Judd was also celebrated with the Country Champion Award, given to her by Brothers Osborne.

Wynonna Judd accepts the Country Champion award from John Osborne and T.J. Osborne from Brothers Osborne; Photo by: Mickey Bernal/NBC
Wynonna Judd accepts the Country Champion award from John Osborne and T.J. Osborne from Brothers Osborne; Photo by: Mickey Bernal/NBC

The coveted awards show also featured performances from Blake Shelton, Carly Pearce, Dan + Shay, HARDY, Jelly Roll, Kane Brown, Kelsea Ballerini, Little Big Town, Toby Keith, Wynonna Judd and more.

Adam Doleac, Blake Shelton, Brothers Osborne, Carly Pearce, Chris Young, Dustin Lynch, Gabby Barrett, Hunter Hayes, Jessie James Decker, Josh Ross, Kameron Marlowe, Kristin Cavallari, Lady A, Lauren Alaina, Leanne Morgan, Mickey Guyton, Nikki Garcia, Scotty McCreery and The War And Treaty were also on hand to present.

Little Big Town; Photo by: Todd Williamson/NBC
Little Big Town; Photo by: Todd Williamson/NBC

Little Big Town was the host of the show. “We are honored to host the inaugural ‘People’s Choice Country Awards,’ especially on one of our most beloved stages in the entire world,” the group previously shared in a press release. “We look forward to welcoming so many of our talented peers to take the Opry stage for this magical night of music.”

The 2023 People’s Choice Country Awards’ aired live on NBC and Peacock on September 28 at 8/7c simultaneously on NBC and Peacock.

The livestream also aired on Peacock, PCA Twitter, NBC Twitter/Facebook/YouTube, TODAY All Day/Twitter, E! News Twitter/Facebook/YouTube/E!Online, Access Twitter/YouTube, and Circle TV Network and Circle social platforms, featuring red carpet arrivals, backstage chats and more.

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Lauren Jo Black

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Lauren Jo Black

Lauren Jo Black, a University of Central Florida graduate, has immersed herself in the world of country music for over 15 years. In 2008, she co-founded CountryMusicIsLove, eventually selling it to a major record label in 2015. Following the rebranding of the website to Sounds Like Nashville, Black served as Editor-in-Chief for two and a half years. Currently, she assumes the role of Editor-in-Chief at Country Now and oversees Country Now’s content and digital footprint. Her extensive experience also encompasses her previous role as a Country Music Expert Writer for and her work being featured on She’s been spotlighted among Country Aircheck’s Women of Influence and received the 2012 Rising Star Award from the University of Central Florida. Black also spent time in front of the camera as host of Country Now Live, which brought live music directly to fans in 2021 when the majority of concerts were halted due to the pandemic. During this time, she hosted 24 weeks of live concerts via Country Now Live on Twitch with special guests such as Lady A, Dierks Bentley, Jordan Davis, Brett Young, and Jon Pardi. Over the course of her career, she has had the privilege of conducting interviews with some of the industry’s most prominent stars, including Reba McEntire, Blake Shelton, Luke Combs, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Lainey Wilson, and many others. Lauren Jo Black is a longtime member of the Country Music Association and the Academy of Country Music.