Michael Ray on Heartbreaking 'Her World or Mine' Single: 'I Did Live It'

Michael Ray might be happily in love with his fiancée, Carly Pearce, but his romantic life wasn't always going so well. The 31-year-old just released an acoustic version of his current single, "Her World or Mine," a heartbreaking song that Ray reveals he experienced firsthand.

“‘Her World or Mine’ is not a reflection of where I’m today, but it’s the exact reflection of where I was a few years ago,” Ray told PEOPLE of the song, which was written by Brett Beavers, Travis Denning and Jamie Paulin. “I can deliver this song now in a hopeful way because I did live it and I came out on the other side."

The end of his former romance was part of a trying time for Ray, while he was striving to get his career off the ground. He could likely never have imagined where he is now, with both his personal and professional life better than ever.

“You look back at what you have been through and then, you can finally start finding the light," Ray maintained. "You start looking forward to what the next day is going to bring.”

The Florida native credits Pearce with improving almost every aspect of his life, which ironically helps him sing one of the saddest songs he has ever recorded.

“Carly has opened me up in so many ways,” Ray remarked. “My home life is better than what I ever dreamed it would be. I’ve really opened up. It’s cool to have someone who can be with you to experience the highs and the lows, because God knows that we’ve been on both sides of that. I can deliver songs like ‘Her World or Mine’ now in a hopeful way because I did live it and I came out on the other side.”

Ray finds that he sings the song better now that he can remember those feelings without currently experiencing them.

“This would be a very different situation if the song found me two years ago,” Ray said.” “This song found me at the exact right time. I believe a song always finds you at the right time. I can sing every word of that song with feeling.”

Ray grew up loving the old style of country, so he has no trouble singing something that isn't entirely autobiographical.

“Vocally, I grew up on traditional music, so this song is really in my wheelhouse,” Ray said. “I’m fine and happy listening to something sad. I feel like it’s very easy to go there because it really does have a traditional feel. I love living and singing a lyric that truly twists your emotions.”

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Download "Her World or Mine" on iTunes.

Photo Credit: Getty Images / Steve Jennings