Taking the stage at the Grammy Awards last month with a flowing gown of blush pink, Nashville-based singer/songwriter Kacey Musgraves made a tearjerker of an acceptance speech for best country song (“Merry Go ‘Round”) and best country album (“Same Trailer Different Park”). Minutes later, the 25-year-old Texan ditched the flowing gown for a country-western get-up featuring illuminated boots.
In just a short time, Musgraves showed the world that she truly does follow her arrow, wherever it points.
“[Laughs] Yes, I saw a lot of people in that crowd a bit wonderstruck by our electric suits,” says Musgraves of the Grammy performance of her latest single, “Follow Your Arrow.” “Getting up on that stage was a full-circle moment and very humbling and flattering. I mean, it’s the highest honor you can receive in music. But I don’t know if it changed my life. It’s hard to get the perspective on that. If anything, it’s going to allow me to stick around and do what I love a lot longer.”
In the year since her debut album was released, Musgraves has gained a legion of fans who find themselves drowning within the lyrics of her songs and keeping her album at the top of the charts — from girls that got “bored and got married” to guys who found the “straight and narrow a bit too straight.”
“I loved watching the album go back to number one after the Grammys,” says Musgraves of “Same Trailer Different Park,” which made her as the first solo female country artist in five years to open at No. 1 with a rookie release. “It’s cool to see a project that means so much to me continue to have life. You only get to make your first record one time. So I want to hold on to it as long as I can.”
With a tour schedule that has Musgraves sharing the stage this summer with everyone from Willie Nelson to Katy Perry, all indications are that the album still has a lot of life and inspiration left to share.
“I could not ask for a more dream career right now,” says Musgraves, who also goes into April with a slew of Academy of Country Music Awards nominations. “The range of people I am touring with pretty much sums me up musically. I am so into traditional tried-and-true classics, but I’m also into a lot of other things. It’s all about bridging those gaps.”
In fact, Musgraves says “Follow Your Arrow” originally had its eyes on Perry, who passed on the song because she thought it sounded more like Musgraves.
“Katy has been a huge champion of mine, whether in terms of my songwriting or my record,” explains Musgraves. “Even when ‘Merry Go Round’ came out, she was already a huge supporter. We have stayed in touch and truly are mutual fans. It’s all about supporting all kinds of genres. It’s the music and the songwriting that is always the common thread there. Plus, I think it’s going to be cool to see a whole different side of music that I haven’t got to see yet.”
Coming into Chicago Feb. 26 alongside Lady Antebellum and Kip Moore, Musgraves says she is no hurry to start, or try to “one up” her last album anytime soon.
“Everything goes downhill when you start doing that,” she says. “You have to keep doing what you have been doing, no matter how many people like or don’t like it.”