Time magazine honored Kacey Musgraves in its new Women of the Year issue this week, and the singer chatted about what it’s like to be a woman in the music business and the choice to live her life openly on the heels of her divorce.
“I don’t really want to keep things private because I’m proud of the love that I have,” Musgraves told the magazine of her relationship with writer Cole Schafer. “I’m very happy. It’s natural to want to share that. And I don’t want to come across like a robot—I think people like me because I share who I am. But you also have to remember that you are under a magnifying glass, and it can get picked apart.”
In Musgraves’ song “Breadwinner,” she sings about being in a relationship with a man who is insecure about her success. She said she knows she’s not the only one who has experienced that, making the sensitive topic easier to write about.
“As more women have moved into power, it’s been interesting to see the effects,” she explained. “It’s important for men to know there are so many things you can bring to the table other than money. If you’re with a woman who earns more than you, maybe look at what you can bring emotionally, mentally, or around the house. I feel really lucky to be with someone who is so secure and is a champion of me reaching for every star possible. It’s a really beautiful thing for a man to be able to support a woman in that way and not take it personally.”
“Breadwinner” is from Musgraves’ recent album “Star-Crossed” that is also home to her Grammy-nominated song “Camera Roll.” While the album was deemed ineligible for inclusion in the country categories, Musgraves said it’s rewarding that “Camera Roll” earned two nods. However, she doesn’t regret recording a project that doesn’t fit neatly into a box.
“Genres were necessary in a time where you would physically walk into a record store and need to browse shelves that were categorically separated,” she said. “Now, mixing genres is encouraged. I can’t tell you what category any of my albums belong in because they’re a patchwork quilt of all the things I’m inspired by. Some of the best artists of all time create their own genres. What genre are the Beatles? I don’t know; it’s the Beatles—they do their own thing. It can be confusing because you could listen to any country radio station and say that a lot of things you’re hearing aren’t technically country either, so it’s worth a bigger conversation. But at the end of the day, if I made a record that makes me feel good, like I represented my truth and I was able to take creative risks, that’s all that matters. It’s bigger than a Grammy. Going into all these rooms and seeing how passionate people are about my songs—they don’t care if I ever win another Grammy. They’re there and singing just as loud either way.”
Musgraves just finished her much-lauded Star-Crossed arena tour, and she admits that coming off the road can be a difficult adjustment. The singer is a big advocate of therapy.
“I really love having that outlet,” she told Time. “I find it to be helpful in getting rid of some energy with an objective opinion—everyone could benefit from that. Being on the road and having constant stimulation, it’s exciting. But then, coming home, my house is completely silent, and it can be jarring to re-enter normal life. That part has never been easy for me. So I’m trying to spin it in my mind: I have all this open space for things that might feed the other part of me that isn’t the Kacey on stage. That’s what the rest of my 30s are going to be about.”