Infinite Shuffle

July 8, 2013

166 – Kacey Musgraves

Filed under: East Texas, M — assman41 @ 3:20 am

The thing about country music is that, for the longest time, it’s been saddled with several stereotypes that tend to turn off the more pretentious of us music fans.

You know what I mean. It’s too conservative or uber-patriotic or influenced by religion. Every song is about guns or trucks or beer. Or it’s about a guy drinking away his sorrows after losing his woman or his dog — or both.

I realize stereotypes are usually nothing more than gross generalizations and that there’s some solid music to be found in the country genre. But at the same time, I’ve already got my hands full in the indie realm and don’t have any desire to stray too far.

But every so often there comes along a twangy act that catches my ear. A few years ago, it was The Band Perry, and before them there was Those Darlins.

And today it’s Kacey Musgraves, the 24-year-old singer-songwriter from East Texas. When I first heard her mentioned on NPR’s “All Songs Considered” podcast late last year, I figured I was getting in on the ground floor with Ms. Musgraves.

Turns out, she’s been doing this whole music thing for more than a decade, having self-released three albums since 2002 when she put out her debut a month shy of her 14th birthday.

But she didn’t land on anyone’s radar until 2007 when she placed seventh on the reality show, Nashville Star. And this past spring she released her fourth full-length album and her first with the support of a record label.

On Same Trailer Different Park, Musgraves shows off the lyrical chops and crooning vocals that landed her several country music award nominations earlier this year.

I couldn’t help but post back-to-back videos. Both songs are so good and filled with clever wordplay and lyrics that seem practically foreign in a country song. From the opening line of “Merry Go ‘Round” — “If you ain’t got two kids by 21, you’re probably gonna die alone.” — to the main theme of “Follow Your Arrow” — “Damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t, so might as well just do whatever you want.” — Musgraves takes all the adages and life lessons she learned while growing up and turns them on their head.

There are plenty more great lines scattered throughout the albums on songs such as “Silver Lining” (“If you’re ever gonna find a silver lining, it’s gotta be a cloudy day.”), “My House” and “Step Off”.

There are also some tracks that have a more traditional vibe — such as “Blowin’ Smoke”, “Back On the Map” and “It Is What It Is”. And then there’s “Keep It To Yourself”, which could probably be a hit on every country and pop chart out there if it was ever actually released as a single.

In addition to her own work, Musgraves has helped pen songs for such singers as Martina McBride, Miranda Lambert and Gretchen Wilson and also wrote a song for the Nashville TV soundtrack.

She’s currently on a tour that will take her to the West, Southeast and Northeast before jetting off to Europe in the fall.

From there, her next destination appears to be superstardom.

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4 Comments »

  1. […] may have heard that 2013 has been the Year of the Indie Woman. From Lorde and Haim to Savages and Kacey Musgraves, the last 12 months have been dominated by female voices shaking things up on the indie […]

    Pingback by 188 – Lucius | Infinite Shuffle — December 19, 2013 @ 1:17 pm

  2. […] Kacey Musgraves – Same Trailer Different Park … Favorite songs: “Merry Go ’round” and “Follow Your Arrow” […]

    Pingback by Best of 2013 – My list | Infinite Shuffle — January 2, 2014 @ 1:43 am

  3. […] 2013 was the year that Kacey Musgraves became a breakout star, then 2014 was when music fans started to see the full effect of her success […]

    Pingback by 210 – Courtney Barnett | Infinite Shuffle — January 16, 2015 @ 12:27 pm

  4. […] Kacey Musgraves – Pageant Material … This felt a little too much like a continuation of her debut album. But, considering how great the precursor was, she can be forgiven for going back to the well. … Thumbs up: “Biscuits”, “Dime Store Cowgirl”, “Pageant Material”, “Family Is Family” and “Cup of Tea” […]

    Pingback by Best of 2015 | Infinite Shuffle — December 31, 2015 @ 8:57 pm


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