Time magazine has revealed its Women of the Year list, honoring 12 leaders helping to create a more equal world. Singer-songwriter Kacey Musgraves is among those being recognized.
Musgraves will perform at Time’s invitation-only Women of the Year gala in Los Angeles on International Women’s Day, March 8. The event will also include Time magazine Women of the Year honorees Tracy Chou, Allyson Felix, Amanda Gorman, Sherrilyn Ifill, Jennie Joseph, Amanda Nguyen, Michaela Jaé Rodriguez and Kerry Washington. Additional honorees highlighted in the Time Women of the Year list include Amal Clooney, Adena Friedman and Zahra Joya.
Texas native Musgraves, who last year released her project Star-Crossed, spoke with Time about being a female in a male-dominated industry, and hearing “no” regularly.
“I have been told ‘no’ a lot in terms of something that I would want to take a creative risk on,” Musgraves told the publication. “I decided I’d rather go down in flames for something I really believe in than present a watered-down version of myself that may make me more money. You have to fight that until you can get to a place where you can have total creative freedom, and I’m getting there.”
In 2018, Musgraves won the album of the year honor at the Grammys for her project Golden Hour. This year, Musgraves’ song “Camera Roll” is nominated for best country song and best country solo performance at the upcoming ceremony on April 3, though Star-Crossed was deemed ineligible for inclusion in the best country album category. Musgraves also shared with Time her feelings about the value of Grammy awards nominations and wins.
“Anytime you get recognized for your work, it’s a huge compliment. But being able to have those things has never shaped what I’m creating,” she said. “Genres were necessary in a time where you would physically walk into a record store and need to browse shelves that were categorically separated. 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.”
Musgraves added, “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.”