Same Trailer Different Park

Same Trailer Different Park

From right out of the gate, Kacey Musgraves knew exactly who she wanted to sing to—and to whom she didn’t. “I’d rather have 100,000 people who really get what I’m doing and like it for what it is than a million who can take it or leave it,” she told a reporter around the time she released her 2013 debut, Same Trailer Different Park. It was a strategy that paid in dividends for the Texas-born Musgraves, who got her start as part of a yodeling duo called the Texas Two Bits before she was even a teenager, singing at the inauguration of President George W. Bush. After a stint in Austin, Musgraves moved to Nashville, and quickly developed relationships with writers like Luke Laird and Shane McAnally, with whom she would co-produce her debut. And they immediately knew she was different. While 2012 brought bro-country and songs about beer, trucks, and the endless tailgate, Musgraves wanted more. She wanted to sing about real life and imperfect people, about loving who you want to love and about smoking the occasional bit of weed. And she wanted to talk about the real side of small-town existence—the pain, disappointment, and struggles that those party-centric radio hits by her male peers seemed to ignore. Same Trailer Different Park’s first single, “Merry Go ’Round,” did just that, offering up a plainspoken, truth-telling ballad that cut right through the bacchanal (it would eventually win a Grammy for Best Country Song). Tracks like “My House” pay tribute to the trailer park, while the silently strummed “It Is What It Is” confesses a desire to find someone who will do in the moment, instead of someone who will say, “I do.” But it was the album’s third single, “Follow Your Arrow,” that would make history. Not only did the song mention same-sex love—"Kiss lots of girls, if that’s something you’re into”—it was was co-written with McAnally and Brandy Clark, both of whom are queer. When “Follow Your Arrow” won Song of the Year at the Country Music Association Awards, Musgraves made sure McAnally and Clark stood right beside her—marking the first time two openly gay artists appeared on the CMA stage to accept their trophy. From that moment on, it was clear that allyship was something inextricable from Musgraves’ music—and that she was destined to become one of the most exciting and inclusive artists the genre had ever seen.

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