Country singer-songwriter Kacey Musgraves recently released her debut album, Same Trailer Different Park, after she sprang up the charts with her hit single “Merry Go Round.”
The 24-year-old Texas native emerged onto the country scene after becoming a top 10 finalist on season five of “Nashville Star.” She has since gained recognition from popular artists such as Katy Perry, who encouraged Twitter followers to buy her album, and Miranda Lambert, whose latest album features one of Musgraves’ songs.
When I first heard this album, I was immediately drawn to Musgraves as an artist but not because of her singing. While her voice is sweet and pleasant, it is not anything extraordinary, but her knack for writing simple, truthful songs is.
The tone of Same Trailer Different Park is refreshing because it is not exclusively filled with redundant songs about love and breakups that are typical of female 20-something artists.
“Merry Go Round,” the song that sparked her career, is one small-town girls can identify with. Musgraves describes the cycle of settling in a familiar place in a heart-wrenching manner that soon turns into inspiration.
“Tiny little boxes in a row ain’t what you want, it’s what you know,” is a brilliant line that accurately portrays people I know.
“Silver Lining,” the opening track, is a light and catchy song with a simple, uplifting message: to not give up on something just because it gets tough. In “Blowin’ Smoke,” which has more of a gritty, rock vibe, Musgraves cleverly uses the phrase “blowin’ smoke” literally and metaphorically to tell her coworkers they will eventually get out of their dead-end jobs.
But as good as these songs are, nothing compares to “Follow Your Arrow,” an upbeat tune that candidly addresses life’s double standards.
“Make lots of noise, kiss lots of boys – or kiss lots of girls, if that’s something you’re into” would not normally be a popular line in the country music world, but it fits perfectly with Musgraves’ blunt writing style.
Of course, the album is not completely void of songs about relationships. “Dandelion” starts with slow, melancholy verses that fade into an uplifting chorus and compares petals flying away in the wind to a man who always leaves.
“Stupid,” a fast-paced, angsty tune, declares that love is stupid and should not be bothered with – a great anthem for those frustrated with their love life. “It Is What It Is” tiptoes the verge of being a ballad and talks about romantic relationships that cannot be defined.
Musgraves has what it takes to become the new sensation in country music. After touring with Kenny Chesney and selling over 43,000 records, she seems to be well on her way.