In a recent interview with Billboard, Kacey Musgraves addressed the lack of women nominated for CMA Awards this year.
Musgraves earned a nod for Album of the Year for her 2018 record Golden Hour, the only album made by a woman nominated in the category. There are no solo female nominees for Entertainer of the Year, Single of the Year or Song of the Year.
“I have the biggest heart for country music,” Musgraves told Billboard. “And I’m honored to represent the female creative spirit as — unfortunately — the only female album nominated this year.”
Musgraves said while she’s seen glimpses of improvement, the landscape for women in country music hasn’t changed much since her 2013 CMA win for New Artist of the Year.
“Five years later, we’re still all focused on how many females are or aren’t included. I can’t say exactly why this is still an ongoing issue, but the current formula or way music is serviced and pushed in modern country music just doesn’t allow for equality,” Musgraves said.
Musgraves told Billboard the issue stems from a reluctance to embrace artists that may not be as financially successful as others.
“I think the basic root of this issue stems from fear and greed. The fear that money will be lost if something different doesn’t succeed,” Musgraves said. “That is so dangerous to a wonderfully rich and beautifully historic genre that, at its core, has traditionally always celebrated the underdog.”
This isn’t the first time Musgraves has spoken out on sexism within the country music industry. Earlier this year in an interview with Music Week, the “High Horse” singer spoke candidly about sexual harassment and power dynamics within country radio, saying “There’s definitely a massive extra pressure on females in country music to be more accommodating, more friendly to the PDs at radio stations…That same pressure is not applied to men. And it can count against you negatively if you don’t live up to those expectations in some areas.”
Musgraves will set out on her Oh, What a World Tour this October.