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Kacey Musgraves, one of country music’s most critically praised artists, took home the Grammy for Album of the Year Sunday, an upset win for a genre-bending musician who infused “Golden Hour” with elements of psychedelia.
The Nashville-based musician’s third studio album beat out a crowded field of heavyweights including rappers Kendrick Lamar and Drake.
She also bested fellow female artists including Cardi B, Janelle Monae and Brandi Carlile to snare the coveted prize, in a year that saw women recognized across the top categories, after largely being snubbed in 2018.
“It was unbelievable to be even in a category with such gigantic albums, really brilliant works of art,” Musgraves told the audience at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Musgraves won four Grammys in all; the others were for Best Country Solo Performance, Best Country Song and Best Country Album.
She took the country world by storm in 2013 with her banjo-heavy hit “Merry Go ‘Round” — winning a Grammy for Best Country Song in 2014 and scoring a nomination for the coveted Best New Artist prize. She won a second Grammy for Best Country Album that same year.
She is considered an innovator in the historically conservative world of country music.
Rolling Stone Magazine has dubbed her “one of the loudest symbols of young country musicians embracing progressive values.”
The 30-year-old has said several of the songs on “Golden Hour” came out of a summertime LSD trip, and the project infuses elements of disco and also uses a vocoder — a machine that manipulates vocal signals with synthesizer signals to create a machine-like effect favoured by electronic and pop musicians.