Kacey Musgraves’ sophomore album Pageant Material isn’t out til June 23, but it’s already earned the 26-year-old singer-songwriter one surprise distinction: on June 30, she’ll become the first country artist to grace the cover of indie music mag The Fader, which is best known for putting artists like Kanye West, Lana Del Rey and Sam Smith on its cover months, if not years, before its more mainstream peers.
“She writes melodies that are really sticky, in the same way that, say, Future or Rich Homie Quan does,” says The Fader editor-in-chief Naomi Zeichner. “We didn’t want to single her out as a token liberal country star. Kacey happens to be one of the most exciting writers and guitar players out there, and we want to be a definitive place for music profiles that dig deeper and get the stories behind the people making music that matters.”
Part of that story includes the detail that Pageant Material takes its title in part from the flak Musgraves caught in country circles after the 2013 CMA Awards camera showed her frowning during Miranda Lambert’s acceptance speech for Female Vocalist of The Year (Musgraves was nominated and lost.)