Contact Us

Kacey Musgraves, ‘Follow Your Arrow’ – ToC Critic’s Pick [Listen]

Follow Your Arrow
Mercury Nashville

That at least one publication referred to Kacey Musgraves‘ ‘Follow Your Arrow’ as a “gay anthem” speaks to how far behind country music is on the subject. The controversial single equally promotes being skinny and overweight, having a drink or staying sober, going to church or sleeping in, and smoking marijuana. All of these topics have been covered — and accepted — previously in the genre.

So maybe this is an anthem for some sort of revolution. That seems like an awful lot of pressure to put on one clever lyric during a well-written chorus. “So, make lots of noise, kiss lots of boys / Or kiss lots of girls, if that’s something you’re into,” Musgraves sings before a line that better sums up what this melodic message is about:

When the straight and narrow gets a little too straight / Roll up a joint, or don’t / Just follow your arrow wherever it points.”

‘Follow Your Arrow’ shouldn’t be hogged by the LGBT community, because the folky cut has the potential to inspire so many others. It’s the perfect answer to every sensational tabloid magazine cover. It’s a shut-down answer to snark. Imagine a world with no more snark!

Musgraves, Shane McAnally and Brandy Clark begin their song with one of those eye-raising almosts. “If you save yourself for marriage you’re a bore / If you don’t save yourself for marriage you’re a horrible person,” the newcomer sings, hanging onto the first syllable of “horrible” long enough to make you think she may use an unflattering “w” word.

The songwriting on this and every song from ‘Same Trailer, Different Park’ is among the best of 2013. Meaningful words snap together like Legos, and Musgraves’ cheery cynicism drives the melodies. The best country songs are often polarizing, and ‘Follow Your Arrow’ is sure to elicit strong opinions from fans of every generation and ideology. It’s the first country song to truly begin the gay conversation. If given significant airplay, it could also be the first to flush ignorance from the shadows that fall on many, many subjects.

Key Lyrics: “You’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t / So you might as well just do whatever you want

Did You Know?: Musgraves is the latest ‘Nashville Star’ alum to find success after the show. In 2007, she finished seventh during the fifth season of the country music reality series.

Listen to Kacey Musgraves, ‘Follow Your Arrow’

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Next: The Top 40 Country Songs of October 2013

Best of KIX FM 108

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for KIXS VIP Rewards quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive KIXS VIP Rewards contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.