The Best Kacey Musgraves Songs: Her 20 Greatest

kacey musgraves songs
Kacey Musgraves - Palace Theatre St. Paul in 2019. Image by Andy Witchger on Wikimedia Commons.

Last updated on June 1st, 2023 at 09:26 pm

Kacey Musgraves knows what’s important to her, and she’s not afraid to write about it and proclaim it to the world in her hit music.

From standing up for others to sharing her experience of heartbreak to standing up for yourself, there is nothing off-limits.

What do we think are the best Kacey Musgraves songs? Find out below.

20 Best Kacey Musgraves Songs


20. “Glittery” (2019)

Put a new spin on your Christmas music with the original Kacey Musgraves song “Glittery” featuring Troye Sivan.

This beautiful twist on Christmas and love debuted during The Kacey Musgraves Christmas Show in 2019.

It wasn’t on our Christmas list, but we’re glad we were given this beautifully crafted surprise.

Related: 30 Best Christmas Songs of All Time


19. “If This Was a Movie…” (2021)

Complete with the singer’s always spot-on vocals, this melancholy track will have us all daydreaming again. It’s easily one of the best Kacey Musgraves songs.


18. “Simple Times” (2021)

Haven’t we all had that moment where we look back and realize that life used to be so much simpler when we were kids, even when it didn’t seem like it at the time?

In this fun melodic tune, Musgraves remembers the simplicity of being a teenager spending all your time with friends and not worrying about the responsibilities that come with adulthood.

Who doesn’t miss that time in our life? “Simple Times” is certainly one of the most relatable Kacey Musgraves songs.


17. “Miserable” (2018)

Kacey Musgraves’ “Miserable” is the story of that person everyone knows who seems always to be weighed down by a gray cloud of misery.

While it seems to be a depressing listen at first, as the constant negative complaints of the person are listed throughout the song, Musgraves brings it back in the bridge and reminds us that we don’t have to expose ourselves to that kind of negative energy.

We love everything about this Kacey Musgraves song.


16. “High Horse” (2018)

Kacey Musgraves molds country instrumentation with a hip disco sound for “High Horse,” and we’re digging it.

The upbeat, danceable melody makes us want to channel our inner John Travolta and play it on repeat.

Related: The Best 15 Female Country Singers of All Time: Who Made the List? 


15. “High Time” (2018)

It’s important to take a step back from the craziness of life, nurture your soul, and find yourself again.

Kacey Musgraves reminds us of that in her 2018 song “High Time” from Pageant Material.  

Maybe it’s “High Time” we unplugged and started “catching up with the old” us, too.


14. “Good Ol’ Boys Club” (2015)

“Good Ol’ Boys Club” is a Kacey Musgraves song that appreciates the simple message of hard work without using connections to get ahead.

The song, off Kacey Musgrave’s second studio album, Pageant Material, is undoubtedly a hidden gem as the infectious melody encourages listeners to be proud of what they can do on their own.


13. “Slow Burn” (2018)

Kacey Musgraves penned this 2018 song for her album Golden Hour while she sat on her front porch.

Musgraves noted in an interview that the song could be applied to so many things, from careers to relationships to savoring a drink, but no matter what remembering that it’s just as much about enjoying the journey as it is the end result.

“Slow Burn” indeed makes us slow down and appreciate the little things in this crazy thing called life, which is why it is one of the best Kacey Musgraves songs.


12. “Lonely Weekend” (2018)

This honest Kacey Musgraves song from the album Golden Hour hears the singer express her loneliness while at the same time seeming to accept the fact knowing it won’t last forever.

It’s a whirlwind of emotions that anyone can relate to at one point or another.

Related: The Best Female Singers of All Time: No Auto Tune Allowed


11. “Breadwinner” (2021)

Female power, ladies!

“Breadwinner,” recorded for Kacey Musgraves’ fifth studio album, brings a sassy mood to the airwaves.

The up-tempo track encourages women everywhere not to settle for a man who doesn’t appreciate a woman’s shining light if it means overshadowing his own. 

We’re right there with you, Kacey!


10. “Are You Sure?” (2015)

Living legend Willie Nelson joins the Grammy-winning singer for her cover of his 1960s song, “Are You Sure?”

The slow, ballad feel of the melody and lyrics brings us straight back to the roots of country music, with Nelson providing a few vocals and accompaniment on his famous guitar, Trigger.

You will want to take advantage of this hidden track on Musgraves’ second studio album, Pageant Material. 

Related: Willie Nelson’s Net Worth and Other Essential Facts About the Country Legend


9. “Space Cowboy” (2018)

We’ll admit, when we first heard the title “Space Cowboy,” we wondered if this would be some strange mashup about a combined Woody and Buzz Lightyear wannabe. Thank goodness we were wrong.

Instead, upon first listen, we immediately fell in love with the beautifully crafted melody and the heartfelt lyrics. Although it’s meant to be a story about letting your loved one go, Musgraves’ stunning voice helps get us through.

It went from bringing confusion to being one of our list’s best Kacey Musgraves songs.

Related: 20 of the Best Songs About Cowboys: Giddy Up!


8. “There is a Light” (2021)

Knowing that the singer recorded “There is a Light” and the entire Star-Crossed album amidst her divorce makes this mid-tempo anthem all the more powerful.


7. “Justified” (2021)

“Justified” is the lead single from Kacey Musgraves’ fifth studio album, labeled the “Divorce Album,” following her split from Ruston Kelly.

In an interview with Elle magazine in May of 2021, Musgraves seemingly confirms this theory as she speaks about the song.

“I felt, in many ways, on top of the world in my career, but in my personal life, I felt like I was dying inside. I was crumbling. I was sad. I felt lonely. I felt broken.”

This profoundly personal track makes us feel like we’re going on the emotional rollercoaster with her, and we’re happy to do it.  

“Justified” has a well-deserved place in our top 10 Kacey Musgraves songs.


6. “Butterflies” (2018)

“Butterflies” is the ultimate love story we all wish we had, as it describes the gain of a relationship that sees your partner lifting you up instead of tearing you down.

Described as a “genre-defying” mix of country, pop, and disco with a “reggae-fied twang,” it’s a song that we’re going to reach for the dial and turn up the volume and roll the windows down.

It will always be one of our favorite Kacey Musgraves songs.

Related: The 50 Best Country Songs from Jimmie Rodgers to Morgan Wallen 


5. “Biscuits” (2015)

When the country superstar released “Biscuits” as the lead single from her second studio album, it quickly became one of our favorite Kacey Musgraves songs.

As she often does in her songs, Musgraves reminds the listener of the importance of caring for yourself and worrying about the path you’re taking instead of what others might think about it.

Even without that, the classic hillbilly-esque line of “Mind your own biscuits and life will be gravy” and the backing banjo accompaniment make us smile every time.


4. “Dime Store Cowgirl” (2015)

Kacey Musgraves has said this song was inspired by her experience in the Buckaroos, a kids’ band she was in with her sister, Kelly Musgraves.

A girl in the group reportedly told Musgraves: “Don’t you wear your hat like that, you’re just gonna look like some dime store cowgirl,” referring to the way she wore their required “pin-up cowgirl-style” outfits. Musgraves said in an interview with Fader that she always remembered that, which eventually inspired the song’s title.


3. “Merry Go ‘Round” (2012)

Kacey Musgraves’ debut single “Merry Go ‘Round” cleverly incorporates a twist on classic nursery rhymes, Mary, Mary Quite Contrary, and Jack & Jill, as the singer cynically perceives life in the Midwest.

The up-tempo guitar and banjo hit earned Musgraves her first Grammy Award for Best Country Song at the 56th Grammy Awards. The album, Same Trailer Different Park, also took home the Grammy for Best Country Album that year.

Related: 2023 Grammy Winners, Nominees, and Performances


2. “Follow Your Arrow” (2013)

It’s the single that reminded us all to stay true to ourselves no matter what others say about it.

Kacey Musgrave’s single “Follow Your Arrow” off her debut album made a bold statement that brought a lot of controversy among conservatives for its support of the LGBTQ+ community.

That didn’t stop the song from winning Song of the Year at the 2014 Country Music Association Awards or earning a platinum certification by RIAA. 

It was ranked No. 39 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 100 Greatest Country Songs of All Time, and, along with it, the publication called out the controversy. 

“‘Follow Your Arrow’ isn’t an attack on conservatism so much as an attack on any system that keeps us from being who we are, gay or straight, sober or stoned,” they said.


1. “Rainbow” (2019)

When Kacey Musgraves released her single “Rainbow” in 2019, it gave us all the feels.

Co-written with Shane McNally and Natalie Hemby, Musgraves has described the piano ballad as “a message of hope for anyone in the midst of dark times” and is the perfect theme song for anyone facing adversity.  

Almost like a modern-day version of the Wizard of Oz’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow,” it gives us the same kind of feel that the dark clouds hovering over our lives will soon go away to reveal “there’s always been a rainbow hangin’ over [our] head.”

The song earned her several award nominations and was certified gold by the RIAA.

If that wasn’t enough to solidify it in the top spot in our best Kacey Musgraves songs list, the fact that it was the last song the singer’s grandmother ever heard her granddaughter write and that it was played at her funeral certainly has us reaching for the tissues and pressing the repeat button.

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Written by Katie Peterson

Katie Peterson received her bachelor's degree in English from the University of Saint Mary in Leavenworth in 2015. She has worked in journalism since 2015, beginning as production assistant and eventual head staff writer of the Fort Leavenworth Lamp newspaper in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Currently, she is a multimedia journalist with the Diocese of Nashville's Office of Media and Evangelization where she writes, does photography, and edits for several types of content, including the Tennessee Register, Catholic Awakenings, and She has also worked as a freelance journalist with the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas's newspaper, The Leaven, since 2016.
In her spare time, Peterson enjoys reading, spending time with her pup, Sadie Lynn, singing and songwriting.


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