In the letter obtained by Variety, however, Mabe argued that, sonically, star-crossed has “got more country instrumentation” than Musgraves’ 2018 album Golden Hour, which won Album of the Year and Best Country Album, and that many of the same people worked on and produced both albums.
“Both albums complete each other with Golden Hour telling the story of falling in love and star-crossed telling the conclusion of the breakup,” the letter read. “There is no departure in sound from these two projects.”
Per the note, Mabe also stressed “the importance of Kacey Musgraves to country music and why this decision is so much more than an entry point for an awards show.” She then pointed out that women are currently “making up only 10 percent of all country airplay.”
At one point in the letter, Mabe claimed the decision regarding star-crossed “calls into question the other agendas that were part of this decision.”
“That takes us to the process,” the letter continued. “The idea that a handful of people including competitors, who would benefit from Kacey not being in the country category, are deciding what is country only exacerbates the problem. The system is broken and sadly not just for Kacey Musgraves but for our entire genre because of how these decisions are made for music’s biggest stage. Building roadblocks for artists who dare to fight the system is so dangerous and against everything I think the Grammy’s stand for. But that’s where we are today.”
E! News has reached out to the Recording Academy, Musgraves’ rep and Universal Music Group Nashville for comment but has yet to hear back.