Breadwinner

Album: Star-Crossed (2021)
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Songfacts®:

  • Bread has long been a staple of the human diet, and a breadwinner is a person whose work provides the income for a family or household. This moody track finds Kacey Musgraves warning her sisterhood about men who feel threatened by their partner being the main breadwinner.
  • Traditionally, the man is the breadwinner in the household, but the dynamic has changed over the last few decades. This song serves as a warning to other women that some guys can't handle it when his partner brings home the dough.

    At first, they're happy to live off their lover's hard work.

    He wants a breadwinner
    He wants your dinner
    Until he ain't hungry anymore


    After a while their ego gets affected, and the men feel emasculated by their partners' success.

    He wants your shimmer
    To make him feel bigger
    Until he starts feeling insecure
  • Musgraves recorded the song for Star-Crossed, an album inspired by her divorce from Ruston Kelly, her husband of two years. Kelly is, like Musgraves, a country singer-songwriter, but with much less commercial success. It begs the question of whether this is the country star's acerbic kiss-off explaining why her marriage broke down. If this is indeed the case, Kelly does not come out of it well.
  • Musgraves wrote the song with:

    Her Golden Hour co-producer Ian Fitchuk.

    Californian singer-songwriter Ilsey Juber and frequent Bon Iver collaborator BJ Burton. They also co-wrote the Star-Crossed track "Justified.
  • Musgraves co-produced the song with Ian Fitchuk and Daniel Tashian. They co-produced her entire Star-Crossed album and collaborated on her previous record, Golden Hour (2018), as well.

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