Justified

Album: Star-Crossed (2021)
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Songfacts®:

  • Movin' backwards, hurt comes after
    Healin' doesn't happen in a straight line


    Kacey Musgraves married fellow country singer Ruston Kelly in October 2017, but the couple went their separate ways 32 months later. Over a bed of acoustic guitars and floaty synths, Musgraves unpacks the contrasting emotions that come with moving on after the divorce.
  • During the chorus, Musgraves says she's "justified" in her disparate feelings towards her former husband, as he didn't treat her right. On the bridge she switches the lyric and admits some responsibility in their marital breakdown, wishing she'd treated Kelly better.
  • Musgraves wrote the song with:

    Californian singer-songwriter Ilsey Juber (Shawn Mendes' "Mercy," Panic At The Disco's "High Hopes," Mark Ronson's "Nothing Breaks Like A Heart").

    Frequent Bon Iver collaborator BJ Burton. He also has production credits on songs by Eminem ("Fall") and Taylor Swift ("Closure").

    Musgraves' Golden Hour co-producer Ian Fitchuk.
  • Musgraves and Fitchuk co-produced the song with the singer's other Golden Hour co-producer, Daniel Tashian. That record earned the three Grammy awards for Best Country Album and Album of the Year.
  • Musgraves wrote this poignant reflection on the breakdown of her marriage for her Star-Crossed album. The record comprises 15 songs she wrote during the pandemic in which she ruminates on the raw emotions exposed by her divorce.
  • Bardia Zeinali directed the video, which finds Musgraves driving solemnly in her car. The songstress quietly reflects on her emotional setbacks as she attempts to rebuild her life.

    Musgraves first met Zeinali on the set of a Vogue shoot in 2019. He later directed the country star when she contributed to the remix of Troye Sivan's 2020 single "Easy."
  • The video is taken from a 50-minute film, also titled Star-Crossed, which is a visual companion to the album.
  • Kacey Musgraves sang the song on the October 2, 2021 episode of Saturday Night Live wearing just cowboy boots and her guitar. She said it was a recreation of the iconic scene from the 1994 film Forrest Gump, where Robin Wright as Jenny Curran performs some songs naked with her guitar.

    Musgraves also performed another Star-Crossed track, "Camera Roll" on the show – this time fully clothed.

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