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Kacey Musgraves, who was honored at Variety’s Power of Women presented by Lifetime luncheon on Friday, talked about the value of music education for young people in a climate that values arts education for students less and less, which is why she’s chosen to work with the Grammy Museum. The singer also talked about the education she’s gotten from spending her life studying under the tutelage of her favorite singers and their records — and the lessons she said she’s learned about what the music business expects out of a burgeoning artist.

“My guitar teacher was this really great man named John DeFord who taught out of this really small room in a haunted hotel from the 1800s, for real,” Musgraves told the crowd. “I’m very thankful for him. But of course I did have a couple other great teachers that come to mind: Loretta Lynn and Dolly Parton. Okay, they got the big hair and they’re frilly and they’re rhinestone and they’re glamorous, but they’re important for more than that. They’re writers and they wrote about real things — birth control, women’s libido, husbands that drink. And even if the subject matter was thought to be controversial and banned by radio, they had the courage to stay true to these visions in the face of disapproval, especially at that time. It must have required some gigantic balls.”