In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8th, Apple Music presents a candid conversation on Beats 1 between Maren Morris and Brandi Carlile. It’s more of an interview really, with the “Girl” singer-songwriter asking the folk-rock rebel about topics as varied as motherhood, the responsibility of male artists to foster gender equity in the music business, and Carlile’s devastating performance of “The Joke” at the Grammy Awards.
They also share more details about the anticipated Highwomen project, an all-star collective of female artists in the vein of the country-music supergroup the Highwaymen. Made up primarily of Carlile, Morris and Amanda Shires, the Highwomen is said to feature a rotating cast.
“The whole idea started with Amanda Shires. Like we were basically hanging out and we got to know each other, became fast friends, fell in love, and she said we should start like a political movement,” recalls Carlile, who suggested it be a musical movement as well. “She was like, ‘Yeah. We can call it the Highwomen.’ … She’s like, ‘And not high like high, but like exulted.'”
Carlile says the project leans toward “really classic country” and includes songs from Natalie Hemby, Lori McKenna and, perhaps, Miranda Lambert. Jason Isbell, Sheryl Crow and the Hanseroth twins from Carlile’s band are among the contributing musicians, overseen by producer Dave Cobb.
“Sheryl Crow’s playing bass. And then our boys, our men, adjacent feminists, you know? Jason Isbell, the Twins, Dave Cobb, Chris Powell. It’s turning into a movement in Nashville to very kindly, but insistently, say, ‘Women need to be included,'” Carlile says. “Women need to experience representation in country and Western music and Americana and that starts in Nashville. It starts with us.”
The conversation between Morris and Carlile airs in full on Beats 1 on Apple Music on March 8th at 12:00 p.m/ET (at apple.co/speciallive and on-demand at apple.co/special) and is part of the service’s month-long campaign to highlight “visionary” women in music. Artist-curated playlists and female-focused programming are planned.