Morgan Wallen performing at the Billboard Music Awards 2022: Here’s why | Biden News


The Billboard Music Awards have announced another round of artists who will take the stage at the May 15 ceremony, and they’re none other than Morgan Wallen Performing at a major awards show for the first time in early 2021 after videos of the country singer using racial slurs leaked. Despite winning three awards, he was banned from the 2021 ceremony. The BBMAs honor artists strictly based on chart performance, without value judgment. Inviting him to perform, however, would seem like a real seal of approval.

“We oppose any form of discrimination, harassment or racism,” MRC Live and Alternative, which produces the awards show, told Billboard in a statement. We believe in treating everyone with dignity and respect. After a thorough review and vigorous discussion internally and with the artist’s team, where we found a demonstrated and ongoing commitment to meaningful work and promotion, we extended an invitation to participate in this year’s show.” Billboard also reviewed an internal MRC memo that said the company “There was meaningful and significant effort toward understanding and redemption, as well as an ongoing commitment to additional work.”

Wallen called his slur “ignorant and wrong” and donated a total of half a million dollars to organizations including the National Museum of African American Music and Rock Against Racism. But whether Wallen actually faced any consequences for his actions is more questionable. Despite temporary absences from awards shows and country radio, he had the most successful album of any genre of 2021: “Dangerous: The Double Album” spent 10 weeks at number one and is still in the top five 16 months after its release. “Dangerous” then won the ACM Award for Album of the Year in 2022 even though Wallen had been banned from that show the previous year as well. Wallen was even able to perform at the hallowed Grand Ole Opry less than a year after the controversy began, drawing criticism.

Perhaps Wallen should get a second chance after trying to make amends. But a year after the uproar, country music remains predominantly male and overwhelmingly white, so I wonder how many black artists don’t get their first chance on a big, nationally televised stage.

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