*Country singer Morgan Wallen has taken to Instagram with an apology over his use of the N-word, and asks his fans not to defend him because he “was wrong” and now takes “ownership” of his actions.
Wallen filmed a five-minute video describing what happened on the night he was recorded saying goodbye to his friends and using the N-word. The fallout from that incident has seen him suspended by his record label, pulled from radio, and dropped by many representatives and institutions in the country.
“I’m long overdue to make a statement regarding my last incident,” said the 27-year-old, adding that he took time to collect his thoughts and “seek some real guidance.”
“The video you saw was me on hour 72 of a bender, and that’s not something I’m proud of either,” he said. “Obviously, the natural thing to do is to apologize further and continue to apologize because you got caught, and that’s not what I wanted to do.”
Wallen said he has apologized to the people he let down by his conduct, and has also reached out to engage in “some very real and honest conversations” with leaders of various Black organizations. He didn’t name names, but said they offered him a chance “to learn and to grow.”
Wallen said he has learned that “a word can truly hurt a person.”
“This week I heard firsthand some personal stories from Black people that honestly shook me,” he added. “And I know what I’m going through this week doesn’t even compare to some of the trials I learned about from them. I came away from those discussions with a deep appreciation for them and a clearer understanding of the weight of my words.
“Our actions matter. Our words matter and I just want to encourage anyone watching to please learn from my mistake,” he said. “There’s no reason to downplay what I did. It matters and please know I’m carefully choosing my next steps in repair.”
Wallen said he will fall back from the public eye for a while, and revealed he’s been sober for nine days.
“I want my team, my family, my friends and even strangers to trust me. Hell, I wanna trust me. Who knows if I’ll be able to live down all the mistakes I’ve made, but I’m certainly going to try.”
In related news, singer-songwriter Jason Isbell says he’s donating royalties from a Morgan Wallen cover of his song “Cover Me Up” to Nashville’s NAACP chapter. Wallen regularly covered the ballad during performances before cutting the song for his 2021 album “Dangerous: The Double Album,” which surged on sales charts after the singer’s label suspended him and radio began pulling his music from rotation.
Quoting an Associated Press article about Wallen’s continued chart success despite his ousting from the industry, Isbell said via Twitter, “A portion of this money goes to me, since I wrote ‘Cover Me Up.’ I’ve decided to donate everything I’ve made so far from this album to the Nashville chapter of the NAACP.”