Jason Isbell has announced that he’s donating any payments he’s received from Morgan Wallen‘s Dangerous: The Double Album, which contains a version of Isbell’s “Cover Me Up,” to the Nashville division of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
The singer-songwriter’s decision comes after Wallen was caught on video using a racist slur, which has caused significant fallout for the 27-year-old “7 Summers” superstar in multiple areas of country music. He’s been suspended by his label and dropped by his agent, seen his songs removed from radio and playlists, and has been rendered ineligible for the 2021 ACM Awards.
Yet, in the controversy’s wake, many of Wallen’s fans have responded by bolstering his streaming stats and album sales. It’s that development, as noted in an Associated Press report, that moved Isbell to dedicate his Dangerous earnings to the civil rights organization.
“So … A portion of this money goes to me since I wrote ‘Cover Me Up,'” Isbell explained via Twitter on Wednesday (Feb. 10). “I’ve decided to donate everything I’ve made so far from this album to the Nashville chapter of the @NAACP. Thanks for helping out a good cause, folks.”
This isn’t the first time Wallen has courted controversy. In 2020, the singer lost a Saturday Night Live appearance after photos and video showed him partying maskless during the coronavirus pandemic. (Although he was invited back soon after and made up the slot later on.) Still, Wallen’s ongoing fall from grace seems particularly pronounced considering his rising popularity: The artist started February with Dangerous in its third week atop the Billboard 200.
When the news of Wallen’s use of the racist slur first came out, the artist quickly issued an apology; however, it didn’t stop much of country music from condemning the singer in record time.
“I’m embarrassed and sorry,” Wallen told TMZ after the celebrity tabloid first revealed the damning footage captured outside the musician’s home on Jan. 31. “I used an unacceptable and inappropriate racial slur that I wish I could take back. There are no excuses to use this type of language, ever. I want to sincerely apologize for using the word. I promise to do better.”
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