Entertainment

Morgan Wallen ‘has yet to pay most of the $500k he pledged to black groups’ after using n-word 


Morgan Wallen has reportedly paid less than a third of the $500,000 he promised to black nonprofits after he was caught on video hurling the n-word in February, despite skyrocketing sales netting him $2million in the days after the controversy.

The country singer pledged half-a-million dollars to various groups in an interview in July, but calls to 57 state, regional and national black charities reveal a single $165,00 donation to the Black Music Action Coalition, Rolling Stone reports.

Wallen’s publicist and manager did not immediately respond to calls and emails from DailyMail.com about the promised donations.

In February, the 28-year-old’s neighbor filmed the musician walking into his house after a night out with friends in Nashville. ‘Take care of this ‘p****-a** mother******, he says. ‘Take care of this p****-a** n*****.’

The race of the person he was talking about is not clear. 

The Black Music Action Coalition, founded last year amid protests following the police murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, told Rolling Stone that they met with the singer and his management separately multiple times in February in March.

Morgan Wallen, 28, pledged half-a-million dollars to various groups in July, but he appears to have donated just $165,000 to one organization

The singer went on an apology tour after the incident, posting a five-minute video on Instagram, above, and appearing on Good Morning America, where he pledged the $500K

The singer went on an apology tour after the incident, posting a five-minute video on Instagram, above, and appearing on Good Morning America, where he pledged the $500K

They say the singer gave them $165K in April, but they called him to task for exaggerating his generosity and for not doing enough to atone for the slur.

‘While we are appreciative of the money, which has been used to make grants directly to Black musicians through our Covid Emergency Relief Fund, we remain disappointed that Morgan has not used his platform to support any anti-racism endeavors,’ the organization said.

They also called his $500,000 figure ‘exceptionally misleading.’

He may have donated more money to different organizations anonymously, though that wouldn’t square with his open support of other charities this year.

In June, he gave a surprise performance for the Brett Boyer Foundation to raise money for children with congenital heart disease and Down syndrome.

Wallen gave $165K to the Black Music Action Coalition in April. The group is open to professionals in the music industry and was founded amid Black Lives Matter protests last year

Wallen gave $165K to the Black Music Action Coalition in April. The group is open to professionals in the music industry and was founded amid Black Lives Matter protests last year

The next month, he founded the More Than My Hometown Foundation to ‘help children, adolescents, and teenagers find families that can provide warm, loving homes that can rebuild their confidence, self-belief, and to feel forever loved, with a forever family.’

The BMAC, where Wallen donated the $165K, is a group of artists, managers, producers, attorneys and other music industry professionals looking ‘to address racism within the music industry and society at large,’ according to their website.

The other 56 organizations contacted by Rolling Stone said they didn’t receive money from the country singer – and the Nashville chapter of the NAACP previously said they haven’t heard from the singer about a meeting, according to Page Six.

Wallen’s second album, Dangerous: The Double Album, debuted to huge commercial success just a month before the controversy on January 8 via Big Loud and Republic Records.

It spent its first 10 weeks atop the Billboard 200 albums chart, with some of those weeks overlapping with the controversy.

Wallen’s second album, released in January, spent its first 10 weeks atop the Billboard 200. He made an estimated $2 million in the nine days after the n-word video surfaced

His success came after much of the industry did its best to chastise him. His songs were removed from streaming playlists and radio and he was dropped by his booking agent

His success came after much of the industry did its best to chastise him. His songs were removed from streaming playlists and radio and he was dropped by his booking agent

According to Billboard: ‘Dangerous is the first album to spend its first 10 weeks at No. 1 since 1987 and continues to have the most total weeks at No. 1 since Drake’s Views spent 13 nonconsecutive weeks in the lead in 2016.’

‘Before this incident, my album was already doing well; it was already being well-received by critics and by fans,” he told Good Morning America host Michael Strahan in July, five months after the video surfaced. 

‘Me and my team noticed that whenever this whole incident happened, that there was a spike in my sales. So we tried to calculate … how much it had spiked from this incident. We got to a number somewhere around $500,000, and we decided to donate that money to some organizations, BMAC [the Black Music Action Coalition] being the first one.’

The jump in sales following Wallen’s use of the n-word came as the industry did its best to chastise him, with streaming platforms pulling his songs from playlists and awards shows deeming him ineligible for prizes.

In the nine days before February 3, Wallen’s songs got nearly 25,000 spins on US radio stations, or 2,000 to 3,000 plays a day. In the nine days afterwards, plays fell by almost 94 percent to well under 2,000 total spins for the entire period, according to Billboard.

His label Big Loud Records suspended him – though the exact nature of the ‘suspension’ is unclear, his booking agent WME dropped him, the cable channel CMT pulled his music videos from the air and the Academy of Country Music deemed him ineligible for this year’s ACM Awards.

The Academy of Country Music deemed Wallen ineligible for awards after the controversy

The Academy of Country Music deemed Wallen ineligible for awards after the controversy

Wallen said on Instagram that he was 'on hour 72 of a bender' when he was filmed using the n-word after coming back to his house, pictured above, from a night of partying in Nashville

Wallen said on Instagram that he was ‘on hour 72 of a bender’ when he was filmed using the n-word after coming back to his house, pictured above, from a night of partying in Nashville

Amid the quasi-cancellation, his fans have shown up to offset the singer’s losses.

He still made an estimated $2million in revenue in the nine days after video of him using the racial slur hit TMZ.

In a five-minute Instagram apology, he said: ‘The video you saw was me on hour 72 of a bender, and that’s not something I’m proud of, either. 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.’

In an interview with Good morning America in July, he said he later checked himself into rehab to see if he has an alcohol problem.

‘I had some long time friends in town and we had been partying all weekend. We just figured we’d go hard. I was around some of my friends and we say dumb stuff together … in our minds it’s playful.

‘It sounds ignorant to say but it’s really where it came from… I wouldn’t say [I say it] frequently. It was just around this certain group of friends. We were all clearly drunk and I was asking his girlfriend to take care of him.’

‘I wasn’t meaning it in a derogatory way at all,’ he said.

The video appears to have been filmed by a neighbor. It was given to the media in February and Wallen was banned from country music awards and slammed by others in the industry.

Afterwards, Wallen said he spent 30 days in a San Diego rehab facility.

‘I went and checked myself into rehab for 30 days. I spent some time out in San Diego just trying to figure out if I have an alcohol problem or a deeper issue.’ 

Interviewer Michael Strahan asked Wallen: ‘Do you understand why it makes black people so upset?’ adding that it was used by slave owners and often abusers before beating or murdering black people in hate crimes.

‘I don’t know how to put myself in their shoes … and I do understand it must sound like I don’t understand when I say I used it playfully and am ignorant,’ he said.

The BMAC criticized his answer to that question.

‘We are confused as to how Morgan has not given any thought as to whether there is a race problem in country music given the amount of time and energy we have specifically spent with him discussing this very issue,’ the organization told Rolling Stone.

‘We would like to be clear: as our recent Report Card illustrates, there absolutely is a race problem in country music.’



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