Jason Isbell Will Donate All the Proceeds He Receives From Morgan Wallen’s Album to the NAACP

The saga of Morgan Wallen has been filled with a lot of drama, and it’s a little hard to follow if you’re not plugged into the pop country music scene. But it involves Wallen, the industry’s fastest rising young, and the many public apologies he’s had to issue in his relatively brief time in the spotlight. Most recently, video surfaced of Wallen using a racial slur, prompting an enormous amount of backlash, including a radio blackout on his music and a label suspension. Nevertheless, streams of Wallen’s music surged on sites like Spotify, sending Wallen’s album Dangerous to the top of the Billboard 200 chart for the fourth week in a row. Now, a new wrinkle comes from Wallen’s fellow country artist, Jason Isbell.

One of Wallen’s most popular songs is “Cover Me Up,” which is a cover of Isbell’s own song from his 2013 album Southeastern. That means Isbell gets a cut of whatever money Wallen makes off the album and on Wednesday, Isbell announced that he’d be donating all that money to the Nashville chapter of the NAACP.

 “A portion of this money goes to me, since I wrote ‘Cover Me Up.'” Isbell tweeted. “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.”
Isbell is a beloved Nashville presence and has denounced Wallen’s behavior many times on social media. Earlier this month when the video first surfaced, Isbell tweeted that “this is an opportunity for the country music industry to give that spot to somebody who deserves it, and there are lots of Black artists who deserve it.”
When others accused Isbell of supporting cancel culture, Isbell drew a distinction between “cancelling” and “holding people accountable for their actions.”
“If he makes real change, his life will be just fine,” Isbell said. “But if he isn’t held accountable, Black people in the industry will know how little country music really cares about them, even now. And that’s much sadder to me than alcoholism.” Isbell’s words come from personal experience, as he as often spoken about the long, destructive relationship with alcohol he had as a young man. Recently, he celebrated nine years sober.

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