Wallen’s good buddy, co-writer, and fellow country singer Hardy sat down for an interview with radio station KASE 101 to give his two cents on the whole situation.
When asked if it would be strange without Wallen being there, especially since he’s a nominee. He responded:
“I think so, yeah. I think it sucks… if you’re going to allow the guy to be able to be voted for, and to be able to be nominated, he should at least be invited.”
It’s gonna be pretty awkward if Wallen wins Album of the Year, and he’s not there to receive the award.
However, in the mind of the Country Music Association, he still hasn’t been punished for his racial slur incident back in February.
Sarah Trahern, CEO of the CMAs, explained their stance in a statement to the Los Angeles Times:
“This was something we looked at from so many angles. The decision, ultimately, was the man would not be allowed, but the music and the people who were part of it [songwriters and producers] could be eligible.
That made his music eligible in five categories, and ultimately, he was nominated in one.”
To her knowledge, the ban was a first for the CMAs:
“This is the first time in the history of the CMA, to my knowledge, anyone has ever been disqualified for conduct.
Honoring him as an individual this year is not right, and he will not be allowed on the red carpet, on our stage, or be celebrated in any way.”
We’ll see if the Grammys and the ACMS follow suit…