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Sturgill Simpson Clarifies ACM Facebook Rant

strugill simpson acm facebook rant
Mike Lawrie, Getty Images

Just hours after he roundly criticized the ACM in a scathing Facebook post, Sturgill Simpson posted an update clarifying his remarks.

The critically acclaimed singer-songwriter turned to Facebook to vent on Monday (Aug. 29), after reading about the new ACM award intended to celebrate the legacy of Merle Haggard. Simpson lambasted the ACM and other members of the country music establishment, saying they have “hitched their wagon to his name” despite knowing that Haggard did not care for them.

“If the ACM wants to actually celebrate the legacy and music of Merle Haggard, they should drop all the formulaic cannon fodder bulls–t they’ve been pumping down rural America’s throat for the last 30 years along with all the high school pageantry, meat parade award show bulls–t and start dedicating their programs to more actual Country Music,” he wrote.

After he learned that Miranda Lambert would receive the first-ever Merle Haggard Spirit Award, Simpson posted a lengthy update to clarify that his words were not directed at her.

“I don’t know Miranda nor have I ever met her but something tells me that in her heart, she knows I’m dead on,” he writes, going on to acknowledge that the ACM recognized Haggard many times during his life.

“My point was that all of these organizations don’t walk it like they talk it. I called the ACM out directly because they are simply the latest in a long line of organizations that have done the same since Merle’s death…and even before. Showing homage and handing lifetime achievement awards to the greats of yesterday while claiming to uphold and hold dear the original values and integrity of Country music’s legacy. Yet these are just hollow words…merely empty semantics. One needs only to look glancingly at the majority of the music that they, along with the CMA’s, predominantly choose to recognize and promote at their award shows.”

Simpson says he feels that his remarks will get him blackballed in the country mainstream, “and that’s perfectly fine with me. I’m not sure how you can blackball somebody you don’t acknowledge in the first place anyway.”

Noting that he and Jason Isbell still post strong sales despite little mainstream support, he says, “I have no more need to make enemies with these people than I have a need to be their friends. If anything I’m trying to help them. Because more and more everyday, people are waking up to the situation and they are pissed. Perhaps Country Music, especially Nashville, should wake up too before it’s too late.”

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