Maren Morris Responds to ‘Unnecessary’ Criticism Over ACM Awards’ Vegas Tribute
Maren Morris thinks people are missing the point when they criticize the 2018 ACM Awards' lack of a musical or photo tribute to the victims of the mass shooting that took place at the Route 91 Harvest Festival last fall, and she's not afraid to say so publicly.
The ACM Awards on Sunday (April 15) marked many artists' first time back in Las Vegas since the tragedy, which took place during Jason Aldean's closing set on the third and final night of the festival on Oct. 1, 2017. A lone gunman fired into the crowd from a hotel room overlooking the concert site, killing 58 people and injuring 851 more, and most fans and media assumed a major musical or photo tribute would be a part of the ACM ceremony — especially after it was announced that the show would open with a special tribute.
That turned out to be a relatively brief, but heartfelt series of spoken-word affirmations, and much of the post-show coverage mentioned the lack of a tribute, with Rolling Stone Country editorializing that the ACMs "dropped the ball" over the Vegas shooting.
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That didn't sit well with Morris, who performed at the Route 91 Harvest Festival prior to the mass shooting and was also part of the spoken-word tributes that opened the ACMs.
"Honestly, this is so unnecessary," she posted to Twitter on Monday (April 16) in response to RSC's piece. "Artists who want to talk about Vegas HAVE talked about it and everyone just wants to exhale. How about you ask one of the country music fans who survived that night if they felt the 'ball was dropped.' Or Jason. I think the ACM’s WERE respectful."
A minute later, she added, "I get that everyone has an opinion, but if you weren’t there and they aren’t YOUR fans who were taken, maybe don’t judge a show that’s trying to help everyone move on."
Morris performed at the Route 91 Harvest Festival the night before the shootings took place, and she released a song titled "Dear Hate" in the wake of the tragedy. She walked the red carpet at the ACMs with her husband, Ryan Hurd, whom she wed in March, and she also performed her new single, "Rich," during the broadcast.
Though the ACMs did not offer a full-scale musical or slide tribute to the victims of the Las Vegas shooting, many artists wore gold pins to honor the victims. One pin bore the number 58 in memory of those who died, while a pin with the number 851 stands for the total number of injured. A final pin bore the number 1, representing unity.
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