The news that legendary country artist Charley Pride passed away on Saturday from COVID-19 hit the community hard. It also drew speculation from artists like Maren Morris on whether the CMAs happening in-person had any factor in it.
Pride was one of the game-changers in country music. He was the first Black country musician to really make it big and was a warm and friendly part of the country music community according to many.
In November, Pride performed at the Country Music Awards with Jimmie Allen. Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, some people were concerned with the choice to have an indoor award ceremony.
Country artist Maren Morris was one of those individuals who were beyond vocal about her opinion of the indoor event happening during the pandemic.
She took to her social media to say, “I don’t want to jump to conclusions because no family statement has been made, but if this was a result of the CMAs being indoors, we should all be outraged. Rest in power, Charley. F—k this f—king year.”
The tweet has since been deleted, however, the singer is not backing down from what she has said.
Morris Defends Tweet
After calling out the country music community and the CMAs for possibly being a factor in his death, Morris received some backlash.
“Screw you [Maren Morris]. How dare you even think about jumping to conclusions at a time like this!! You’ve lost a fan in me,” one fan wrote.
However, Maren Morris had no issue sticking to what she believed. She calmly replied “Love you!” with a waving emoji.
Another fan said, “We need answers to how Charley Pride got COVID.” Another also said quite simply, “The CMA’s killed him.”
While many fans grapple with the weight of COVID-19 taking another wonderful life, they also reflect on his last performance.
At the CMAs he performed “Kiss and Angel Good Morning” with Jimmie Allen. Now, the message is even more heartbreaking.
The CMAs released a message that they had been following proper safety procedures for the show.
“Charley was tested prior to traveling to Nashville. He was tested upon landing in Nashville, and again on show day, with all tests coming back negative. After returning to Texas following the CMA Awards, Charley again tested negative multiple times.”
However, even with proper safety measures, many people wonder why bother taking the risk at all. Many people felt the show ignored some important measures, even though it was littered with losses related to the pandemic. Artists like Joe Diffie and John Prine are just two examples of artists that were also lost from the virus.
Maren Morris Speaks Her Mind
Maren Morris is known for not holding back on her beliefs. This is especially true for anything related to COVID.
In a tweet that has now been deleted, Morris harshly criticized people out partying in downtown Nashville.
The tweet read, “While the rest of us are trying to be responsible in our homes and get this shit over with, THIS?! Broadway, you aren’t a hero for staying open.”
According to Country Now, after Morris and other artists chastised the city for not taking things seriously, news came that changes were going to be implemented. The mayor ordered that bars on Lower Broadway be closed. He also placed limits on the capacity for other restaurants and bar services.