Jason Isbell is donating his songwriting royalties to a good cause.
Isbell’s ballad “Cover Me Up” has been a Morgan Wallen staple after performing it on tour and later releasing his own cover of it two years ago, garnering over 28 million views on YouTube.
Since then, it’s been a fan-favourite of Wallen and was featured on his 2021 Dangerous: The Double Album.
While the country singer’s latest project remains atop the Billboard 200 for the fourth week amid controversy following his use of a racial slur, Isbell has made a decision regarding his earnings.
“So… 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.”
So… A portion of this money goes to me, since I wrote ‘Cover Me Up.’ 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. https://t.co/Ch3FlDBmJf
— Jason Isbell (@JasonIsbell) February 10, 2021
Isbell quote-tweeted a link to an Associated Press story, which reported Wallen’s album is still at the top of the charts despite the controversy and his music being removed from nearly every radio station.
After Wallen’s racist slur video surfaced, Billboard reported the album’s streaming numbers increased by three per cent and song downloads went up by 67 per cent.
“His fans are likely streaming him more because they can’t hear him on the radio anymore,” says Billboard editorial director Hannah Karp. “Some fans may be streaming him more in addition to show their support for him, which is something that super fans and fan armies often do.”
Isbell’s announcement comes after the Nashville branch of the NAACP offered to inform and educate Wallen on his use of the racial slur.
“Because he was such a prominent celebrity and an artist here in Nashville, I mean he’s living here, we would love for him to have that conversation with us,” says NAACP president Sheryl Guinn. “We invite him to come and have that conversation with us, the NAACP, as to why that word is so hurtful.”