Hot off the back of his new album One Thing At A Time which is already soaring in the charts and his sold out Aotearoa concert on March 15, we’re here to round up the most important facts about country superstar Morgan Wallen.
He was a contestant on The Voice
Regarding his start in music, something fans may not know is that he actually starred on television show ‘The Voice USA,’ competing in Usher’s team in Season 6. Though he was eliminated early on, it’s safe to say that the 12.3 billion streams he now has makes this fact slightly less important in hindsight. You can still find videos of his performances online though.
He’s already got some critical acclaim
Having been dubbed the most wanted man in country music by the New Yorker, it’s no wonder his show is in such high demand in NZ, but did you know that he was the 2022 Billboards Country Award Male Artist Recipient? One of the most acclaimed awards an artist can receive, and he achieved the feat super early in his career, with only two albums under his belt.
His last album broke records
Wallen’s last album Dangerous: The Double Album is one fans are sure to know. Released in 2021 through Big Loud Records and Republic, the tracklist is composed of a whopping 30 songs, making it the perfect length for a mini road trip play in the summer. Generating 7 billion total streams, it was the most streamed album of 2021 in the US as well as spending 67 weeks in the top 10 charts and a simultaneous 50 weeks at the top 5 of the Billboard 100 – a record in the country scene that is yet to be beaten. Featuring tracks such as ‘Wasted on You’, ‘Whiskey’d My Way’ and ‘Warning’, there’s no doubt that Wallen is capable of producing hit after hit.
His Dangerous Tour also broke records
In 2022, he completed the Dangerous Tour, which broke records that were previously held by legends like Elton John and Lady Gaga, comprising a massive 55 shows. An incredible feat which very much solidifies his status in the music industry, he performed some of his best known hits, including ‘7 Summers’ which Time called one of the best songs of the year, and 2018’s ‘Chasin’ You.’ Those who aren’t established fans but use social media may know that second one, as the lyrics have been a cemented trend on the TikTok recently due to one very dedicated US fan.
Oh yeah, more record breaking …
His first 2022 single, an emotional ballad entitled ‘Don’t Think Jesus’ was timed for release on Good Friday last year, primarily due to it’s lyrics signifying redemption. The song landed both in the Top 10 of the Billboard 100 while also skyrocketing to the top of the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart. With no other country artist having landed all 3 top chart positions within such a short time, Wallen once again proved his star qualities by breaking yet another historic record.
He’s been praised for stepping outside the traditional Country sound
Critics are constantly raving about Wallen’s work, with Hits Magazine noting that he works ‘outside the traditional Nashville framework’ and we have to agree. Wallen comes across as evolutionary and boundary-crossing but still uses a formula that country fans will love and recognise, which is probably part of the reason that he has such an “unprecedented connection” to his immense audience.
View this post on Instagram
He’s big on charity
Another fact you may not know is that the money raised from the Dangerous tour primarily went to the Morgan Wallen Foundation, which funds causes that he is passionate about as an individual. So cool – how many artists can you name that do that these days?
View this post on Instagram
He has a new album!
In regards to One Thing At A Time, it’s been described as representing the last few years of Morgan’s life, and we’ve listened – there’s a few tear jerkers on there so have your tissues well ready. Covering what Morgan described as the good, the bad and the heartache, it’s a widely ranging album that speaks to his creative flair.
He said in an interview he hopes it makes his fans proud, but with it definitely being a step up from his previous work, there’s no doubt of this. Combining hip-hop, alternative and his usual country in the lyrics, ideas and production, it’s yet another example of his talent and ability to cross the traditional boundaries of genres.