Morgan Wallen has made good on his promise to donate $500,000 to Black-led organizations. According to USA Today, the final $100,000 was allocated to Nashville’s National Museum of African American Music.
The donation completes a promise that Wallen made in the wake of his racist slur scandal from early February, 2021, when doorcam video footage emerged of the singer yelling the N-word as he bid good night to a car full of friends at the end of a night out. Wallen was swiftly benched by many facets of the music industry: His music was removed from many radio playlists, his record contract was put on “indefinite hiatus” and he was barred from eligibility at the bulk of the major awards shows in 2021.
Wallen spent some time out of the spotlight. In the first major interview he did after the incident, a July Good Morning America segment with Michael Strahan, the singer explained that he and his team decided to pledge $500,000 to Black-led organizations because that was the amount of money he estimated he’d made when his music sales spiked after the incident. Wallen said he planned to donate that money to the Black Music Actional Coalition (BMAC) and other organizations he did not name.
In September, a Rolling Stone investigation questioned where that money had gone, and if Wallen had indeed donated it as promised. Wallen’s manager, Seth England, responded, saying that $300,000 had been allocated to BMAC in April; however, rather than being donated in Wallen’s own name, the money had been donated in the names of 20 people who “counseled” the singer.
That broke the $300,000 down into 20 donations of $15,000 each. Additionally, each of the 20 people had the option to allocate the money elsewhere instead of sending it to BMAC. $165,000 stayed directly with BMAC, while the other $130,000 went to organizations such as Nashville’s Teen Dream Center, the Young People’s Chorus of New York City, Atlanta’s Right Hand Foundation and more.
Half of the remaining $200,000 went to Rock Against Racism via Big Loud Records, Wallen’s label. The other half, per a USA Today report from September, “has been earmarked to be dispersed to Back-led organizations in Tennessee by the end of the year.”
This week, Wallen completed his pledge with his $100,000 donation to the National Museum of African American Music. The donation was confirmed by Tuwisha Rogers-Simpson, who is the vice president of brand and partnerships for the museum. She also confirmed that the money will be used to support education and operational initiatives within the museum.
Rogers-Simpson also said that she “had the opportunity to tour and share our mission with Wallen as he was eager to learn more in a sincere effort to grow,” per USA Today.