Morgan Wallen took to the Bridgestone Arena stage during the 56th Annual CMA Awards to perform his seventh No.1 single, “You Proof” and his 2-year-old son, Indigo (Indie) Wilder, cheered him on from home.
According to a social media post by Indie’s mother, KT Smith, Wallen’s son was “watchin’ his daddy” on TV as he delivered the live television debut of the tune.
Wallen, who was named CMA New Artist Of The Year in 2020, was joined by his full touring band to perform his latest chart-topping hit during the “Country Music’s Biggest Night.”
In the adorable photo, Indie could be seen sporting a diaper while glued to the television screen where Wallen was performing from Downtown Nashville.
Smith also shared how upset she was that Wallen didn’t win any of the CMA Awards he was nominated for, including Entertainer Of The Year and Male Vocalist Of The Year.
“@cma do better,” Smith wrote in her Instagram stories. “You robbed the one with the most talent tonight. Truly sickening.”
She went on to explain that she usually stays quiet but admitted she just had to speak up this time.
“I typically keep my mouth shut, but this time I couldn’t. hardy and mo should have won most of those awards tonight. without a shadow of a doubt, everyone knows Mo was the most talented in that room. but to rob someone of something they so rightly deserve is sickening,” Smith continued. ”I’m glad you got your views this year CMA awards- but it’s likely that a lot of us won’t be watching again after that. we all know that the one who sells out all of his shows night after night, spends hours in the studio to make his fans happy, breaks records, and the one that does everything he can to make his son proud- is the one who should have won tonight.”
Some fans took to social media to share similar opinions on the outcome of the show.
“When a guy who’s album has been in the Billboard top 10 for 86 weeks doesn’t win any awards you know you must be watching the CMA’s. @MorganWallen was robbed,” one fan passionately wrote.
— Gena Graddy (@gena_graddy) November 10, 2022
“Shame on you CMA! Morgan Wallen has sold more tickets and out-sold every country singer but you refuse to recognize his success! #rigged,” another shared.
Shame on you CMA! Morgan Wallen has sold more tickets and out sold every country singer but you refuse to recognize his success! #rigged
— Realtor TAMI BEHLER (@TamiBehler) November 10, 2022
While Wallen didn’t walk away with any trophies, he is still seeing massive success on the sales, airplay, and streaming charts.
“You Proof” recently topped the charts at country radio for multiple weeks. The infectious track was released earlier this year and made a huge impact at country radio upon its official debut with 52 first-week adds and 94 in total.
The heartbreak anthem was co-written by Wallen with Ashley Gorley, Ernest K. Smith, and Charlie Handsome. Released to streaming services in honor of Wallen’s 29th birthday, the song finds the country hitmaker crooning over the need to drown his memories with a bottle of something strong in the aftermath of a breakup.
“I need something you proof/ Somethin’ stronger than I’m used to/ Yeah, I’ve been pourin’ ninety to a hundred/ Feel like nothing’s gonna cut it, that’s the hard truth/ Yeah, I need something you proof/ Oh, I need something you proof,” he sings.
Heading into the 2022 CMA Awards broadcast, Wallen was nominated for Male Vocalist of the Year and the night’s highest honor, Entertainer of the Year. Additionally, his song “Sand In My Boots,” written by HARDY, Ashley Gorley and Josh Osborne, was nominated for Song Of The Year.
The 56th Annual CMA Awards featured performances from Luke Combs, Morgan Wallen, Miranda Lambert, Carrie Underwood, Luke Bryan, Cole Swindell, Cody Johnson, and Carly Pearce.
The show opened with an all-star tribute to the late Loretta Lynn from Underwood, Reba McEntire and Lambert.
Underwood, Dierks Bentley, Jon Pardi, and Lainey Wilson joined together to honor the 2022 CMA Willie Nelson Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, Alan Jackson.
Additionally, the show included star-studded collaborations from Kelsea Ballerini, Kelly Clarkson and Carly Pearce, HARDY and Lainey Wilson, Elle King with The Black Keys, Brothers featuring The War and Treaty, Thomas Rhett and Katy Perry, Chris Stapleton with Patty Loveless, Zac Brown Band, Jimmie Allen and Marcus King as well as Ashley McBryde with Pillbox Patti, Brandy Clark, Caylee Hammack and John Osborne.
Mookie Betts, BRELAND, Jessica Chastain, Jordan Davis, Sarah Drew, Cole Hauser, Tyler Hubbard, Wynonna Judd, Lady A, Rex Linn, Little Big Town, Parker McCollum, Reba McEntire, Ben and Erin Napier, Jeannie Seely, Michael Shannon, and Lainey Wilson were on hand to present during the ceremony.
Co-hosted by Luke Bryan and Peyton Manning, the 2022 CMA Awards broadcasted live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena and aired on ABC (8:00-11:00 PM/ET).
The CMA Awards will also be available for viewing on Hulu beginning Thursday, Nov. 10.
The 56th Annual CMA Awards was a production of the Country Music Association. Robert Deaton served as the Executive Producer, Alan Carter as the Director, and Jon Macks as the Head Writer.