2021’s CMT Music Awards continued the superstar coming-out party for country star and Arlington, Texas native Mickey Guyton. The event featured her performing alongside both rising singer-songwriter BRELAND and living legend soul artist Gladys Knight. Plus, she aided Darius Rucker and Sugarland’s Jennifer Nettles in awarding iconic country performer Linda Martell with CMT’s 2021 Equal Play Award. As well, this week marked the announcement of her long-anticipated first long-play album release, Remember Her Name, due this fall.
When asked on the red carpet of the 2021 CMT Music Awards about the album, its inspirations, and the songwriting process compiling the album required, she offered the following to CMT:
“Oh, I’ve been writing these songs for years,” the “Black Like Me” singer says. “This has not been a one-year process. Some of these songs are four or five years old. ’Remember Her Name’ — which is also the album’s title — was written in 2020, though. When I was thinking about [the story of Black medical worker shot and killed by Louisville police officers in March 2020] Breonna Taylor, and seeing inaction regarding her murder, I thought, ’I need to bring justice to her life.’ I was writing these types of [thoughtful] songs long before America’s racial reckoning. The frustration that I’ve felt as an African-American has been a part of my process for a while. So the song, and album, are dedicated to [Breonna Taylor] and giving her the justice that she deserves.”
In regards to Guyton’s resolve in her decision to use her voice as a way to continue the march towards civil rights for all marginalized Americans, Carrie Underwood told The New Yorker, “I give Mickey a lot of credit for not giving up after years of hearing no. The world needs more voices like Mickey’s — not only the world of country music.”