Maren Morris Criticized for Disallowing Local Openers
Paige Davis is 21-year-old up-and-coming songwriter from New England who was looking forward to opening for one of her favorite national artists, Maren Morris, on Saturday, July 9th at the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion near Gilford. The Paige Davis appearance was set to transpire on the venue’s “Hazy Little Stage” sponsored by Sierra Nevada beer. The stage is located just inside the doors of the venue, and the program has been ongoing for the last few years. As people file into the New Hampshire Pavilion, they can listen to the music of a local band, and hopefully discover something.
It’s a cool program the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion has put together, with local bands opening for big-named acts all summer, including Kane Brown, Thomas Rhett, Morgan Wallen, Sam Hunt, and Luke Bryan all allowing local openers. The Tedeschi Trucks Band, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, and Willie Nelson’s traveling Outlaw Fest are also events that will be featuring local bands on the venue’s side stage.
But apparently when the team for Maren Morris caught wind that there would be a local act playing on the Hazy Little Stage, they cited a “no local openers” clause, and the performance of Paige Davis was cancelled. “Due to Maren Morris’ request for “no local* openers,” we are sad to share that we will no longer be playing the show at Bank of NH Pavilion on July 9th,” Davis said. “…local opener is in reference to the Hazy Little Stage (second stage) performers.”
Though Paige Davis is local to the New England area, she has recorded multiple singles in Nashville, and released them internationally.
When Davis announced the cancellation on social media, the situation went viral, with many going after Maren Morris for canceling the local opener. “As a local supporter of independent music, this bothers me.. Nothing against anyone.. but this absolutely is sad..” said one commenter.
“Really sad to think, a woman, who’s been fighting for woman’s rights in music, said no to a show because they wanted to use local bands for openers, a couple of which are female fronted. Come down off your high horse lady,” said another commenter.
“Very rarely do you see this. A national, well known star not wanting to let local performers play before their show….and on a separate stage to boot. WoW,” said another. This is just a smattering of the many angry comments in reaction to the cancellation.
Though fans were just looking to step up and support Paige Davis, this also put the young songwriter in a difficult place for her career, where it could be perceived she was attacking Maren Morris personally. So Paige Davis took to Facebook to clarify,
“My intentions were to let my fans, friends, and family know that it wasn’t me who cancelled the show with this short notice. I’m a huge Maren Morris fan (and even cover a few of her songs during almost every one of my shows). I’m a huge BNH Pavilion fan also. I have been playing there every summer for years. I love the venue and everyone I’ve ever come into contact with there. It was not my intention in any way for this to turn into bashing of an artist I admire or a venue that I adore.”
RJ Harding speaking for the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion also tried to do some damage control, saying. “To be clear, this was not at all Maren’s decision. We at the venue take full responsibility for this error. There was a miscommunication about clearing the activation of a secondary stage on this show from our part on the venue. The tour has activation in the plaza that conflicts with being able to have a band performing on the second stage at the same time. Had we advanced this correctly, the second stage should not have been booked in the first place and therefore would never need to be cancelled. We feel terrible about it and offered to find a replacement show for Paige to play if she wanted. To reiterate, Maren and her people had nothing to do with the cancellation. That is all on us at the venue. We are very sorry for the inconvenience to anyone for our error.”
But that is beside the point. The bigger issue here is that Maren Morris is not allowing local openers on her Humble Quest tour, while most, if not all of the other big mainstream country stars playing the New Hampshire Pavilion are. Sure, perhaps the venue made a mistake booking Paige Davis for the appearance. But if Maren Morris was allowing local openers, it would have not been a problem.
It is very difficult for women in country music to find opportunities for exposure. Programs like the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion’s Hazy Little Stage is a perfect example of an initiative that can give up-and-comers those opportunities. It also extols bragging rights for the local artists that they opened for a big national act. And this is not a situation where a national tour has to deal with the logistics of facilitating a local opener on the same stage. These performances happen well before the main performance, and one a side stage where there is no logistical issue.
Maren Morris very well may not know about the cancellation of the Paige Davis performance on July 9th. She may not even be aware that she has a “no local openers” clause. But if Maren Morris is serious about supporting her fellow women in country music, she would remove this clause not just for the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion performance, but all of her national performances where local openers are part of the presentation.
July 4, 2022 @ 8:50 am
Morris has shown herself to be an entitled c*** at this point.
July 4, 2022 @ 8:54 am
“I’m a huge Maren Morris fan (and even cover a few of her songs during almost every one of my shows).”
That’s reason enough to cancel her show, right there…
July 4, 2022 @ 9:01 am
This young lady is an in an impossible situation. She tussles with a big named act like Maren Morris, and it could damn her career. She doesn’t say anything as other national acts allow for openers, and it looks like she’s allowing herself to get walked on. Ultimately, she decided to be the bigger person and let the story tell itself.
July 4, 2022 @ 2:12 pm
All she has to do is go on social media and say “Fuck Marin Morris” and she will be branded an “outlaw” and receive tons of free publicity. It’s easier than ever to get your voice and music out there, unfortunately it still has to stand out from the thousands of other women doing the same.
July 5, 2022 @ 1:42 am
For about a week she will be front page. Then never heard of again.
July 5, 2022 @ 4:32 am
I’m sorry, but you lost me at “big named act” when referring to Maren Morris. I mean, this ain’t Reba McEntire we are talking about here. I had to go look up who this Morris chick was.
July 4, 2022 @ 9:00 am
Anyone contact the Morris team to ask why they have this policy? They must have some reason, even if it’s a lousy reason.
July 4, 2022 @ 9:15 am
The Morris team probably thinks she’s too big and important to be associated with up and coming local/regional acts. She’s pretty impossible to like.
July 5, 2022 @ 7:28 am
It probably has to do with association. Anyone could be booked by a local promoter or venue and then forever say “I opened for Maren Morris” and attach themselves to her name. What if that person ends up being controversial or isn’t a good fit or flat out isn’t that talented? So the big artists just have a blanket policy of no local openers or whatever. I can see how it looks incredibly odd to anyone outside the business, but artists at that level are constantly running strategy and trying to prevent possible damage control situations. It’s just the way it is.
July 5, 2022 @ 8:08 am
Except that all the other major mainstream country stars that are playing this venue this year are allowing these local openers, including Morgan Wallen, Luke Bryan, Kane Brown, Thomas Rhett, Sam Hunt, and more. You can see the lineup for the “Hazy Little Stage” here: https://www.banknhpavilion.com/?page=second_stage , and it includes many big acts that don’t take issue with the local program.
The Original WTF Guy
July 5, 2022 @ 10:54 am
The acts you mention all share the fact they are allowing local openers at this venue. Good for them.
The also share something else – they all suck.
Honestly, if I was one of the acts* you mention I’d be less inclined to allow local openers due to the high likelihood fans would prefer the local opener to them.
*And I use the word “acts” to explicitly note they are acts. They are not artists, nor are they muscians.
July 5, 2022 @ 11:40 am
I think the fact that you have some of the worst, most douchey, out-of-touch acts in all of country music also playing this venue, but still allowing the local openers to play really speaks to how unusual this stipulation from the Maren Morris camp is. I agree with others that she may not even know what’s happening here. But she should, and that’s the reason it’s important to speak up about it.
July 5, 2022 @ 10:56 am
I can add some context as this is my local venue (and one of the best and most well run large venues in the country). This small stage is right after you enter the venue with your ticket. It’s in the same section with marketing booths, concessions, merch sales, bathrooms, etc. You have to then show your ticket again to actually get inside the seating area, a completely separated section from all of this. Nobody associates this small stage with the main stage, like a co-sign or a bigger relationship. It’s just local acts in NH or New England. There isn’t even an audience really that sits there for this small stage. Generally background music as people walk around pre-show and grab food, drink, merch, visit sponsor booths, etc. It happens for basically every show whether it’s James Taylor, Morgan Wallen or Ringo Starr.
July 5, 2022 @ 8:14 am
Janet Weir from Red Light Management is Maren’s manager. Sony Music – Columbia Nashville, with CEO Randy Goodman, is her label. I’m guessing someone at Red Light or Sony – Columbia decided it would be better to protect their assets by banning independent artists from riding the coat tails of their artists. Maren likely doesn’t have a clue what terms her label and management company put in her booking contracts.
July 4, 2022 @ 9:14 am
1 word …………….EGO!
July 4, 2022 @ 9:51 am
Her loss. The ONLY reason I’d go to a Maren Morris show is if she happened to have a good local opening act.
July 4, 2022 @ 9:53 am
What exactly does this mean?
“The tour has activation in the plaza that conflicts with being able to have a band performing on the second stage at the same time.”
I’m trying to think of anything physically set up in the venue that could make a second-stage performance unworkable. A huge merchandise table with Maren’s new album playing constantly? I don’t know. When I saw the headline and first few paragraphs, I was disgusted, but the statement from the venue raises doubts. Clearer wording than “activation in the plaza,” which borders on gibberish, would have helped immensely.
July 4, 2022 @ 10:05 am
It seems to me that CAA made a mistake here. Maybe a innocent move by an assistant agent to get it ‘right’ instead of using logic. It is not uncommon for touring acts to state no local openers BUT they rarely mean it. It is all about communication. I believe Maren Morris doesn’t really know what is in her own contract. CAA has a mind of it’s own. They have an opportunity to put on an opener of THEIR choosing . NOT THE VENUES choice of an opener is how the contract should read. The New England woman got screwed.
July 6, 2022 @ 5:04 am
Not a fan of Morris, but highly doubt she negotiates her own tour contract or language. Managers and promoters work out these details. She most likely only knows the number of shows, the price she is being paid, and any personal requirements she requests. A little pre-show work and communication may have resulted in a waiver for this show, or as the venue stated, an act not being hired.
July 6, 2022 @ 11:20 am
This explanation makes the most sense to me. The idea that an act is worried about being upstaged by a “local nobody” seems pretty far-fetched.
July 4, 2022 @ 10:26 am
She has forgotten when she was a local opener and how hard that role can be. Too bad. (I was a local opener for Cash, Jones, Willie, Buck And Haggard and many others . They didn’t have a problem with us being local….)
Country Charley Crockett's Butter
July 4, 2022 @ 10:56 am
Maren’s marketing team:
“Maren, you’re new album is coming out in 2 weeks. We have pulled together this amazing roll out of promotions. We’re talking SNL, Today Show, Oprah Interview, People magazine spread. How does all that sound?
Maren: “Nah. I’m good. I’m just going to respond to Instagram comments that talk about my breasts.
Marketing Team: “Oh excellent. We’ll send the story off to Good Morning America and different media sites. You’ve outdown yourself again, Mrs Morris.”
July 4, 2022 @ 8:51 pm
She has breasts? Somehow I missed them…
Country Charley Crockett's Butter
July 6, 2022 @ 2:50 pm
Ryan Turd loves em
July 4, 2022 @ 11:05 am
Yawwwwnnnnn . . .
Never heard of either one of them.
July 4, 2022 @ 11:07 am
When your Humble Quest lands you in a pit full of Hubris.
July 4, 2022 @ 11:33 am
This sounds pretty horrible. If she didn’t know about the clause, she certainly does now. We’ll see if she responds with removal of the clause. If so, it’s a little victory I suppose.
However, based on what I’ve seen/heard I’m not a fan and certainly doesn’t represent country music very well.
July 4, 2022 @ 12:04 pm
Wasn’t it Maren Morris who kept Mickey Guyton or someone else out of the Highwomen group? Seems like she thinks she’s entitled for some reason. Seems like a weird clause to have in a performing contract.
July 4, 2022 @ 3:02 pm
The Highwomen disinvited Mickey Guyton from participating in the “Redesignng Women” video shoot, and Mickey wrote and op/ed about it. We still don’t have an explanation of what happened there, but Maren Morris was the only one of the group that acknowledged the incident.
July 4, 2022 @ 12:05 pm
Turnpike didn’t have a local opener on either of its Red Rocks shows, or Cain’s, or Billy Bob’s. Looking forward to the article you’re going to write about them not allowing local openers as well.
July 4, 2022 @ 12:38 pm
Big difference between not having local artists from the beginning, versus having them actively canceled.
Keepin it Country
July 4, 2022 @ 12:49 pm
Turnpike isn’t really a national act. Yes, it’s huge regionally but I don’t see them selling out stadiums in Chicago or anywhere up north. For example Chris Stapleton is coming to Chicago and I think he will be way more successful.
July 4, 2022 @ 3:10 pm
That’s a false equivalency. If the Turnpike Troubadours played the Bank of New Hampshire Pavilion where they have a program for local openers and disallowed the local opener, that would be the equivalent. I think Turnpike have been very generous with their opening slots over the years, helping out Charley Crockett, Jaime Wyatt, and recently The Vandoliers and 49 Winchester. The question is if you’re returning the opportunities you received early in your career.
July 4, 2022 @ 12:11 pm
Paige loves, loves, loves, Taylor Swift.
Tay could offer Paige an opening act slot.
Help take the sting out of the N.H. snafu
July 4, 2022 @ 12:25 pm
Too bad, being a native of Maren’s area she popped up anywhere there was a chance to sing. She was just a kid and got a chance by alot of people.
Shame she forgot where she came from, bad move.
July 4, 2022 @ 2:10 pm
“It is very difficult for women in country music to find opportunities for exposure“. Umm… YouTube, TikTok, Instagram.
Also Marin Morris is just another spoiled entitled shallow country artist who also looks like she got stung by multiple bees in the face.
King Honky Of Crackershire
July 4, 2022 @ 3:34 pm
Happy Independence Day, Trig.
July 4, 2022 @ 3:46 pm
I doubt I have ever heard a Maren Morris song but she sure likes to get her name out there…
July 5, 2022 @ 6:27 am
I’ve always had the opinion that Morris feels she is bigger than she really is. For some reason she thinks she’s the most beautiful person in the world.
Part of my day job is a customer service and retention trainer. The venues answer is exactly what I would expect. No matter if your client made an unpopular decision the company takes responsibility. And I agree with Trig the young lady made the best decision possible with her comments.
July 4, 2022 @ 4:06 pm
whatever is going on here, i blame Mickey Guyton somehow.
July 4, 2022 @ 4:26 pm
Go back and check the comments on the article for her first single.
I warned you guys about her. But you folks were drooling over “My Church.”
North Woods Country
July 4, 2022 @ 6:09 pm
It is impossible to support Maren Morris.
Wilson Pick It
July 4, 2022 @ 7:43 pm
So I’m a New Englander, and I went to the Bank of NH Pavilion last summer to see Willie’s Outlaw fest. I remember the Hazy Little Stage, and I think it needs to emphasized that no one playing the Hazy Little Stage could be called an “opener” for the performers on the main stage. The Hazy Little Stage is in the area of the venue when you first walk in, which is like a little commerce area that has vendors, a restaurant or two, bathrooms, tables, and stuff like that. It’s like a little mall. The band is pretty much background music for the venue’s gift shop. Not trying to take away from the bands that play there, but that’s what we’re talking about. It’s ridiculous to call any band on that stage an opening act.
July 4, 2022 @ 9:02 pm
Nice to see malignant narcissism, arrogance, big ego and low self esteem are not exclusive to rock and hip hop. The issue isn’t *who* on the team said no local openers, it’s the fact that the artist would even tolerate that (shade on the record company too for allowing such a bad look). The perception of diva-esque behavior is appalling, as well as forgetting your roots….
July 5, 2022 @ 6:36 am
I have no love for Maren Morris, her “music” is pop garbage, and she comes off a little too entitled to me. I also think she too often focusses her energy in the wrong direction. But dollars to donuts she has no idea this even happened. I’m guessing this young woman will be playing the main stage the night of that concert if Maren has anything to say about it.
July 5, 2022 @ 8:20 am
My guess would also be that Maren Morris doesn’t know this happened, and that’s one of the reasons I felt it was important to write a story about it and help boost the signal. I also don’t think that ignorance is necessarily an excuse in this instance. Maren Morris is presented as a leader for women in country music mostly for what she says. But when it comes to what she does, it’s a different story. If Morgan Wallen, Sam Hunt, and Thomas Rhett can make sure that they’re not getting in the way of side stage local performers, Maren Morris can too. Challenging these kinds of contractual clauses that get in the way of young women receiving opportunities like this is the exact kind of thing we would expect from Maren Morris if she was taking a leadership role. Instead, when the Paige Davis performance was cancelled, mainstream country fans in New England—not independent country fans who read Saving Country Music—spoke out in droves of how it was a bad move by Morris, and speaks to the M.O. of Maren Morris as someone who likes to control the narrative. That’s probably one of the reasons she doesn’t allow for local openers. That contract stipulation has real world implications that are counter-productive to the causes she purports to champion.
July 5, 2022 @ 7:25 am
This is more on the promoter than Maren. If it was in the contract, it was in the contract and their negligence led to this cluster. Now, you can make the argument that Maren should have just let played in good faith and I would agree.
July 5, 2022 @ 8:17 am
i’m with 63Guild on this one, but even more… does everyone know every detail of every piece of paper they’ve ever signed? does everyone on here ever read the entire cell phone or credit card contract fine print? i don’t blame Morris one bit, and i’m not even a fan. but i also don’t think this is even newsworthy enough to be a post.
July 5, 2022 @ 11:13 am
Considering she still hasn’t really dealt withe Mickey Guyton video incident I no longer accept ignorance as an excuse.
July 5, 2022 @ 11:44 am
Does she know about it? That is a good question. Maybe more or a lot less to this story than meets the eye.
July 5, 2022 @ 12:08 pm
I hadn’t heard of Paige Davis before so I checked her out. Here are a couple of clips (second one is her new single):
July 5, 2022 @ 12:14 pm
A lot more country than Maren Morris. New single has a Miranda Lambert vibe.
July 5, 2022 @ 1:21 pm
90% of pop music is more country than Maren Morris.
July 5, 2022 @ 3:36 pm
While I haven’t seen this at a country concert (we tend to only get the big-name arena/amphitheater acts ’round these parts), I am no stranger to punk/metal shows where a shady promoter stacks the bill with 5-6 local bands, probably as part of a pay-to-play scheme. As a result, the touring headliner doesn’t take the stage until 2 am, at which point half the crowd has left and they only get to play for 30 minutes or less before the lights turn on. So, if I was a veteran of those kinds of shows, I might want a “no local openers” clause in my contract.
However, I don’t think Maren Morris’ career arc has taken her down a path where she’s had to take the stage at 2 am after 6 local metal bands (that would be a laugh riot), in which case her “no local openers” clause seems pretty petty — and I ain’t talking bout Tom or Richard.
July 9, 2022 @ 6:22 pm
As has been stated by several other commenters, the booking situation you’re describing bears no resemblance whatsoever to what BoNH does with the Hazy Little Stage (which is several hundred yards away from the main stage). These acts are on at 5:00pm or 5:30pm, playing before the opener and in between the opener(s) and headliner.
July 9, 2022 @ 6:31 pm
I know what you’re talking about here. In fact , I was just reminiscing the other day about how I used to go to a ton of concerts in Chicago, the kind where you have to stand and hold your spot the whole time. It seems like every show, they would throw a local opener in front of the touring opener. I used to hate that. It was one extra hour I had to stand there and hold my piss waiting for the band I actually paid to see. And then the concert is going to finish one hour later and I’m going to miss an extra hour of sleep having to get up to go to class the next day. All so some forgettable band can force me to listen to them.
July 5, 2022 @ 3:53 pm
Maren may very well be blameless in this incident, but the way she’s comported herself in the past makes me disinclined to afford her the benefit of the doubt here. From what I know of her, this sounds very much like something she’d do.
I could make a “Karen Morris” joke here, but I won’t because my mom’s name is Karen.
July 5, 2022 @ 5:55 pm
Maren Morris has been in and around this type of thing before, i.e. Mickey Guyton incident. Seems a tad too coincidental. Of course they will say she knew nothing about it. The guy from the venue really taking a hit for the team on this one. And Maren Morris knows now surely…give the girl a quick set on stage so we can see you support women, not just talk about it.
July 5, 2022 @ 11:22 pm
good move by maren more-ass. what if the opening local act is actually country, and then all her fans realize shes just a phony playing pop???
July 6, 2022 @ 8:02 am
Timely??? I live in NH and am on the Bank of NH Pavilion mailing list.
Today I got an offer for free tickets to Maren Morris’s show, I just havre to pay the $9.95 handling fee.
Traditionally this happens to shows that are selling very poorly.
Gee a nice local act playing might actually boost sales….
Needless to say, I will save my money for shows and artists I really care about.
July 7, 2022 @ 10:51 am
Exactly!! The media has told us she’s a big star but those tour sales say folks aren’t really that interested. PERIODT
July 7, 2022 @ 10:49 am
TBH her supposed “large fan base” is totally made up by the media and those with financial strings tied to her “success”. It’s all phony bologna. Anyone can log onto Ticketmaster and check the status of her ticket sales for shows that have been on sale quite long enough for someone of her alleged status to sell out or at least mostly sold. Mess!
July 9, 2022 @ 6:27 pm
Agree that Maren Morris is not as big an act as she thinks/outlets like Rolling Stone try to portray her as (I don’t love her solo work, but I am a fan of the Highwomen), but that’s not at issue here.
“Activation” refers to some type of interactive marketing set-up (these are very common at music festivals: Truly, for example, has an activation at some festivals were attendees can take photos with Truly props and try different flavors of Truly) though as someone familiar with the venue I can’t imagine an activation on such a scale so as to take up the entire entry plaza. For context, the Hazy Little Stage is pretty far from the main stage.
July 10, 2022 @ 2:18 am
It’s unfair to blame Maren Morris here, she records and sings and does not do her live business contracts. That’s her agency’s booker’s and/or management’s job. It’s not like every (or probably any) artist is overseeing every clause of their touring contracts.
If her agency have decided to not have local supports, that’s their decision. There may be a number of reasons for this.
One is: Like it or not, but often support slots on tours are being paid for. The support act’s label or management are seeing this as investing in their talent’s future and the main act receives a level of financial stability that part-funds their tour. If you have a support act paying money for the slot, that act may be rightfully miffed about other acts getting to play a similar slot for free. Right?
(Is this a good situation? Well if someone is offering to buy your support it’s hard to turn down. Often the support band money is crucial to the financing of a tour. I do know though, that a friend’s band, they’re Swedish, once hesitantly took a band on their US tour with them once because the other band’s label put up the money. But the bands really were not a good musical fit and they did not get along, the tour became an unpleasant experience. Since then my Swedish friends have taken to only taking buddies who they know well along, if only to enjoy their tours more.)
Another reason may be negative experiences. Having local bands not only eats into your soundcheck time, there may be situations backstage, from a local band plundering your catering to things going missing. Overenthusiastic local bands may not notice that their attempts to befriend the main artist can be very intrusive, but there may also be straight-up hassling. And if you are on a 80-day-slog arriving at a new backstage area every day, sometimes you just want to keep your head down and be among your team, which is also okay.
So why no simply regulate this with strict backstage area separations? Because not every venue allows for that. You’ll be surprised how tiny backstage areas can be even at biggish venues, let alone small clubs. So instead of bartering with every local promoter, the booker may find it easier to just state “no local openers” in the standard contract.
Of course, many acts do allow and wish for local bands to open their shows and maybe bring along some of their home crowd. Many musicians are welcoming local acts into their backstage area and enjoy the hanging out and the companionship. But if that is not for everyone, that is understandable.
There even are rare occasions when traveling acts not only request local support acts, but wish to listen to them beforehand to see if they fit. That level of commitment is really seldom though. Who is really looking at their 50-date schedule and decides to listen to one or more bands per city?
Anyway, having worked for a local promoter and a local club for a number of years I have seen both approaches in a roughly 50/50 spilt. Usually, the bigger the acts become, the more they avoid any extra hassle that interferes with the professional execution of their show – and unfortunately for local newcomers, their appearance may mean just that.
So, Maren Morris’ management avoiding local support bands does not single her out as the one evil witch who wants to stomp on local talent. Actually, very, very, very, very, many artists are preferring tour life without local support acts. That is just the way it is. So this is very much a non-story and Maren is really unlucky for receiving all the anger about something that is a) a very common practice and b) entirely outside her decision-making.
July 10, 2022 @ 7:20 am
So a lot of the concerns you bring up are just not relevant in this case. This isn’t a local opener being shoehorned on the main stage by the venue. This is a long-stablished side stage specifically set up for local openers, where concerns for money, quality of performance, soundcheck issues, or anything else would never enter the equation. That is why the Band of New Hampshire Pavilion has set the situation up like this. And let’s remember, it was a concern for the Maren Morris team, but pretty much every other big mainstream country star playing the venue this year does NOT have a problem with it, only Maren Morris.
You are correct though that we can’t assume Maren Morris knows anything about this. It could be a stipulation put in her contract she is unaware of. Or, as the venue is saying, she has some specific “activation” that gets in the way of the side stage local opener (though nobody is saying what that “activation” is.) Nonetheless, if Maren Morris is out there preaching about how the country music industry is unfair to women, and her contract stipulations are actively cancelling the opening slots of up-and-coming women, it’s a problem she should know about. That’s why I wrote this article, to hopefully help raise awareness. Maren Morris SHOULD know about this, if she wants to be considered a leader for women in country music. Artists DO concern themselves with these matters when they take a ‘leadership’ role. I’m disappointed Maren Morris couldn’t either be aware enough, or figure out a way to let this up-and-coming woman play this gig.
July 11, 2022 @ 11:32 am
The whole issue with these sponsored / secondary stages at big venues is the perception that this act is “opening for” the artist. Most artists take great pride in who they bring on the road with them, for a number of reasons, but it is one of the strongest endorsements of an artist that a headliner can make.
When you get into these situations like this Hazy Stage – the artist has absolutely nothing to do with who is performing. The promoter is choosing an artist based on who is available, willing to play for a low fee, and loosely similar to the headliner. The promoter is also taking a nice check from the corporate sponsor of the stage.
All that to say, the issue from an artist’s perspective is that the vast majority of the public has no idea about this. So when they see an artist say, “I opened for so and so at this big venue” – well, no they didn’t. The artist had no say in that, and they’re not playing on the main stage so it’s technically not even part of the show.
The entire framing of this article as Maren “disallowing local openers” is all the proof you need.
Unfortunate lack of communication from promoter to artist, however that transpired. Understandable move from Maren’s POV in my opinion.
July 12, 2022 @ 1:14 pm
i must admit i am warming up to her predilection for disallowing the wearing of brassieres.
hate to see her sing, love to watch her leave.