Last night on November 8th the Country Music Awards took place in Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena one man decided to not take his seat amongst the audience, he wasn’t even sure he was invited. According to Vice’s Noisey, Sturgill Simpson, an award winning Grammy artist, decided to take a different seat at the CMAs. Rather than sit and watch the CMAs, Simpson chose to busk outside the CMA barricade to play his music and answer the questions any passerby or Facebook user had (as he livestreamed his whole performance).
Most people passing his busking station, though, did not recognize him. His outfit did not help that, however; he wore a black jacket and strapped an acoustic guitar around his chest and two signs by his feet. One sign read, “struggling country singer…anything helps (all donations go to the ACLU). God Bless America,” while the other read “I don’t take requests, but I take questions about anything you want to talk about…because fascism sucks.” He also decidedly placed his Grammy Award winning album A Sailor’s Guide To Earth alongside the actual Grammy Award.
Many people may not have recognized Simpson’s face in the cold, but his 70,000 livestream followers did as well as the masked man holding his camera for him. Like his first sign stated, Simpson answered any and every question posed to him, suggesting he might even be an undercover secret spy CIA agent. Some of his other answers included his love for Angel Olsen and Run the Jewels music as well as calling POTUS Donald Trump “a fascist f—g pig”. He continues, “Anybody’ who’s still supporting that guy can’t be anything in my mind but an ignorant f—g bigot. So there it is. Anybody that’s surprised to hear me say that is going to unfollow me or stop listening to my record was probably not listening that close anyway.” It is bery clear in his message that this busking was more than a perfomance for him, but to raise awareness on some difficult topics.
If you are wondering how he was able to answer the slew of questions he faced, Nashville Journalist Adam Gold (and writer for Rollingstone) asked him each question as they were posted to the comments section. One boy asked the Grammy award-winning artist why he was out there doing his performance and Simpson answered smoothly, “I’m just down here being an asshole.”
The busking lasted around 50 minutes while s few of his fans who recognized his silky voice gave him cheers of encoragement and snaps of selfies. Sturgill Simpson may have had 70,000 fans watching his every move on his Facebook livestream, and raised thirteen dollars from his busking, stating “it was all worth it”.
Featured Image credited to Raymond Flotat.