Lainey Wilson on Record Breaker Award At Billboard Country Live: ‘Women Deserve a Spot in Country Music’

Country music tastemakers united in Dallas for the second annual Billboard Country Live and all eyes were on Lainey Wilson as the country titan accepted the Record Breaker award presented by Lone River.

At the evening event, which took place on Tuesday, May 14, at Gilley’s Dallas, notable names preceded Wilson’s appearance at the podium, including Lone River founder Katie Beal Brown, who had a few words to share with the crowd. “Tonight, we get to honor a woman who knows a little something about celebrating where she comes from,” she said, adding, “She has inspired millions of people on her whirlwind world tour and I am so lucky to call her a friend.” 

Following Brown was none other than Kelsea Ballerini, who stood before the audience to speak about Wilson’s impact both personally and professionally. “Lainey is a country girl, a girl’s girl, a good friend, a good woman,” she gushed in front of the live audience. Afterward, the “Wildflowers” singer accepted the accolade saying, “The word that I keep thinking of when I think about these last few years is whirlwind because that’s what it’s been. The love and support that I’ve received from all of y’all is the thing that has just kept me going and kept me grounded and kept me feeling right at home even when I was a really long ways away from home.”

“As a woman in country music, I am so grateful to the woman who have came before me and paved the way for artists like me. It’s crazy when I think that I get to call Dolly [Parton] a friend now and get to call Wynona [Judd] a friend,” she continued. “Women deserve a spot in country music and we gotta side of the story, too, and it’s a good one.”

In addition to her appearance at the ceremony, Wilson also performed an intimate set, including her 2022 hit, “Wildflowers and Wild Horses.”

2023 was a busy year for the Nashville-based artist after her quick ascent to fame from being a local staple. Her second album, Bell Bottom Country, earned her a Grammy in the Best Country Album category, as well as a record breaking nine nominations and five wins at the CMA Awards. Between performances all over the United States, as well as international shows, Wilson has also been able to balance an acting career as a lead cast member in the Paramount hit series, Yellowstone

Wilson’s impact on the Billboard charts demonstrates how she is one of the recent trailblazers among woman-fronted country acts. In the upcoming months, she shows no signs of stopping her busy streak and is expected to continue touring through November 2024 with her band.

Additional honorees for this year’s Billboard Country Live ceremony included Rookie of the Year Nate Smith, Groundbreaker The War & Treaty, Executive of the Year Seth England and more. Click here to catch up on more highlights from the event!

Photo Credit: Catherine Powell
Photo Credit: Catherine Powell
Photo Credit: Catherine Powell
Photo Credit: Catherine Powell
Photo Credit: Catherine Powell

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