Paramore’s Hayley Williams Calls Tennessee GOP “Embarrassing” For GRAMMY Congratulations After Allison Russell Controversy

Paramore is calling out the Tennessee GOP after the political party extended congratulations to the band on their recent GRAMMY win. Hayley Williams put out a statement rebuffing the gesture from the Republican party, citing racism when they refused to similarly honor Allison Russell on her win.

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“The blatant racism of our state leadership is embarrassing and cruel,” said Williams in her statement. “Myself, as well as Paramore, will continue to encourage young people to show up to vote with equality in mind.”

The backlash comes after Paramore and Allison Russell received strikingly different receptions to their GRAMMY Award wins. Democratic Tennessee Representative Justin Jones put forward two resolutions before the House Republicans that would honor both Paramore and Allison Russell for their achievements and awards. The proclamation for Paramore was easily approved, while the one for Russell was blocked.

It was House Republican Caucus Chair Jeremy Faison who rejected the proclamation for Russell, according to a report from Variety. Russell released a statement thanking Jones and Representative Gloria Johnson for the “high honor” of the celebratory resolution. She continued, “That the TN GOP blocked it, I take as a compliment. Their bigotry, sadly, is on relentless display. We have a chance this year to make a real change in TN.”

Faison has blocked similar proclamations in the past, such as the one celebrating TJ Osborne of the band The Brothers Osborne. Osborne had recently come out as gay, and even though the resolution passed unanimously in the state Senate, Faison rejected it.

[RELATED: Paramore to Serve as 2024 Record Store Day Ambassador: “The Timing Feels Kismet”]

Both Hayley Williams of Paramore and Allison Russell Make Rallying Calls to Tennessee Voters

Paramore’s statement, posted today (February 16), began by acknowledging the resolutions put forth by Rep. Jones, stating, ‘as far as I can tell these resolutions have no legal weight to them. They’re like a big high five or when the whole restaurant joins in to sing you ‘Happy Birthday.'”

The statement continued, “House Republicans only let the measure that acknowledged Paramore’s win pass. They blocked Allison’s. For those that don’t know, Allison Russell is an incredibly talented musician and songwriter. Her music spans genres with strong ties to the Folk/Americana scenes. You might have seen her on the Grammy stage performing with the great Joni Mitchell.

“Oh, she is also Black. She’s a brilliant Black woman,” the band stated, bringing attention to their statement on the “blatant racism” within the legislature by making Russell’s race clear.

The statement concluded, “I’d like to say thank you to Brother Jones for your steadfast commitment to your community. And thank you to Allison Russell for using your voice and artistry to band people together, not tear them apart. CONGRATS on your incredible Grammy night. On behalf of Paramore, Happy Black History Month.”

Featured Images by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for The New Yorker; Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for The Recording Academy

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