Mickey Guyton embraced her natural hair for an emotional performance of “Love My Hair” at the 2021 Country Music Association (CMA) Awards Wednesday evening (Nov. 10) live from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena.
Faith Fennidy, who was removed from her Catholic school at age 11 for wearing braids, presented the performance by opening up about how she personally inspired the song “Love My Hair.” “A few years ago, I was sent home from school because my braids were said to be a distraction. It was devastating for me. But this next artist created this song to make sure girls like me feel seen and loved,” she said before pausing in the midst of roaring applause. “And that’s how you turn something very painful into something very positive. With your help, we can work together to ensure the next generation grows up in a respectful and open world for natural hair.”
Guyton, Brittney Spencer and Madeline Edwards put their big, beautiful curly hair and billowing white gowns on full display while singing their truths as Black women who “used to think what God gave me wasn’t fair/ I’d braid it all/ Just to hide the curls up there/ I found my freedom/ When I learned not to care/ Now I’m not scared/ To love who I am/ I love my hair.” After the threesome harmonized on the chorus, they came together in an embrace.
Guyton was nominated for new artist of the year, which fellow Black country artist Jimmie Allen ended up winning that night. “Love My Hair” is from the 37-year-old singer’s debut studio album Remember Her Name, which she released in September via Capitol Records Nashville.
Two-time entertainer of the year winner Luke Bryan made his hosting debut at the 55th annual CMA Awards.