Cassadee Pope leaving country music after being ‘shamed for speaking out’ against Morgan Wallen, Brittany Aldean

Cassadee Pope announced she is leaving country music after calling out the “problematic” behavior of Morgan Wallen and Jason Aldean’s wife.

The “Voice” alum explained to Rolling Stone that she is returning to her pop-punk and rock roots because of both her personal preferences and the polarizing antics of some of the most popular people in Nashville.

“If this is a genre that I absolutely can’t let go of, I’m just kind of being complicit,” Pope told the magazine in an interview published Thursday.

Cassadee Pope explained that she’s leaving “problematic” country music after being “shamed for speaking out.”Instagram
Pope recalled being “completely ostracized and shamed for speaking out.”Instagram

“I realize every genre has problematic people in it. I’m not saying there’s not a frontman in a band who hasn’t been accused of something in rock music. But I guess rock is in my bones more. You’re not completely ostracized and shamed for speaking out,” she added.

“I am completely disgusted by Morgan Wallens’ words. To be that flippant and nonchalant while hurling the most offensive racial slur you could utter…. some people just have ZERO sensitivity to a real f–king problem in this world: racism,” she wrote on Instagram at the time.

“It has no place in country music and has been tolerated and enabled way too long. And it has NO place in this world.”

The “Voice” alum previously condemned Jason Aldean’s wife Brittany’s transphobia.FilmMagic

Pope made headlines again in August 2022 for calling out Brittany Aldean thanking her parents for “not changing my gender when I went through my tomboy phase.”

“You’d think celebs with beauty brands would see the positives in including LGBTQ+ people in their messaging. But instead here we are, hearing someone compare their ‘tomboy phase’ to someone wanting to transition. Real nice,” the “Wasting All These Tears” singer tweeted at the time.

Fellow country artist Maren Morris supported Pope at the time, infamously referring to Brittany, 35, as “Insurrection Barbie.” (The “Bones” singer has also since distanced herself from the genre.)

“Real nice,” Pope tweeted at the time.Getty Images

Pope told Rolling Stone that she got death threats for condemning Brittany’s transphobic comment, but she “had no feeling of regret” and “felt so proud” of herself.

“I just kept my head down and kept going. It’s only been the past few months that I’ve let my guard down in therapy and said, ‘Wait, I actually wasn’t OK.’ But I think that kind of comes with the territory of including activism in your life. You’re not going to please everyone,” she shared.

The former Hey Monday lead vocalist also touched on some of the “sexist” behavior she experienced within the country music community.

Pope said she got death threats for her response to Brittany.Getty Images
“I actually wasn’t OK,” she recalled.Getty Images

“I didn’t really identify it as sexist at the time because I wasn’t educated on it. If anything, I’d think, ‘Oh, I must be really special to be the only girl doing this or that,’” she recalled.


Pope’s solo career took off after she won Season 3 of “The Voice” on Blake Shelton’s team in 2012. She subsequently moved to Nashville, opened for Rascal Flatts and visited various country radio stations to “get in nice” with the local DJs.

“Between flights, hotels, food, all of it, I was probably in the hole for at least half a million. It was just insane,” she remembered.

Cassadee Pope, Blake Shelton singing on "The Voice"
The former Hey Monday vocalist began her solo country career after winning “The Voice” in 2012.©NBC/Courtesy Everett Collection

“I was so dedicated and determined to get in nice with everyone,” she told the mag. “Some people I genuinely liked, but others I was tipped off that, ‘Oh, this person expects a friendship or some sort of communication, so if you don’t give it to them, they’re probably not going to play you on the radio.’”

Nearly a decade later, Pope has pivoted to releasing pop-punk songs like “People That I Love Leave.”

“I was just ready to change people’s perception of me,” she explained, “so that I can really just start this chapter of saying whatever I want.”