It was also a show, however, that was rife with more tension than usual between country radio
, woman artists, fans, and the country music industry. According to the Annenberg Inclusionist Initiative
, women only received 16% of radio airplay from 2014 to 2018, which is significant in an industry where radio still holds an immense amount of power. Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles
even showed up to the ceremony in a Christian Siriano-designed jumpsuit stitched with the words "play our fucking records, please and thank you," on the front, and “equal play” on the back. Advocacy group The Women of Music Action Network catalogued some of the responses of prominent country radio DJs and personalities, further underscoring the sexism still at play. One of the tweets: "make records that sound more like men."