Megan Moroney Nabs Breakthrough Female Video of the Year at 2023 CMT Music Awards
The Breakthrough Video of the Year category was newly divided into Male and Female subdivisions for 2023 -- a testament to how much great new talent is emerging in the country music genre -- and even with those new parameters in place, the competition remained fierce.
Parker McCollum, who won the award last year, presented Moroney with her trophy win. Before doing so, he said, "What's up Austin? Winning this category last year was a highlight for me. I cannot wait to share that feeling with tonight's winner. So let's get to it."
After hearing her name called, Moroney, who dazzled in a green knee-length dress -- presumably a nod to her upcoming Lucky album, slated for release on May 5 -- made her way through the audience and up to the stage.
"Oh my God! What is going on? Thank you CMT so much," a stunned Moroney said while accepting her first award of the night, and first ever at the CMT Awards. "Thank you to my fans. I wouldn't be up here if it wasn't for you all. Thank you to the incredible video team at Columbia for putting this together the day after Christmas. Thank you to the director, Jason Lester for really bringing my ideas to life in this video."
Moroney then went on to thank her family for helping her get to where she is today.
"I also wanted to thank my parents, especially my mom because my flight got canceled the night before and she had to drive me through the night to Nashville," she continued. "So thank you, mom. I love you so much. Thank you CMT. Holy crap!"
Moroney's viral hit, "Tennessee Orange," is about a lifelong Georgia Bulldogs fans who temporarily becomes a University of Tennessee supporter in the name of love. The song's relatable subject matter -- and fan speculation about whether its lyrics might actually be about a certain Tennessee-born country superstar -- quickly got listeners buzzing as Moroney sent it to radio.
The music video certainly plays into the intrigue of who the mystery man of "Tennessee Orange" might be: Various scenes show Moroney waking up in bed, sitting across a diner table from and making adoring eyes at the camera with the unnamed Tennessee fan presumably behind the lens. No matter who he is, one thing's for sure: "Tennessee Orange" was a runaway hit that jump-started Moroney's career both with her rapidly-expanding fanbase and at country radio.
The 2023 CMT Music Awards aired on CBS on Sunday night (Apr. 2) live from Austin, Texas. The show also streamed live and on-demand on Paramount+. Kane Brown and Kelsea Ballerini served as this year's co-hosts.