Singer-songwriter Jaime Wyatt turns in a moving, bittersweet performance of “Mercy” as part of Ty Herndon and GLAAD’s 2021 Concert for Love and Acceptance, happening as a virtual event for a second consecutive year. This year’s concert takes place Wednesday, June 30th, at 8 p.m. ET and will stream on CMT’s Facebook and YouTube channels as well as f4la.org.
Dressed in a sparkling suit and hat, Wyatt — a Nashville transplant by way of California — brings a world-weary feeling to this rendition of “Mercy,” which she originally recorded for her 2020 album Neon Cross. She says the song was “carefully chosen” for her Concert for Love and Acceptance performance because it follows her own story of deciding to leave her marriage to a man and come out of the closet.
“I had buried the queer stuff so deep… I woke up one day and realized that what I had been suspicious of and thought might be was really true. And that was what the source of my unhappiness was, was that I was really gay,” she tells Rolling Stone. “So I was asking for mercy when I was trying to avoid judgment by other people when I divorced my husband.”
These days, Wyatt is in a healthier spot, living out and proud and finding affirmation from fellow members of the LGBTQ community. “I am literally who I was always meant to be now, and finally. It’s just a way different feeling,” she says.
Wyatt joins an impressive and diverse lineup of performers for the 2021 Concert for Love and Acceptance, including Brothers Osborne, Gavin DeGraw, Brooke Eden, Terri Clark, Jamie Floyd, Michael Ray, Harper Grae, Shelly Fairchild, Rissi Palmer, and Kathy Mattea. Herndon will also perform and co-host the event with CMT’s Cody Alan. As Wyatt points out, it’s a lineup that includes numerous allies, of course, but leans heavily toward featuring country-singing members of the LGBTQ community.
“I’m grateful there’s an event that is for queer people by queer people in country music,” Wyatt says. “It’s kind of amazing, it’s almost miraculous that this gets to happen now.”
Proceeds from the event will benefit GLAAD, MusiCares, and Nashville’s Oasis Center. Before the concert, Ty Herndon’s Facebook will host the Red Carpet Countdown, featuring performances by Curtis Braly, Sarah Potenza, Brandon Stansell, and Emily West.