Just months after facing backlash for his packed Tennessee concert, Chase Rice is again wading controversy. The country crooner sparked upset on social media this week after taking to Twitter Sunday night to promote his new song, "Drinkin Beer. Talkin' God. Amen," with a joke about the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
In the tweet, Rice quipped that he had "just lost my taste and smell," referring to a common COVID-19 symptom. He went on to write that he was "dropping a single at midnight," the song being his latest collaboration with Florida Georgia Line's Brian Kelley and Tyler Hubbard, who recently recovered after testing positive for the virus. Rice, in a second tweet, assured his followers that did not "have covid," adding, "but I'm dropping a single tonight. With 2 guys that I learned a lot from."
Just lost my taste and smell. Weird. Also, dropping a single at midnight.— Chase Rice. (@ChaseRiceMusic) November 29, 2020
The controversial joke came just five months after he drew outrage from fans and his fellow country stars alike when he hosted a performance at the former prison Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary in Petros, Tennessee. Video from the even showed attendees ignoring social distancing guidelines and many not wearing a face mask. Kelsea Ballerini had called the scene "selfish," and Rice eventually spoke out, acknowledging that some people "had a big problem with how the show looked." He said that his next show would be a "drive-in show."
Rice's Sunday tweet was met with just as much outrage, with many people reflecting back on the controversy the singer found himself in over the summer. To date, more than 260,000 Americans have died of the coronavirus, and experts fear that the current surge in cases will only grow worse amid the holiday season. Scroll down to see what people are saying.
Hey first off I hope you’re not sick but if you’re not damn it I have Covid right not don’t be joking around about this crap cause I’m struggling to catch my breath at times to a point I feel like I’m about to pass out. Don’t be using a pandemic to rise sales of a dang song!— John Reynolds (@GENERALLEEJOHN) November 30, 2020
I'm legitimately glad you're ok but it's NOT funny joking about having Covid. Especially to promote music. People are literally dying from it. And Tyler might not find your joke funny either since he's actually HAD Covid.— 🎄Kay Watson (@Kaylore) November 30, 2020
you made a joke in poor taste considering the state of our citizens at this time. i do hope you’ll sincerely apologize and donate a portion of the sales from this single to frontline workers and PPE as a good faith gesture. just a thought...— flutie's girl (@flutiefan) November 30, 2020
I’ve lost all my respect for you this year. Congrats. I’ll be turning off the radio every time it comes on.— Ashley (@ashleylayneee) November 30, 2020
It was an awful joke that goes right along with his awful music— Brent Tuttle ⛳ (@squid_tuttle) December 1, 2020
Really in bad taste to joke about Covid. Thought you had learned something since the concert incident this year. Guess not. Here’s an idea: take all the earnings from this song and donate to Covid survivors or donate PPE to local hospitals. Do better, Covid is not a joke.— wendyrn11 (@wendyrn11) November 30, 2020
Speaking of respect, I used to respect you as an artist. But I was so disappointed to see how you handled the pandemic earlier this year, and now this. You’ve lost a fan my man. Be better.— Derek James (@derekjames66) November 30, 2020
Not funny at all Chase. Just lost a lot of respect for you 😳— Casey (@0000000000Casey) December 1, 2020
Ask healthcare workers if getting/dealing with Covid-19 is funny. Hint: it's not.— Long Duong (@SHD_Agent_Duong) November 30, 2020
This is in such poor taste man— james gaudioso (@jgaudioso1) December 1, 2020
Lost all respect for you and FGL— m. prenger (@inlove65) December 1, 2020
Wow. So disrespectful & cruel. Shameful.— Kelly Howell (@Kellycow08) December 1, 2020
Always a good idea to mock the over 230,000 dead Americans and over 1,000,000 that have tested positive from COVID-19 in a feasible attempt to promote your new music. @THubbmusic hope you are better than that.— Ryan (@RyanBounsall) November 30, 2020
imagine using a virus that one of the men THAT SANG WITH YOU ON THIS SONG has battled to promote the song. i KNOW he doesn't appreciate it. you should be ashamed of yourself.— ًtay 2 (@larriscardigan) November 30, 2020