Miranda Lambert raised a toast to her loyal fans after recently sparking backlash for her onstage behavior.
The 39-year-old country singer was performing her Velvet Rodeo Las Vegas residency on Saturday, July 22, when she spotted a cheeky T-shirt in the audience. “Her shirt says, ‘Shoot tequila, not selfies,’” Lambert said in a clip from the show, pointing to the fan in the front of the crowd.
Cheers erupted throughout the venue as Lambert teased, “She did it, I didn’t! … That’s badass.”
Lambert laughed before walking to the edge of the stage to accept a mini bottle of tequila from the fan. She took a swig and offered the rest to her guitarist, Ethan Ballinger. “So this happened last night 🙈,” Ballinger wrote via his Instagram Story on Sunday, July 23, alongside a video of the interaction.
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The playful moment came one week after Lambert was criticized for calling out a group of women mid-performance. She paused her show on July 15 while gearing up to play her emotional song “Tin Man.”
“I’m gonna stop right here for a second, I’m sorry,” she said after getting through the first verse. “These girls are worried about their selfie and not listening to the song. It’s pissing me off a little bit. Sorry, I don’t like it. At all.”
Lambert added: “We’re here to hear some country music tonight. I’m singing some country damn music.”
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The statement was met with mixed reviews in the room, with some fans cheering in support. Others, however, were seen getting up to leave. “You don’t do that to fans,” one person said in a video from the concert.
While Lambert has yet to publicly address the controversy, the fan spoke to NBC News shortly after the incident went viral. “It felt like I was back at school with the teacher scolding me for doing something wrong and telling me to sit down back in my place,” Adela Calin said on July 17. “I feel like she was determined to make us look like we were young, immature and vain. But we were just grown women in our 30s to 60s trying to take a picture.”
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Calin claimed that she and her friends took “30 seconds at most” to take their photos, confessing that she was “appalled” by Lambert’s comments. “We just couldn’t get one good picture. We were so excited because I think we had the best seats in the house in the whole theater,” she said.
As the interaction sparked a major debate online, a source exclusively told Us Weekly that Lambert “is, and always has been, incredibly grateful for her fans” throughout her extensive career. “[She] feels like there is a level of respect that is expected when somebody is on stage,” the insider explained. “She understands fans are there to have fun, but she hopes people focus more on the show and being in the moment than using the opportunity to promote social media.”
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