When it comes to country music stars, there’s no one quite like Miranda Lambert, and she has the awards to prove it. At this year’s Academy of Country Music Awards, held Sunday, April 15 in Las Vegas, Lambert took home awards in two of the three categories for which she was nominated: Female Vocalist of the Year and Song of the Year. In total, that brings her to a whopping 27 ACM Awards over the course of her career, and she deserves every one of those trophies, especially because her music is so, so honest.
That is especially true of the song “Tin Man,” the song that got her the nomination and eventual win for Song of the Year. During her acceptance speech for Song of the Year, Lambert dedicated the win to her fans. “Thank you guys so much for sharing my broken heart with me,” she told the audience. Her speech may have been short, but it’s still so meaningful. It was a poignant line, especially considering Lambert has gone through some major personal humps in recent years, most recently, her split from her boyfriend of two years, musician Anderson East. The fact that Lambert has felt comfortable enough to share her broken heart with fans creates such a special kind of connection.
— ACM Awards (@ACMawards) April 16, 2018
“Tin Man,” released in 2017 as a single off her most recent album, The Weight of These Wings, is a devastating ballad about loss. It’s a letter to the Wizard of Oz character in which Lambert implores him to consider how lucky he is to not have a heart. “Hey there, Mr. Tin Man,” she sings, “I’m glad we talked this out/You can take mine if you want it/It’s in pieces now/By the way there, Mr. Tin Man/If you don’t mind the scars/You give me your armor/And you can have my heart.” Talk about a tearjerker of a song.
About “Tin Man,” Lambert told iHeartRadio, “‘Tin Man,’ I guess [was] going through a lot of times where I felt pretty empty — I understood a whole new meaning. I mean, how many times have we seen The Wizard of Oz? Something that everyone knows what the Tin Man represents: cold, and empty, and loneliness, and heartless. And it just opened my eyes to it even more, going through pain myself.”
That pain Lambert speaks of is likely a reference to her divorce from first husband Blake Shelton — a heartbreak fans have witnessed Lambert process and then channel into song. In the three years since her divorce, Shelton has begun a relationship with fellow Voice coach Gwen Stefani — both of them were in the audience Sunday night.
As for how she feels about splitting from East, fans are a little less informed. There’s no doubt she’s still processing it and will likely put those feelings into a whole new slew of songs.