Miranda Lambert Celebrates Being a ‘Free Agent’ After Leaving Sony

Miranda Lambert is excited about her next musical chapter. The 39-year-old left her longtime label, Sony Music Nashville, earlier this year, after 20 years on their roster, and is happy to be on her own, for the first time in her career.

“I am, for the first time in 20 years a free agent,” Lambert tells ABC Audio. “I don’t have a label and I feel pretty great about it. I mean, I have Vanner Records, which was my imprint that now I have.”

“And it feels very inspiring to get to go see what’s out there and what options [there are],” she continues. “It’s definitely a very different landscape than the first time I signed my first record deal at 19 years old.”

Lambert signed with Sony Music Nashville after coming in third on Nashville Star in 2003. In the two decades she was with Sony, Lambert released nine studio albums and one EP, with more than two dozen Top 40 singles. As country music has changed, especially in recent years, Lambert is eager to see what her career can still become.

“Everything has changed in the business, and I’m excited to learn about it and hopefully be part of a new wave of whatever’s going on, because it changes so quickly,” she says. “But I do have a home, and it’s Nashville and this community. So I’m excited to see what comes to the table. And in the meantime, I’m just working on stuff and getting inspired and seeing what’s fueling my creative vibes.”

The Texan has managed to remain a consistent presence in country music, which includes recently making history by earning her 17th nomination at the ACM Awards for Female Artist of the Year, surpassing Reba McEntire‘s 16 nods in the category. She is also nominated for Entertainer of the Year, Artist-Songwriter of the Year, and for Album of the Year, both as an artist and producer, for her 2022 Palomino album.

“It’s pretty fun to get to celebrate stuff like that with your besties. It’s awesome. I’m so thrilled with that, ’cause Palomino was such a labor of love,” Lambert shared on The Bobby Bones Show when the nominations were announced. “I’d never written a record kind of concept-y. I mean, it’s not a concept record, but it definitely has a common thread that runs through it. We got to make up some interesting characters that we met along the way on this whole journey of Palomino. It sort of covered the whole map of the United States on this record.

“And so, we were writing with a purpose to meet these people and go through this storyline,” she added. “It was really, really cool. And we wrote it during a time when we couldn’t travel at all, so it felt good to write about freedom during the lockdown portion of our lives.”

Garth Brooks and Dolly Parton will host the ACM Awards ceremony. The 2023 ACM Awards will take place on Thursday, May 11 at 8:00 PM ET, streaming live on Amazon Prime Video, from Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, Texas. A limited number of tickets are available to enjoy the ceremony in person, at SeatGeek.com.