The student news site of Millbrook High School

Cat Talk

The student news site of Millbrook High School

Cat Talk

The student news site of Millbrook High School

Cat Talk

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It’s Debatable: Are the Grammys Fair?

SZA+describes+Grammys+as+a+thirsty%2C+dark+space+for+artists+-+Los+Angeles+Times
SZA describes Grammys as ‘a thirsty, dark space’ for artists – Los Angeles Times

  American rapper, Jay Z, expressed his anger at the most recent Grammys saying that they disregarded his wife Beyoncé again for the best album award. He mentioned that the Grammys failed to recognize her in 2017 when Beyoncé released her album “Lemonade,” and they’ve done it again with Beyoncé’s newest album, “Renaissance.” 

  Since the inception of the Grammys in 1957, precisely only 11 black artists have won the prestigious “Album of the Year” award. In 2017, only two black artists had televised awards, Beyoncé and Chance the Rapper. In 2014 Macklemore was so embarrassed at winning “Best Rap Album” that he later apologized to Kendrick Lamar who has been nominated for album “DAMN.”. A similar situation happened in 2017 when Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” lost album of the year to Adele’s “25,” with Adele saying she “couldn’t possibly accept this word.”

  Essentially the Grammys is a group of nominated experts that annually vote on music. Little is known about how Grammy committees are formed, who forms them, and who is truly on these committees. After intense pressure across the industry in 2021, the Grammys got rid of all committees. 

  Their breaking point had to be when the artist The Weeknd received zero nominations at the 2021 Grammys after his record-breaking year in music. His 2020 album “After Hours” spent 44 weeks in the top 10, 28 weeks at number 4, and several weeks at number 1(where). The Weeknd also broke several records with his single “Blinding Lights’” and didn’t receive a single nomination. He later went on to tweet that the Grammys remain corrupt. Additionally, he announced in the New York Times that he was ready to boycott the awards altogether and no longer allow his label to submit his music to the Grammys since he rejects the idea of their secret committees. This also happened to Micheal Jackson who wasn’t nominated for his classic album “Off The Wall.” 

  In many other instances, artists have called out the grammys. After Halsey’s album “Manic” didn’t receive any nominations at the 2021 Grammys, she called them out on Instagram. Their response was that the Grammys are an elusive process and it’s all about private performances, knowing the right people, and campaigning through the grapevine. She even said that bribery plays a part in the awarding and nominations process providing that they’re vague enough to not be considered bribes. 

  Zayn Malik also said something similar to this in 2021. He has never received a grammy before, and he tweeted “F*** the grammys and everyone associated.” He declared that unless you shake hands and send gifts, there are no nomination considerations.

  Frank Ocean did not even submit his album “Blonde” for consideration at the 2017 grammys. He told the New York Times that the Grammys have a nostalgic importance but that their nominating and awarding system is simply dated. In response to that statement, a Grammy awards writer and producer said that his 2013 performance was “faulty” and not good T.V. This caused Ocean to  go off on tumblr saying that winning a T.V.award should not be the measurement of success for an artist. He also said that it wasn’t great T.V. for them to award album of the year to Taylor Swift’s “1989” over Kendrick Lamar’s “To Pimp A Butterfly”  and mentioned that the award show suffers from cultural bias. 

  Therefore, racial bias in the Grammys directly affects all black artists. After 63 years of celebration since the inception of the Grammys, which soon became highly prestigious awards that are sought out by artists all over the globe, allegations of racism in the award section can be proven by multiple controversies. 

 

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