On the 24th of June 2020, nominations for the 63rd annual Grammy Awards were announced to much pomp and protest. While Artists like Beyoncé featured in nine categories, and some others like Taylor Swift, Dua Lipa, and Roddy Rich have six nominations each. Some top artists have received no nomination.
In what is one of the biggest snubs in recent memory, Singer The Weeknd received zero nominations for the 2021 Grammys despite his song, Blinding lights, being the biggest chart hit of the year.
In a bold tweet, The Weeknd accused The Grammy of corruption and lack of transparency. Recording Academy chief Harvey Mason, jr. has since responded saying that “I was surprised and can empathize with what he’s feeling.” He continues: “Unfortunately, every year, there are fewer nominations than the number of deserving artists.”
The Weeknd’s exclusion comes as a shock given the astonishing numbers his album, After Hours, has enjoyed since release. In March 2020, this album broke the record for the most global pre-adds in Apple Music history, with over 1.02 million users.
In a different event, fellow Canadian, Justin Beiber whose album raked three nominations has called out The Grammys for miscategorizing his music. He voiced his disappointment in an Instagram post.
“I grew up admiring R&B music and wished to make a project that would embody that sound. For this not to be put into that category feels weird, considering from the chords to the melodies to the vocal style, all the way down to the hip-hop drums that were chosen, it is undeniably, unmistakably an R&B album!”
Trevor Noah, anchor of The Daily Show, will host the event in January. In a statement, he said: “Despite the fact that I am extremely disappointed that the Grammys have refused to have me sing or be nominated for best pop album, I am thrilled to be hosting this auspicious event.”
“I think as a one-time Grammy-nominee, I am the best person to provide a shoulder to all the amazing artists who do not win on the night because I too know the pain of not winning the award! (This is a metaphorical shoulder, I’m not trying to catch Corona). See you at the 63rd GRAMMYs!” Noah added.
This year’s nomination features African artists such as Wizkid (for his part in Brown Skin Girl), Burna Boy, who becomes the first Nigerian to bag consecutive nominations, for his recent album, Twice As Tall.
Nominated categories include:
Song Of The Year
A Songwriter(s) Award. A song is eligible if it was first released or if it first achieved prominence during the Eligibility Year. (Artist names appear in parentheses.) Singles or Tracks only.
Denisia Andrews, Beyoncé, Stephen Bray, Shawn Carter, Brittany Coney, Derek James Dixie, Akil King, Kim “Kaydence” Krysiuk & Rickie “Caso” Tice, songwriters (Beyoncé)
Samuel Gloade & Rodrick Moore, songwriters (Roddy Ricch)
Aaron Dessner & Taylor Swift, songwriters (Taylor Swift)
Louis Bell, Adam Feeney, Kaan Gunesberk, Austin Post & Billy Walsh, songwriters (Post Malone)
DON’T START NOW
Caroline Ailin, Ian Kirkpatrick, Dua Lipa & Emily Warren, songwriters (Dua Lipa)
EVERYTHING I WANTED
Billie Eilish O’Connell & Finneas O’Connell, songwriters (Billie Eilish)
I CAN’T BREATHE
Dernst Emile II, H.E.R. & Tiara Thomas, songwriters (H.E.R.)
IF THE WORLD WAS ENDING
Julia Michaels & JP Saxe, songwriters (JP Saxe Featuring Julia Michaels)
Best New Artist
This category recognizes an artist whose eligibility-year release(s) achieved a breakthrough into the public consciousness and notably impacted the musical landscape.
MEGAN THEE STALLION
Best Pop Solo Performance
For new vocal or instrumental pop recordings. Singles or Tracks only.
EVERYTHING I WANTED
DON’T START NOW
Best Alternative Music Album
Vocal or Instrumental.
FETCH THE BOLT CUTTERS
THE SLOW RUSH
Best R&B Performance
For new vocal or instrumental R&B recordings.
LIGHTNING & THUNDER
Jhené Aiko Featuring John Legend
ALL I NEED
Jacob Collier Featuring Mahalia & Ty Dolla $ign
The full Grammys nomination can be read here.