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Beyoncé led the 63rd annual Grammy Awards nominations announced Tuesday, with a few notable snubs and surprises.
One such surprise was The Weeknd who didn’t receive any nominations for his most recent album, After Hours. After being snubbed, the star took to social media to criticize the Recording Academy for the omission.
The singer’s failure to receive a single nomination for his album and hit single “Blinding Lights” (the single was ranked as the No. 1 spot on the Billboard 200 chart for more than three weeks) was a surprise given The Weeknd is coming off big wins at the recent American Music Awards. The Weeknd was also announced to headline the 2021 Super Bowl halftime show. The Weeknd was also expected to be a big nominee for the upcoming ceremony.
Recording Academy chief Harvey Mason, jr. has responded to The Weeknd’s claims in a statement provided to The Hollywood Reporter.
“Congratulations to today’s Grammys nominees who have earned their peers’ recognition for their incredible work,” he wrote. “There were a record number of submissions in this unusual and competitive year. We understand that The Weeknd is disappointed at not being nominated. I was surprised and can empathize with what he’s feeling. His music this year was excellent, and his contributions to the music community and broader world are worthy of everyone’s admiration. We were thrilled when we found out he would be performing at the upcoming Super Bowl and we would have loved to have him also perform on the Grammy stage the weekend before.”
“Unfortunately, every year, there are fewer nominations than the number of deserving artists,” the statement continued. “But as the only peer-voted music award, we will continue to recognize and celebrate excellence in music while shining a light on the many amazing artists that make up our global community. To be clear, voting in all categories ended well before The Weeknd’s performance at the Super Bowl was announced, so in no way could it have affected the nomination process. All Grammy nominees are recognized by the voting body for their excellence, and we congratulate them all.”
Apart from The Weeknd, other artists such as Harry Styles, BTS, Luke Combs and more were also snubbed. Styles received noms in the best pop vocal album category but he was shut out of all four major categories. Meanwhile BTS’ hit song “Dynamite” did not receive any nominations in the major song categories but the group secured a pop duo/group performance category nom. Country artist Combs’ sophomore album What You See Is What You Get won album of the year at both the CMA Awards and Academy of Country Music Awards but was passed over as a Grammy nominee.
Other notable snubs include The Chicks, Bob Dylan, Selena Gomez, Mac Miller and Pop Smoke.
Beyoncé, Dua Lipa, Roddy Ricch, Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, Billie Eilish and Megan Thee Stallion led the list of nominees for the 2021 awards.
The Grammys remain corrupt. You owe me, my fans and the industry transparency…
— The Weeknd (@theweeknd) November 25, 2020
Justin Bieber, who received four nominations including best pop solo performance for “Yummy,” also shared frustrations on the day of the Grammy nominations. The artist took to Instagram to note why his album Changes should have been categorized as R&B instead of Pop.
“To the Grammys, I am flattered to be acknowledged and appreciated for my artistry,” Bieber wrote. “I am very meticulous and intentional about my music. With that being said, I set out to make an R&B album. Changes was and is an R&B album. It is not being acknowledged as an R&B album, which is very strange to me. 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!”
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