January 20, 2021

Beyoncé, Taylor Swift and Dua Lipa Dominate 2021 Grammy Nominations

The world music category was named best global music album to avoid what the academy considered “connotations of colonialism, folk and ‘non-American.’” Nominees include Bebel Gilberto, Anoushka Shankar, Antibalas, Burna Boy and Tinariwen.

Over the summer, as the music industry wrestled with issues of race, the academy announced that it had renamed urban contemporary as progressive RB. That change predated the industry’s most recent discussions, but the connotations of “urban” have long been debated, including at the Grammys.

Nominees for best progressive RB album — which, according to the academy’s peculiar musicology, “may include samples and elements of hip-hop, rap, dance and electronic music” as well as “production elements found in pop, euro-pop, country, rock, folk and alternative” — are Aiko, Chloe x Halle, Free Nationals, Robert Glasper and Thundercat.

The nominations for this year’s 83 categories were winnowed down from more than 23,000 submissions — an uptick from the 21,000 that were submitted for the 62nd annual ceremony, suggesting that musicians have focused on recording work in the absence of live opportunities during quarantine.

One category was affected by the pandemic, however. The nominations for best immersive audio album — formerly known as best surround sound album — were delayed because, according to a Recording Academy spokeswoman, the panel of specialists who review those recordings considered virtual meetings but decided that “there was not a way to judge all the entries in a thorough manner that does justice to the entries and was safe for the committee members.”

The entries for that category will be taken up again next year, but judged separately from the 64th annual submissions.

Article source: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/24/arts/music/grammy-awards-nominations.html

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