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Old 06-11-2020, 02:49 PM   #1
JamesG
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Music Recording Academy Announces Changes in Award Categories

Grammy Awards Drop the Word "Urban" from All but One Category, Among Other Changes
by Marcus Jones
June 10, 2020



The Recording Academy is joining other companies within the music industry in getting rid of "urban" as a classification for American music. All changes made for the upcoming 63rd Grammy Awards were voted on and passed at the semiannual Board of Trustees meeting held in May.

While within the record industry, "urban" has been more clearly associated with rap and R&B, genres populated by mostly black artists, the Grammys use of the word in some categories has made the euphemism even murkier.

For example, at last year's ceremony, Lizzo was nominated for Best Pop Solo Performance for her No. 1 hit, "Truth Hurts," while the album the song was included on was nominated for in the Best Urban Contemporary Album category.




For the 2021 Grammys, Best Urban Contemporary Album will now be known as Best Progressive R&B Album, meant for albums that "include the more progressive elements of R&B and may include samples and elements of hip-hop, rap, dance, and electronic music. It may also incorporate production elements found in pop, euro-pop, country, rock, folk, and alternative."

The other former category to use the word "urban," Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album, has now been split between two categories: Best Latin Pop Or Urban Album, and Best Latin Rock Or Alternative Album.

The word "urban" actually serves a purpose here in that the term musíca urbana has become the agreed upon catch-all for most rap and R&B-inspired Latin music.




Some of the final changes include Best Rap/Sung Performance becoming Best Melodic Rap Performance, accounting for more solo artists like Future or Lil Nas X who often rap through autotune, rather than just rapper/singer collaborations.

Also, there will not be a specified maximum number of release for a Best New Artist candidate anymore. A screening committee will instead determine if a prospect has already had a breakout year in a prior eligibility period. An affirmative determination would then disqualify them.

Nominations Review Committee members will also have to fill out a conflict of interest disclosure form before voting in any of the categories they are invited to participate in.

https://ew.com/awards/grammys/grammy...-contemporary/
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