The Weeknd calls the Grammys ‘corrupt’ after nominations snub

The Weeknd has accused the Grammys of being “corrupt” after being snubbed for the 2020 awards despite a stellar year.

Following the release of his hit album After Hours and the ubiquitous single Blinding Lights, which broke the record for the longest-running top five hit in US chart history, the Canadian star was predicted to feature in at least one or two categories.

However, the 30-year-old failed to pick up a single nomination for the awards, for which Beyonce is the frontrunner after being shortlisted in nine categories, including song and album of the year.

“The Grammys remain corrupt,” The Weeknd tweeted after the nominations were announced. “You owe me, my fans and the industry transparency…”

According to Rolling Stone, a “source close to the situation” alleges the snub follows weeks of discussions about the star possibly performing at the ceremony in January and a “struggle” over him also playing the Super Bowl.

The criticism comes less than a year after the Recording Academy’s ousted chief executive accused the group that determines nominations in the top categories of having conflicts of interest and not engaging in a transparent selection process.

Harvey Mason Jr, interim president and chief executive, released a statement following The Weeknd’s post explaining that “unfortunately, every year, there are fewer nominations than the number of deserving artists”.

He said: “We understand that The Weeknd is disappointed at not being nominated. I was surprised and can empathise with what he’s feeling.”

The Weeknd was not the only star criticising the awards following the shortlist announcement on Tuesday – rapper Nicki Minaj also posted a tweet about being snubbed back in 2012.

She said she failed to receive the best new artist award after having seven songs “simultaneously charting on billboard & bigger first week than any female rapper in the last decade”.

And while Justin Bieber said he was “flattered” to have been included among the 2021 nominations, he questioned his inclusion in the pop category – saying his album, Changes, was “not being acknowledged as an R&B album which is very strange to me”.

Other nominees include British star Dua Lipa, who is up for album and song of the year for Future Nostalgia and Don’t Start Now respectively, as well as Taylor Swift, Roddy Ricch and Coldplay.

This year’s Mercury Prize winner Michael Kiwanuka was also shortlisted for his self-titled album.

He tweeted: “I’m so proud and over the moon to say that my album Kiwanuka has been nominated for a Grammy!!!!!

“I can’t believe it. So excited that I could pop. My mind is well and truly blown!!!”

Here are all the Grammy nominees for main categories:

Record of the year

  • Black Parade, Beyonce
  • Colors, Black Pumas
  • Rockstar, DaBaby featuring Roddy Ricch
  • Say So, Doja Cat
  • Everything I Wanted, Billie Eilish
  • Don’t Start Now, Dua Lipa
  • Circles, Post Malone
  • Savage, Megan Thee Stallion featuring Beyonce

Album of the year

  • Chilombo, Jhene Aiko
  • Black Pumas, Black Pumas
  • Everyday Life, Coldplay
  • Djesse Vol 3, Jacob Collier
  • Women In Music Pt III, Haim
  • Future Nosalgia, Dua Lipa
  • Hollywood’s Bleeding, Post Malone
  • Folklore, Taylor Swift

Song of the year

  • Black Parade, Beyonce
  • The Box, Roddy Ricch
  • Cardigan, Taylor Swift
  • Circles, Post Malone
  • Don’t Start Now, Dua Lipa
  • Everything I Wanted, Billie Eilish
  • I Can’t Breathe, H.E.R.
  • If The World Was Ending, JP Saxe featuring Julia Michaels

Best new artist

  • Ingrid Andress
  • Phoebe Bridgers
  • Chika
  • Noah Cyrus
  • D Smoke
  • Doja Cat
  • Kaytranada
  • Megan Thee Stallion

Best pop solo performance

  • Yummy, Justin Bieber
  • Say So, Doja Cat
  • Everything I Wanted, Billie Eilish
  • Don’t Start Now, Dua Lipa
  • Watermelon Sugar, Harry Styles
  • Cardigan, Taylor Swift

Best pop duo/group performance

  • Un Dia (One Day), J Balvin, Dua Lipa, Bad Bunny and Tainy
  • Intentions, Justin Bieber featuring Quavo
  • Dynamite, BTS
  • Rain on Me, Lady Gaga with Ariana Grande
  • Exile, Taylor Swift featuring Bon Iver

Best pop vocal album

  • Changes, Justin Bieber
  • Chromatica, Lady Gaga
  • Future Nostalgia, Dua Lipa
  • Fine Line, Harry Styles
  • Folklore, Taylor Swift

Best rock album

  • A Hero’s Death, Fontaines DC
  • Kiwanuka, Michael Kiwanuka
  • Daylight, Grace Potter
  • Sound & Fury, Sturgill Simpson
  • The New Abnormal, The Strokes

Best alternative album

  • Fetch the Bolt Cutters, Fiona Apple
  • Hyperspace, Beck
  • Punisher, Phoebe Bridgers
  • Jaime, Brittany Howard
  • The Slow Rush, Tame Impala

Best progressive R&B album

  • Chilombo, Jhene Aiko
  • Ungodly Hour, Chloe X Halle
  • Free Nationals, Free Nationals
  • F*** Yo Feelings, Robert Glasper
  • It Is What It Is, Thundercat

Best R&B album

  • Happy 2 B Here, Ant Clemons
  • Take Time, Giveon
  • To Feel Love/d, Luke James
  • Bigger Love, John Legend
  • All Rise, Gregory Porter

Best rap album

  • Black Habits, D Smoke
  • Alfredo, Freddie Gibbs & The Alchemist
  • A Written Testimony, Jay Electronica
  • King’s Disease, Nas
  • The Allegory, Royce Da 5’9″

Best country album

  • Lady Like, Ingrid Andress
  • Your Life Is A Record, Brandy Clark
  • Wildcard, Miranda Lambert
  • Nightfall, Little Big Town
  • Never Will, Ashley McBryde

Best dance/electronic album

  • Kick I, Arca
  • Planet’s Mad, Baauer
  • Energy, Disclosure
  • Bubba, Kaytranada
  • Good Faith, Madeon

(c) Sky News 2020: The Weeknd calls the Grammys ‘corrupt’ after nominations snub

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