AceShowbiz - The Recording Academy has spoken up amid the backlash over The Weeknd snub at the 2021 Grammy Awards. Despite still being one of the most celebrated artists in the industry today, the Canadian star who released his latest album "After Hours" in March didn't get any nomination for the 63rd annual ceremony.
Speaking to Billboard on the eve of nomination announcement, the Recording Academy's interim President/CEO Harvey Mason Jr. briefly touched on The Weeknd snub, insinuating that the "Save Your Tears" crooner didn't receive any nomination simply because he lost the spot to other artists. "For The Weeknd, in every year you only have a certain amount of people you can nominate for each category," Mason said.
Mason also explained Harry Styles' absence on the "Big Four" categories, despite him still receiving nominations in other categories such as Best Music Video and Best Pop Vocal Album. As for Harry, he has some great nominations this year [even though he wasn't nominated in the top categories]," he said. "We are excited about some of the other categories where he was nominated. It's never easy to tell where people are going to land."
Mason added that The Academy had a "very diverse group of new voters" and didn't have much to say when it was noted that these "new voters" seemed to value rising, lesser-known artists than those who have established careers and bodies of work. "[Hesitantly] Yeah, it's interesting," Mason admitted.
Elsewhere in the interview, Mason doubled down on his explanation, "From year to year, it is really hard to predict who is going to be nominated and who's not. I personally wish we could give everybody a nomination, but there are only a certain amount of slots. There were some amazing records that did not get nominated."
Meanwhile, The Weeknd has lashed out at The Academy, which he deemed "corrupt" for denying him any nomination. "The Grammys remain corrupt. You owe me, my fans and the industry transparency...," he demanded on Tuesday, November 24 after the nominations were announced.
TMZ additionally reported that the singer, whose real name is Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, likely got snubbed for the Grammy nominations after testy talks with Grammy brass about him performing at the Grammys and Super Bowl LV. The organization allegedly issued an ultimatum for the singer to choose either one of the events.
Both parties eventually agreed that The Weeknd could do both, but the bitter back-and-forth reportedly pissed off Grammy honchos, which might have cost him the Grammy nominations.