The GRAMMYs will quit utilizing the expression “urban” for next February’s 63rd yearly installment. The move comes after prominent artists like Tyler, The Creator and Billie Eilish took a stand in opposition to the term and The Recording Academy’s bygone class groupings. Per Variety, this declaration features various significant changes accompanying following year’s show with updates to the Best New Artist classification, Latin, R&B, Rap and an overall overhaul of the Nominations Review Committees. In recent history’s first, the rules book has been made accessible to the general population.
Interim president and CEO Havey Mason Jr. told Variety, “It’s something we’ve been discussing for a couple of years, and the term has been a hot button for a while. A lot of creators and people in that genre didn’t like that description and felt it pigeonholed certain styles of music, so when our constituents brought that to us in the form of a proposal, we listened and voted to approve, as asked by the people in that community. “Progressive R&B” gives us a chance to lean more into the modern R&B and hybrid-style recordings and give us a little bit of flexibility in that category.”
This declaration comes shy of a week after Billie Eilish took to social media to upbraid the “urban” classification, reflecting Tyler, the Creator’s statement after he won the GRAMMY Award for Best Rap Album for his largely exploratory project IGOR, which was for the most part without rapping outside of a couple of guest appearances. “I have always hated categories,” Eilish said in a June 4 interview with British GQ. “I hate when people say, ‘Oh, you look like ‘blank.’ You sound like ‘blank.’ It was such a cool thing Tyler said. I agree with him about that term. Don’t judge an artist off the way someone looks or the way someone dresses. Wasn’t Lizzo in the Best R&B category that night? I mean, she’s more pop than I am.”
Tyler at first decried the “urban” order during the actual GRAMMYs Awards, telling CBS, “It sucks that whenever “we” – and I mean guys that look like me – do anything that’s genre-bending or that’s anything, they always put it in a rap or “urban” category which is – and I don’t like that “urban” word, it’s just a politically correct way to say the ‘N-word’ to me.”
About a week ago Republic Records supported the remainder of the music business to follow their lead in dropping the “urban” depiction over its artist program. Look at a portion of the renamed classes beneath. One of the most recognizable changes comes in the “Best Rap/Sung Performance” class. That will be classified “Best Melodic Rap Performance” moving forward, as The Recording Academy has at last perceived that as a rule, rappers are additionally doing the singing on their own tunes. Changes to the Best New Artist classification incorporate expelling the limitation on number of recordings, something that was intended to support rappers, who regularly drop a productive measure of work in their initial years, not be unreasonably left off the polling form.
Stay tuned for additional reports on the continuous GRAMMYs Awards changes later on. In more music news, Coachella 2020 and Lollapalooza 2020 have been authoritatively dropped.