Grammy Awards Renames ‘Urban’ Category After Artists Call for Change - Black Enterprise

Grammy Awards Renames ‘Urban’ Category After Artists Call for Change

Grammys
(Image: Recording Academy)

The Recording Academy announced last week that it will be eliminating the term “urban” from the Grammys. This change will take effect in time for next year’s 63rd Annual GRAMMYs.

“I’m excited to announce our latest changes, as we’re constantly evaluating our Awards process and evolving it to ensure the GRAMMY Awards are inclusive and reflect the current state of the music industry,” said Harvey Mason Jr., chair and interim president/CEO of the Recording Academy in a written statement. “The Academy accepts proposals for rule changes from members of the music community throughout the year that are carefully reviewed and, if accepted, ultimately ratified at our annual Board meeting, a process that we are proud to have continued in this challenging year.”

Grammy Changes
(Image: Recording Academy)

“As a peer-driven and peer-voted award, members of the music community are directly involved in the growth and preservation of the GRAMMYs process,” said Bill Freimuth, chief awards officer at the Recording Academy. “Each year we receive a number of rule change proposals from artists, producers and songwriters asking us to reevaluate our process to better reflect the current state of the music industry and how it’s evolved over the past 12 months.”

APPROVED RULE AMENDMENTS:

Best Urban Contemporary Album has been renamed Best Progressive R&B Album to appropriately categorize and describe this subgenre. This change includes a more accurate definition to describe the merit or characteristics of music compositions or performances themselves within the genre of R&B.

This category is intended to highlight 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.

Likewise, Best Rap/Sung Performance has been renamed Best Melodic Rap Performance to represent the inclusivity of the growing hybrid performance trends within the rap genre. The expanded category is defined as follows:

This category is intended to recognize solo and collaborative performances containing elements of rap and melody over modern production. This performance requires a strong and clear presence of melody combined with rap cadence, and is inclusive of dialects, lyrics or performance elements from non-rap genres including R&B, rock, country, electronic or more. The production may include traditional elements of rap or elements characteristic of the aforementioned non-rap genres.

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