With the music industry adapting to changing tides, so too are the award shows which reward the year’s top releases.
And at the forefront of this shapeshifting is the Grammy Awards.
Heavily critiqued in recent years after seismic snubs, questionable wins, and a still raging gender debate, organisers for music’s biggest calendar night have announced changes – which amount to being some of the most profound in Grammy history.
Find out what they are below…
Effectively immediately (and thus reflective in nominations for the 2019 Grammys), all four of the top categories expands its pool of nominees from five to eight.
This impacts the following: Album Of The Year, Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year, and Best New Artist.
While the remaining 80 categories will stay capped at five, this is a major shift and undoubtedly one of the most historic to be implemented on the watch of the Grammys’ outgoing president Neil Portnow.
Explaining the change, he said:
“Throughout the year, we team up with music people across all genres and disciplines to consider revisions and subsequently make amendments to our rules and entry guidelines to ensure we’re keeping up with our ever-changing industry and meeting the needs of music creators. This creates more opportunities for a wider-range of recognition in these important categories and gives more flexibility to our voters when having to make the often challenging decisions about representing excellence and the best in music for the year. We look forward to celebrating all of our nominees when they are announced later this year.”
We’re here for it! This promotes variety, diversity, and adds a layer of excitement to forecasting winners (as the increase in options may see “surefire” votes split and thus make it more difficult to predict who’ll be taking home awards).
That said, the true test of the effectiveness of the changes will be in who ends up winning.
In recent times, it’s become routine to see the same ol’ Grammy darlings bag awards. So hopefully this is more than clever optics designed to be make the voting committee be “seen” to be more inclusive while rewarding the usual candidates. Fingers crossed this actually amounts to the major shake-up it looks like on paper.