The Chief Executive Officer of the Recording Academy, Harvey Mason Jr., organisers of the prestigious Grammy Awards, has hinted at the possibility of having a category for Afrobeats at future Grammy awards.
Mason, who disclosed this while addressing journalists during a visit to Accra the Ghanian capital, noted that the Recording Academy recently had a meeting with leaders of the Afrobeats community including producers, songwriters, executives and others to learn more about the genre – and will continue to do so.
“We just talked about what are the different sub-genres (of Afrobeats), the needs, the desires, and my goal is to represent all genres of music including Afrobeats at the Grammys but it has to be done properly,” Mason said.
TCN had reported in August how the Academy came under fire for misrepresenting the music genre that has become one of the biggest musical exports out of the African continent.
However, the Grammy CEO said that members of the academy must submit a proposal to formally request the creation of a category for the genre.
Mason added that the Academy would continue to have fruitful conversations with the Afrobeats creators among others during the process.
“So, the process has started.”
Meanwhile, the news of a possible inclusion of a category for Afrobeats at the Grammys has generated mixed reactions among many music lovers as they perceive the gesture to be a veiled attempt to confine African music to just one category.
Here are some of their reactions below:
@SamuelM57486305: “This is caging African sounds to one category .. it’s rubbish African sound’s should be allowed to participate in main categories and not confined to a particular space or category.”
@Oluwaseun_Bpro: “This is a very bad idea honestly,for starters it shouldn’t be an Afrobeats category it’s like trying to put everybody under one umbrella funny thing is the Grammy don’t actually care that deeply as long as they can control the narratives from nw on. Validation wil ruin us.”
@sharklinx: “They are only trying to control the narrative here,if they really want to make an impact they should then start nominating afrobeats for main categories, such as song of the year , record of the year, record of the year. That’s a better way to start.”
@whoisdonta: C’mon, fr?
Grammy is for the American continent, there is no point to this.
It will eventually lead up to jumbled history in the future fr.
@iam_fvrst: “U are right,, it will fuck up our industry in the long run……we know grammy has a massive reputation,but them taking charge of awarding out afrobeat artiste is not good. Our vision as an industry will be placed in hands of foreign awards who don’t understand or know our artistry.”
@whoisdonta: “Yah, the charts is enough, it measures up the genre success in the American landscape.A more inclusive nominations will be better(pushing the notions for African artist to get nominated on major categories).”