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Beyonce at the 2021 Grammy Awards
Beyonce at the 2021 Grammy Awards
Photo by Cliff Lipson / CBS
Culture > Entertainment

The Grammys: Do We Still Need It? 

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Temple chapter.

The Grammys, and other prominent award shows, have been under fire recently. Are these awards shows, specifically the Grammys, still relevant? Does winning a Grammy induct you into some ultimate singer-songwriter-producer-etc hall of fame? I don’t think so. 

Grimes, a famous Indie experimental artist, recently exposed the Grammys for their rigid nomination selection, commenting: “I stopped even clocking [The Grammys] in any capacity when I was on the producer of the year board and they quite literally would not allow me to nominate anyone who wasn’t on a pre-fabricated list that was exceptionally boring.” Not only are these lists a major problem in the Grammy voting process, but actually the whole process itself.  

Grammy voters are allowed to vote in up to 10 categories across 3 genre fields, according to the Recording Academy. Although this restriction is put into place to avoid any non-experts from skewing results, it’s up to the voter’s discretion as to which field they are experts or non-experts in. One Grammy voter, Rob Kenner, notes, “I refrained from voting in heavy metal and classical because I know very little about those genres. But I could have if I wanted to, and that strikes me as a problem” (Complex). This voting process makes it less likely artistic ability and authenticity are being accounted for. 

This year’s Grammys bought many issues like this to light. The first being “ABCDEFU” by Gayle being nominated for Song of the Year. Additionally, Sam Smith and Kim Petras winning for their song “Unholy.” I call it the “TikTok-ifcation” of the Grammys. Popular songs will make it past the first round of nominations, due in part to their recognition and not exactly for their artistic eligibility.  

The biggest issue was Harry Styles’ win for his album Harry’s House. Nominated against big players, like Beyonce and Kendrick Lamar, many have been calling to question what constitutes a true album of the year.  

In my opinion, Beyonce’s Renaissance was the strongest in the category. Hitting on themes of capitalism and Blackness, Beyonce delivers a blend of electronic, pop, R&B, and more. It’s easily one of her best works, yet was clearly disrespected on a stage meant to honor and preserve musical transcendence.  

So, why? Who knows? Music is subjective, but it’s clear that the Grammys have shifted their priorities. This is not to say Gayle, Smith, Petras, or even Styles don’t deserve their flowers. Beyonce even became the most-awarded Grammy artist this year. But, I think artists should stop treating this event as the hail mary. We can move on.  

Evie Lugo

Temple '26

Hi! I'm Evie Lugo, a current Temple Freshman with a love for music, writing, journaling, and deco-ing. I love all things Sanrio, and anything plushie.