The Weeknd says he will boycott the Grammys going forward
The Weeknd has announced he will boycott the Grammy Awards going forward, again slamming the Recording Academy's perceived lack of transparency in selecting nominees.
The "Blinding Lights" singer, who was shut out of this year's Grammy nominations, said in a statement to The New York Times, "Because of the secret committees, I will no longer allow my label to submit my music to the Grammys."
"The secret committees" refers to the Grammys' complicated and obscure nomination process, which involves anonymous committees who review the nominees chosen by the Recording Academy's membership. (Voting members of the body include "performers, songwriters, producers, engineers, instrumentalists, and other creators currently working in the recording industry," according to the Grammys' official website.) Ultimately, the committee members have the final say over who and what is nominated, voting via confidential ballot to select each category's finalists.
Representatives for the Recording Academy didn't immediately respond to EW's request for comment.
The Grammys have come under renewed scrutiny in recent years, after longstanding accusations of bias against Black artists and women in particular. The Weeknd follows Frank Ocean in opting not to submit his music for Grammy consideration in protest, while artists including Drake, Kanye West, and Ariana Grande have criticized or publicly clashed with the awards show.
Last year, furthermore, Recording Academy chief Deborah Dugan was fired after just five months in her position, and mere days before the Grammy Awards ceremony. Though the academy alleged misconduct by Dugan, she claimed her dismissal was "retaliation" for raising concerns about the "boys' club" atmosphere and corruption within the organization.
The Weeknd previously slammed the Grammys in November, after this year's nominees were announced.
"The Grammys remain corrupt," he wrote on Twitter at the time. "You owe me, my fans and the industry transparency."
Sources close to the situation also claimed the singer was given an "ultimatum" saying he had to choose between performing at the Grammys ceremony or at the Super Bowl, which Recording Academy chief Harvey Mason Jr. denied.
"We understand that The Weeknd is disappointed at not being nominated," Mason said in a statement to EW at the time. "I was surprised and can empathize with what he's feeling. His music this year was excellent, and his contributions to the music community and broader world are worthy of everyone's admiration."
The Recording Academy has taken several steps in the last year to diversify its membership, inviting more than 2,000 new members in July and implementing numerous recommendations to help better its representation.
"The changes have been transformative," Mason told The New York Times.
The 63rd Annual Grammy Awards air Sunday at 8 p.m. on CBS.