Opinion | Drake Was Right. Maybe All Black Artists Should Boycott The Grammys


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By Dustin J. Seibert, Guest Writer

Black artists deserve Grammys, but do the Grammys deserve Black artists?

Beyoncé receives an award at the 65th Grammy Awards
Beyoncé made history at the 65th Grammy Awards by simultaneously becoming the first Black woman to win for Best Dance/Electronic Album and becoming the artist with the most Grammy Award wins ever. (FRANCIS SPECKER/CBS VIA GETTY IMAGES)

Beyoncé made history Sunday night in a manner only Beyoncé can pull off.

After showing up fashionably late for the 65th Grammy Awards because she had other stuff to do, she won four Grammys for her seventh album ”Renaissance,” bringing her lifetime Grammy wins to 32. That breaks the previous record of 31, set by British conductor Georg Solti 26 years ago. (My guess is you could fit the number of people reading this who knew who he was before Sunday in a middle school gym and have enough space left over to play dodgeball.)

Every major news outlet sent a notification of the broken Grammy record and Bey’s emotional speech to my phone. But what she didn’t win arguably made more noise: the Album of the Year award. The snub is jarring for a lot of folks in my world, where ”Renaissance” was handily the biggest and most celebrated album release of 2022. Months after it dropped, I still saw posts and memes on my news feed about how Bey’s “dance album” was like crack infused into digital files.

Though I’m personally not a huge fan of Beyoncé’s music, my world, my social media, and my family and friends consist of many Black women who deeply adore her and everything she touches. If “Lemonade” was a movement, “Renaissance” isn’t far behind.


While Bey has rocked with her Grammy snubs, Drake and The Weeknd offer no quarter to the ceremony, having once again boycotted: Neither artist submitted any of their solo work for consideration, despite Drake dropping his seventh album “Honestly, Nevermind” (otherwise known as Great Value Renaissance) and The Weeknd dropping his fifth studio album, “Dawn FM,” in 2022.

T]here seems to be something about the top award that evades Black artists, and especially Black rappers. There have been only three Black women to win Album of the Year in the 65-year history of the ceremony; Lauryn Hill nabbed it last 24 years ago for “The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill.” OutKast’s “Speakerboxxx/The Love Below” is the only hip-hop album to ever win Album of the Year. And let’s be honest: That’s only because of Andre 3000’s decidedly non-hip-hop half of the double album. (Some consider “Miseducation” a hip-hop album. I do not.)

Keep reading this opinion piece.

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