The 59th Grammy awards sparked an array of criticism after Adele took home the Album of Year award over Beyonce. Even Adele herself during her acceptance speech acknowledged that Beyonce should have won, “I can’t possibly accept this award… The ‘Lemonade’ album was just so monumental, Beyoncé. It was so monumental and well thought-out and beautiful and soul-bearing… we appreciate that. All of us artists here adore you. You are our light”
Fan’s of Queen B were anything but silent about the win. Indie pop artist Sufjan Stevens and St. Vincent accused the Grammys as being racist for denying Beyonce her win for best album. On Sufjan’s website he posed the following question:
St. Vincent later agreed with the Sufjan’s statement via Twitter.
Recently Neil Portnow (Recording Academy President), has responded to the allegations of the Grammys being “racist.” In an interview with Pitchfork, Portnow was asked if he believed the Grammy’s has a race problem considering the last black artist to win album of the Year was in 2008. He responded, “No, I don’t think there’s a race problem at all.” He continued with “We don’t, as musicians, in my humble opinion, listen to music based on gender or race or ethnicity. When you go to vote on a piece of music—at least the way that I approach it—is you almost put a blindfold on and you listen. It’s a matter of what you react to and what in your mind as a professional really rises to the highest level of excellence in any given year. And that is going to be very subjective. That’s what we ask our members to do, even in the ballots.”
Also adding in a quick side note that “You don’t get Chance the Rapper as the Best New Artist of the year if you have a membership that isn’t diverse and isn’t open-minded and isn’t really listening to the music, and not really considering other elements beyond how great the music is.”