Beyonce dominated nominations for the 2021 Grammy Awards on Tuesday in a field that favored alternative artists over mainstream musicians, topped by a stunning snub for Canadian singer The Weeknd, who called the process corrupt.
Beyonce’s nine nods lead her to become the second most nominated Grammy artist in history through projects that celebrated Black culture in a year of racial turmoil in the United States.
The biggest shoutout for the highest honors in the music industry was The Weeknd, whose critically acclaimed album After Hours, was No. 1 on the Billboard 200 charts for four weeks. Variety called the omission of the R&B singer, who has been chosen to play the halftime show at the Super Bowl next year, the biggest snub in memory.
The Weeknd, tweeted – “The Grammys remain corrupt. You owe me, my fans, and industry transparency.” The Recording Academy’s chair and interim CEO, Harvey Mason, regarding this tweet said in a written statement that he understood The Weeknd’s disappointment.
British singer Dua Lipa, pop star Taylor Swift, and rapper Roddy Ricch got six nominations apiece. Swift and Dua Lipa will compete for the top prize – an album of the year – along with R&B singer Post Malone, British band Coldplay, female band Haim, avant-garde Briton Jacob Collier, American soul band Black Pumas and American alternative R&B singer Jhene Aiko.
Bob Dylan, 79, was a no-show despite acclaim for his first album of new music in eight years, Rough and Rowdy Ways, while established artists like Katy Perry, Maren Morris, The Chicks, Halsey, and the Jonas Brothers all got zero nominations. But K-pop sensation BTS got its first major Grammy nod, for single Dynamite in the best pop group performance field, in a breakthrough for a South Korean group.
The best new artist field included rappers Megan Thee Stallion and Doja Cat, as well as alternative artist Phoebe Bridgers and Noah Cyrus. Women, including Fiona Apple, Brittany Howard, and newcomer Ingrid Andress, packed the rock and country music fields, while Britain’s Harry Styles got his first Grammy love with three nods for his work on album Fine Line.
Beyonce’s nominations came for her hit tracks including Black Parade and visual album Black is King, along with her collaboration with Megan Thee Stallion on the single Savage. They were released during a summer of nationwide protests when #blacklivesmatter stormed the internet.