From the pre-show at the Peacock Theatre to the main event at the Crypto.com Arena, the 66th Grammy Awards, held on Sunday, February 4, 2024, were fraught with tension.
Glamsquad examines some of the events that distinguished the 2024 Grammys.
Nicki Minaj’s Prank
The Recording Academy provoked outrage as it appeared to have pranked rapper Nicki Minaj; the Grammy organisers proclaimed ‘Barbie World’ by Nicki Minaj and Ice Spice as the winner of the Best Rap Song category on their website and social media handles, but later removed it.
The organisers issued a new announcement, claiming Killer Mike’s ‘Scientists & Engineers’ as the rightful winner without making a statement or apologising for their earlier gaffe, which enraged fans of Nicki Minaj, who has not won a Grammy in almost two decades. Nicki Minaj still hasn’t won a Grammy.
American hip-hop legend, Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter appeared to have called out the Grammy organisers while receiving the Dr. Dre Global Impact Award at the 2024 Grammys at the Crypto.com Arena, in Los Angeles, on Sunday.
Using his wife, Beyoncé’s Album of the Year snub as a case study, Jay-Z criticised the Recording Academy’s sense of judgment, pointing out that despite Beyoncé being the most awarded person in the Grammy’s history with a total of 32 awards, she has never won the Album of the Year category.
The Roc Nation boss said, “She [Beyoncé] has more Grammys than everyone and never won album of the year. So even by your own metrics, that doesn’t work. Think about that. Most Grammys never won Album of the Year. That doesn’t work.”
He went on to accuse the Grammy organisers of “robbing” some nominees and awarding undeserving recipients.
“Some of you are going to go home tonight and feel like you’ve been robbed. Some of you may get robbed. Some of you don’t belong in the category.
“Sorry, when I get nervous, I tell the truth,” Jay-Z said
Killer Mike’s Arrest
Rapper Killer Mike was detained shortly after winning three golden gramophones at the 66th Grammy Awards on Sunday night.
Chris Gardner, a senior staff writer for Hollywood Reporter, confirmed to X that the rapper was “taken away handcuffs” in the Crypto.com arena during the main category telecast.
After being detained and questioned at the Grammys, Mike Killer was jailed for misdemeanour violence, according to a statement from the LAPD.
According to the statement, the rapper was set to be released around the time the Grammys ended.
Nigeria’s Miss Out
The dismal performance of Nigerian performers at the 66th Grammy Awards proved to be one of the event’s biggest discussion points.
According to the report, the Nigerian quintet of Burna Boy, Ayra Starr, Davido, Asake, and Olamide were overlooked at the 66th Grammy Awards on Sunday, with Tyla winning the prize for Best African Music Performance, the only non-Nigerian contender in the maiden category.
Davido and Burna Boy were also stripped of their nominations for Best Global Music Album and Best Global Music Performance.
Burna Boy lost his nomination for Best Melodic Rap Performance as well.
Many Nigerian artists were outraged by their Grammy loss, with some claiming that they were purposefully spurned in order to restrict the thriving Nigerian Afrobeats genre, while others called for a boycott of the Grammys.
Davido’s hypeman, Special Spesh, accused the Grammy organisers of attempting to control African music, saying that Africans will not give them the authority to downgrade Afrobeats or any other African genre.
“We will not allow you to dumb down Afrobeats, Afrofusion, or anything African!
“That is (white) America’s problem!” When things start to take over and get enormous, people always want to be a part of it, to have a say, and to control,” Spesh stated on Instagram.
Similarly, Adesope Olajide, nicknamed Shopsydoo, a British-Nigerian media figure, has called on Africans, particularly Nigerians, to boycott the Grammys, accusing the Recording Academy of utilising Nigerian artists for promotion.
Speaking via an Instagram live session, Shopsydoo claimed that the Recording Academy does not care about African music, stressing that the Grammy band playing Fela Anikulapo-Kuti’s ‘Water’ after ‘Water’ when South African singer Tyla was announced as the winner of the inaugural Best African Music Performance category, was enough reason that the Grammy doesn’t have a clue about African music.