Is this Entertainment or Politics? Analyzing the 2017 Grammys’
The 59th annual Grammy Awards show aired three days ago and it didn’t take long for controversy to brew. The Grammys’ is one of the few highly-anticipated award shows that you can expect to get a few great performances out of it. It’s probably the only time that you’ll see your favorite rappers and pop-stars under one roof. In order to understand the politics that circle around the award show you must understand the history of it. Black performers have come a long way in terms of being awarded for their immaculate performances, but even in 2017 they are still snubbed of what they rightfully earned. In 1958, Ella Fitzgerald was the first African-American to win a Grammy award. 59 years later performers such as Beyoncé, Chance the Rapper, Jay-Z and many more are allowed to take the stage, when during one point of time there was still segregated seating’s.
Despite the many advances and strides that we have made as Americans; racial discrimination always seems to creep its way back into our homes and on our television screens. There would not be an award show without controversy, but over the past fifty-years African Americans have been left with a bitter-taste of injustice in their mouths after another deserving performer has been snubbed an award. Now that the smoke has cleared, we can analyze why the Grammys’ is more political than it is fair.
Beyoncé’s Lost “Album of the Year” to Adele
Anyone who has access to the internet can tell you that “2016” was the year of Beyoncé. In 2009 the songstress won Best Contemporary R&B Album for “I Am… Sasha Fierce”. It was undoubtedly a great album, however, it was a mashup of pop, hip-hop, and mostly radio bangers. This time around Beyoncé’ took a different approach and crafted one of the most culturally important albums of our time. To her dismay, her album only won two awards and not to add the phenomenal performance that she put on during the award show. Despite losing another award to a White musician, the Lemonade star still managed to be all smiles.
“The Way You Make my Black Friends Feel”
Pop-singer Adele decided to take a stand by dedicating a large portion of her speech to Beyoncé. The singer admitted that she believed that Beyoncé deserved the award and even went a little further to describe why. Adele said, “I can’t possibly accept this award”… “The way you make my black friends feel is empowering and you make them stand up for themselves.” Her attribute was noted and condemned, but her end comment is what landed her in hot water. Some people are defending the singer by saying that her comment was a subliminal message for saying that Lemonade did not win because it was aimed towards the empowerment of African-Americans. However, it was “my black friends” that ruffled people’s feathers. Nevertheless, the real issue is why do African-Americans still need justification from white Americans in 2017? As if her saying what she said would magically reverse the time and give Beyoncé the award and stop gentrification and systematic racism.
Chance The Rapper Wins “Best New Artist”
The Chicago born rapper was the second African-American artist to take home the “Best New Artist” award since Lauryn Hill. Chance also was nominated for Best Rap performance (No problem) Best Rap/Sung Performance (Ultralight Beam), Best Rap Album (Coloring Book), Best Rap Song (Famous, Ultralight beam, and no problem). Rapper’s like Fat Joe and Remy Ma applauded Chance The Rapper for winning. “He won an award, the new artist, there ain’t been a rapper that won sh-t in eighteen years since Lauryn Hill. And when Lauryn Hill won that, she won that after selling 30 million Fugees records, and then went on to her solo classic album,” Joe told HotNewHipHop.
Despite the disappointment of Beyoncé’ losing a well-deserved award to a White star, other celebrities took political stands to advocate against the new presidential election. Take a look below.
“We could really use this kind of excitement at a pipeline protest,” said the-late Michael Jackson’s daughter Paris before she introduced the Weeknd.
A Tribe Called Quest took to the stage to perform their song “We the People” which is directed towards the immigration ban.