Taylor Swift Cancels Secret Grammys Gig Amid Deborah Dugan Scandal

Laura Bradley
Kevin Winter/Getty

If a “secret” performance gets canceled, do the screams of millions of sad Swifties still make a sound? I’m guessing yes, but we’ll find out for sure on Sunday—because Taylor Swift just canceled an unannounced Grammys gig just days before the awards show airs on Sunday.

Per Variety, rehearsal schedules for the show included one anonymous artist simply listed as “TBA”—an act many believed would be Swift. But multiple sources tell the trade that the pop icon will no longer be making an appearance. Swift’s exit is just the latest in a series of bad news for the Recording Academy/

On Tuesday the organization’s former CEO, Deborah Dugan, filed a lawsuit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, alleging that the organization has a “boy’s club” environment and allows conflicts of interest in its voting processes. Dugan’s complaint also alleges sexual harassment on the part of general counsel Joel Katz, which he has denied.

Swift was reportedly expected to sing “The Man”—which might have felt a little out of sync for the night, given the Academy’s ongoing clashes with Dugan.

Friday had already taken a bad turn for the Grammys before the news broke about Swift. Rapper YG, who was set to participate in a tribute to Nipsey Hussle, was arrested and taken into police custody on Friday morning on robbery charges, Rolling Stone reports. The charges, police told the music publication, are linked to “an ongoing criminal investigation.” Should YG post bail, he could still perform, Rolling Stone reports. Representatives for YG did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s request for comment.

To top it all off, Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer just unsuccessfully sued his own band in an attempt to get onstage with them on Sunday—a debacle that’s not really the Academy’s problem, but still puts a little damper on things nonetheless.

Insiders have been wondering ever since the Dugan scandal began to flare whether Swift might back out of her performance, Variety notes, but her reasons for canceling remain unknown. A representative for the Recording Academy did not immediately respond to The Daily Beast’s request for comment.

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