After criticising the Grammys on social media over his lack of nominations for After Hours and single "Blinding Lights", The Weeknd has circled back with a fresh round of accusations against the Recording Academy.
“Collaboratively planning a performance for weeks to not being invited? In my opinion zero nominations = you’re not invited!" he tweeted.
Digging further into what the three-time Grammy winner is referencing, Variety spoke to sources close to the singer’s team, who alleged that prior to the 2021 nominations, The Weeknd (Abel Tesfaye) had in fact been in talks to perform at the 63rd Grammy Awards. The negotiations hit a snag, however, when the "In Your Eyes" singer was offered the Super Bowl halftime show, which takes place a week after the Grammys.
Eventually, Variety alleges, his team agreed that he'd perform on both shows. That agreement was called into question, though, when the performer realised that he had not received any nominations on Tuesday (24 November).
Responding to The Weeknd's continued criticism, Recording Academy interim president & CEO Harvey Mason Jr wrote, “We understand that The Weeknd is disappointed at not being nominated. I was surprised and can empathise with what he’s feeling. His music this year was excellent, and his contributions to the music community and broader world are worthy of everyone’s admiration. We were thrilled when we found out he would be performing at the upcoming Super Bowl and we would have loved to have him also perform on the Grammy stage the weekend before.
“Unfortunately, every year, there are fewer nominations than the number of deserving artists. But as the only peer-voted music award, we will continue to recognize and celebrate excellence in music while shining a light on the many amazing artists that make up our global community. To be clear, voting in all categories ended well before The Weeknd’s performance at the Super Bowl was announced, so in no way could it have affected the nomination process.”