Credited as being “music’s biggest night,” The Grammys have been under fire the past few years, namely with the Hip Hop world, over their lack of recognition to the genre’s most creative stars, often accused of getting the nominations and winners wrong. Recently, Chance The Rapper voiced his opinion, stating that the The Grammys should recognize free music, i.e. mixtapes, which is how Chance and many our favorite rappers began their careers.
The awards show is known to only recognize music that is released commercially (for sale) but with growing demand, including a Change.org petition titled “Allow Free Music To BE Eligible For Grammy Nomination,” the Grammy committee will be considering the addition. The petition, which was created by Max Krasowitz, states:
“Ridiculously talented artists who are releasing free mixtapes and projects are not getting the recognition they truly deserve because the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences insists that to be eligible for a prestigious Grammy Award that the music must be “commercially released in general distribution in the United States, i.e. sales by label to a branch or recognized independent distributor, via the Internet, or mail order/retail sales for a nationally marketed product.”
According to IBN, the Grammy Awards is always open to revising their standards to fit the ever-evolving music world, and they will in fact consider adding free music, with a decision on whether or not to make the inclusion coming in June.
The organization that runs the Grammy Awards said Monday it would consider revising its eligibility requirements in the wake of a growing effort to boost industry recognition for free music. Under its current rules, the Recording Academy only considers music released “commercially” and distributed in the United States to be eligible for Grammys, but the organization said it reevaluates its nominating process and considers changes to its categories every year.
“The Grammy Awards process is fluid and, like music, continues to evolve,” an academy spokesperson told International Business Times in an email. “As a peer-voted award, the awards process is also peer-determined. Each spring, music creators in the community work with Recording Academy staff to prepare and submit proposals, which are then reviewed by the Board and announced shortly thereafter.”