Recording Academy CEO Harvey Mason Jr. announced at a press conference in Ghana this past weekend that the institution is considering adding an Afrobeats category to next year’s 65th Grammy Awards.
TurnTable Charts, a Nigerian chart analysis platform and magazine, tweeted a video clip from the conference in which Mason says he and other members of the Recording Academy “literally had a meeting with Afrobeats community leaders about six or seven days ago.” to discuss possible change.
“We had a virtual listening session where we listened to the creators of Afrobeats and thought, ‘What are the different subgenres? What are the needs? What are the wants?’” he adds. “And my goal is to represent all genres of music at the Grammys. , including Afrobeats.”
However, Mason makes it clear in the video that the decision is far from final. “I don’t decide on the categories,” he explains.
“Categories are decided by suggestions from members. Members might say, “Harvey, I want an Afrobeat category…” So that process has now started. I think last week’s audition session was very important, very valuable and a step on that journey.”
Afrobeats’ popularity has exploded in recent times, with scene leaders such as Burna Boy, Wizkid, Olamide Fireboy DML, Asake, Adekunle Gold and Tems driving the movement.