Macklemore’s Grammy Wins Demonstrates The Award Ceremony Is Concerned With Popularity, Not Race.
(ThyBlackMan.com) After Sunday’s Grammy catastrophe which mainly included Seattle rapper Macklemore sweeping the rap categories (excluding the Best Rap/Sung collaboration in which Jay-Z’s Holy Grail won,) many fans of the hip hop and overall music world have been appalled at the nonexistence of attention that Kendrick Lamar received at the Grammys. Notwithstanding the fact that Kendrick Lamar and his album, Good Kid, M.A.A.d City has been acclaimed far more than Macklemore’s The Heist has from a critical and hip hop fan base standpoint, Macklemore apparently fits the outline the Grammy’s has promoted perhaps since the last decade; If your music fits commercial radio, then you will get the nod of winning a award.
It’s far from the false propaganda that it’s a race issue, because the unfair exhibitions the Grammy’s have demonstrated have gone on despite the winning popular artist’s skin color or ethnicity. Sure, Kendrick Lamar should have won at least in one category, and if this was a rap award show, Lamar would have walked home with more than the four awards that Macklemore took home.
But, the Grammy’s provided the wrinkles and burns of the music industry. Although Kendrick Lamar and Macklemore both achieved platinum albums in the past year, the main discrepancy between the two artists is their music agenda in terms of releasing singles for commercial appeal. This in turn, sealed Lamar’s fate Sunday night, unfortunately.
While Lamar on GKMC focused on making an album that seemed sufficient together sonically but still had radio-enough singles, Macklemore aimed to make radio-friendly tracks, while also making sure to tackle a hot button topic (Same Love, which criticized the treatment same-sex couples received.) Macklemore’s strategy worked, in which his album The Heist released four top 20 singles, including two number ones (Can’t Hold Us and Thrift Shop.) Kendrick only scored one top 20 placement (Swimming Pools) while his other singles hit right outside of the top 20 (Bitch, Don’t Kill My Vibe, and Poetic Justice.)
Macklemore also had his songs featured on commercials and other promotional ads while Kendrick was revered in the hip hop community as the next coming of Nas. But in the end, overall respect from hip hop heads doesn’t matter much nor hold leverage and influence to the Grammy board, and it may never will. So, don’t be upset that Kendrick didn’t win, and Macklemore did. It’s how the system was built, to honor the average performers for being popular (not implying Macklemore is average, by the way.) Nas, A Tribe Called Quest, and The Roots have been snubbed when their albums were more deserving and qualified to win.
To conclude, remember Michael Jackson felt disrespected after Off The Wall did not receive a Grammy in 1981, either. And we all know which album he made after that and what it did at the 1984 Grammy’s, too.