No white men have been nominated for the 2018 Grammy for Album Of The Year, according to a report from USA Today‘s Maeve McDermott — the first time this has occurred since 1999. After the Grammys took some criticism after the 2017 show for failing to include and reward diversity, their picks for 2018 are being counted by some as a much-needed course correction.
After many fans complained that the Grammys have not given enough acknowledgment to Black artists in its extensive history — one informative thread pointed out all the artists that are considered the greatest of all time who have never won — it seems the Grammy nomination committee has opened up overall with its most recent collection of nominees. Hip-hop especially seems much more representative of all aspects of the genre, with Rapsody receiving her first-ever Best Rap Album nomination alongside Kendrick Lamar, Jay-Z, and Migos.
However, the biggest news remains the Album Of The Year nomination, the most prestigious award the Grammys give each year, consisting of a field that includes no white men. Rap and R&B are the primarily represented genres, with two albums each from Jay-Z and Kendrick Lamar, and Childish Gambino and Bruno Mars, respectively. That means history could potentially be made for hip-hop — of the five album field, three were created by rappers. The winner in 1999 was Lauryn Hill’s The Miseducation Of Lauryn Hill (yeah, Garbage has some white dudes in the backing band, but they are lead by a woman), but this is the first time a primary rap album stands a decent chance at taking home the most coveted hardware in the music business (Outkast won for Speakerboxx/The Love Below double album, but The Love Below was mostly sung).