The Recording Academy unveiled their full list of nominations (well, almost full) for the 2021 Grammy Awards on Tuesday. Following the announcement, many artists were rejoicing about their nominations while others were critiquing the Recording Academy for their choices. Justin Bieber, however, was doing both.
Bieber secured four nominations for his recent album Changes. Each of the nominations were in pop categories, and Bieber wasn’t too happy with that classification. In an open letter penned to the Recording Academy and posted on social media, Bieber said he’s confused why his record is labeled as pop music:
“I am very meticulous and intentional about my music. With that being said I set out to make an R&B album. Changes was and is an R&B album. IT is not being acknowledged as an R&B album which is very strange to me. I grew up admiring R&B music and wished to make a project that would embody that sound. For this not to be put into that category feels weird considering from the chords to the melodies to the vocal style all the way down to the hip hop drums that were chosen it is undeniably, unmistakably an R&B album!”
Bieber noted that he isn’t “ungrateful” about the nominations and thanked his team for their hard work.
While Bieber is frustrated about falling into the pop category, the Recording Academy’s decision was apparently intentional. According to their website, the nomination categories are chosen by panel of over 150 experts “across various musical fields.” That means even if Bieber and his team pushed for Changes to be considered in R&B categories, the Recording Academy gets the final say.
Read Bieber’s open letter to the Recording Academy above.
Changes is out now via Def Jam. Get it here.