During turbulent times of political and racial discourse and constant debates surrounding minority representation in the entertainment industry, it isn’t easy to ignore the stark contrast between the two headliners: “a white, blond woman whose music is shorn of any explicit political edge, vs. a black man whose newest music wears its jagged edges as badges of pride.” Taylor Swift (“1989″) and Kendrick Lamar (“To Pimp a Butterfly”) may be going head to head at the Grammys, but the awards show is facing the same type of criticism plaguing the Oscars.
Lamar has the chance to make history tonight should his Pharrell-produced “Alright” win; it would be the first hip-hop track in the Grammys’ 58-year history to win Song of the Year. But are the nominations this year no different from before? While the long-running producer, Ken Ehrlich, stated that the Grammys “doesn’t have Oscars diversity issue,” Billboard’s “Confessions of a Grammy Voter” piece says otherwise.
“The voting bloc is still too white, too old and too male. I do see a significant difference from [what it was] three or four years ago — the voters are becoming more diverse in terms of minorities, females and younger ages — but there’s still a long way to go.”
Tune in tonight at 5PM PST/8PM EST and let us know what you think.