Nashville-based rapper Daisha McBride is one of the 2,710 potential new voting and nonvoting members invited to join the academy in June. “As hip-hop artists, we definitely have this idea about the Grammys because of what JAY-Z and The Weeknd have said [about], ‘Hey, the Grammys aren’t fair,’” she says. “But I think as long as the Grammys [acknowledge] ‘We haven’t done the greatest job’ and make an attempt, we can, as a genre, at least try to meet them halfway.”
While the academy has aimed to further diversify and contemporize membership with similar outreaches in 2019 and 2020, now existing voters also have to requalify, proving that they have earned credits within the last five years. New, informed lifeblood is key, says S-Curve Records founder and two-time Grammy winner Steve Greenberg.
“The problem the committee system was created to solve was how to keep irrelevant releases by the most famous veteran superstars from dominating the nominations,” he says. “The best solution is to continually refresh the voting membership with voters from diverse backgrounds who are currently active in the fields in which they vote.” And, of course, make sure they vote. Mason stresses that with the changes, “we are even more reliant on getting our voting body to turn out and pay attention to their ballot.”