Grammys rename the world music class in “connotations of colonialism”
The Recording Academy announced that the Grammy Award for Best World Music Album has been renamed, Billboard reports. The award is now called the best global music album. This year the award went to Angélique Kidjo (who called out Burna Boy in her acceptance speech). In recent years it has been awarded to Yo-Yo Ma, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Tinariwen, Gypsy Kings, Ravi Shankar, Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, the chiefs and others.
“As we continue to have a truly global mindset, we are updating our language to reflect a more appropriate categorization aimed at embracing and celebrating the current range of music from around the world,” the Recording Academy said. “During the summer we had conversations with artists, ethnomusicologists and linguists from around the world who realized that there was an opportunity to update the best world music album category to a more relevant, modern and comprehensive term. The change symbolizes a departure from the colonial, folk, and “non-American” connotations that the previous term embodied while adapting to current listening trends and cultural developments in the various communities it might represent. “
Previously, the Grammy announced that the Best Urban Contemporary Album would be renamed Best Progressive R&B Album. The word “urban” has been removed from the Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album category, while Latin Pop has been renamed Latin Pop and Urban.