Grammys announce change to category name due to ‘connotations of colonialism’

Decision comes just 22 days before the announcement of the 63rd annual Grammy nominations

Annabel Nugent
Tuesday 03 November 2020 08:48
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The Grammy Award for Best World Music Album has been renamed Best Global Music Album to "symbolise a departure from the connotations of colonialism”.

The Recording Academy made the decision on Monday (2 November).

A verdict was reached after speaking "with artists, ethnomusicologists and linguists from around the world who determined that there was an opportunity to update [...] toward a more relevant, modern, and inclusive term”, the Recording Academy said in a statement.

“The change symbolises a departure from the connotations of colonialism, folk and ‘non-American’ that the former term embodied while adapting to current listening trends and cultural evolution among the diverse communities it may represent,” the statement continued.

The name change comes five months after the academy announced its decision to drop the word “urban” from its awards

Angélique Kidjo is the only three-time winner in the category to date

In the same vein, last year the Oscars renamed the award category for Best Foreign Language Film to Best International Feature Film.

The Recording Academy first introduced the category for what is now called the Best Global Music Album in 1991. Mickey Hart became the first-ever recipient for his album Planet Drum.

This year Angélique Kidjo took home the award for her 2019 album Celia, making her the only three-time winner in the category to date.

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