Recording Academy to “Diversify” with New Members and New Awards

The Recording Academy will increase its diversity with the induction of almost 2,000 new members, per the organization’s president and CEO.

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In recent years, the Grammys have been criticized for its lack of diversity within the organization, which has led to a lack of diversity in the nominees and winners at the gilded award show.

However, the organization is now taking steps to remedy the issue. President and CEO Harvey Mason Jr. has spoken about the latest efforts to increase diversity in the Academy’s annual address, which was held earlier this week. As reported by Billboard, Mason welcomed new members into the organization during the event and answered questions from the audience.

“We now actively recruit prospective members and we extend invitations to people who will help us have a more diverse, engaged, and relevant membership base,” he said.

He continued, “We strive for diversity not merely to give certain groups of people or musical genres space at the table [that has been] historically denied them – though that’s definitely part of our motivation. The truth is whenever you have diverse inputs into a decision-making process, you tend to arrive at better outcomes.”

He added later in a statement, “After years of listening, learning, and putting in the work, we’re beginning to see results of our efforts to diversify the Academy’s membership come to life. When we have diverse people representing all corners of the industry contributing unique perspectives, progress is achieved at a rapid pace. The journey is just beginning, and I can’t wait to work alongside our new and existing members to build on the Academy’s commitment to effecting real, meaningful change.”

A recently revealed report from the Academy has projected that 47% of the members inducted this year were under the age of 40. A total of 44% of the new members are from “traditionally underrepresented communities” and 32% percent are women.

Earlier this year, it was confirmed that the Grammys would return to Los Angeles in 2023 after moving to Las Vegas for this year’s ceremony. The event will also return to its usual February timeslot following two years of postponements due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

New awards will also be added to the 2023 event, including Songwriter Of The Year (Non-Classical, Best Alternative Music Performance, Best Score Soundtrack For Video Games, and Other Interactive Media, while a Special Merit Award will be handed out for Best Song For Social Change.

Photo: The Recording Academy

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