Recording Academy President Neil Portnow Clarifies Controversial #GrammySoMale Remarks

Halsey, Pink, Charli XCX and more have also responded.

Music
29,641 Hypes 49 Comments

This past Sunday, Recording Academy president Neil Portnow stirred up controversy with his response to a question from Variety concerning female representation as this year’s Grammy Awards. Speaking to Michele Amabile Angermiller about the #GrammySoMale trending topic, Portnow shared these remarks:

“It has to begin with… women who have the creativity in their hearts and souls, who want to be musicians, who want to be engineers, producers, and want to be part of the industry on the executive level… [They need] to step up because I think they would be welcome. I don’t have personal experience of those kinds of brick walls that you face but I think it’s upon us — us as an industry — to make the welcome mat very obvious, breeding opportunities for all people who want to be creative and paying it forward and creating that next generation of artists.”

Immediately following the publishing of his words, responses from stars like Charli XCX, Halsey and Pink poured in, challenging Portnow’s words and beliefs. “Women are making AMAZING music right now wtf is this dude talking about?” Charli XCX tweeted. “Neil’s comment was absurd. Female artists came HARD in 2017,” Halsey shared. “But the nominees are selected by peers and their opinion of the music. Which means it’s a conversation about the standards of which the ENTIRE INDUSTRY expects women to uphold.” For her part, Pink took to social media to share a handwritten note:

With an overwhelming wave of negative attention directed towards Portnow and other higher-ups at the Recording Academy, the Grammy head has clarified his comments. Once again taking to Variety, Portnow issued the following statement to clear the air:

“Sunday night, I was asked a question about the lack of female artist representation in certain categories of this year’s Grammy Awards… Regrettably, I used two words, ‘step up,’ that, when taken out of context, do not convey my beliefs and the point I was trying to make… Our industry must recognize that women who dream of careers in music face barriers that men have never faced. We must actively work to eliminate these barriers and encourage women to live their dreams and express their passion and creativity through music. We must welcome, mentor, and empower them. Our community will be richer for it… I regret that I wasn’t as articulate as I should have been in conveying this thought. I remain committed to doing everything I can to make our music community a better, safer, and more representative place for everyone.”

As pointed out by those discussing the #GrammysSoMale hashtag on social media, Alessia Cara was the only female artist to receive a Grammy Award this year, earning an accolade for “best new artist.”

Read Full Article

What to Read Next

Recording Academy Announces New Rules for GRAMMY Awards
Music

Recording Academy Announces New Rules for GRAMMY Awards

Set to go into immediate effect for the 64th GRAMMY Awards.

Recording Academy Votes to Disband GRAMMY Nominations Review Committees
Music

Recording Academy Votes to Disband GRAMMY Nominations Review Committees

Nominees will now be elected by the majority of the GRAMMY voting body.

The Recording Academy Is Making Some Changes to the GRAMMY Awards Process
Music

The Recording Academy Is Making Some Changes to the GRAMMY Awards Process

Some “new amendments” for 2018.


Recording Academy President Says Female Artists "Need to Step Up"
Music

Recording Academy President Says Female Artists "Need to Step Up"

Sparking controversy at the 60th Grammy Awards.

Daidō Moriyama x WACKO MARIA Showcased in New Kinfolk Editorial
Fashion

Daidō Moriyama x WACKO MARIA Showcased in New Kinfolk Editorial

Bold monotone prints take center stage.

Young Designer William Francis Green Puts a Quirky Twist on Nike's Air Force 1
Footwear

Young Designer William Francis Green Puts a Quirky Twist on Nike's Air Force 1

A definite head-turner.

TV Newscaster and Traffic Reporter Pay Tribute to Rakim
Music

TV Newscaster and Traffic Reporter Pay Tribute to Rakim

Celebrating The God MC’s 50th birthday.

UNDEFEATED & Beats by Dre Tease Upcoming Collaboration
Tech

UNDEFEATED & Beats by Dre Tease Upcoming Collaboration

Tigerstripe headphones?

Filling Pieces Hits the Court With Basketball-Inspired Sneakers
Footwear

Filling Pieces Hits the Court With Basketball-Inspired Sneakers

Available in both luxury materials and functional fabrics.


Netflix's 'Mute' Is a Sci-Fi Mystery Starring Starring Alexander Skarsgård & Paul Rudd
Entertainment

Netflix's 'Mute' Is a Sci-Fi Mystery Starring Starring Alexander Skarsgård & Paul Rudd

“Welcome to Berlin 2052 – where dreams come true and man comes undone.”

Porsche, Ferrari & Ford Cars Appear in LEGO's 2018 Speed Champions Collection
Design

Porsche, Ferrari & Ford Cars Appear in LEGO's 2018 Speed Champions Collection

Collect your favorite real-life racers.

Nike to Release Special Air Force 1 With Removable Velcro Swooshes
Footwear

Nike to Release Special Air Force 1 With Removable Velcro Swooshes

Choose the color that fits your mood.

Donald Glover Has Re-Released His 2011 'Childish Gambino' EP
Music

Donald Glover Has Re-Released His 2011 'Childish Gambino' EP

Available now on all streaming platforms.

Dan Witz Creates New Mosh Pit Paintings for Upcoming London Show
Art

Dan Witz Creates New Mosh Pit Paintings for Upcoming London Show

At London’s StolenSpace gallery.

More ▾
 
Subscribe to our Newsletter

Gain access to exclusive interviews with industry creatives, think pieces, trend forecasts, guides and more.

By subscribing, you agree to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Looks like you’re using an ad-blocker

We charge advertisers instead of our readers. If you enjoy our content, please whitelist our site to show your support. We’d really appreciate it.

Whitelist Us

How to Whitelist Us

screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlock icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Under “Pause on this site” click “Always”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlock Plus icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Block ads on – This website” switch off the toggle to turn it from blue to gray.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the AdBlocker Ultimate icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Switch off the toggle to turn it from “Enabled on this site” to “Disabled on this site”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the Ghostery icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Click on the “Ad-Blocking” button at the bottom. It will turn gray and the text above will go from “ON” to “OFF”.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the UBlock Origin icon in the browser extension area in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. Click on the large blue power icon at the top.
  3. When it turns gray, click the refresh icon that has appeared next to it or click the button below to continue.
screenshot
  1. Click the icon of the ad-blocker extension installed on your browser.You’ll usually find this icon in the upper right-hand corner of your screen. You may have more than one ad-blocker installed.
  2. Follow the instructions for disabling the ad blocker on the site you’re viewing.You may have to select a menu option or click a button.
  3. Refresh the page or click the button below to continue.