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EXPLAINER: How Grammy winners are selected

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EXPLAINER: How Grammy winners are selected

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The 2024 66th Grammy Awards ceremony, also known as the Grammys, was held last night at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles.

Tagged “Music’s biggest night,” the Grammy Awards is regarded as the most prestigious award in the music industry worldwide.

It is presented by the Recording Academy of the United States.

This year’s award ceremony featured a total of 94 categories.

Below are the winners of the top four categories at last night’s award:

Album of the Year – Taylor Swift, Midnights
Record of the Year – Miley Cyrus, Flowers
Song of the Year – Billie Eilish, What Was I Made For?

Taylor Swift was the highlight of this year’s Grammy Awards, making history as the first artiste to win the Album of the Year award for the fourth time.

This year, Africa was prominently represented at the awards.

FULL LIST: 2024 Grammy winners
Over the years, the Grammy Awards have become increasingly inclusive on a global scale. A significant milestone was reached with the introduction of the Best World Music Album category in 1992, which was later renamed Best Global Music Album in 2020.

At the 64th Annual Grammy Awards in 2022, the Best Global Music Performance category was added, focusing on non-European, indigenous traditions.

The new category, Best African Music Performance, was also announced in 2022, providing a platform for more Nigerian artistes.

Burna Boy, Davido, Asake, Olamide and Ayra Starr all bagged nominations this year but came up short as no Nigerian artiste was awarded at the ceremony.

In this report, PUNCH Online highlights the process by which Grammy winners are selected, as stated on the Recording Academy’s website:

The Grammy Awards process begins with submissions. Record companies and artistes submit their works to the Recording Academy for consideration.
The submissions are made online, accompanied by a physical copy of the work, which is sent to the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences.
The submission must meet several eligibility categories, including the release date, submission deadline, proper categorization and other Academy rules that must be adhered to. For example, for the 2024 awards, only works released between October 1, 2022, and September 15, 2023 were nominated.
150 industry experts from various fields access eligibility and decide which category submissions are nominated for. This is the first screening process.
Once this screening is done, the Recording Academy carries out the first round of voting. During this round, Academy members vote for their top choices in each category, and the nominations are determined based on the works that receive the highest number of votes in each category.
The recordings that receive the most votes in each category are selected as nominees.
Then the final voting commences. Musicians, singers, songwriters, producers, engineers, and others who have made an impact in the industry make up the voting members. They are often invited to become members based on their significant contributions and accomplishments in the music industry.
Every voting member is entitled to cast their votes in the four general categories: Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best New Artist.
In other categories, voters cast ballots only in their areas of expertise like pop, rock, hip-hop, country, jazz, classical, etc
In both voting rounds, Academy members are required to vote solely based on quality, without consideration for sales, chart performance, personal friendships, regional preferences or company loyalty.
The Grammy winners are selected and announced at the Grammy Awards telecast ceremonies.
The identities of these voting members are typically kept confidential to prevent external influence and bias.
The eligibility period for the 2025 67th Grammy Awards will be from September 16, 2023 to August 30, 2024. Only recordings released within this period will be considered for next year’s award.

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