Interesting. I’m trying to decide whether this is a positive or negative for the recording industry.
The impact will be immediate as next year’s 54th annual Grammy Awards will have only 78 categories, 31 fewer than presented at the 53rd ceremony held in February. The most noticeable changes are in the stripping of gender-based categories in pop, R&B, rock and country. There will no longer be separate awards for male or female vocals, simply an award in each genre for a single “solo performance.” Several instrumental categories have been eliminated as well.
I do believe it gives artists a sense of equality, rather than breaking it down by male and female. Then again, it does leave less room for nominations, surprise winners and the overall excitement. But that’s just coming from a music fan who wants to see these artists succeed and win their respective awards. Here are some other changes:
In addition to the category alterations, the Recording Academy has written new rules on entries and voting. Each category must have at least 40 artist entries to move forward. If a category receives between 25 and 39, only three recordings will receive nominations. If there are fewer than 25 submissions, the category will not be presented. The category will be discontinued if there are fewer than 25 entries for three consecutive years. Voters, who previously chose nine genre fields to cast votes, will now vote in up to 20 categories in the genre fields plus the four general categories. Portnow said the goal is to have more knowledgeable and focused voting.