Ah, the 2024 Grammys! Los Angeles is once again ready to roll out its shiniest red carpet, adorning the cityscape with an extravagance that borders on parody. Indeed, on February 4th, this city of angels — and industry angles — transforms into a jamboree of the music industry’s self-aggrandizement.
A Flashback to Macklemore: Grammy’s Greatest Gaffe?
The Grammys, you see, have a storied history of turning the sublime into the ridiculous. Where else would Macklemore’s lukewarm verses trump Kendrick Lamar’s raw and rhythmically-rich narrative in “Good Kid, M.A.A.D City”? That’s like voting Kyrie Irving over Jokic for MVP, isn’t it? However, Kendrick shouldn’t be bothered after earning a Pulitzer Prize, you know, an award with real prestige.
Album of the Year: Where’s Hip-Hop?
Then, there’s the perennial cold shoulder to hip-hop, the zeitgeist of our times. You can count the number of hip-hop albums that have won Album of the Year on a solitary finger – Lauryn Hill’s solo debut. It’s a tally that screams of the Grammys’ tone-deafness to the beat of contemporary music.
Ignoring the Classics, A Grammys Tradition
The Grammys’ blatant disregard for hip-hop, the very pulse of modern musical narrative, becomes more evident when you list out the snubbed classic hip-hop albums. Let’s stroll down Grammy memory lane, shall we?
- Nas’s “Illmatic,” a lyrical masterpiece, didn’t get a look in.
- Notorious B.I.G.’s “Ready to Die,” a groundbreaking work, was passed over.
- Eminem’s “The Marshall Mathers LP,” a genre-defining album, was overlooked.
- Kendrick Lamar’s “To Pimp a Butterfly,” a masterstroke of musical brilliance, was ignored.
- Dr. Dre’s “The Chronic”
- Wu-Tang Clan’s “36 Chambers”
- Outkast’s “Aquemini”
Related: Dive deep into the unparalleled legacy of the Wu-Tang Clan members.
And these are but a few blatant oversights in the Grammy’s long history of ignoring classic hip-hop albums.
Explore our monthly series on classic albums of the month.
The 2024 Grammys: An Affair to Forget?
So, as Los Angeles prepares to host the 2024 Grammys, it’s clear that this event is not just about celebrating music. It’s a spectacle, a cavalcade of missed opportunities and misplaced awards. On February 4th, the Staples Center will likely be the venue for another round of musical faux pas, remembered more for its controversial decisions than its ostensible celebration of artistry.
Final Notes? More like final jokes. The 2024 Grammys are set to provide another year of entertaining controversy while missing the beat of the music it claims to celebrate. The music industry’s grandest stage? Perhaps. But when it comes to recognizing true artistry and genre-shaping work, one might argue the Grammys are singing in the wrong key.