She's the only female artist nominated for the night's top honour, Album of the Year, alongside Childish Gambino, JAY-Z, Kendrick Lamar and Bruno Mars — but also the only nominee from the category that was not offered a slot to perform solo during the show.
Variety reports that a source close to Lorde said that the New Zealand-born singer was approached to sing "American Girl" as part of a Tom Petty tribute, but she declined. Organizers and Lorde were unable to come to a different deal prior to showtime.
Many have accused the Grammys of gender bias for offering the male performers the opportunity to perform songs from their nominated albums.
Lorde's own mother, Sonja Yelich, seemed to comment on the disparity via Twitter. On Friday (January 26) she shared a clipping from the New York Times that reads:
"Of the 899 people nominated in the last six Grammy Awards, the report found, 9 percent were women. (This year, Lorde is the only woman nominated for album of the year; she is not scheduled to perform.)"
She simply captioned the clipping: "This says it all."
UPDATE (1/29, 12:30 p.m. EST): Lorde has seemingly responded to the controversy, assuring Grammy producers and viewers alike that she's more than capable of delivering a killer live performance.
IF YOU'RE DEBATING WHETHER OR NOT I CAN MURDER A STAGE... COME SEE IT FOR URSELF 😇https://t.co/BeS8VYTynn— Lorde (@lorde) January 29, 2018
Lorde and her mom aren't the only ones baffled by the performer omission, though.
it's like they're trying to show they'll have literally any music performance that isn't Lorde— rob sheffield (@robsheff) January 29, 2018
Golden Globes: though it is just a feeble gesture, we are all wearing black to raise awareness of sexual assault#Grammys: we let Sting and Shaggy perform two duets instead of the only female nominee for Album of the Year, and also Colonel Sanders is a woman now— Lindsay Zoladz (@lindsayzoladz) January 29, 2018
So we have a performance from Sting -- doing a 31 year old song. And yet Lorde did not get a solo slot to perform. So many iconic women in music right now, but we get ... this?? I have zero problem with Sting existing, but I really do not understand the priorities of the #grammys— Mo Ryan (@moryan) January 29, 2018
"Maybe we should let Lorde do a song by herself."— Rob Tannenbaum (@tannenbaumr) January 29, 2018
"Ehh, doesn't feel right for the zeitgeist. Did they film the Sting skit yet?"
Watching these extremely LONG performances really drives home Lorde's alleged Grammys boycott.......they really couldn't give her a solo spot?— LW (@lindseyweber) January 29, 2018
Did Ed Sheeran skip town with Lorde's performance— Ira Madison III (@ira) January 29, 2018
Sting's warming up backstage to perform "The Louvre" on flute— Alison Greenberg (@alisongreenberg) January 29, 2018
Head over here to keep tabs on all of tonight's Grammy winners.
Melodrama is available to pre-order on standard vinyl and deluxe blue vinyl through Umusic.