Published Jun 10, 2020Last week, Republic Records announced that it was ditching the term "urban" from its verbiage because of the word's history of being used to generalize Black artists. Now, the Grammys have followed suit. Well, sort of.
The Recording Academy announced that it will no longer use the term "urban" for most of its categories, although the organization's interim president and CEO Harvey Mason Jr. told Variety that the decision to do so was actually made last month.
"The time frame of our process is that proposals are turned in by March, they're discussed [internally at annual board meetings] in May, and now we're talking about them publicly, so these are things that have been in the works for six months," he said.
The biggest change is that "Best Urban Contemporary Album" has been renamed "Best Progressive R&B Album," which was made in an effort to "describe the merit or characteristics of music compositions or performances themselves."
The category formerly known as "Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album" has also had the word "urban" removed from its title. But here's where it gets weird: "Latin Pop" has now been renamed to "Latin Pop and Urban." Yes, they've added the word "urban" to a category that previously didn't have it.
There are plenty of other incredibly confusing changes to the Grammy wording across the board. You can read into the whole situation here, although it might give you a bit of a headache.