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Why Grimes was snubbed by the Juno Awards
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Feb 05, 2016  |  Vote 0    0

Why Grimes was snubbed by the Juno Awards

Juno Awards president Allan Reid says timing of album release hurt its chances in sales-based categories

OurWindsor.Ca

There’s always next year, Grimes. Juno Awards president Allan Reid says he was disappointed that Grimes’s eclectic electronic album Art Angels was shut out of this year’s nominations despite its critical acclaim, but noted that it could still be recognized at the 2017 ceremony.

“Grimes, we were really hoping she would receive a nomination this year,” Reid says. “The challenge that Grimes had is that her record came out right at the end of our eligibility period.”

Art Angels, which was submitted to the Pop Album of the Year category despite Grimes’ assertions that she is not a “pop star,” was released on Nov. 6, 2015. The cutoff date for the category, which is equally weighted between sales and judges’ scores, was Nov. 13, giving the album only one week of sales figures.

That was enough for Hedley’s Hello, which came out the same day and debuted at No. 1 in Canada. Justin Bieber’s Purpose was also nominated despite being released on Nov. 13 — that’s because sales for previously released hit singles such as “What Do You Mean?,” “Sorry” and “Love Yourself” were included in its sales data.

Art Angels, which debuted on the Billboard chart at No. 16, was clearly more of a critical darling than commercial blockbuster.

Still, Grimes may have a Junos sweep in her future. The eligibility period for some categories, including Album of the Year, is 16 months, allowing albums released during the overlapping months to submit two years in a row.

Beyond sales-driven categories, Grimes’ album was submitted to categories that were voted on by judges, including Producer of the Year and Engineer of the Year, but was not recognized.

In a series of tweets posted on Feb. 2, Grimes wrote “women r kinda absent from the junos this year. No female noms for album, artist, engineer or producer of the year etc. I don’t expect recognition, but I believe there were qualified women besides myself for many categories. I can’t help but feel that if women were rewarded for technical work, they would feel more inclined to participate.” The tweets were deleted that night.

Responding to how male-dominated the nominees were this year, Reid says that only eight women submitted to the Producer of the Year category, two women submitted to the Recording Engineer of the Year category, and no women submitted to the Rock Album of the Year category.

“There’s a cyclical (nature) to the release,” he says. “I don’t think anybody can deny that men this year globally have had an incredible (year), when you look at Drake, the Weeknd, Shawn Mendes and Justin Bieber. No one can say it’s not deserved.

“They’ve had an incredible year this year, just as Alanis and Céline and Sarah McLachlan had an incredible run in the ’90s.”

Toronto Star

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