Rappers Drake, Kendrick Lamar and Childish Gambino are all up for major awards during this year’s Grammys. Unfortunately for fans, all three MCs have turned down the opportunity to grace the Grammy stage come Sunday night.
Ken Ehrlich, the longtime producer of the ceremony, hints that their refusal could be symptomatic of a long-strained relationship between hip-hop music and the academy.
“The fact of the matter is, we continue to have a problem in the hip-hop world,” Ehrlich told The New York Times. “When they don’t take home the big prize, the regard of the academy, and what the Grammys represent, continues to be less meaningful to the hip-hop community, which is sad.”
Lamar leads the pack in nominations for the night with a total of eight, including Album of the Year for the Black Panther soundtrack. Drake follows with seven while Gambino earned four nods for “This is America.”
Stars who are scheduled to hit the stage include H.E.R., Janelle Monáe, Cardi B, Diana Ross, Yolanda Adams, Fantasia, Lady Gaga and others.
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Born and raised in Compton, California, Jessica Bennett began her career as an intern at The Oakland Post, and later, The Source Magazine. She went on to write for respected hip hop publications such as DJ Booth and Hip Hop DX before becoming the Urban Editor of pop culture website, Wetpaint.com. She joined Ebony as the Entertainment Editor August 2017. Bennett has interviewed such names as Vanessa Williams, Spike Lee, Tyra Banks, Forest Whitaker, Magic & Cookie Johnson and several others.