The Recording Academy wanted a simpler show; instead, they got something a lot more complicated.
After accusations of racism, personal attacks against NARAS head Neil Portnow and scattered protests, lawyers have been hired and a lawsuit against the Academy is being explored.
Leading the charge is multi-Grammy Award Bobby Sanabria, who is pushing for a class action involving other Latin artists (and potentially artists from other affected genres as well). “The trustees chose to rubber stamp a secretive process that serves the interests only of those popular performers who already enjoy broad exposure,” Sanabria said during a Thursday conference call.
On top of that, the group is also pushing for a boycott against CBS, which is broadcasting the February event. Both CBS and NARAS have remained quiet on the matter. In April, NARAS announced the reduction of 31 categories, from 109 to 78. Other affected genres include
Hawaiian, Cajun, and Blues.
So what’s next? This is the sort of bad publicity that isn’t good, especially with serious accusations of racism being thrown around. Earlier, the Recording Academy indicated that modifications would be considered after the 2012 Grammy Awards, though this could easily become a PR mess come February.