The 7 Wildest, Most Controversial Grammys Moments of All Time
The Grammy Awards are just around the corner, and while it remains to be seen what this year’s ceremony will bring on Sunday night, controversy is already brewing. Cast your mind back to 2018: After only one woman won a solo award, Recording Academy president Neil Portnow raised eyebrows and ire when he responded to criticism by saying, “It has to begin with…women who have the creativity in their hearts and souls, who want to be musicians, who want to be engineers, producers, and want to be part of the industry on the executive level… [They need] to step up because I think they would be welcome.”
Last year, he stepped down and was replaced with a female CEO, Deborah Dugan. But that wasn’t the end of it: Just over a week out from the 2020 Grammys, it was announced that Dugan had been placed on administrative leave after a “formal allegation of misconduct by a senior female member of the Recording Academy team.” Behind the scenes, though, Dugan had just expressed concerns about the organization—according to the New York Times, these encompassed voting irregularities, financial mismanagement, “exorbitant and unnecessary” legal bills, and conflicts of interest.
It’s not every year that such drama erupts, but this is certainly not the first time the Academy has faced controversy. Below, 7 of the wildest, most talked-about moments in Grammy Awards history.