The Grammys Have Finally Recognised Hip-Hop For What It Is... The Best of The Best
I would like to take this time to say this to the National Recording Arts & Sciences.
Congratulations. For the Crowning category, (Album of The Year) you have gotten the scope of the music calendar correctly. In the year where Hip-Hop officially became the most listened to genre in America, you have picked a nominee list that perfectly encapsulates where the best creativity is emanating from. Broken news: It's coming from the Hip-Hop tree.
Now, I am only highlighting the Album of The Year because that is THE award. Like Best Picture in the Oscars, it is the award every artist wants. For other awards such as New Artist, Rap Album, Song, Record of the Year and others. There are many other nominations that I can applaud. But I don't want this to be a straight up appreciation post because I can easily do that on social media.
For this knee-jerk reaction, impromptu post, I just want to say that this is a significant milestone in the story of Hip-Hop. To have two Rap albums and a rapper (Childish Gambino) doing a Psychedelic Soul/Funk/R&B album that also makes the top category, is something special. We will probably never see this again.
I can be cynical and say that this is a blip. I'm usually that guy anyway. But arguments about the state of Hip-Hop and its "purity" aside, Hip-Hop is so strong right now. Not quite as strong as the Golden Age (Although, if you can make the case, I'll happily listen) but it is pretty freaking strong! I see these nominations the same as Barack Obama becoming President.
It says to a set of people that "You can do this". Kendrick Lamar's Three Studio Albums have all made the "Album of The Year" list. Jay-Z, on his 13th Album, FINALLY gets an "Album of The Year" nomination. And Childish Gambino (Donald Glover) created something that nobody saw coming and is a perfect example of evolutionary brilliance.
These three have made a statement. Hip-Hop is where the best of the best live. And considering that none of these men are dropping an album anytime soon. Next Year? It's up to everybody else to make sure that this is a trend. Not a blip.