The Weeknd has accused the Grammys of being corrupt, after failing to receive any nominations for the 2021 awards.
The Canadian pop star had been expected to perform strongly, thanks to his hit album After Hours and the single Blinding Lights, which is the longest-running top 10 hit in US chart history.
“The Grammys remain corrupt,” he wrote on Twitter, hours after the nominations were announced.
Several US media reports suggested that The Weeknd, whose real name is Abel Tesfaye, was locked out of the awards after weeks of discussions over a possible appearance at January’s Grammys ceremony.
“There was an ultimatum given resulting in a struggle over him also playing the Super Bowl that went on for some time and was eventually agreed upon that he would perform at both events,” an unnamed source told Rolling Stone magazine.
The head of the Recording Academy, which organises the awards, dismissed any suggestion that the star’s award nominations had been cancelled as a result.
“We understand that The Weeknd is disappointed at not being nominated. I was surprised and can empathise with what he’s feeling,” said Harvey Mason Jr.
“Unfortunately, every year, there are fewer nominations than the number of deserving artists. To be clear, voting in all categories ended well before The Weeknd’s performance at the Super Bowl was announced, so in no way could it have affected the nomination process.”
Beyoncé led the nominations at this year’s Grammys – with nine in total. Dua Lipa, Taylor Swift and Roddy Ricch were close behind, with six apiece.