There was a distinctly queer vibe about the nominee list for the 63rd annual Grammy Awards, held on Sunday evening at the L.A Convention Centre across from the Staples Centre, the awards ceremony’s traditional home which was abandoned this year for the Covid influenced alternatives.
And the queer vibe of the nomination list carried through to producing lots of Queer Grammy winners this year, with nine golden and glimmering gramophones handed out to eight of our LGBTQI peers, one of the biggest turnouts for queer artists in years!
A fresh take
The scaled down event was hosted by Trevor Noah and they ditched the daggy and tired formats that have been failing them for the last many years. It is perhaps also thanks to some fresh blood in Executive producer Ben Winston from “The Late Late Show” now running the show.
And the queer Grammy winners are…
LGBTQ inclusive winners included:
- Best Pop Duo/Group Performance: “Rain On Me” — Lady Gaga & Ariana Grande – “Rain on Me” is the first all-female song to win in this Grammy category and the 12th Grammy for Lady Gaga who is openly bisexual!
- Best Rock Song: “Stay High” — Brittany Howard, a lesbian and Alabama Shakes frontwoman awarded as the songwriter
Thank you Brittany! I’m really proud to have been a part of this. A lot of jazz musician’s were unfortunately omitted so I’m dedicating my performance to Ralph Peterson Jr, Frank Kimbrough, Lyle Mays, Jimmy Cobb, Wallace Roney and Tony Allen. https://t.co/LUBGbNvYTx
— Nate Smith (@natesmithdrums) March 15, 2021
- Best Dance/Electronic Album: “Bubba” AND Best Dance Recording: “10%“— Kaytranadam, a queer artist who was also nominated in the Best New Artists category!
No diggity no doubt https://t.co/jiex7vh89Y
— KAYTRA (@KAYTRANADA) March 15, 2021
- Best R&B Song: “Better Than I Imagined” — Robert Glasper feat. H.E.R. & Meshell Ndegeocello – Ndegeocello is an out bisexual singer.
- Best Country Song: “Crowded Table” — The Highwomen (Brandi Carlile, Natalie Hemby, and Lori Mckenna). The songwriter’s award went to Brandi Carlile, a gay woman
- Best Music Film: Linda Ronstadt: The Song of My Voice — Rob Epstein & Jeffrey Friedman. They also directed The Celluloid Closet, based on the book by GLAAD co-founder Vito Russo.
- Best Spoken Word Album: Rachel Maddow — Blowout: Corrupted Democracy, Rogue State Russia and the Richest, Most Destructive Industry on Earth – Aussies might not recognise the name of this MSNBC Host and political commentator but Rachel Maddow is the first openly lesbian anchor to host a major prime-time news program in the United States
- Best Musical Theater Album: Jagged Little Pill – a musical based on Alanis Morissette‘s five time Grammy Award winning album of the same name, the musical centres on modern themes, including characters struggling with gender and sexual identity.
And while not technically one of the queer Grammy winners, Megan Thee Stallion who has spoken about her feelings of same sex attraction but hasn’t officially come out as part of the LGBTQI community took home the Best New Artist award, which notably had three openly queer artists nominated, Phoebe Bridgers, Kaytranada and Chika.
— Recording Academy / GRAMMYs (@RecordingAcad) March 16, 2021
Queer musicians SOPHIE and Ari Gold were also honoured in the In Memoriam section.