Drake and The Weeknd boycott the Grammys for the second year running

No new Grammys.

Drake and The Weeknd have elected to sit out the 2023 Grammy Awards, marking the second year in a row that both Canadian artists have declined to participate, per Vibe.

The two musicians — also collaborators going back more than a decade — have on separate occasions in the past expressed frustration with the behind-the-scenes workings of the Recording Academy, the organization behind the awards, viewed by many as the highest honor in the music industry.

Back in 2021, The Weeknd announced his decision to boycott future Grammys following the snub of his mega-popular and critically lauded hit 2020 album “After Hours” — which featured the record-setting chart-topper “Blinding Lights.”

In a March 2021 statement to the New York Times, the “Save Your Tears” crooner declared, “Because of the secret committees, I will no longer allow my label to submit my music to the Grammys,” apparently taking aim at the Recording Academy’s arcane voting process in determining nominees and winners.

The Weeknd


“Because of the secret committee, I will no longer allow my label to submit my music to the Grammys,” The Weeknd stated in 2021.FilmMagic

The Weeknd“Because of the secret committee, I will no longer allow my label to submit my music to the Grammys,” The Weeknd stated in 2021.Getty Images

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The Weeknd“Because of the secret committee, I will no longer allow my label to submit my music to the Grammys,” The Weeknd stated in 2021.Getty Images

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The Weeknd, whose real name is Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, had also vented to Billboard in an interview published earlier that year, in January 2021.

“Look, I personally don’t care anymore. I have three Grammys, which mean nothing to me now, obviously,” he told the music mag. “I suck at giving speeches anyways. Forget awards shows.”
DrakeDrake’s beef with the Grammys dates back to 2017, when his pop song “Hotline Bling” earned nominations (and won) for Best Rap/Sung Performance and Best Rap Song — but was snubbed in other categories.Mike Marsland/WireImage
Of his initial shock at the snub, the 32-year-old musician added, “I use a sucker punch as an analogy. Because it just kind of hit me out of nowhere. I definitely felt … I felt things. I don’t know if it was sadness or anger. I think it was just confusion. I just wanted answers. Like, ‘What happened?’”

Meanwhile, Drake’s beef with the Grammys dates back to the 2017 ceremony, at which the former “Degrassi” actor couldn’t help but notice how his catchy pop/R&B hit “Hotline Bling” had only received nods for Best Rap/Sung Performance and Best Rap Song.


Drake, The WeekndDrake and The Weeknd first collaborated more than a decade ago.WireImage

Drake, The WeekndDrake and The Weeknd first collaborated more than a decade ago.WireImage

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The Weeknd, DrakeDrake and The Weeknd first collaborated more than a decade ago.Redferns via Getty Images

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Despite winning both categories, the 35-year-old expressed ambivalence about how the Grammys had seemingly pigeonholed the single. “Even though ‘Hotline Bling’ is not a rap song … the only category they can manage to fit me in is a rap category,” the “God’s Plan” crooner explained on the OVO Sound radio show the day after the  ceremony. “Maybe because I’ve rapped in the past or because I’m black, I can’t figure out why.”

“I love the rap world and I love the rap community, but you’re right. I write pop songs for a reason,” he continued. “I wanna be like Michael Jackson. I wanna be like artists that I’ve looked up to. Those are pop songs, but I never get any credit for that…I won two awards last night, but I don’t even want them, because it feels weird for some reason.”


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