The 2023 Grammy Awards will include new accolades, including best video game soundtrack of the year and songwriter of the year, the Recording Academy announced Thursday.
In the biggest change of the year, the Songwriter of the Year award will not be open to performers or producers, but instead focus on songwriters who often receive little recognition for their contributions and who lobbied for years for such an adjustment to the prestigious music award.
Artists will also be able to submit their work for Best Alternative Music Performance, Best American Performance and Best Spoken Poetry Album, an area that will now be separated from the ever-quirky audiobook category.
The Recording Academy will also award a Special Merit Award, chosen by an appointed committee, for Best Song for Social Change, which aims to celebrate tracks that “contain lyrical content that addresses a current social issue and promotes understanding , peacebuilding and empathy”.
The changes follow several years of overhauling the Grammy category as the academy tries to quell criticism that its award choices are not inclusive and do not reflect developments in the music industry.
“We are thrilled to honor these diverse communities of music creators through the newly created awards and edits, and to continue to cultivate an environment that inspires change, progress and collaboration,” said Harvey Mason Jr., CEO of the academy, in a press release. .
In 2020, the Los Angeles-based institution went through a number of category name swaps, including changing the controversial “urban contemporary” to “progressive R&B.”
The move came amid growing concerns in the music industry that “urban” was far too general to encompass genres, including hip-hop and R&B, which it came to describe, and minimized the innovations of black musicians.