07 DECEMBER 2018
Cardi B, Drake and Ariana Grande are top contenders for Friday’s Grammy nominations, with an expansion of the four big categories that could mean more recognition for women and minorities on music’s biggest night.
After the last gala in January quickly drowned in criticism that the winners were consistently too white and too male, the Recording Academy created a diversity task force.
The head of the academy — which includes more than 13,000 music professionals — said in May he would step aside when his contract expires near year, amid outrage after he said women artists should “step up.”
Then in June, it announced an expansion from five to eight of the 2019 nominee fields for Album of the Year; Record of the Year, for best overall song; Song of the Year, which honours songwriting; and Best New Artist.
The other categories will remain at five nominees for the ceremony to take place on February 10 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
The last Grammys marked the first time that hip-hop dominated the nominations — but the academy fell under sharp criticism after pop-funk revivalist Bruno Mars swept the top awards.