Grammys 2021: Stars Who Skipped the Show and Why
Lady Gaga, Justin Bieber and more A-list nominees are skipping the 63rd annual Grammy awards for a bevy of reasons — find out why
Lady Gaga tuned into the show from Italy, where she’s currently filming Ridley Scott's film House of Gucci. The singer, who wrote on Twitter that she was “so honored just to be nominated,” took home her 12th Grammy for best pop duo/group performance for “Rain on Me” with Ariana Grande, making history as the first all-female song in the category to win.
The “Yummy” singer, who has a complicated history with awards shows, will not be attending despite his four nominations this year. The pop star, who is up for best pop vocal album, pop solo performance, country duo/group performance (which he won with Dan + Shay) and pop duo/group performance, spoke out when his nomination was announced to express his frustration with his 2020 album Changes being nominated in the pop category instead of R&B.
“I am flattered to be acknowledged and appreciated for my artistry. I am very meticulous and intentional about my music,” he began a November Instagram post. “With that being said, I set out to make an R&B album. Changes was and is an R&B album. It is not being acknowledged as an R&B album, which is very strange to me.” He clarified that he hoped fans wouldn’t “mistake this as me being ungrateful, these are just my thoughts take em or leave em. Thank you to the people who fought for me to even have any noms.”
He added, "To be clear I absolutely love Pop music it just wasn't what I set out to make this time around. My gratitude for feeling respected for my work remains and I am honored to be nominated either way."
Beyoncé & Blue Ivy
Queen B — who has the most Grammy nominations of any female artist, and is leading this year’s ceremony with another nine — hasn’t attended the Grammys since 2018. Husband JAY-Z previously boycotted the ceremony for six years before showing his support for her during their last appearance.
During the pre-ceremony, she took home two awards: best rap performance for “Savage” with Megan Thee Stallion and best music video for “Brown Skin Girl,” which also marked the first Grammy for daughter Blue Ivy Carter. At 9 years old, Blue Ivy is the second-youngest artist to ever win a Grammy.
The singer-songwriter, who took home the awards for best rock performance and best alternative music album for Fetch the Bolt Cutters ahead of the ceremony, explained in an Instagram video that she wouldn't be attending because she wants to "stay sober" and wouldn't feel comfortable in the spotlight.
"I'm not gonna be at the Grammys. It's not because I'm trying to protest even though I have problems with the Grammys," she explained in the clip, posted by filmmaker and friend Zelda Hallman.
"It's just really because I don't want to be on national television," Apple continued. "I'm just not made for that kind of stuff. I wanna stay sober and I can't do that sober. It doesn't feel safe to me to be in that kind of exposure, scrutiny [and] comparison to people."
The Weeknd, born Abel Tesfaye, has been outspoken about how his lack of Grammy nominations this year "kind of hit me out of nowhere ... I felt things. I don't know if it was sadness or anger. I think it was just confusion. I just wanted answers," he told Billboard in his January cover story. The Super Bowl halftime star’s song "Blinding Lights" made history as the first to spend a full year in the Top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100, according to Variety.
"We did everything right, I think," he told the outlet. "I'm not a cocky person. I'm not arrogant. People told me I was going to get nominated. The world told me. Like, 'This is it, this is your year.' We were all very confused."
The Canadian singer went on to say, "I have three Grammys, which mean nothing to me now, obviously." On March 11, he announced that he will no longer allow his music to be submitted to the Grammys for consideration.