Drake Withdraws His Two 2022 Grammy Award Nominations After Critiquing Recording Academy Last Year

Both best rap album and best rap performance will continue with only four nominees, instead of five

Photo: Karwai Tang/WireImage

Drake's music won't be considered for the Grammys next month.

Drake, 35, and his management have withdrawn his Grammy Award nominations for the album Certified Lover Boy, which was up for best rap album, and "Way 2 Sexy," which was nominated for best rap performance, PEOPLE can confirm, and the Recording Academy has honored his ask. Variety was first to report.

Without Drake's works nominated, there are now four nominations in each category. Without "Way 2 Sexy," those up for best rap performance are Baby Keem and Kendrick Lamar for "Family Ties," Cardi B for "Up," J. Cole, 21 Savage and Morray for "My Life" and Megan Thee Stallion for "Thot S—."

In the album category, the nominees are now J. Cole's The Off Season, Nas' King's Disease II, Tyler, the Creator's Call Me If You Get Lost and Kanye West's Donda.

The rapper's decision comes about a year after he criticized the awards shows for not nominating The Weeknd for any awards after the high level of success of his album After Hours and its hit single "Blinding Lights."

View of a GRAMMY Award
The Grammys. Michael Kovac/Getty Images

At the time, the rap star said, "I think we should stop allowing ourselves to be shocked every year by the disconnect between impactful music and these awards and just accept that what once was the highest form of recognition may no longer matter to the artists that exist now and the ones that come after."

He continued, on his Instagram story, "It's like a relative you keep expecting to fix up but they just can't change their ways. "The other day I said @theweeknd was a lock for either album or song of the year along with countless other reasonable assumptions and it just never goes that way."

Drake added at the time that now is "a great time" for someone to "start something new that we can build up over time and pass on to the generations to come."

The year prior, when "God's Plan" took home the award for best rap song in 2019, Drake took the stage to criticize the awards show, saying that it was "the first time in Grammys history where I actually am who I thought I was for a second."

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"I wanted to take this opportunity, while I'm up here, to just talk to all the kids who are watching this who are aspiring to do music, all my peers who make music from their heart, that do things pure and tell the truth," he said. "I want you to know we play in an opinion-based sport, not a factual-based sport. This is not the NBA where at the end of the year, you're holding a trophy because you made the right decisions or won the games."

"This is a business where sometimes it's up to a bunch of people who might not understand what a mixed-race kid from Canada has to say, or a fly Spanish girl from New York, or anybody else, or a brother from Houston, my brother Travis," he continued. "You've already won if you have people who are singing your songs word for word, if you're a hero in your hometown… You don't need this right here. I promise you."

Variety also reported that he declined to submit his album More Life in 2017 after JAY-Z won no awards, despite being nominated for eight.

Drake has won four Grammys before — two in 2017 for "Hotline Bling," one in 2019 for "God's Plan" and another in 2013 for Take Care.

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