At the GRAMMYs on Sunday, Alessia Cara won the highly-coveted Best New Artist trophy, beating out fellow newcomers Khalid, Julia Michaels, Lil Uzi Vert, and perhaps most surprisingly, SZA, who many thought might be able to take home the prize. While any name being called in that particular category typically causes a wave of praise and celebration for the new talent, this time around, there are a lot of people who are actually mad. Well, a lot more people than there usually are.
Cara herself understands the disappointment and anger, but the singer has not wasted any time in telling everyone to shut it, and we agree.
The music-loving, GRAMMY-watching (or maybe just those who heard about who won, as viewership was way down this year) masses seem to be upset with Cara’s claiming the prize for two reasons. Perhaps most importantly, there are many who believe she shouldn’t have been eligible for the Best New Artist trophy, as she’s not really all that new. That’s a fair point, as her debut album did hit the top 10 and launched a top 10 single way back in 2015.
There are also many who believe she also simply isn’t the “best,” and that she shouldn’t have taken home that golden gramophone based on merit and talent. This is completely a matter of opinion, and while all five names included in the vertical this time around were worthy of their inclusion, there can only be one champion, and some talent is bound to go unrecognized.
The singer herself has noticed the online vitriol, and thankfully, she’s not having any of it, and she’s not shy about calling people out. “I’m aware that my music wasn’t released yesterday,” Cara stated in a lengthy Instagram post. She went on to assert that she's not about to apologize for her success, stating "I am not going to be upset about something I’ve wanted since I was a kid, not to mention have worked really hard for."
The negative emotions and nasty comments being hurled at Cara aren’t necessarily incorrect when it comes to sentiment, but they’re going in the wrong direction. The Canadian pop star has every right to make the music she likes, to promote it to as many people as possible, and to campaign for and win awards for her work. She claims she didn’t do anything to court GRAMMY voters, but it doesn’t matter if she did.
If you’re angry, don’t write something nasty on Alessia Cara’s Instagram or assault her on Twitter! Feel free to make your feelings known to the Recording Academy, which proved yet again this year that it needs to fix its voting system and get its act together. It’s the voters who chose Cara above all others, and it’s the Academy who allowed her to be nominated in the first place.
We at Fuse would like to congratulate Alessia Cara on a well-deserved, if awkwardly-timed, GRAMMY win, and hope she earns many more trophies in the future.
Watch fellow Best New Artist nominee Khalid's interview with Fuse below!