The BRIT Awards 2022 has been criticised by a number of artists, music industry insiders and fans for not including any R&B artists in its Best Pop/R&B Act category.
Last month, four new genre categories were introduced to the annual award show: Alternative/Rock Act, Hip-Hop/Grime/Rap Act, Dance Act and Pop/R&B Act.
After news of the new categories was announced, it was heavily criticised by artists, music experts and fans on social media, many of whom wondered why R&B was being merged with pop.
“Putting pop and R&B in the same category is really nuts to me. And proves that the powers that be once again just do not get it,” R&B singer-songwriter Mahalia tweeted. “I love the Brits. I have since I was a kid. But as an R&B singer/songwriter, this feels completely unprogressive to the whole UK R&B scene.”
The nominees for next year’s BRITs were announced on Sunday (December 18). Ed Sheeran, Adele, Dua Lipa, Griff and Joy Crookes lead the nominations in the Pop/R&B category, which has confused a number of people.
“So the BRIT nominations have come through and something is a little bit strange, or curious about the category there,” R&B singer-songwriter Sinéad Harnett said in a video shared to Twitter.
She prefaced the next part of her video by explaining that she “absolutely adore[s] each and every one of” the artists in the category. “They are fucking amazing,” she said. “But I have two questions: The first one is why merge pop with R&B? And the second is, if you’re gonna do that please at least include some R&B acts within the category.”
UK Rnb exists 😊😊😊 pic.twitter.com/E2ebVQphY5
— Sinéad Harnett (@SineadHarnett) December 20, 2021
BRITs voting panel member Joseph “JP” Patterson added: “Glad to be on the voting panel this year — best it’s looked in a minute! But this category needs rethinking. No one here makes R&B.”
Glad to be on the voting panel this year — best it’s looked in a minute!
But this category needs rethinking. No one here makes R&B. https://t.co/eCrkQiSrGT
— Joseph JP Patterson (@Jpizzledizzle) December 18, 2021
“I’m sorry but Dua Lipa , Ed and Adele don’t make R&B music , who’s idea was it to put these two genres in one category ?” one fan wrote. Another said: “I’m really not understanding why the BRITs decided to group pop and R&B into one category this year. Aside from ZERO U.K. R&B artists being nominated, what chance would any of them have alongside Adele and Ed Sheeran?”
A third said: “#boycottbrits because what on earth were they thinking. First they merge together pop and R&B into one category, and now the people who are nominated for that category are all Pop artists. @BRITs you could have at least added one UK RnB artist in there.”
— Kyler_Updates (@keke2089421015) December 18, 2021
I’m really not understanding why the BRITs decided to group pop and R&B into one category this year. Aside from ZERO U.K. R&B artists being nominated, what chance would any of them have alongside Adele and Ed Sheeran?
— rooftop papi. (@hadleyogarro) December 18, 2021
#boycottbrits because what on earth were they thinking. First they merge together pop and R&B into one category, and now the people who are nominated for that category are all Pop artists. @BRITs you could have at least added one UK RnB artist in there.
— Leciann (@iamleci) December 19, 2021
You can see more reactions below:
— Kayne Kawasaki (@kaynekawasaki) December 18, 2021
I have a real issue with combining Pop with R&B ??? 2 totally diff genres @BRITs ?
— MAX (@ThisIsMax) December 18, 2021
The pop/r&b category at the brits is a bit of a disgrace though. Because every year pop acts will get nominated because they’re mainstream. I think they should of just called a spade a spade and named it the best pop act.
— omo (@omointhislife) December 18, 2021
Little Simz nominated for Best New Artist, Pop / R&B a combined category.. BRITs needs revising lmao
— Tochi (@tochichels) December 18, 2021
It seems it understandably but BRITs are actually based on charts and R&B isn’t really charting (yet) so the alternative I guess is to leave it out? But this is also why it’s important to actually buy R&B music when it’s released. https://t.co/s1LIlrBtZc
— Miss Boateng. (@Whitb_xx) December 18, 2021
I can’t lie, I’m disappointed the #BRITs combined Pop and R&B category. There are very worthy nominations for R&B alone that were missed including @thisNAO, @cleosol, @hamzaa and @SineadHarnett but that’s my opinion ☹️
— Aaliyah Iona (@AaliyahIona) December 18, 2021
It’s great that the BRITs have scrapped gendered categories…but they need more genre categories… POP AND R&B in one category, in 2022?! No. https://t.co/dxcQTUIdao
— J Λ M Ξ S (@jamesglynn) December 19, 2021
The BRITs are black as hell this year, loving it. Not feeling the erasure of R&B though but alas, from one struggle to another ey.
— manda 🇬🇭 (@Comanda_x) December 19, 2021
Where is the R&B act?
— Now twirl on that! 🍑 (@stephennnd) December 19, 2021
Next year’s BRIT Awards will take place on February 8 at The O2 in London and will be broadcast live on ITV. It will be hosted by Mo Gilligan.
Gilligan will replace Jack Whitehall as host of the show, who announced recently that he was stepping down from the role after four consecutive years.
Meanwhile, Holly Humberstone has been announced as the winner of this year’s BRITs Rising Star Award, after fending off competition from Bree Runway and Lola Young.
Source: Music News – NME