The award was for Best Rap Album, but Tyler took issue with the racial bias the Recording Academy places on Black artists, with particular attention to the use of the word ‘urban’.
In the GRAMMYs press room, Tyler said that, while very gracious and grateful for it, the award feels like a “back-handed compliment”.
“I’m very grateful that what I made could just be acknowledged in a world like this, but also it sucks that whenever we — and I mean guys that look like me — do anything that’s genre-bending, or anything, they always put it in a rap or urban category,” he said.
“I don’t like that urban word, it’s just a politically correct way to say the N-word to me. When I hear that, I’m just like, why can’t we just be in pop? Half of me feels like the rap nomination was a backhanded compliment.”
This comes in the wake of huge controversy for the Recording Academy at the moment, as recently ousted CEO Deborah Dugan filed a formal complaint and accused the academy of racial and gender bias.
You can check out Tyler’s response below, and the full list of winners here.
— Odd Future Fans (@itsOddFuture) January 27, 2020