Kanye West will boycott the Grammys if Frank Ocean doesn’t get nominated


We could add a “Kanye West Rants” category to our archives and we would have pages and pages of documentation of Kanye’s near-constant habit of going off on wild tangents about how he’s the New Steve Jobs and If Mozart Was Black He Would Be A Fashion Designer (I’m just making that last one up, but it sounded Yeezy-ish, didn’t it?). Over time, I’ve grown accustomed to Kanye’s speech patterns and I can usually follow what he’s trying to say and I at least understand what point he’s trying to make. This is one of those times! And I have to admit something: I don’t even think Kanye is wrong. I actually applaud him for doing a Kanye-Rant about someone other than himself.

Kanye’s latest rant was about Frank Ocean and how Ocean’s new album, Blonde, is somehow not eligible for Grammy nominations this year. Even though Blonde was released well before the Grammy nomination-process cut-off date, apparently no one at Ocean’s label formally submitted the album and that means the Grammys are all “I don’t know her.” It seemed like a weird technicality and why would you have to formally submit an album when it’s already been released, you know? So that’s Kanye’s rant. He’s threatening to boycott the Grammys unless they find a way to nominate Frank Ocean. And he legitimately has a point.

Kanye West’s love for Frank Ocean runs deep. Ocean’s two albums, Blonde and Endless, have been deemed ineligible for consideration at the 2017 Grammys, as neither was submitted before the Sept. 30 deadline. When West took the stage in Oakland, Calif., Saturday as part of his Saint Pablo Tour, the 39-year-old rapper argued that there’s a double standard at play—and he pointed to pop singer Lady Gaga as an example.

“So, I don’t know if any of y’all remember: I was supposed to go on a tour with Gaga, like about six, seven years ago—a while back,” West told concertgoers inside the Oracle Arena, referring to the scrapped Fame Kills tour planned for late 2009 and early 2010. “I remember, that it was something…She wasn’t nominated for Best New Artist, right? But they wanted her to perform at the show; they wanted her to open, right? So, the Grammys secretly changed something about the nominations in order to nominate her—in order for her to perform in the show.”

Indeed, a lone nomination at the 2009 Grammys prevented Gaga from receiving a Best New Artist nomination the next year; that prompted a revision of the eligibility criteria for the Best New Artist category. Gaga opened the 2010 Grammys, singing with Elton John, and she won two awards: Best Electronic/Dance Album (The Fame) and Best Dance Recording (“Poker Face”). So, why bend the rules for one and not another? As West pointed out, Ocean has been “very vocal that his album wasn’t nominated for the Grammys.” And because “he’s vocal,” West said, “No one wants to say nothing about it. No one wants to do nothing about it.”

“I’m saying this to y’all, because a lot of people, you know, they try to make a scene, like, ‘I’m so self-centered.’ But the album I listened to the most this year is Frank Ocean’s album,” he said. “And I will tell you this right now: If his album’s not nominated in no categories, I’m not showing up to the Grammys.” The audience erupted in thunderous applause. “As artists, we gotta come together to fight the bulls–t they been throwing us with. All we need is a fair shot, you know what I’m saying? Let the album lose, let whoever win or lose,” he said. “My whole point—my purpose, my existence, everything that people try to diss me for—is based on an instant replay clock. Imagine in sports if they didn’t have no instant replay clock and someone could step completely out of bounds.”

[From E! News]

I’m using this E! story because they detail the Lady Gaga situation that Kanye referenced, a situation I didn’t even know about until today… so Kanye actually educated me on something. Do you see Kanye’s point? I do. Even if Frank Ocean and his team made a conscious choice to NOT play the game and submit his album, that kind of technicality should not matter for an awards show that is supposed to reward the best music of the year. And if they changed the rules for Gaga, why not change the rules for Ocean? And what I still enjoy is that Kanye genuinely and truly wants establishment approval, not just for himself but for other artists… who might otherwise be ignored by the establishment.


Photos courtesy of WENN.

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52 Responses to “Kanye West will boycott the Grammys if Frank Ocean doesn’t get nominated”

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  1. Jess says:

    But that’s how it works. The nominations are chosen from the list of people/works that have been submitted.

    • AbrarAk says:

      No, this narcissist is clearly above the system.

      • Megan says:

        Changing the rules for Gaga was wrong. Changing them for Frank Ocean would also be wrong. And, as usual, two wrongs don’t make a right.

    • Hannah says:

      The whole point is: the label didn’t submited his album and you need submission, so stop complaining, Kanye.

      • CTgirl says:

        Someone should explain to Kanye that him threatening to boycott the Grammys is like Stephen Baldwin threatening to boycott a Republican fundraiser. No one cares.

    • paolanqar says:

      Yes but most of all: who cares if he boycotts?

    • Crox says:

      That’s what I was thinking. It’s the same for the Oscars. Your company needs to submit the product and even choose the category. It’s a very clear system. So I’d say he should boycott the company, not the awards, but those will be better off without him too, so who cares?

    • velourazure says:

      Is this a promise Kanye?

    • Marlena says:

      Maybe Ocean did it on purpose? I mean shouldn`t Kanye respect his discision? Ocean is an established artist and surely does not need Kanye as his big protector. I guess I would have appreciated this more if it was in defence of an unkown, overlooked artist. This reeks of the thing he pulled with Swifty about Beyonce. And she clearly was uncomfortable with it so I am guessing Frank Ocean feels the same….

      • Susan says:

        Exactly Marlena. The submission rules exist for a reason…so artists who don’t buy into the commercialized bullshit don’t have their works associated with awards they are not interested in. Frank Ocean could easily not want to have been submitted. But even if it was an oversight, that is not for the Grammy’s to rectify. This is a big name performer with seasoned label behind him. They can figure things out themselves if they wanted to b

  2. Leah says:

    Frank Ocean is the new Kanye. And by that i mean hes as influential, innovative and original as Kanye used to be. And he absolutely should be nominated.

    • ElleBee says:

      He would have been, had he met the deadline for submission. His own fault really.

    • DeniseMich says:

      I know Kanye’s rants make us want to discount him. However, this is a problem. Smaller artists don’t get recognized because they don’t know the process. This happened to the Weeknd, NERDs (aka Pharall).

      the Grammy’s are really about the best music from all artists.

      Maybe it is just a political race for corporations like the oscars.. I just don’t know.

      • Lightpurple says:

        But hasn’t Ocean won a Grammy in the past? So, it isn’t an issue of being smaller or not knowing what to do.

      • Fl girl says:

        Shouldn’t one make it one’s business to “know the process”? It is your only job.

      • DeniseMich says:

        I am not sure about the process……. it seems record companies or grammy members do the submissions. I looked at the website.

        It maybe that the record company or a Grammy member submitted him last time. Maybe there was a disconnect on who was going to submit this time.

        He has one grammy for the Orange album and one with jay z and kanye.

        Seems convoluted and not about the best music. I think Kanye needs to accept the awards are about business not artistry.

      • Kate says:

        Frank Ocean should well know the process. This would be about like a certain tennis player saying her propel handle the rules regarding PEDs…

  3. Lucy says:

    I was ready to roll my eyes at him, but…he does have a point. When he’s right, he’s right…

    • MC2 says:

      I agree. I already was rolling and then had to stop. But- I take Kanye with a boulder of salt and look forward to more details…

    • Cran says:

      How is he right? The argument is that the material was not submitted not that it was released in time. Either Ocean’s team erred or Ocean didn’t want to submit his material.

      Either way Kanye is wrong. He should stay home because he’s annoying & stop using other artists as an excuse for attention. He could, oh I don’t know, take a break from his tour to spend time with his wife & children considering the robbery. He seems far more concerned with whining about Hova not rushing to his side after the robbery & this imaginary dis of Frank Ocean. As far as I can tell all Kanye did was cut one concert short. I was ok with him not rushing to Paris because Kim came home but it’s not like he’s been a rock of support like he’s expecting Jay to be considering he’s actually married to Kim.

  4. Pandy says:

    I have no horse in this race but not sure I’m taking Kanye as the truth teller of the situation. It’s his version anyway.

  5. Cool Character says:

    Great I can watch the Grammies with Kanye!

  6. swak says:

    I guess I’m not getting this and please someone enlighten me. The way I read it, Gaga was nominated in 2009 which prevented her from being best new artist in 2010. They changed the criteria on the category. How does this mean they should allow Ocean to submit his work after a deadline date? If he had wanted to change the criteria on one of the categories, I could see this happening for him. Also, if they allow him to submit after the deadline date, then they would need to open that up to ALL artists not just him. Am I reading this wrong on what they did for Gaga?

  7. Va Va Kaboom says:

    Man, I’m torn here. Frank Ocean’s album not receiving any Grammy recognition is ridiculous, but a Kanye West-free awards ceremony…..

    • Anilehcim says:

      Frank’s album didn’t get any nominations because he didn’t submit it. They have to submit their work for it to be considered and nominated.

  8. JK3 says:

    I wanted to be grr Kanye, but the Grammy’s invited this upon themselves when they changed the rules for the purpose of getting Gaga to perform. Does Frank Ocean even wannt to be nominated though?

    Edit: The MTV article has a bit more info on Kanye’s reasoning. No, they didn’t change the rules so that she could perform, but they did change the rules, after her best new artist snub, So by his logic, if they changed a rule based off of Gaga’s fame, and imo “Best New Artist” was too loose of a category before Gaga got rightfully snubbed, they should do the same for Ocean.

  9. Lalu says:

    Kanye should def boycot.
    He should start his own awards show and then he could give the awards to the people he believes should win… For example Beyoncé.
    Taking a page out of the Kardashian play book he is no longer known for his actual “art”, only for the drama that swirls around him.

  10. MrsBPitt says:


  11. Bridget says:

    Kanye is definitely very passionate about music getting the recognition that he thinks it deserves. And for the most part, he’s got very good taste.

  12. Lightpurple says:

    He says he’ll boycott like that’s a bad thing.

  13. Anilehcim says:

    Kanye needs to get a hold of his emotions already…he really seems incapable of controlling himself and these outbursts.

    Frank is a big boy. Frank made a choice not to submit his work to be considered. Kanye needs to learn to respect other people’s wishes. He was also trying to push Chance The Rapper to release his album for profit (they’re all free, which I love! Chance is amazing!) so that he could submit his work to be nominated as well. Fortunately for Chance (I mean, if he cares about the Grammy’s), they changed the rules to include albums that are only streamed.

    To a degree, I get it, Kanye wants to see his friends and the people he admires succeed, but he also is def. that friend in the group that wants to tell everyone what to do with their lives 24/7 and clearly thinks he is the smartest guy in every room and that he knows more than everyone. IDK how people can handle that.

  14. QQ says:

    Throw your Sh*tfit ‘Ye… You happen to be right on this one, Endless and Blonde are absolutely excellent ( tbh im more mesmerized with Endless than Blonde) Frank is EXCELLENCE! Related… this weekend I woke up early to catch the moment ticketmaster opened up the sale, Im going to see Kanye West Dec 4th OOOAAAHH OOOAAAH

  15. ElleBee says:

    …but Frank Ocean purposely didn’t submit the album in time,

  16. ria says:

    There are a lot really important musicians and singers that were never even considered much less nominated or given a Grammy.
    Frank Ocean got his Grammys a couple years ago for Channel Orange, i found Blonde way weaker. The hype about it was amazing though.
    Kanye West acts as if no one ever praised Ocean for his music, when in fact nearly everyone worshiped Frank Ocean to high heaven. WITH ANOTHER GRAMMY OR WITHOUT.

  17. me says:

    This dude thinks he’s THAT important? No one cares if you don’t go Kanye ! Didn’t he say out of his own mouth that awards mean nothing?

    By the way is it just me or does it look like he’s lost a good amount of weight? Go Yeezy !

  18. juliaoc123 says:

    GUYS!! If Kanye doesn’t attend the Grammy Awards THE WORLD WILL STOP TURNING or…something. This is so, so important.

  19. lucy2 says:

    His team is saying he chose not to submit it. Maybe Kanye should have, I don’t know, asked him about it before going on a rant? I’m all for making sure things are fair for everyone and good work getting the recognition it deserves, but…he chose to not submit it.

  20. Babs says:

    I hope he’ll be There for the grammies.

  21. Tredd says:

    *can’t stop laughing* who gives a shit?

  22. hayley says:

    Well then, I guess I’m hoping Ocean doesn’t get nominated. What a nice broadcast it’ll be without Kanye up there acting the fool.