Brandi Carlile Reflects on Being Placed in the Grammy Awards’ Pop Category

by Lauren Boisvert

The Grammy Awards came and went, but Brandi Carlile is still a little sore that the Grammys moved her from the Americana category to pop. Not because of any awards, though, but because of community. The Recording Academy switched categories on her without her input, and with no warning; Carlile feels like the Grammys cheated her out of where she rightfully belongs.

Carlile is always considered in Americana and Roots categories; but, this year, she felt “surprised and disappointed” to find out the Grammys nominated her song “Right On Time” in the pop genre. When nominations came, Carlile put out a statement addressing the change.

“While I’m incredibly flattered to be considered ’pop’ as a 40-year-old crooning lesbian mother,” she said in October last year. “I would be lying if I said I wasn’t a bit surprised and disappointed to learn the Recording Academy decided to move ’Right on Time’ out of the American Roots genre and into the pop category.”

Carlile said recently that the change “pissed [her] off.” She told Billboard recently, “I can’t even begin to express how important it is to me to stay with [the Americana community] even if it means levels of success that I’ll never reach. When the Grammys made that decision for me, it felt like I had been taken out of my space that I wanted to be in.”

Community is crucial, even in the music world. Brandi Carlile had her niche in the music industry, and she was happy there. The Grammys changed that. “Communities are so important,” she said. “You should be able to choose which one you’re a part of.”

Brandi Carlile Expresses Disappointment at Grammys Genre Change, Plus Previously Reflected on The Judds’ Influence

Brandi Carlile may not have won a Grammy this year, but she did win in our hearts; she performed a heartwrenching duet with Wynonna Judd at Naomi’s memorial on May 15th. Carlile reflected on The Judds’ influence on her life in a tweet in mid-May.

“When I was 7 years old, The Judds were my first concert…then they were my second and then my third as well,” Carlile began, in part. “I’ve always felt like I knew Naomi and Wynonna somehow, right along with the rest of the world. The Judds are in all of our families.”

She also announced that she would join Wynonna on her Final Tour. “I have been asked to sing with my hero Wynonna Judd on the very last ever Judds tour to honor her ubiquitous contributions to country music and to honor her mother – it’s an honor so surreal I’ll never find the right words,” she wrote. Wynonna Judd’s Final Tour kicks off on September 30 in Grand Rapids, MI and concludes October 29 in Lexington, KY.