Why 'Despacito' Snubs Are Among The Most Outrageous In Grammy History

Despite several minutes of pro-Immigrant, pro-DREAMer posturing during the televised ceremony, the Grammy Awards snubbed the best-selling Spanish-language song of all time. Not once, not twice, but three times, 2017's ubiquitous hit "Despacito" (by Puerto Ricans Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee) was overlooked for trophies by members of the Recording Academy.

First, a review of some numbers. "Despacito" was — by almost every measure — the biggest song of 2017. It sold nearly 7 million track-equivalent copies last year, outpacing runner-up Ed Sheeran (whose "Shape Of You" took home the trophy for Best Pop Solo Performance) by a million units. It tied the record for the longest-running No. 1 on the Hot 100 in history, topping charts for an astounding 16 straight weeks. It's the only video in history to hit 4 billion views on YouTube, where it not only topped American charts but was also the most-watched video in more than 50 other countries across the globe. It's the most-streamed song of all time. Just yesterday, "Despacito" became the first Latin song ever to reach RIAA Diamond Certification for U.S. sales of 10 million units or more, an honor fewer than 20 songs in history have achieved.

Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee’s chart-obliterating hit was up for three Grammy Awards. In the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance category, the hit lost to Portugal. The Man's "Feel It Still." Bruno Mars reigned supreme in the Record of the Year and Song of the Year categories with "24K Magic" and "That's What I Like," respectively. Although all winning three songs were objectively great, it's disappointing that the voting members of the Recording Academy chose not to recognize a song that, by all commercial measures, dwarfed those entries.

In November, fans and music critics alike were celebrating the Recording Academy's recognition of "Despacito." As Billboard put it, the last "remotely Latin" nominees to see props in the two major categories were Carlos Santana's English-language "Smooth" and Ricky Martin's English "Livin' La Vida Loca" in 2000. The first (and only) time a non-English song on Song of the Year was at the second Grammy Awards, in 1959, when an Italian song called "Volare" took the top honor.

The "Despacito" snubs speak more to the members of the Recording Academy than to the merit of the song or its performers. Although the Grammy voters may not yet be ready for a Spanish-language Song or Record of the Year, the American public — and fans in the 50 countries around the world where "Despacito" topped sales and airplay charts — know which Record and Song truly reigned supreme in 2017.

If the success of "Despacito" wasn't enough to make a dent in the major Grammy categories (or even the Best Pop Duo/Group category!), it's hard to imagine what it will take for a Spanish-language song to win. Here's hoping it won't take decades to find out.

Brittany Hodak is co-founder of ZinePak, an entertainment agency that helps brands and celebrities convert consumers into superfans.

Panorama Hispano is the regional news and information newspaper for Hispanic and other diverse communities.

US Hispanics are now the largest ethnic minority in the United States numbering 54.2 million as of July 2014. Serving: Buffalo, Rochester, Fredonia, Niagara Falls, NY and Erie, PA. Outside our Market area: Visit our affiliate at: http://www.impremedia.com/

Contact us: Contact@PanoramaHispanoNews.com

Featured News

May 5, 2021
States push back against use of facial recognition by police

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Law enforcement agencies across the U.S. have used facial recognition technology to solve homicides and bust human traffickers, but concern about its accuracy and the growing pervasiveness of video surveillance is leading some state lawmakers to hit the pause button. At least seven states and nearly two dozen cities have limited […]

Read More
May 5, 2021
Biden busca que el 70% de adultos estén vacunados para julio

WASHINGTON (AP) — El presidente Joe Biden fijó una nueva meta de vacunación para aplicar al menos una inyección contra el coronavirus al 70% de los estadounidenses adultos antes del 4 de julio, cuando el país celebra el Día de la Independencia. La demanda de vacunas ha disminuido notablemente en todo el país y algunos […]

Read More
May 5, 2021
Federal judge vacates CDC’s nationwide eviction moratorium

In a ruling that could have a tremendous impact on millions of Americans, a federal judge in Washington D.C. on Wednesday ruled that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention overstepped its legal authority when it issued a nationwide eviction moratorium. U.S. District Court Judge Dabney Friedrich’s 20-page order says that the protection, first put […]

Read More

popular categories

Copyright © 2021 Panorama Hispano News. All Rights Reserved.
crossmenuchevron-downmenu-circlecross-circle
linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram