The Weeknd caused something of a stir after he publicly addressed the Grammys not nominating After Hours, and now he’s opened up about how he initially felt upon hearing the news. In an in-depth interview with him and his team, the Weeknd spoke about his rise to fame and explained how the recent snub really caught him off guard.
“I use a sucker punch as an analogy,” Abel said, “Because it just kind of hit me out of nowhere. I definitely felt…I felt things. I don’t know if it was sadness or anger. I think it was just confusion. I just wanted answers. Like, ‘What happened?’ We did everything right, I think. I’m not a cocky person. I’m not arrogant. People told me I was going to get nominated. The world told me. Like, ‘This is it; this is your year.’ We were all very confused.”
It wasn’t just the Weeknd unhappy about the snub, either, as plenty of his peers contacted him to say he deserved a nomination for the record. “People I haven’t spoken to in ages, the entire music community,” he noted.
The Weeknd’s manager Wassim “Sal” Slaiby, who is also the CEO of management company SALXCO, even called up interim Recording Academy president Harvey Mason Jr. to talk about the situation.
“I wasn’t mad,” said Slaiby, “I was a gentleman. I said, ‘Hey, bro, how are you? How’s your day? Our day is shit. What the fuck just went down?'”
The Weeknd, meanwhile, pointed out that only 10 Black artists have won Album of the Year in the past 61 years. “I don’t want to make this about me,” he said. “That’s just a fact.” His team revealed the album was submitted in six categories, with one of the nominations later moved by “a genre screening committee.”
“The leadership there has got to go. They’re weak,” added Slaiby.
“Look, I personally don’t care anymore,” continued the Weeknd. “I have three Grammys, which mean nothing to me now, obviously. It’s not like, ‘Oh, I want the Grammy!’ It’s just that this happened, and I’m down to get in front of the fire, as long as it never happens again. I suck at giving speches anyways. Forget awards shows.”
Read the full interview with the Weeknd and his crew right here.
This story is being updated.