A number of artists are speaking up in response to Recording Academy president Neil Portnow’s controversial statements about female artists, including Iggy Azalea.
On Tuesday (Jan. 30), the rapper took to Twitter about her frustrations over Portnow telling female artists to "step up," following the 60th annual Grammys and its lack of female representation. She tweeted, "Neil Portnow really has me heated with his 'women need to step up Grammy-Boys-Club bulls**t statement.'"
Iggy was nominated for four Grammys in 2014 for her breakout single, "Fancy." They include, Best New Artist, Best Rap Album, Record of the Year and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.
She doubles down on her opinion with a suggestion to boycott the ceremony in the future. "Instead of being gracious and wearing white flowers on the carpet (bringing in the viewers for his telecast in designer gowns) women should consider if we NEED to take firmer action and stay at home in PJs next year... see how that works out for Neil."
After her comments picked up steam, the "Black Widow" artist cleaned up her statements, demanding that women in music be valued at all levels. "I’m not saying we should boycott anything just yet," she tweeted. "However, if women don’t see signs of real change throughout the year a firmer stance may be needed to be taken seriously. I just want to see my peers valued."
Portnow apologized for his comments to Variety, claiming used the wrong words.
“Sunday night, I was asked a question about the lack of female artist representation in certain categories of this year’s Grammy Awards,” his statement reads. “Regrettably, I used two words, ‘step up,’ that, when taken out of context, do not convey my beliefs and the point I was trying to make. Our industry must recognize that women who dream of careers in music face barriers that men have never faced."
"We must actively work to eliminate these barriers and encourage women to live their dreams and express their passion and creativity through music," he added. "We must welcome, mentor, and empower them. Our community will be richer for it.“I regret that I wasn’t as articulate as I should have been in conveying this thought. I remain committed to doing everything I can to make our music community a better, safer, and more representative place for everyone.”