During Sunday night’s broadcast, the 2023 GRAMMYs held their annual tribute to all musicians and figures who passed away in the last year. While it was heartwarming to see Takeoff get a special performance by Quavo and Maverick City Music, fans were not pleased with Gangsta Boo, Lil Keed, and others being omitted.
The Migos member sang “Without You,” his tribute track to his late nephew while pictures of deceased artists within Hip-Hop, R&B, Reggae, and other genres showed up on the screen behind him. There were many faces shown, and while Hip-Hop was well represented at the show with the massive Hip-Hop 50 tribute performance, viewers still rightfully wanted more acknowledgment of the other lives lost.
“So how the Grammys missed Gangsta Boo AND Traci Braxton?!?” one used tweeted. “@BET y’all on the clock!!!” Another user said “Y’all didn’t acknowledge Gangsta Boos death at the Grammys like y’all did these other celebrities that died earlier this year. She contributed to Three 6 Mafia’s career! #GRAMMYs @CBS @CBSNews.”
Gangsta Boo passed away on Jan. 1 at the age of 43. Lil Keed passed away on May 13, 2022. Fans also pointed out how the Atlanta rapper Trouble, who died on June 5, 2022, and Traci Braxton, who passed away on March 12, 2022, were also not included.
This came on an evening when Beyoncé became the most awarded artist in GRAMMY history, but did not walk away with a single award in the overall, “big three” categories. This just goes to show that while the annual award spectacle has somewhat improved its diversity efforts and gave Black artists major looks, they still do not fully understand all of what is important to the genre and culture at large.