Latin Jazz Grammy is Restored

Vindication for musicians who felt shunned by the Recording Academy

Bobby Sanabria image 0
Andrew Lepley

Bobby Sanabria

The Recording Academy has restored the Latin Jazz category to the Grammy awards, a major victory for Latin Jazz musicians and fans who’d been protesting the removal of the category for the past year. According to articles today in The New York Times, Billboard and other news outlets, two new categories will also be added: Best Urban Contemporary Album and Best Compendium of Classical Music.

The Times wrote, “The reinstatement of the Latin jazz category represents a retrenchment for the Recording Academy. Last year, the trustees rattled the music industry when they reduced the categories from 109 to 78. By a narrow vote, they decided to get rid of separate awards for men and women in many fields, consolidate many categories and eliminating individual awards for several regional or ethnic genres, among them zydeco, Hawaiian music, American Indian music and Latin jazz.”

The reinstatement was especially applauded by drummer Bobby Sanabria, who led the drive to get the category restored. Sanabria and other musicians had filed a lawsuit against the Recording Academy, but it was dismissed by a judge in April.