SZA’s manager says the musician’s recent snub for ‘Artist of the Year’ at the MTV VMA Awards was “disrespectful.”
Her manager, Terence “Punch” Henderson opened up to The Hollywood Reporter about MTV’s decision not to nominate SZA in the Artist of the Year category, despite the musician having one of the strongest years of her career to date.
“Obviously, she had one of the best years, if not the best year, of any artist at this point. I don’t see why she wouldn’t be nominated for artist of the year,” he told the publication. “It just really didn’t make any sense to me. It’s disrespectful.”
Those nominated for artist of the year included Beyoncé, Shakira, Nicki Minaj, Karol G, Doja Cat and Taylor Swift, who went on to win the prize.
Henderson told the publication that he contacted MTV about the lack of nomination in the category uring a call about a potential performance with SZA at the ceremony, but “they couldn’t give a clear answer as to why she wasn’t [nominated]. It was just, ‘Well, she’s nominated for all these other [awards].’”
He continued: “And they ended up saying, ‘OK, well we could do another call’ because there were people on [the call] about logistics for the show who didn’t have anything to do with [the nominations]. When we tried to set up the second call, they didn’t want to discuss artist of the year, which to me was really a slap in the face.
SZA performs on stage during her ‘The SOS North American Tour’ at Rogers Arena on March 19, 2023 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada (CREDIT: Andrew Chin/Getty Images)
“Why wouldn’t she be nominated for artist of the year? Even with the other artists that were nominated for artist of the year, some of them were even off-cycle. They didn’t have an album out. I mean, no disrespect to them or anybody else; everybody’s great and all of that, but still, you can’t discredit what ‘SOS’ has done and is currently doing,” he added, about the musician’s most recent album which NME awarded five stars and described as a “comeback well worth the wait.”
SZAs manager said after the snub, they pulled the MTV performance. “I figured, why go perform and do this if she’s not going to be respected to the highest level? So, it was my call to actually pull out of the performance,” he explained. “I felt it was disrespectful and I was very stern on that and influencing that. If there’s any issues or backlash and all of that, I’m taking all of that.”
SZA’s VMA nominations did include Album of the Year, Song of the Year and Best R&B, which she won for her hit ‘Shirt.’ The musician didn’t attend the ceremony.
In other news, Drake has teamed up with SZA for a new single, ‘Slime You’.
The track is the first taste of Drake’s upcoming album ‘For All The Dogs’, which serves as the follow-up to 2022’s ‘Honestly, Nevermind’.
Despite the new single release, however, Drake has announced that the release of ‘For All The Dogs’ has been postponed from September 22 to October 6.