Recording Academy Pres. Neil Portnow Under Fire For Grammy Makeup And ‘Step Up’ Remark

The RECORDING ACADEMY Pres. NEIL PORTNOW remains in the crosshairs as THE LOS ANGELES TIMES reports More than 20 female music industry executives have reportedly signed an open letter calling for his resignation. The response is to several issues, including the “male-centric” GRAMMY AWARDS show, and PORTNOW’s remark during a news conference suggesting it was the responsibility of women to “step up.”

“The statement you made this week about women in music needing to ‘step up’ was spectacularly wrong and insulting and, at its core, oblivious to the vast body of work created by and with women,” read the letter. “Your attempt to backpedal only emphasizes your refusal to recognize us and our achievements. Your most recent remarks do not constitute recognition of women’s achievements, but rather a call for men to take action to ‘welcome’ women. We do not await your welcome into the fraternity. We do not have to sing louder, jump higher or be nicer to prove ourselves.”

The paper writes, “The signatories include executives at several powerful talent agencies, publicity firms, PR companies and artist managers,” and adds, “The letter also called for changes in the academy’s voting structure to better reflect the diversity of the music industry.”