BTS have made history once again. This morning, the K-Pop group earned a Grammy nomination for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for their song, “Dynamite.”
Along with Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, they also sent in submissions for six additional categories. These included Album of the Year, Song of the Year, Record of the Year, Best Pop Vocal Album, Best Engineered Album Non-Classical and Best Music Video.
Following the announcement livestream, the members shared a video of some of them reacting to the nomination on their official twitter. In the short clip, RM, Jimin, Jungkook and V watch from their couch as Megan Thee Stallion reads the nominations. Of course, celebration takes place afterwards, and for good reason!
In a tweet that followed, they thanked ARMY and the Recording Academy for this honor.
“Thank you to everyone who listened to and sympathized with our music during the difficult times. Above all, it is ARMYs who made the miracle of being a Grammy candidate. I always appreciate and love you. Thank you @RecordingAcad for this great honor!”
Big Hit Entertainment also sent out a press release, expressing their joy over this moment.
“We’re indescribably happy, thinking that our effort has come to fruition. We’re fascinated and moved. We thank ARMY who gave us the chance to be nominated. Thinking fans will be happy makes us even happier. Now that we’re nominated, we wish to win and look forward to doing so.”
With this, BTS are now the first K-Pop group to ever receive a Grammy nomination. However, they are no strangers to the award show—or making Grammys history for that matter.
BTS and the Grammys: A Look Back
BTS first made a break into the Grammy world in 2018 with their visit to the Grammy Museum. Then in 2019, their third studio album, Love Yourself: Tear received the nomination for Best Recording Package, which focuses on the visual look of the album; if it had won, the award would have gone to the album’s art director HuskyFox rather than the group, but it was still a huge moment.
They were also invited to come to Los Angeles to present at that year’s ceremony, becoming the first K-Pop group to ever go to the Grammys in general.
At this year’s 2020 ceremony, they went a step further. While they did not receive any nominations, BTS took the Grammys stage, performing alongside Lil Nas X, Billy Ray Cyrus and Nas for a big “Old Town Road” performance. And, you guessed it, this meant that BTS became the first K-Pop act to perform at the Grammys—even if it is wasn’t their own song.
The Nomination Brings Joy and Dismay
While BTS and ARMY relish in the excitement that is this nomination, there’s still a lingering feeling of disappointment.
It goes without saying that BTS are a record-breaking group, especially in the United States. They’ve landed on several Billboard music charts over the last few years and have had songs and albums become RIAA Gold and Platinum certified.
Map of the Soul: 7, for instance, sold a total of 422,000 units on its debut day, surpassing Eminem’s record of 279,000 and becoming the biggest debut album of 2020. Last week, the album became the only pop album to go Platinum this year, so several people are wondering why it earned zero nominations.
Their first, all-English language song “Dynamite” broke records as well, from the music video reaching over 100 million views in the first 24 hours, to becoming BTS’s first No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100 to having tons of radio play; it also surpassed Taylor Swift’s stream record—Swift had 7.7742 million streams for her Folklore single “Cardigan” while “Dynamite” reached 7.778 million. At the same time though, the Grammy nomination they received was for their performance of the song and not the song itself.
Frustrations with the Western Music Industry
After the livestream ended, several ARMY on Twitter spoke out on how Map of the Soul: 7 deserved more notice from the Grammys, and how they believe that BTS and “Dynamite” received this recognition due to it being an all-English language track.
However, it isn’t just the Grammys that they are frustrated with. Following the release of their new album BE last Friday, their single “Life Goes On,” a primarily Korean-language song, received 6 total spins on U.S. pop radio this last weekend; this is a large contrast to that of “Dynamite” on its opening day, where it earned 1,500 total spins and continues to earn thousands of spins to this day.
“Music transcends language,” as RM once said. It’s what allows himself, Jin, Suga, J-Hope, Jimin, V and Jungkook to communicate with the fans; their music allows people to feel what they feel, regardless of what language is spoken. So in the end, language should not matter when it comes to BTS, or any K-Pop or foreign group; what matters is the impact they have made and the successes that follow along with them.
All in all, I’m still beyond proud of BTS and congratulate them for working so hard to earn this as it’s something they have worked towards for a long time, and in their latest interview with Esquire magazine, RM reflected on the hopes of them receiving a nomination.
“We would like to be nominated and possibly get an award. I think the Grammys are the last part, like the final part of the whole American journey. So yeah, we’ll see.”
And see, you did.