(bron: Music in Africa)

Grammy oversight body the Recording Academy is accepting entries for the Best Song for Social Change category at the 65th annual Grammy Awards slated for 6 February 2023.

The special merit award will honour songwriters and is one of five new categories to be awarded at the 2023 Grammys. It will recognise creators of “message-driven music that responds to the social issues of our time and has the potential for positive global impact.”

Eligibility criteria

  • The award recognises a song that has had profound social influence and impact.
  • Submissions should contain lyrical content that: a) addresses a timely social issue, b) explores a subject impacting a community of people in need, and c) promotes awareness, raises consciousness and builds empathy.
  • The award is given to the songwriter(s).
  • The award honours singles or tracks only, in any musical genre.
  • The song must include melody and lyrics.
  • The song must have been commercially released within the last five Grammy eligibility years.
  • The song may reference previous work and may include previously recorded or published lyrical material; in addition, a significant degree of new creative and lyrical content is required. The songwriters of the new material are eligible to receive the award; determination of songwriter eligibility for previously recorded or published lyrical work will be at the discretion of the Academy.
  • Recordings featuring samples or interpolations are eligible; however, in alignment with Grammy Awards rules, songwriters of sampled or interpolated material are not eligible to receive the award. (A sample is defined as an element of a previously released recording incorporated into a new recording. Samples can be entire parts of earlier recordings or isolated sections of earlier recordings including, but not limited to, tracks with vocals removed, hooks, riffs, basslines or background vocals.)

Selection criteria

  • Lyrical content of the song, the artistic quality of the composition and the perceived impact of the song in delivering an empowering message that brings awareness about social issues that affect the world.
  • The criteria to select Best Song for Social Change will be guided by the principle that social good is “an action that will result in a benefit being available to the general public”, which may include songs that affirm the basic humanity of all people. In this context, the new award will recognise a song that promotes:
    • Understanding  – educates and /or raises awareness of other people’s experiences, advocacy and tolerance.
    • Peacebuilding  – measures intended to create or sustain peace or freedom from dissension.
    • Empathy  – he ability to understand and share the feelings of another.
    • Being positive  –  a good, affirmative or constructive quality or attribute. In contrast, songs containing hate speech or advocating violence or terrorism would be deemed ineligible.

The submission form is available here(link is external).

The deadline for submissions is 14 October.

For more information, email socialchange@recordingacademy.com(link sends e-mail).