Earlier today, The Recording Academy announced that they will be restructuring their award categories ahead of next year’s 54th annual Grammy awards. The changes effectively eliminate 31 categories from the Grammys, with the Jazz, Classical, and American Roots genres most affected.

Following parody rap group Lonely Island‘s nomination for ‘Best Rap Song’ in 2009, alongside Hall & Oates being nominated for ‘Best Pop performance…’ for a live performance of a song that was released almost 30 years earlier, many fans acknowledged the need for change in category and nomination procedures at the annual award ceremony. In the same year, The Academy began a consultation process to address the issue.

The category restructuring is one of the results of the consultation, however the changes have been criticized by many Jazz fans, who note that many of categories to be eliminated or consolidated are related to Jazz and other traditionally underrepresented genres.

The Academy plans to introduce a new category called ‘Best Jazz Instrumental Album’, which will replace three previous categories: ‘Best Contemporary Jazz Album’, Best Latin Jazz Album, and ‘Best Instrumental Album by an Individual or a Group’. A selection of submissions from these categories will also fall into other related categories. See a full list of the changes HERE.

What do you think of the changes – Let us know in the comments below.