Alessia Cara defended herself for winning the Grammy for best new artist after critics said she didn’t deserve the award over her fellow nominees.
The 21-year-old was criticized because many people argued she shouldn't be considered a “new” artist. Cara won the Grammy Sunday night, beating out Khalid, Lil Uzi Vert, Julia Michaels and SZA.
In a lengthy Instagram post, Cara responded to the backlash and said she wasn’t “going to be upset” about winning an award she “worked really hard for.”
“To address the apparent backlash regarding winning something I had no control over: I didn’t log onto grammy.com and submit myself. that’s not how it works. I didn’t ask to be submitted either because there are other artists that deserve the acknowledgment,” she wrote.
“But I was nominated and won and I am not going to be upset about something I’ve wanted since I was a kid, not to mention have worked really hard for,” Cara added.
She referenced her acceptance speech where she said every artist deserves a chance to be noticed and slammed the music industry’s focus on popularity rather than a singer’s talent and hard work.
Cara continued, “I’m aware that my music wasn’t released yesterday, I’m aware that, yes, my music has become fairly popular in the last year. but I’m trying very hard to use the platform I’ve been given to talk about these things and bring light to issues that aren’t fair, all while trying to make the most of the weird, amazing success I’ve been lucky enough to have.”
“I will not let everything I’ve worked for be diminished by people taking offence [sic] to my accomplishments and feeling the need to tell me how much I suck. here’s something fun! I’ve been thinking I suck since I was old enough to know what sucking meant. I’ve beat u to it. And that’s why this means a lot to me,” Cara said.
The singer said her music’s reach has shown that her dreams of being a successful artist “have paid off” and that she is still processing the moment. She ended the post by thanking her fans for supporting her early on in her career.
Though the award has been lauded as one of the most coveted honors in the music industry, some have deemed winning it a curse. Adele, Sam Smith and Chance The Rapper have all previously won the award while some other top artists such as Justin Bieber were shut out.
When asked if the Grammy award was a curse, Bieber told TMZ Sunday night: “I don’t know. Could be.”