Bill Burr receives backlash for comments at Grammy Awards appearance

Bill Burr’s appearance at the 2021 Grammy Awards sparked backlash on social media for his comments made while presenting during the pre-Grammy ceremony.

The standup comedian was asked by the Recording Academy to present a series of awards earlier in the night before the main broadcast. Prior to the ceremony, Burr started by joking about the previous piano performance. “Was I the only one who wanted to kill himself during that piano solo?” Burr said while making his way onstage. He continued, saying, “I bought a suit for this. I thought it was gonna be on TV. I’m such a moron, I’m losing so much money right now.” His distaste for classical music was ironic given that he was on stage to present a handful of music honors in the genre such as best choral performance, best classical instrumental solo performance, best classical vocal album, and best classical compendium.

Burr continued presenting awards throughout the night. During his presentation for best Latin rock or alternative album and best tropical Latin album, he said,“How many feminists are like going nuts? ‘Why is this cis-white male doing all this Latino stuff?’ Burr carried on announcing the winner of the regional Mexican music award joking that he couldn’t pronounce winner Natalia Lafourcade’s name. “I can’t say this name. Natalie what?” However, Burr later attempted to pronounce her last name and apologized. “If I butchered her name, I’m sorry. Natalie you won,” he added while accepting the award on her behalf.

After his mistake, Burr tried to make light of the situation, predicting that the audience would react negatively to a white man presenting these awards. Following his appearance at the Grammys, Burr was criticized by many viewers on Twitter for they felt he did not take his presenting duties seriously. Additionally, they took him to task for some of his jokes. One person tweeted “sorry to everyone on the tl/watching who’s been forced to learn who bill burr is, he’s been absolute garbage for years and I shook my head in bitter disbelief when I saw he was one of the presenters. further shows the Grammys don’t *really* care at all about inclusivity/progress.”

However, a great amount of the conversation surrounding Burr on Twitter were people defending him from criticism, noting that his time on the Grammys’ stage was indicative of his comedy style. “Gonna be honest and say I blame the Grammys for the Bill Burr fiasco…his actions and words today are par for his course and maybe just shouldn’t have been a part of that moment. It was their choice to add him to a situation that didn’t need or require that kind of levity” one person tweeted. Another took to Twitter to write, “Bill Burr is the only reason I even considered watching a 6-minute clip of the Grammys. It was worth it.”





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