The BRIT Awards have today announced the introduction of a new awards category for 2024 for best R&B Act, in a move that sees the genre separated from its previous combined category of best Pop/R&B Act. Eligibility for the newly created R&B award will cover a 24-month span - rather than the usual 12 months - meaning that artists who may have been overlooked in this year’s shortlists will be eligible for nomination.
The decision has been welcomed by the likes of Mahalia, who last year protested the combined Pop/R&B category (predictably dominated by huge mainstream pop artists) by wearing a jacket emblazoned with the words ‘Long Live R&B’ to the 2023 ceremony.
Speaking about the change, BPI Chair YolanDa Brown OBE DL has said: “British music is special, the secret ingredient is its rich diversity of genre bending sounds created by the most eclectic artists of all backgrounds. It was this that prompted The BRIT Awards to introduce genre-based awards in 2022, and we are delighted to continue this with the addition of a new standalone R&B category to join the four other genres that we will celebrate in 2024. Our best wishes to all the artists who are eligible.”
The BRITs are also set to increase the number of nominees for the coveted Artist of the Year and International Artist of the Year categories from five to ten, in an effort to improve representation and inclusion following criticism that no women were shortlisted for the best artist award in 2023.
Finally, the organisation have unveiled that visual artist and painter Rachel Jones has designed the 2024 BRIT trophy. Discussing her design, she has said: “I feel like it’s my voice in the form of a trophy, it’s colourful and chaotic, and this was really important because all the other trophies were so distinctive, and you know immediately who made them. I’m really happy that what we’ve ended up with is a reflection of my visual language.”
Check out Rachel’s trophy design and find out more about the full list of BRIT Award categories below.
The full list of award categories for 2024 is:
1. Artist of the Year
2. Group of the Year
3. BRITs Rising Star
4. Best New Artist
5. Song of the Year with Mastercard
6. Mastercard Album of the Year
7. International Artist of the Year
8. International Song of the Year
9. International Group of the Year
10. Alternative/Rock Act
11. Pop Act
12. R&B Act
13. Dance Act
14. Hip Hop/Grime/Rap Act
15. Producer of the Year (honorary award as decided by a separate expert panel)
16. Songwriter of the Year (honorary award as decided by a separate expert panel)
The Brit Awards 2024 will take place on Saturday 2nd March, live from the O2 Arena.