NEW YORK, N.Y. – The ousted head of the Grammy Awards says that music's biggest awards are tainted because of conflicts of interest that infect how certain songs and artists are nominated.
Nevertheless, Deborah Dugan said in an interview on ABC's “Good Morning America” on Thursday that she plans to watch the Grammys this weekend.
Dugan was fired only months into her job as head of the Recording Academy and this week filed an explosive complaint with the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission that alleged she was sexually harassed and that the music organization was a “boy's club” that favors friends. The academy, which has accused Dugan of misconduct, has said it has launched an investigation.
The personnel allegations had largely overshadowed Dugan's charges about the integrity of the Grammys' awards process — a huge problem given that its annual ceremony is set to be televised on CBS in three days.
“The system should be transparent and there are incidents of conflicts of interest that taint the results,” Dugan said on ABC.
The academy vehemently defended its voting process in response to Dugan's complaint and interview.
“Spurious allegations claiming members or committees use our process to push forward nominations for artists they have relationships with are categorically false, misleading and wrong," Chief Awards Officer Bill Freimuth said in a statement.
Dugan's complaint charged that a “secret committee” that decides who gets Grammy nominations contains people with business and personal relationships with artists, and that they push their favorites ahead. The Grammy membership generally selects 20 potential nominees in categories and internal committees whittle those lists down to the five or seven eventual nominees.