The Recording Academy CEO has defended the organization's Grammy nomination of Marilyn Manson, the shock rocker who has been accused of sexual abuse or misconduct by multiple women.
Manson is up for "Album Of The Year" at the 2022 Grammy Awards for his role as both a featured artist and songwriter on Kanye West's latest album, "Donda".
In a new interview with The Wrap, Harvey Mason Jr. said The Recording Academy "won't restrict the people who can submit their material for consideration. We won't look back at people's history, we won't look at their criminal record, we won't look at anything other than the legality within our rules of, is this recording for this work eligible based on date and other criteria. If it is, they can submit for consideration."
He continued: "What we will control is our stages, our shows, our events, our red carpets. We'll take a look at anyone who is asking to be a part of that, asking to be in attendance, and we'll make our decisions at that point. But we're not going to be in the business of restricting people from submitting their work for our voters to decide on."
At least 15 women — including "Westworld" actress Evan Rachel Wood — have publicly accused Manson of sexual assault. He is currently facing three lawsuits from women who claim to have been sexually abused by him in the past, including his ex-girlfriend Ashley Morgan Smithline and "Game Of Thrones" actress Esme Bianco.
After Wood shared her accusations, several other women posted their own allegations against the singer. The women claimed to have endured "sexual assault, psychological abuse, and/or various forms of coercion, violence, and intimidation" at the hands of Manson.
The 52-year-old rocker, whose real name is Brian Warner, later released a statement denying the abuse allegations leveled against him, writing on Instagram: "Obviously, my art and my life have long been magnets for controversy, but these recent claims about me are horrible distortions of reality. My intimate relationships have always been entirely consensual with like-minded partners. Regardless of how — and why — others are now choosing to misrepresent the past, that is the truth."
In the months since Wood came forward with her allegations, Manson has also been dropped by his label, Loma Vista Recordings, longtime manager Tony Ciulla, as well as the talent agency CAA, which provides representation for individuals across various mediums.
Manson's attorney Howard King said in a statement: "Mr. Warner vehemently denies any and all claims of sexual assault or abuse of anyone. These lurid claims against my client have three things in common — they are all false, alleged to have taken place more than a decade ago and part of a coordinated attack by former partners and associates of Mr. Warner who have weaponized the otherwise mundane details of his personal life and their consensual relationships into fabricated horror stories."