According to the New York Times, the Recording Academy has removed the 52-year-old shock-rocker from the Best Rap Song category, in which he was previously nominated for his contribution to Kanye West’s Donda album. However, the move is unrelated to his ongoing sexual abuse case.
The Times reports Manson—real name Brian Hugh Warner—earned the nod after he was credited as one of the songwriters for the Donda track “Jail”. Although he did write for the song’s alternative version, “Jail Pt. 2,” he is not listed as one of the writers for the “most current version of the album.” The outlet also points out Manson is still listed as one of Donda’s contributors, meaning he’ll secure a trophy for Album of the Year if Ye’s project ends up winning the category.
News of the withdrawal comes as authorities investigate Manson for alleged sex crimes, including physical abuse and trafficking. Manson has continued to deny the accusations, which were brought forth by actresses Esmé Bianco, Evan Rachel Wood, and more.
“Obviously, my art and my life have long been magnets for controversy, but these recent claims about me are horrible distortions of reality,” he wrote on Instagram earlier this year. “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.”
The Recording Academy faced backlash over its decision to nominate Manson for next year’s ceremony. The Academy’s CEO Harvey Mason Jr. defended the move by saying an artist’s history does not make him/her ineligible for nominations.
“We won’t restrict the people who can submit their material for consideration,” he said in a statement to The Wrap. “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.”