The 2022 Grammys are a big look for Filipino Americans: Olivia Rodrigo made Grammy history when she became the first Filipina and second-youngest artist to be nominated in all four top categories; H.E.R., also Filipina, landed eight nods; and Saweetie, who is Chinese, Filipina and Black, landed two, including Best New Artist.
Rodrigo, the year’s 18-year-old breakout star, landed nominations for her debut album, “Sour” and hit single “Driver’s License” for Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best New Artist. Rodrigo follows in the footsteps of Billie Eilish who in 2019 landed six similar Grammy nominations.
Singer-songwriter H.E.R., who was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, landed nominations related to her debut full-length album, “Back of My Mind.” H.E.R. who is part Filipino and part Black, took home a Grammy Award earlier this year when she won song of the year for “I Can’t Breathe” at the 63rd Grammy Awards. She made Oscar history a few months later when she picked up Best Original Song for “Fight For You” from “Judas and the Black Messiah.”
She is one of the few Filipino women to win in the category. Speaking with Variety earlier this year, H.E.R. talked about the impact her win meant. She said, “It means that there’s another Filipino girl out there and Black girl out there who says, ‘I can do that too.’”
Rodrigo too, is seen as a role model to young girls, spoke about her impact. She said, “I sometimes get DMs from little girls being like, ‘I’ve never seen someone who looked like me in your position,'” she shared. “And I’m literally going to cry, like just thinking about it. I feel like I grew up never seeing that. Also, it was always like, ‘Pop star,’ that’s a white girl.”
Rapper Saweetie who made her “Saturday Night Live” debut this past weekend, also landed Best New Artist alongside Rodrigo. Earlier this year, the rapper released Best Friend” as the third single from her debut studio album “Pretty Bitch Music.” Saweetie paid homage to her heritage when she wore a Christian Cowan gown to the Met Gala earlier this year. Cowan wrote, “@saweetie’s crystal trains for her @christiancowan MET gala gown were a homage to her heritage. One the Black American Heritage flag, the other the Filipino flag.
In the words of Saweetie, “That’s what makes me an American girl.”