Phoebe Bridgers enjoyed a big night at the Grammys on Sunday with her band Boygenius winning in three different categories. Bridgers took the opportunity to use the success of the group, which also features Lucy Dacus and Julien Baker, to respond to sexist comments made by the former head of the Recording Academy in 2018.
The Hollywood Reporter states that Bridgers was asked in a winners press conference about women excelling in rock music to which she replied, "I have something to say about women. The ex-president of the Recording Academy, Neil Portnow, said that if women want to be nominated and win Grammys that they should step up. He’s also being accused of sexual violence. And to him I’d like to say I know you’re not dead yet, but when you are, rot in piss."
Bridgers referred to a lawsuit filed in November 2023 by an unnamed accuser who claims Portnow assaulted her in a hotel room in 2018; he has denied the allegations.
Portnow left his position at the Recording Academy in 2018. His departure followed controversial remarks made at an afterparty for the 2018 Grammys: when asked about the overrepresentation of male artists in that year's nominees, Portnow said that female artists should "step up" if they want to be recognized.
Boygenius won a total of four Grammys at Sunday night's ceremony, taking home the prizes for Best Rock Performance, Best Rock Song, and Best Alternative Music Album. Bridgers was also honored in the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance category for her appearance on SZA's "Ghost In The Machine."