Miley Cyrus dusted off her 2009 hit “The Climb” last week for her Pride 2021 concert special, Stand By You, and it got us thinking about the iconic song.
In fact, there’s one thing about “The Climb” that many Hannah Montana fans may not even realize: Did you know that the song was once briefly nominated for a Grammy? But wait, there’s more: Not only was it nominated, but that nomination was rather controversially and abruptly rescinded!
It all started when “The Climb” earned a nod for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media at the 2010 Grammy Awards. After all, Hannah Montana: The Movie had been a bona fide hit in the summer of 2009, earning more than $155 million worldwide at the box office.
The moment would’ve marked Cyrus’ first-ever Grammy nomination, but alas, it was not meant to be.
Soon after nominations were announced, it came to everyone’s attention that “The Climb” wasn’t written specifically for the Hannah Montana film. In actuality, it was written as a spiritual song by Jessi Alexander and Jon Mabe. Originally called “It’s the Climb,” Alexander and Mabe shopped the song around, and eventually it landed at the Walt Disney Company, who gave it to Cyrus to be used on the at-the-time upcoming Hannah Montana: The Movie film soundtrack.
In light of the revelation, the track never should’ve been in contention in the soundtrack category at the Grammys to begin with, and according to Rolling Stone, had been submitted by mistake. Cyrus’ team ultimately withdrew it from consideration.
The resulting void left room for Karen O and the Kids’ “All Is Love” from Where the Wild Things Are to swoop in and take the place of “The Climb,” which director Spike Jonze announced on his blog the following week.
By the time the actual ceremony rolled around a few months later, the dust-up about “The Climb” was all but forgotten. Karen O’s track was beaten by “Jai Ho” from Slumdog Millionaire, and Cyrus would eventually go on to be nominated for a Grammy for Pop Vocal Album in 2014 for her hit album Bangerz.