Well, I had hunches.
And as it turns out, my hunches were kinda right.
The pack of nominees for the 2013 Grammy Awards has no clear frontrunner, a la Adele last year. Also, the list of nominees is not veteran-heavy (as it tends to be most years) or pop heavy (as it was last year.)
Six artists tied with six nominations each: breakthrough pop artist fun., singer/songwriter Frank Ocean, banjo-flickin’ Mumford & Sons, Ohio rock duo The Black Keys (which includes a Producer of the Year nomination for lead singer Dan Auerbach,) and Grammy stalwarts Kanye West and Jay-Z, who floated to the top of the nominations list despite being almost completely confined to the rap categories.
A few surprises:
–Carly Rae Jepsen‘s “Call Me Maybe” was not nominated for Record of the Year, although it received noms for Song of the Year (which recognizes song composition as opposed to performance) and Best Pop Vocal Performance, Solo. Shades of Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” having the same thing happen a couple years ago. Had “Call Me Maybe” been shut out completely, it’d be fairly easy to say that the Grammy committee (somewhat rightfully) has a bias against teen pop (or rather, since Jepsen is pushing thirty, pop made for teens.) Maybe slotting it in “Song” as opposed to “Record,” Grammy is awarding the composition (which was the song of the summer) while recognizing that the performer of said song is probably relegated to flash-in-the-pan status?
-Teen pop gets dissed. Justin Bieber and OneDirection combined for 0 nominations. Not that they deserved any, but if there are any teenage girls (or creepy old guys) who follow the Grammys, they’re probably ready to wage war.
–Miguel‘s “Adorn” gets nominated for Song of the Year: I’m happy just because “Adorn” is arguably my record AND song of 2012. I can’t stop playing that damn record.
–John Mayer gets shafted. Although, considering the low-key year JM has had, it’s likely that he asked his record company not to even submit Born And Raised for consideration. A shame, though, as it’s a solid effort and one of 2012’s best albums.
–The Roots‘ Undun gets nominated for Best Rap Album. And given the other nominees in the category (Drake, Lupe Fiasco, 2 Chainz, Nas and Rick Ross,) I’d say they have a pretty good chance of coming away with the win. Actually, The Roots and Lupe are the only two artists out of the six nominated who have won a Grammy before.
-The new “urban contemporary” category only has three nominees. A late addition to the categories list, the nominees are Chris Brown’s Fortune, Miguel’s Kaleidoscope Dream, and Ocean’s channel ORANGE. It’s safe to say that Brown won’t be celebrating a second Grammy win this year.
Vets shut out: sorta: Bob Dylan got shut out completely, Paul McCartney & Bonnie Raitt only scored a nomination each, and Springsteen scored two. Not that they’re not worthy of Grammy love-after all, they’re legends who still make quality music. But it’s time for the guard to change. Hopefully, the committee will be listening when U2 finally puts out their new album.
In case you want to take me to Vegas:
I called 4 of the 5 Album of the Year nominees (I incorrectly called the Biebs, and missed The Black Keys, although I called them “maybe”-see what I did there?)
I called 4 of the 6 Record of the Year nominees
I called 3 of the 5 Best New Artist nominees (Gotye’s exclusion was a big surprise-for me, anyway.) I guess I’m not country enough to have considered Hunter Hayes, and I had the Alabama Shakes listed as a “maybe,” as well.
Here are some of the nominees in the major categories.
Record of the Year: Black Keys (Lonely Boy)/K. Clarkson (Stronger)/Taylor Swift (Never Getting Back Together)/fun (We Are Young)/Gotye (Somebody That I Used To Know)/Frank Ocean (Thinking Bout You)
Song of the Year: Call Me Maybe/Thinking Bout You/Stronger/A-Team (Ed Sheeran)/Adorn (Miguel)
Album of the Year: Fun/Mumford & Sons/Black Keys/Jack White/Frank Ocean
Best New Artist: Frank Ocean/Fun/Alabama Shakes/Hunter Hayes/Lumineers
Pop Album: Kelly Clarkson/Florence + the Machine/Pink/Kelly Clarkson/Fun
Rock Album: Black Keys/Coldplay/Muse/Springsteen/Jack White
Alternative Album: Fiona Apple/Bjork/Gotye/M83/Tom Waits
R&B Album: Robert Glasper/R. Kelly/Anthony Hamilton/Tamia/Tyrese
Rap Album: Drake/Nas/Rick Ross/The Roots/2 Chainz/Lupe Fiasco
Full list of nominees here: http://www.grammy.com/nominees