The nominations for the 59th Annual GRAMMYs are almost around the corner as the eligibility period ended on September 30th, meaning all records released after this date will have to compete in next year’s edition. And while we wait for the submissions’ list, let’s speculate on the possible contenders.
Who will get the most nominations?
Three artists are considered locks for the general field: Adele, Beyoncé, and Drake. Whether they achieve nominations in the three major categories (Album, Record and Song of the Year) remains to be seen but they all have a chance to grab 6+ nods.
Adele’s 25 was not as stellar as the Album of the Year-winner 21, but it is a guaranteed nominee for the prestigious category however could it win? The British singer has though competition but she still should be able to grab the same six nominations she got in 2012: Album of the Year, Best Pop Vocal Album (which could be an easy win), Best Pop Solo Performance, Best Music Video and Record and Song of the Year for “Hello”. Adele’s rivals in the pop and general fields include Beyoncé, Sia and Justin Bieber. It is unlikely her label would submit “Send My Love (To Your New Lover)”, though it is a current pop hit is not usually what Grammy voters are aiming for. If submitted it’d must likely be for pop solo and music video.
Beyoncé’s Lemonade is set to be the most acclaimed album f the eligibility period —much like Kendrick Lamar’s To Pimp A Butterfly. And while To Pimp… lost AOTY it won five other awards and was nominated for nine, Lemonade could pass it and there are three categories Queen Bey could count on: AOTY, Best Urban Contemporary Album and Best Music Film. But the visual album and its collage of sounds could lead to even 13 nominations: Record, song, best music video, best R&B performance and song for “Formation”; best pop solo performance for “Hold Up”; “Freedom” for best rap/sung collaboration (or best Gospel/Contemporary Christian music song); “Don’t Hurt Yourself” for best rock performance and song; and “Daddy Lessons” for best American roots performance and song. Could Beyoncé strip Kendrick (or even Michael Jackson) as the most nominated artist in one night? Don’t be surprised if she does.
Drake’s Views spent ten weeks atop of the Billboard 200 and this could led the Toronto rapper to his first general field nomination as a lead artist —he’s been nominated for AOTY as a featured artist on Rihanna’s Loud, Beyoncé’s self-titled album and Lamar’s good kid…—. He’s a lock on best rap album, record of the year and best pop/duo group performance for “One Dance”. His “Work” with Rihanna is the strongest contender for best rap/sung performance and song. And he has songs like “Pop Style” or “The Grammys” that might get into rap performance, even last year’s “Hotline Bling” is still eligible and may even land him on pop solo performance.
Since all the rockstars from the 90s are aging, it is hard to define who is a veteran and if they are still as relevant as they use to be for the awards. The last time a ‘veteran’ won in the general field was Robert Plant for Raising Sand with Alisson Krauss —though some argue that Beck was the last two do so in 2015—. Either way, there are three so-called veterans to consider: David Bowie, Paul Simon, and Barbra Streisand.
The buzz over David Bowie’s death had diminished by now. However Bowie’s last album Blackstar is among this year’s best and if MTV honoured him with an award and three other nods, how can the Academy forget him? The late singer could be getting his second AOTY nomination since Let’s Dance in 1983. But even if he doesn’t get the prestigious nomination, he will still appear in the rock field (where he’s been a regular since the 1980s) as the song “Lazarus” is a shoo-in for best rock performance and song. Some pundits also put the experimental track “Blackstar” as a contender for record and song of the year.
Barbra Streisand recently topped the Billboard 200 with Encore: Movie Partners Sing Broadway and had the GoldDerby forums discussing a possible AOTY nomination. Though her chances are not high, Streisand is a lock for traditional pop album, a category she could finally win since Tony Bennett did not release anything.
Paul Simon released Stranger to Stranger to much critical acclaim and while his chances for an AOTY nod are tight he could be facing Adele, Justin Bieber, Sia, and Ariana Grande at the pop vocal album category.
The new artists
Chance the Rapper’s sophomore album Coloring Book is among the favourites for AOTY too. But Chance’s chances are very high at getting Best New Artist and most likely all of the rap field with “No Problem”. Vancouver singer/songwriter and JUNO winner for Breakthrough Solo Artist, had been a favourite for best new artist since the release of “Here” in late 2015.
There are two artists vying for the regular country spot in BNA: Kelsea Ballerini and Maren Morris both with strong chances, it could be the first time since 2000 when two country artists competed for this award.
Danish trio Lukas Graham is a hot favourite for record and song of the year for “7 Years”, but the song seem to be bigger than the group and they might just miss the BNA line-up. On the other hand, the only group that could go for the revelation award are The Chainsmokers.
What do you think? Who will get the most nominations at the 59th GRAMMYs?