The 60th GRAMMY Award nominations were released today, sending social media into a frenzy about who got too much love and how their favorite artist was once again snubbed. I’m not going to get too much into that, but speaking more in generality that looking at the noms, hip-hop and R&B are the big winners here.
The genres have been wildly underrepresented in the past and now with hip-hop at music’s forefront, it can no longer be denied as it has become the most popular genre of music to be consumed on the open marketplace. A 48-year-old JAY-Z leads all artists with 8 nominations, including having 4:44 up for Album of The Year.
Check out the complete list of nominees here.
Album of the Year:
• “Awaken, My Love!” – Childish Gambino
• 4:44 – JAY-Z
• DAMN. – Kendrick Lamar
• Melodrama – Lorde
• 24K Magic – Bruno Mars
What’s amazing here? This will be the first time since 1999 that there are no white males represented in the major category. Have no problem with the Academy’s choices, but I believe The Weeknd’s Starboy should have gotten more recognition. Early prediction: Going to ride with Kendrick Lamar, he absolutely dominated 2017, showing he’s one of the all-time greats, while offering up a masterpiece with DAMN.
Record Of The Year:
• “Redbone” – Childish Gambino
• “Despacito” – Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee Featuring Justin Bieber
• “The Story Of O.J.” – JAY-Z
• “HUMBLE.” – Kendrick Lamar
• “24K Magic” – Bruno Mars
More urban music domination in 2017, and it’s only going to be more powerful as the years go on. I’m honestly surprised to see “The Story Of O.J.” in this category, not even the best record off of 4:44. Talking it over with DG, I guess “Despacito” will have to get some nominations because of just how huge of a record it was this year. Where is Ed Sheeran?!?!?! “Shape Of You” has to get a nomination here. Love the other three choices, would have no problem with them winning too. “Redbone”‘s organic rise was one of the special events to witness in music in 2017.
Best New Artist: (My Favorite Category)
• Alessia Cara
• Lil Uzi Vert
• Julia Michaels
This category has birthed so many superstars over the years, even though most years I disagree with who is really considered a “New Artist” by the Academy. Any of these talented artists could win and I’d think it was fair. This may be the most talented “New Artist” field I’ve seen in a long time. Kehlani should be in the conversation with these artists as well, let’s not forget about her ability. Recent winners of the category include: Chance The Rapper, Adele, John Legend, Amy Winehouse, Alicia Keys, Mariah Carey and Maroon 5.
Outside of SZA (28) the others mentioned are just 24 or younger with Khalid still a teenager. Alessia Cara has shown she can dominate the pop charts, Khalid’s American Teen impressed critics, Lil Uzi Vert is hip-hops’s biggest rockstar, Julia Michaels is one of the most talented writers in music, SZA is the next R&B star to carry the torch for strong-minded women after her CTRL debut. The future is bright.
Best Rap Album:
• 4:44 – JAY-Z
• DAMN. – Kendrick Lamar
• Culture – Migos
• Laila’s Wisdom – Rapsody
• Flower Boy – Tyler, The Creator
Expected to see the top three on this list with Jay, Kenny and Migos. The bottom two is where I have somewhat of an issue. I don’t believe Rapsody’s project was strong enough to make this list in my opinion. Flower Boy, is another story. Definitely needs to be recognized for it’s artistic creativity as Tyler produced all of the 14-track album. I’m cool with him getting his first nomination here, well deserved Ty. If it was up to me I would’ve liked to see Vince Staples’ Big Fish Theory, Big Sean’s I Decided or Logic’s Everybody up there.
Before I sign off I just want to highlight some of the younger artist’s in hip-hop/R&B to get nominations because that should be celebrated. Congrats to Khalid, Cardi B, 6lack, GoldLink, Rapsody, and Daniel Caesar on notching their first nominations. This is a life-long labor of love coming to fruition. The future of the genre is brighter than ever. See everyone at the 60th GRAMMY’s on January 28th. Good luck to the nominees.