Friday, January 24, 2014

Grammy Predictions 2014

Madonna is going to have a duet with a surprise guest, then there is the potential Jay-Z and Beyonce duet, Daft Punk, Nile Rodgers, Stevie Wonder, and Robin Thicke.  These are only a few of the performances and cool pairings.  Over the past few years the Grammy Awards have been blending genres, and pairing cool performers in part to save their poor set of nominees.  

Over the years the Grammy Awards have become the most generic in music.  I realized just think year that the last rap artist to win Best New Artist was in 1993.  This could be the first year a rap/hip-hop artist wins this award with two nominees Kendrick Lamar, and Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.  This could also cement the Grammy Award's penchant for honoring pretty young white girls.  The same has been true in Album of the Year, although the Grammy Awards have been honoring more non-traditional genres lately with wins from Mumford and Sons (2013), Arcade Fire (2011) Outkast (2004).   A win from the above mentioned Best New Artist nominees or Daft Punk would prove the Grammy Awards are not just rubber stamps for pop music, but value rap/hip-hop, and dance/electronic music.

Album of the Year
Sara Bareilles-The Blessed Unrest 
Daft Punk-Random Access Memories
Kendrick Lamar-Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City
Mackelmore and Ryan Lewis-The Heist
Taylor Swift-Red

I am better predicting Oscar winners, the Grammy Awards are not my forte.  If you look at history the winner would seem to be Swift, but in my book there are marks against her, one she has has won this award before, and not long ago repeat wins at her age seem unlikely.  I would also argue that she did not receive as many nominations as you would have expected leaving her vulnerable.  Daft Punk has a good shot here too, they had a huge hit, and are the critical darling of the group, which has paid off for many artists recently, although in fairness Kendrick Lamar's album has the highest meta critic rating.  So who wins?  My money is on Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, huge hits beget huge album, and a large presence.  I think this year's prizes are going to be split pretty evenly as there is no landslide winner like Adele two years ago, or even fun. who took home two trophies last year.

Will Win: Macklemore and Ryan Lewis-The heist
Spoiler: Not to cop out, but everyone my second gut would be Swift

Record of the Year 
Get Lucky — Daft Punk & Pharrell Williams
Radioactive — Imagine Dragons
Royals — Lorde
Locked Out Of Heaven — Bruno Mars
Blurred Lines — Robin Thicke Featuring T.I. & Pharrell

In years past songs like Radioactive dominate this category but Imagine Dragons was left in the dust, and not as popular this year.  Blurred Lines is the biggest hit, but the controversy hurts the song, as does  Thicke's reputation.  Daft Punk had another huge hit of the summer, I think this is their best shot at a win.  Lorde's Royals is also a huge hit, and still all over the radio, but does that matter?  Not really if you look at the past winners here many of them were songs I did not even hear on the radio look at the Robert Plant and Allison Krause win just a few years back.  The Bruno Mars song makes the most sense here, but is it too light hearted, or not "important enough?"  My money is on Daft Punk vs. Lorde.

Will Win: Lorde-Royals
Spoiler-Daft Punk-Get Lucky

Song of the Year
Just Give Me A Reason — Jeff Bhasker, Pink & Nate Ruess, songwriters (Pink Featuring Nate Ruess)
Locked Out Of Heaven — Philip Lawrence, Ari Levine & Bruno Mars, songwriters (Bruno Mars)
Roar — Lukasz Gottwald, Max MartinBonnie McKeeKaty Perry & Henry Walter, songwriters (Katy Perry)
Royals — Joel Little & Ella Yelich O'Connor, songwriters (Lorde)
Same Love —- Ben Haggerty, Mary Lambert & Ryan Lewis, songwriters (Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Featuring Mary Lambert)

Another tough call.  I like the idea of "Same Love" winning the message is great, and it would fit within the category.  My gut says "Just Give Me a Reason" wins.  Although Lorde and Bruno Mars are the double nominees, which typically bodes well for artists.  I would say "Royals" has the better shot of these two.

Will Win: Just Give Me A Reason — Jeff Bhasker, Pink & Nate Ruess, songwriters (Pink Featuring Nate Ruess)
Spoiler: Royals — Joel Little & Ella Yelich O'Connor, songwriters (Lorde)

Best New Artist 
James Blake
Kendrick Lamar
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
Kacey Musgraves

History says the winner is Kacey Musgraves with the country voting block, and split in the hip/rap world with two nominees.  I do however think that it would be hard to ignore Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.

Will Win: Macklemore and Ryan Lewis
Spoiler: Kacey Musgraves

Pop Field

Best Pop Solo Performance

Mirrors — Justin Timberlake

Best Pop Duo/Group Performance

Just Give Me A Reason — Pink Featuring Nate Ruess

Best Pop Vocal Album

The 20/20 Experience — The Complete Experience — Justin Timberlake

Dance/Electronica Field

Best Dance Recording

Sweet Nothing — Calvin Harris Featuring Florence Welch

Best Dance/Electronica Album

Random Access Memories — Daft Punk

Traditional Pop Album

To Be Loved — Michael Bubl√©

Rock Field

Best Rock Performance

The Stars (Are Out Tonight) — David Bowie

Best Metal Performance

God Is Dead? — Black Sabbath

Best Rock Song
Cut Me Some Slack — Dave Grohl, Paul McCartney, Krist Novoselic & Pat Smear, songwriters (Paul McCartney, Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, Pat Smear)

Best Rock Album

The Next Day — David Bowie

Alternative Field

Best Alternative Music Album

Modern Vampires Of The City — Vampire Weekend

R&B Field

Best R&B Performance

How Many Drinks? — Miguel Featuring Kendrick Lamar

Best Traditional R&B Performance

Get It Right — Fantasia

Best R&B Song

Pusher Love Girl - James Fauntleroy, Jerome Harmon, Timothy Mosley & Justin Timberlake, songwriters (Justin Timberlake)

Best Urban Contemporary Album
Unapologetic - Rihanna

Best R&B Album

Girl On Fire - Alicia Keys

Rap Field

Best Rap Performance

Thrift Shop - Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Featuring Wanz

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration

Holy Grail - Jay Z Featuring Justin Timberlake

Best Rap Song

Thrift Shop - Ben Haggerty & Ryan Lewis, songwriters (Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Featuring Wanz)

Best Rap Album

Good Kid, M.A.A.D City - Kendrick Lamar

Country Field

Best Country Solo Performance

Mama's Broken Heart - Miranda Lambert

Best Country Duo/Group Performance

Highway Don't Care - Tim McGraw, Taylor Swift & Keith Urban

Best Country Song

Merry Go 'Round - Shane McAnally, Kacey Musgraves & Josh Osborne, songwriters (Kacey Musgraves)

Best Country Album
Red - Taylor Swift

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