Awards season is coming back in full swing as the nominees for the 60th annual Grammy Awards were announced Tuesday morning. The nominations were met with both praise and criticism as artists compete for the sought-after titles.
Jay-Z is currently leading off the nominations with a total of eight, in categories such as: Record of the Year, Song of the Year, Album of the Year and Best Rap Performance. Jay-Z (“The Story of O.J.”) will be competing with several respected artists like Bruno Mars (“24K Magic”), Kendrick Lamar (“DAMN”), Luis Fonsi (“Despacito”) and Childish Gambino (“Redbone”) to hold the prestigious title of Record of the Year.
Even though they may be newcomers, the nominees for Best New Artist have proven their talent and power in the music industry. Alessia Cara, Khalid, Lil Uzi Vert, Julia Michaels and SZA will be competing for this year’s award. Alessia Cara is best known for her album “Know-It-All” featuring the songs “Here,” “Wild Things” and “Scars to your Beautiful.” Cara is also nominated for Best Duo/Group Performance for her and Zedd’s performance of “Stay.”
Khalid is fairly new to the music industry with his album “American Teen,” featuring popular songs “Location” and “Young Dumb & Broke.” Cara and Khalid collaborated with rapper Logic on the song “1-800-273-8255,” which is nominated for Song of the Year.
Lil Uzi Vert, a rapper based out of Philadelphia recently released his album “Luv is Rage 2” featuring the hit song “XO TOUR Llif3.” He gained worldwide popularity after being featured in Migos’ “Bad and Boujee” which is nominated for Best Rap Performance.
Before releasing her own music, Julia Michaels was a songwriter for stars like Demi Lovato and Fifth Harmony. She released her first single, “Issues,” last January, and it reached No. 11 on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. “Issues” is also competing for Song of the Year.
The last nominee for Best New Artist is SZA, an American R&B singer whose album “Ctrl” was released earlier this year. Critics praised “Ctrl” for SZA’s commanding presence and songwriting, which helped her nab five nominations including: Best New Artist, Best Contemporary Album, Best R&B Performance, Best R&B Song and Best Rap Performance. SZA was overwhelmed with the amount of Grammy nominations she received, telling Pitchfork, “ . . . this entire thing puts my wildest dreams to shame.”
Of course, not everyone is lucky enough to be nominated for multiple Grammys. This year, singer/songwriter Ed Sheeran only received two nominations: Best Vocal Performance (“Shape of You”) and Best Pop Vocal Album (“Divide”). Sheeran was not nominated for any major categories, which shocked critics and fans alike.
Similarly, R&B singer The Weekend only received one nomination for Best Urban/Contemporary Album despite his successful album “Starboy” which was released last year and was met with worldwide success. This came as a shock considering he won two Grammy’s in 2016 for his album “Beauty Behind the Madness.”
The 60th annual Grammy Awards are being aired on Jan. 28, 2018. Tune in to see which artists will win these coveted titles!
Taylor Stenroos is a fourth-year English major with minors in journalism and French. She can be reached at TS833344@wcupa.edu.