Saturday, December 4, 2010

It's Grammy Time!

Out of all the award shows we are bombarded with on an annual basis my favorite, without a doubt, is the Grammys. When I started this blog almost a year ago the first post I wrote was about the Grammys so in a sense I could say that the show was my initial inspiration for all of this.

Anyway, the Grammys is my favorite award show of the year because of the performances of course but also because this one has the ability to solidify and legitimize an artist’s career. Whether the artist is brand new or has been around awhile, getting a Grammy matters. Even if artists have said in previous interviews that awards don’t matter and it’s all about the music, the fans and God, trust me, this one matters.

The Grammys are comparable to the Academy Awards in that once an actor wins an Oscar their names will forever be introduced as “Oscar Winner _____.” The same goes for musicians who win a Grammy and I can imagine that there is nothing better than being introduced as “Grammy Award Winner ____.” There is a reason why the Grammys are called “music’s biggest night” – it’s because winning this award is a very big deal. So, here are this year’s nominees and my picks for the winners:

Album of the Year
Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
Eminem - Recovery*
Lady Antebellum - Need You Now
Lady Gaga - The Fame Monster
Katy Perry - Teenage Dream

*There is no question that Eminem should win this category. Recovery is gutsy, melodic, tells a great story and features one of rap’s biggest stars at his finest. I guess you can call it a comeback.

Record of the Year
B.o.B (featuring Bruno Mars) - "Nothin' on You"
Eminem (featuring Rihanna) - "Love the Way You Lie"*
Cee Lo Green - "Fuck You"
Jay-Z and Alicia Keys - "Empire State of Mind"
Lady Antebellum - "Need You Now"

*This is a tough one since there are three strong choices including “Love the Way You Lie,” “Fuck You” and “Empire State of Mind.” This year was definitely the year of the rappers/lady hook masters so I’m thinking Eminem and Rihanna might take it since it’s the most recent and currently the most ubiquitous. That being said, “Empire State of Mind” was inescapable for what seemed like forever but honestly I feel like that song came out in 2009. I think Eminem and Rihanna will take home the big trophy.

Best New Artist
Justin Bieber
Florence + the Machine*
Mumford & Sons
Esperanza Spalding

*Since I literally cannot stand the sight or sound of Justin Bieber and I think Mumford & Sons are good but not great I’m going with Florence + the Machine as a shout out to Carly Brown.

Song of the Year
Ray LaMontagne - "Beg Steal or Borrow"
Cee Lo Green - "Fuck You"*
Miranda Lambert - "The House That Built Me"
Eminem (featuring Rihanna) - "Love the Way You Lie"
Lady Antebellum - "Need You Now"

*Again this one is a close call between “Love the Way You Lie” and “Fuck You” so maybe Cee Lo will grab this one – he certainly deserves it.

Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocals
"Glee" cast - "Don't Stop Believin' (Regionals Version)"
Maroon 5 - "Misery
Paramore - "The Only Exception"
Sade - "Babyfather"
Train - "Hey, Soul Sister (Live)"*

*Since the Glee cast is technically not a real music group I’m not sure why they are nominated and honestly I’m not super impressed with any of these choices. I guess I’ll go with Train even though Paramore might take.

Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals
B.o.B, Eminem and Hayley Williams - "Airplanes II"*
Herbie Hancock, Pink, India.Arie, Seal, Konono No. 1, Jeff Beck and Oumou Sangare - "Imagine"
Elton John & Leon Russell - "If It Wasn't For Bad"
Lady Gaga and Beyoncé - "Telephone"
Katy Perry and Snoop Dogg - "California Gurls"

*I absolutely love “Airplanes” – can’t get enough of it.

Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group With Vocals
Arcade Fire - "Ready to Start"
Jeff Beck and Joss Stone - "I Put a Spell on You"
The Black Keys - "Tighten Up"*
Kings of Leon - "Radioactive"
Muse - "Resistance"

*The Black Keys have been all over the radio and TV this year – I mean seriously, every single commercial on television features a song by them. Plus, they are phenomenal live – “Tighten Up” gets my vote.

Best Hard Rock Performance
Alice in Chains - "A Looking in View"
Ozzy Osbourne - "Let Me Hear You Scream"
Soundgarden - "Black Rain"
Stone Temple Pilots - "Between the Lines"*
Them Crooked Vultures - "New Fang"

*Another tough call as all five options represent some of the biggest guns in rock and roll. That being said, I think I’m going to have to go with “Between the Lines” for this year.

Best Rock Song
Neil Young - "Angry World"
Mumford & Sons - "Little Lion Man"
Kings of Leon - "Radioactive"
Muse - "Resistance"
The Black Keys - "Tighten Up"*

*I have to go with The Black Keys again for this one.

Best Alternative Music Album
Arcade Fire - The Suburbs
Band of Horses - Infinite Arms
The Black Keys - Brothers*
Broken Bells - Broken Bells
Vampire Weekend - Contra

*Although I loved seeing Band of Horses live this year, The Black Keys should take this one as well. (By the way, what constitutes "Alternative" music sure has changed since Nirvana ran the show).

Best Rap Song
Jay-Z and Alicia Keys - "Empire State of Mind"
Eminem and Rihanna - "Love the Way You Lie"*
Eminem - "Not Afraid"
B.o.B (featuring Bruno Mars) - "Nothin' on You"
Jay-Z and Swizz Beatz - "On to the Next One"

*This one may come down to Eminem vs. Eminem and although I think “Not Afraid” succeeds in being both gritty and inspiring at the same time, I think people really could not get enough of “Love the Way You Lie.”

Best Rap Album
B.o.B - The Adventures of Bobby Ray
Drake - Thank Me Later
Eminem - Recovery*
Jay-Z - The Blueprint 3
The Roots - How I Got Over

*I feel like I’m being repetitive but then again Eminem did earn an astonishing 10 nominations this year. I predict Eminem takes home the trophy with Jay-Z nipping at his heels.

Best Country Song
George Strait - "The Breath You Take"
Zac Brown Band - "Free"*
Miranda Lambert - "The House That Built Me"
Gretchen Wilson - "I'd Love To Be Your Last"
The Band Perry - "If I Die Young"
Lady Antebellum - "Need You Now"

*Zac Brown Band seems to be the favorite but I think both Miranda Lambert and Gretchen Wilson put out stellar albums that include these unforgettable songs.

Best Country Album
Dierks Bentley - Up on the Ridge
Zac Brown Band - You Get What You Give
Jamey Johnson - The Guitar Song
Lady Antebellum - Need You Now*
Miranda Lambert – Revolution

*Five great choices as these are five of country music’s biggest acts. I’m partial to Dierks Bentley and Miranda Lambert but Lady Antebellum and Zac Brown Band have been getting a ton of airplay while Jamey Johnson is billed as country’s biggest badass. Tough choice but I’m thinking Lady Antebellum might grab this one.

Best Americana Album
Rosanne Cash - The List
Los Lobos - Tin Can Trust
Willie Nelson - Country Music
Robert Plant - Band of Joy*
Mavis Staples - You Are Not Alone

*While I think this is a very strange name for a category there are clearly some heavy hitters on this list of nominees. Though I am a big fan of Rosanne Cash and Willie Nelson I will always put Led Zeppelin’s notorious front man, Robert Plant, at the top of my list.


  1. If Justin Bieber wins I'm moving to Africa. If Florence + The Machine wins I am throwing a god damn ticker day parade!

  2. Side note: I was watching SNL last night and the musical guest was "Diddy Dirty Money." Apparently P. Diddy is "rapping" (yes allegedly)again, and has changed his stage name AGAIN. Oh, by rapping I mean he sat on stage with blonde women crawling all over him while other people sang and dance better than he could. Stay in the 90's, Diddy, where Mase and Biggie made you look slightly alright.

  3. I'm moving to Africa with you with if Justin Bieber wins. I don't know if you watched the American Music Awards but he kept winning and thanking his "mentor" Usher. Wow....

    In other news I had no idea that Puff Daddy/P.Diddy/Diddy Dirty Money was rapping again. Was SNL his 10 year check up? And I agree...he was nothing without Biggie.

  4. I am happy not to see a bunch of Taylor Swift nominations up there again, and I really hope Eminem gets Album of the Year over Lady Gaga, although I never feel to sure when she's involved..

    The only part I slightly disagree with you on here is that I would have put Muse over The Black Keys in both categories. (Although I guess that could be because I didn't get to go to see The Black Keys, yet I've seen Muse live twice in the last year:)