Once released, the Internet immediately took to picking apart and analyzing this year’s Grammy nominees.
The four most closely-watched categories were, as always: record of the year, song of the year, album of the year, and best new artist.
A few of the surprises? Taylor Swift’s reputation was nominated for only one award – best pop vocal album, and Kanye West only received one nomination as well – for producer of the year. Two relative newcomers to the Grammys are folk rock singer Brandi Carlile, who was nominated for six awards, including Best Song, Record, and Album of the Year, and R&B artist H.E.R. was nominated for six awards, including Best New Artist and Album of the Year.
Totaling everything up, Kendrick Lamar was the most-nominated person this year, with eight nominations, and following close behind was Drake with seven.
Some viewers were frustrated that some of their favorite songs and/or artists didn’t make the cut due to the fact that only recordings released from Oct. 1, 2017 to Sept. 30, 2018 were eligible for this year’s Grammys (even though the awards are in February). So Ariana Grande’s “thank u, next”? Not eligible, because it was released on November 3rd of this year. It gets even more complicated when considering awards like “Best New Artist”, as it’s hard to pinpoint when exactly an artist rose to success (Romano, 2018).
Another controversy to consider is last year’s #GrammysSoMale, which took off when only one woman was presented with an award at the 2018 Grammys. The outrage over the lack of representation was only further fueled when Recording Academy president Neil Portnow commented in an interview that women needed to “step it up” if they wanted to be a part of the industry (Angermiller, 2018). Instead, the Recording Academy “stepped it up” by actively recruiting more young voters and increasing the number of nominations in order to encourage diversity.
You can watch the 61st Grammy Awards live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles on CBS Sunday, February 10th, at 7pm CST.
– Beatrice Naujalyte