Tomorrow, the Recording Academy will unveil their picks for 2016’s best in music as they announce the nominations for the upcoming Grammy Awards.
As in past years, I will try to make my predictions for the four main categories, Album, Song and Record of the Year, and Best New Artist.
This year has a few titles that are pretty much shoo-ins. Ever since Adele dropped 25, she was a guaranteed entry. Of course that depended heavily on her competition however 2016 hasn’t been a particularly strong year. That makes predicting challenging and beyond Beyoncé and David Bowie, the choices are pretty open. Will it be Drake, The Weeknd or Justin Bieber? Will country or rock have a presence? We’ll find out soon.
So here are my predictions for who will be named in the Big 4 categories.
Album of the Year
David Bowie was an early contender from the day Blackstar dropped. When Beyoncé pulled another unconventional album release with Lemonade, she was a repeat contender along with Adele for 25. The remaining two could go several directions. Drake’s Views and Bieber’s Purpose have been thrown around a lot. Paul Simon is filling the not-so-regular oldies spot with Stranger To Stranger, plus albums from previous category nomineeesBon Ivor, Kanye West and Radiohead are possible contenders.
My Predictions: Adele (25), Beyoncé (Lemonade), David Bowie (Blackstar), Radiohead (A Moon Shaped Pool), Rihanna (ANTI)
Record of the Year
In some ways, this category is the toughest to predict of the four because while there have been some big hits in 2016, none of them scream “Grammy” in the traditional sense. But then the Grammys have been shifting from their traditional predictability in recent years so it’s almost a coin-toss between all the big hits. Will they lean toward past favourites like Coldplay and Justin Timberlake, aim for more progressive choices from Drake or The Chainsmokers or somewhere in between? There’s the obvious Hello and less obvious Formation, and then it’s wide open.
Adele (Hello), Beyoncé (Formation), Justin Bieber (Sorry), Sia (Cheap Thrills) Twenty One Pilots, (Stressed Out)
Song of the Year
Other than Hello, Bieber could be here with Love Yourself (a co-write with last year’s winner Ed Sheeran) and Bowie with Blackstar. I’d love to see Piece By Piece by Kelly Clarkson in this category and think a Coldplay nom for Adventure Of A Lifetime wouldn’t be inappropriate either. I also believe Tim McGraw‘s Humble And Kind (written by last year’s Song of the Year nominee Lori McKenna) is as strong a contender as Hello, judging from its country music award accolades.
Predictions: Adele & Greg Kurstin (Hello), David Bowie (Blackstar), Justin Bieber & Ed Sheeran (Love Yourself), Khalif Brown, Jordan Frost, Asheton Hogan, Michael Len Williams II, Beyoncé Knowles (Formation), Lori McKenna (Humble And Kind)
Best New Artist
Best New Artist is always a tough pick but also the one most reliant on genre. There’ll be a token country act, rap act and possibly rock. I’m taking this one as a shot in the dark.
Predictions: Alessia Cara, Chance The Rapper, Halsey, Maren Morris, Shawn Mendes
Once the nominations are announced tomorrow, I’ll check back in to see how I did!