Category Archives: GRAMMY Awards

GRAMMY WEEK: Adam Picks The Winners for Packaging/Visual Media Fields

Gram bam, thank you, ma'am.

Gram bam, thank you, ma’am.

It’s finally here… the week before the 56th Annual GRAMMY Awards, airing on Sunday, January 26 at 8PM Eastern on CBS. This week on POP! Goes The Charts, we’ll be taking a look at nearly half the categories on the list and laying out who I think will taking home a prize or two or five (maybe!) on the big day. Today, we start out with the fields for Packaging and Visual Media.

(For a full list of nominations, check it out on GRAMMY.com along with more interactive features. You can also order the 2014 GRAMMY Nominees album, from Atlantic Records.)

56. Best Musical Theater Album

Kinky Boots (***ACTUAL WINNER***)
Matilda: The Musical
Motown: The Musical

PREDICTION: Much like the Tony Awards back in June, I think Best Musical winner Kinky Boots will be the winner in this category. This would mark singer and songwriter Cyndi Lauper‘s first GRAMMY win since claiming Best New Artist way back in 1985.

57. Best Companion Soundtrack for Visual Media

Django Unchained
Quentin Tarantino, compilation producer

The Great Gatsby (Deluxe Edition)
Baz Luhrman, compilation producer

Les Misérables (Deluxe Edition)
Cameron Mackintosh, Lee McCutcheon & Stephan Metcalfe, compilation producers

Muscle Shoals
Stephan Badger & Greg Camalier, compilation producers

Sound City: Real To Reel
Butch Vig, compilation producer (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

PREDICTION: I was going back and forth between Luhrman and Vig for this Award, as both soundtracks have the star power to win, but I’ll give the edge to The Great Gatsby on this one. As a stand-alone work, it’s quite inspired and did well commercially.

58. Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media

Argo
Alexandre Desplat, composer

The Great Gatsby
Craig Armstrong, composer

Life Of Pi
Mychael Danna, composer

Lincoln
John Williams, composer

Skyfall
Thomas Newman, composer (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

Zero Dark Thirty
Alexandre Desplat, composer

PREDICTION: Five out of the six nominations (minus Danna) are by previous winners in the category; that is some serious competition. However, I’m giving it to Lincoln. The movie was fantastic and Williams did an exceptional job setting the mood for it.

59. Best Song Written for Visual Media

“Atlas” (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire)
Performed and Written by: Coldplay (Guy Berryman, Jonny Buckland, Will Champion & Chris Martin)

“Silver Lining (Crazy ‘Bout You)” (Silver Linings Playbook)
Performed by: Jessie J
Written by: Diane Warren

“Skyfall” (Skyfall)
Performed by: Adele
Written by: Adkins & Paul Epworth (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

“We Both Know” (Safe Haven)
Performed and Written by: Colbie Caillat and Gavin DeGraw

“Young And Beautiful” (The Great Gatsby)
Performed by: Lana Del Rey
Written by: Del Rey & Rick Nowels

“You’ve Got Time” (Orange Is The New Black)
Performed and Written by: Regina Spektor

PREDICTION: This is a pretty hard category – two of the selections in here went to #1 on my personal chart. As much as I want “Atlas” to take the prize, I am going with “Skyfall”. The GRAMMY’s wouldn’t be complete without an Adele win, would they?

63. Best Recording Package

Geneseo, Automatic Music Can Be Fun
Mike Brown, Zac DeCamp, Brian Grunert & Annie Stoll, art directors

Reckless Kelly, Long Night Moon
Sarah Dodds & Shauna Dodds, art directors  (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

Jay Z, Magna Carta… Holy Grail
Brian Roettinger, art director

Metallica, Through The Never (Music From The Motion Picture)
Bruce Duckworth, Sarah Moffat, Brian Steele & David Turner

David Bowie, The Next Day
Jonathan Barnbrook, art director

PREDICTION: All five sets have pretty unique artwork even though I don’t know two of the acts in the category. I do believe David Bowie has the best chance of a win here. I liked the campaign based around it; it’s a simple piece, yet it’s also mysterious.

64. Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package

Rolling Stones, The Brussels Affair
Charles Dooher & Scott Sandler, art directors

Mayer Hawthorne, How Do You Do (Limited Edition Box Set)
Mayer Hawthorne, art director

Mumford & Sons, The Road To Red Rocks (Special Edition)
Ross Stirling, art director

Various Artists, The Smith Tapes
Masaki Koike, art director

Wings, Wings Over America (Deluxe Edition)
Simon Earith & James Musgrave, art directors (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

PREDICTION: There’s some major GRAMMY darlings in here, and of course, my dream win would be for Hawthorne. Yet, I’ll be realistic here and say Wings Over the other four. Hey, I even got the “Maybe I’m Amazed” 12″ for Record Store Day last year.

81. Best Music Video

“Safe And Sound”, Capital Cities
Grady Hall, video director; Buddy Enright, Javier Jimenez, Danny Lockwood & Daniel Weisman, video producers

“Picasso Baby” (A Performance Art Film), Jay Z
Mark Romanek, video director; Shawn Carter & Aristides McGarry, video producers

“Can’t Hold Us”, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Ray Dalton
Jon Jon Augustavo, Jason Koenig & Ryan Lewis, video directors; Tricia Davis, Honna Kimmerer & Jenny Koenig, video producers

“Suit & Tie”, Justin Timberlake featuring Jay Z
David Fincher, video director; Timory King, video producer (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

“I’m Shakin'”, Jack White
Dori Oskowitz, video director; Saul Levitz & Candice OvaKnine, video producer

PREDICTION: Of the five entries here, only one music video helped me to like the song better, and that would be “Safe And Sound” by Capital Cities. With a clip featuring dancers from multiple eras, the nostalgia should prove to be positive with the committee.

82. Best Music Film

Coldplay, Live 2012
Paul Dugdale, video director; Jim Parsons, video producer

Green Day, ¡Cuatro!
Tim Wheeler, video director; Tim Lynch, video producer

Ben Harper with Charlie Musselwhite, I’m In, I’m Out And I’m Gone: The Making Of Get Up!
Danny Clinch, video director; Ben Harper, video producer

Paul McCartney, Live Kisses
Jonas Åkerlund, video director; Violaine Etienne, Aron Levine & Scott Rodger, video producers (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

Mumford & Sons, The Road To Red Rocks
Nicolas Jack Davies & Frederick Scott, video directors; Dan Bowen, video producer

PREDICTION: I only own one of these (Coldplay), but I think Mumford & Sons will take it. I saw the special when it aired on HBO; besides being a fan of them, it’s a high quality film and edited together well. Their past GRAMMY history also helps the cause.
_____

Check back tomorrow to see what I’m thinking for the Alternative, Rock and Country categories! Until then, follow the blog below and find us on social media by click the “Get Social!” tab.

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GRAMMY WATCH: Nominations As They’re Announced (Complete)

A grand slammy for a GRAMMY or two.

A grand slammy for a GRAMMY or two.

Excited for this year’s GRAMMY Awards? I am as well, but we’ll have to wait until January 26 to find out the winners of this year’s prizes. Tonight, however, is all about the nominations in a one-hour program airing on CBS at 10PM Eastern. The special, The GRAMMY Nominations Concert Live!! — Countdown To Music’s Biggest Night, will feature the unveiling of the nods in several categories, with a full update online sometime after the broadcast. Performances are due from Lorde, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Robin Thicke, Taylor Swift and more. So, stay tuned to my blog as the nominations come in… and see how I did at predicting the Big Four categories.

View the full nominations at GRAMMY.com.

LIVE BLOG — CURRENTLY UPDATING

(10:00 PM) PERFORMANCE – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Wanz are currently performing “Thrift Shop”.

(10:05 PM) LL Cool J is handling the nominees for Song Of The Year…

SONG OF THE YEAR
Bruno Mars, “Locked Out Of Heaven”
Katy Perry, “Roar”
Lorde, “Royals”
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Mary Lambert, “Same Love”
Pink featuring Nate Ruess, “Just Give Me A Reason”

I predicted:
Bruno Mars, “When I Was Your Man”
Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams, “Get Lucky”
Justin Timberlake, “Mirrors”
Katy Perry, “Roar”
Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams and T.I., “Blurred Lines”
The Civil Wars, “The One That Got Away”

(10:08 PM) PERFORMANCE – Taylor Swift is currently performing “I Knew You Were Trouble” from Australia.

(10:15 PM) PERFORMANCE – Keith Urban and Miguel are currently duetting on a cover of Bill Withers‘s “Ain’t No Sunshine”.

(10:18 PM) Ed Sheeran is handling the next set of nominees…

BEST POP DUO/GROUP PERFORMANCE
Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams, “Get Lucky”
Justin Timberlake featuring JAY Z, “Suit & Tie”
Rihanna featuring Mikky Ekko, “Stay”
Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams and T.I., “Blurred Lines”
Pink featuring Nate Ruess, “Just Give Me A Reason”

(10:23 PM) Enrique Iglesias is presenting the nominees for Album Of The Year…

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Daft Punk, Random Access Memories
Kendrick Lamar, Good Kid, m.a.a.d City
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, The Heist
Sara Bareilles, The Blessed Unrest
Taylor Swift, Red

I predicted:
Bruno Mars, Unorthodox Jukebox
Daft Punk, Random Access Memories
Justin Timberlake, The 20/20 Experience: The Complete Experience
Taylor Swift, Red
The Civil Wars, The Civil Wars

(10:26) PERFORMANCE – Katy Perry is currently performing “Roar”.

(10:35) PERFORMANCE – Lorde is currently performing “Royals”.

(10:40) Kelly Rowland is presenting the nominees next…

BEST COUNTRY ALBUM
Blake Shelton, Based On A True Story…
Jason Aldean, Night Train
Kacey Musgraves, Same Trailer, Different Park
Taylor Swift, Red
Tim McGraw, Two Lanes Of Freedom

(10:48) Arsenio Hall is presenting for Best New Artist…

BEST NEW ARTIST
Ed Sheeran
James Blake
Kacey Musgraves
Kendrick Lamar
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

I predicted:
Emeli Sandé
Imagine Dragons
Kendrick Lamar
Lorde
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

(10:53) Melissa Etheridge is handling the nominees for Record Of The Year…

RECORD OF THE YEAR
Bruno Mars, “Locked Out Of Heaven”
Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams, “Get Lucky”
Imagine Dragons, “Radioactive”
Lorde, “Royals”
Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams and T.I., “Blurred Lines”

I predicted:
Bruno Mars, “When I Was Your Man”
Lorde, “Royals”
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Mary Lambert, “Same Love”
Passenger, “Let Her Go”
Pink featuring Nate Ruess, “Just Give Me A Reason”

(10:55) Robin Thicke, T.I. and Earth, Wind and Fire end the show with a performance of “Blurred Lines”.

View the full nominations at GRAMMY.com.

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GRAMMY WATCH: Adam Predicts The Big Four

Don't stop the music.

Don’t stop the music.

September 30 marks the end of the eligibility for the upcoming 2014 GRAMMY Awards, so, being that it’s the day after, I think it’s time to make some predictions for the big show, yes? Though it isn’t until January 26 of next year and a special nominations special doesn’t air until December 6, here are some of my early favorites, and let me know what you think below! For now, it’s just the Big Four — and maybe a few extra thoughts when it’s all over. Let’s get to those magic predictions:

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Bruno Mars, Unorthodox Jukebox
Daft Punk, Random Access Memories
Justin Timberlake, The 20/20 Experience: The Complete Experience
Taylor Swift, Red
The Civil Wars, The Civil Wars

All five of these albums went to #1 and the majority of them have been certified (or are at the point where they can be.) It’s definitely going to be another pop heavy year overall. Mars’s late 2012 release has given us smashes like “Locked Out Of Heaven” and “When I Was Your Man”, plus with his upcoming Super Bowl appearance, he may just lead the nominations. Luck was on Daft Punk‘s side this year as “Get Lucky” took a ride up to #2 on the Hot 100, while their album delivered the band’s best sales frame by far. Timberlake, an early winner for this category, had the biggest opening of the year with the first half of this collection and will once again debut at the top with the second half. Why RCA chose to submit both albums as one entry instead of two, we shall never know. Both Swift and The Civil Wars are GRAMMY favorites having been nominated separately and together and should likely gain a vote or two.

Other contenders:
Drake, Nothing Was The Same – The rapper’s album was just issued last week and the numbers on it are looking huge. His connection was multiple format audiences will obviously help him; I’d think this would be the rap release to get a nomination if there is one.
Janelle Monáe, The Electric Lady – Expect to see this one on a lot of year-end lists. The futuristic neo soul singer has a lot of people buzzing about her latest release, but with low radio airplay and only decent sales, this will get cut along the way.
Jay Z, Magna Carta… Holy Grail – He’s an industry heavyweight and his most recent album was one of the most hyped of the year. With a hit single in “Holy Grail”, his name is out there once again, but reception’s been mixed and others are favored.
Kanye West, Yeezus – It’s raw, it’s minimalist and ultimately, it won over both fans and critics when it was released this summer. That being said, I don’t think those on the GRAMMY panel will “get it.” Expect a tantrum or two from West if it’s looked over.
Vampire Weekend, Modern Vampires Of The City – Some people seem to think that this could pull off a nomination because of high critical scores. This era gave them their biggest hit yet on the Alternative survey, “Diane Young”, but I don’t think it’ll be enough to get this in.

RECORD OF THE YEAR
Bruno Mars, “When I Was Your Man”
Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams, “Get Lucky”
Justin Timberlake, “Mirrors”
Katy Perry, “Roar”
Robin Thicke featuring Pharrell Williams and T.I., “Blurred Lines”
The Civil Wars, “The One That Got Away”

Both Record and Song Of The Year are going to be tough this year, but 2013 has been a spectacular and diverse year for music. Since ROTY listed six nominations last year, I’ll be predicting the same this year. Summer smashes “Blurred Lines” and “Get Lucky” will no doubt be in there, which is huge for producer, writer and singer Pharrell Williams. Many people seem to think that both Bruno Mars and Justin Timberlake are a lock for ROTY; I’m putting “Man” here over “Locked Out Of Heaven” and “Mirrors” over “Suit & Tie”, but it could go either way. “Roar”, like Taylor Swift‘s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” last year, will be the last-minute nomination of the bunch. Finally, there’s The Civil Wars; based on the buzz this song registered on my blog well as the prior GRAMMY love for the duo, I think they hold a strong chance of being here.

Other contenders:
Drake featuring Majid Jordan, “Hold On, We’re Going Home” – With a smooth 80’s feel and a simple lyric, the song’s hot and a hit. I think this will only be shut out due to the similar throwback feel of entries like Thicke’s, which was also much bigger commercially.
Imagine Dragons, “Radioactive” – 2013 was a breakout year for this Las Vegas band and their dubstep meets rock production took over the charts a few months ago. Unfortunately, the burn factor with this one will ultimately cost it some votes in the long run.
Kanye West, “New Slaves” – With Yeezus probably missing a chance at AOTY, this would be West’s next best option. The industrial sounding song will too probably not make the category, but it’s worth a shot. He’ll pick up a few nods in the Rap sub-categories.
Taylor Swift, “I Knew You Were Trouble” – Swift has a better shot in the AOTY category. I’m not sure the Academy voters will respond positively to this song, despite the fact that it was a significant hit, given the harder electronic elements of it. Cue the goats!

SONG OF THE YEAR
Bruno Mars, “When I Was Your Man”
Lorde, “Royals”
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Mary Lambert, “Same Love”
Passenger, “Let Her Go”
Pink featuring Nate Ruess, “Just Give Me A Reason”

As it was last year, Song Of The Year should be vastly different from ROTY, and since this is a songwriter’s award, let’s get into the lyrical love. Mars may be the only repeat in this category; his tender love song “Man” resonated with more than a few people this year. Lorde‘s anthem about the lifestyles of the rich and famous may have a minimal production, but stands out lyrically as biting and powerful. “Love” from Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Mary Lambert carries a heavy tone, but is also a game changer when it comes to same-sex marriage support. Passenger‘s “Go” may be the dark horse in this race, but with a similar label strategy to Ed Sheeran‘s “The A Team”, this will continue to be a slow burner into next year. Last year, the duet between Pink and Ruess has such a classic feel that I would be shocked if “Reason” is snubbed in any of the major categories.

Other contenders:
Emeli Sandé, “Next To Me” – Though this was only a moderate success on the charts, Sandé is long overdue for some form of nomination after the song initially went to radio last year. Perhaps a nod in the BNA category below will serve her better.
Rihanna featuring Mikky Ekko, “Stay” – This big ballad from the singer’s Unapologetic album was a nice change of pace at the time. The multi-format smash will likely be on the minds of the voters; it’s going to be a very close one.
Sara Bareilles, “Brave” – You may think it sounds like Katy Perry‘s “Roar”, and once the GRAMMY nominations actually come out, “Roar” will likely take all the glory. Still, “Brave” has a great lyric and Bareilles is certainly worthy of the Award.
The Band Perry, “Better Dig Two” – It’s another morbid musical number from these guys, but it was huge on the Country airwaves. It’s one of the best from the genre this year, but it may fall short of the nominations due to the competition.
The Civil Wars, “The One That Got Away” – I pegged this as a nominee for ROTY, but this still has a promising chance in this category to a lesser extent. I’m hoping for an excellent performance from the duo on the live telecast.

BEST NEW ARTIST
Emeli Sandé
Imagine Dragons
Kendrick Lamar
Lorde
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

This category should be largely predictable, save for maybe an entry or two. Sandé, who was expected to be on last year’s ballot, should make it on this year after the success of “Next To Me”, current single “My Kind Of Love”, and her “Beneath Your Beautiful” duet with Labrinth. Las Vegas quartet Imagine Dragons are an easy sell with their crossover-friendly hits like “It’s Time” and “Radioactive”. Lamar’s debut album, Good Kid, M.A.A.D City, recently went Platinum and he’s also all over the Urban airwaves in addition to his feature on Robin Thicke‘s “Give It 2 U”. New Zealand’s Lorde is also expected to place in the category thanks to the immense, yet sudden success of her “Royals” single, a recent #1 on the Alternative chart. Finally, there’s Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, likely the favorite to win, with three big hit singles in a row including the novelty hit “Thrift Shop” and the socially conscious “Same Love”.

Other contenders:
Ariana Grande – Young diva Grande has some major chops and a major fan base. 2013 marked her first top ten single, “The Way”, and her first #1 album, Yours Truly. However, with so many R&B acts in the bunch, she may not find a “way” into the five finalists.
Florida Georgia Line – The Southern duo has accumulated three big #1 singles on Country radio and scored one of the biggest Country crossovers of the year with the Nelly assisted “Cruise”, but will they skew too young for the panel? Perhaps.
Kacey Musgraves – Musgraves debuted at #2 on the Billboard 200 with her first major label release; however, she’s been recording over ten years and issuing albums independently since 2002. The committee may see that as a reason to leave her out of this one.
Passenger – See Musgraves. He faces a similar problem in that he’s released several albums independently since 2009, as well as one with the band form of Passenger in 2007. Hey, Ed Sheeran and Gotye didn’t make it into BNA last year either.
Phillip Phillips  The American Idol winner from 2012 could be a strong candidate with a Platinum album and two memorable singles, yet it seems that most of his initial hype is gone. “Home” would have been a better choice for last year’s Awards.

As for some of the genre-specific categories, look out for a few more Pink and Taylor Swift nods in the Pop categories, as well as fun. and Maroon 5. Avicii, Martin Garrix and Zedd could compete together for the Best Dance Recording, while the Country categories should be dominated by Blake Shelton, Jason Aldean, Lady Antebellum and The Band Perry. Oh, and in the Jazz categories, my friend Kurt Trowbridge would say that Etienne Charles‘s chances of being nominated for Creole Soul are “killin’ breh.” I just hope he doesn’t have to kill anyone to get his nods. That would just be bad.

Once again, let me know you think below or find PGTC on social media by clicking the “Get Social!” tab.

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2013 GRAMMY Awards: The Picks According To Adam (+ COMPLETE WINNERS)

Carry on wayward Sons.

Carry on wayward Sons.

We’re nearing the end of GRAMMY Week! Thanks for sticking with the blog as we count down the days until music’s biggest night on Sunday at 8PM eastern on CBS.

Now, for the topic of all GRAMMY topics, my predictions for all of the categories. This took a while to compile, so I hope you enjoy and let me know your predictions in the comments or on Twitter at @AdamFSoybel. You’ll see some general notes from me in the categories I know best. Check back on Sunday to see how well I did! (Original Big Four post) (Second Big Four post)

FULLY BOLD = I picked the winner correctly. CROSSED OUT = I did not pick the winner correctly. I got 35 out of 81 correct.

GENERAL FIELD (winners complete)
Record Of The Year: fun. featuring Janelle Monáe – “We Are Young” Gotye featuring Kimbra – “Somebody That I Used To Know”
Album Of The Year: Mumford & Sons – Babel
Song Of The Year: Kelly Clarkson – “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)” fun. featuring Janelle Monáe – “We Are Young”
Best New Artist: fun.

First of all, you’re probably saying, where is Frank Ocean? To be honest, I have no clue where to put him, because I can’t see him winning any of the Big Four. I know people generally think he’ll take Best New Artist over fun., but considering how commercial the picks have been leaning recently, I think they can pull it off. (I do have Ocean winning for a feature and genre-specific award later on.) My only change from December is that I think “We Are Young” will win Record Of The Year rather than “Somebody That I Used To Know”. Gotye and Kimbra aren’t performing on the broadcast, which is usually an indication that they didn’t win any of the big ones.

POP FIELD (winners complete)
Best Pop Solo Performance: Adele – “Set Fire To The Rain (Live at the Royal Albert Hall)”
Best Pop Duo/Group Performance: Gotye featuring Kimbra – “Somebody That I Used To Know”
Best Pop Instrumental Album: Chris Botti – Impressions
Best Pop Vocal Album: fun. – Some Nights Kelly Clarkson – Stronger

Solo Performance is definitely going to Adele; remember that Train‘s “Hey, Soul Sister” won in a live version two years ago for a similar category. With my thinking that Gotye and Kimbra are going to lose out on Record Of The Year, they should win Pop Duo/Group Performance. Chris Botti‘s album did well commercially. Pop Vocal Album is tough; I’ve been going back and forth between fun., Kelly Clarkson and Pink, but I like Some Nights the most out of the three.

DANCE/ELECTRONICA FIELD (winners complete)
Best Dance Recording: Swedish House Mafia featuring John Martin – “Don’t You Worry Child” Skrillex featuring Sirah – “Bangarang”
Best Dance/Electronica Album: The Chemical Brothers – Don’t Think  Skrillex – Bangarang

I still don’t know why the Academy liked Skrillex so much last year. He’s nominated again in both categories this year, but I think the Academy will sympathize with the fact that Swedish House Mafia is breaking up, plus The Chemical Brothers took home wins for the Album Award in 2006 and 2008.

TRADITIONAL POP FIELD (winners complete)
Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: Michael Bublé – Christmas Paul McCartney – Kisses On The Bottom

Bublé’s won the Award three times in the past five years. It would be the first time a seasonal album wins in the category.

ROCK FIELD (winners complete)
Best Rock Performance: Mumford & Sons – “I Will Wait” The Black Keys – “Lonely Boy”
Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance: Iron Maiden – “Blood Brothers (Live)” Halestorm – “Love Bites (So Do I)”
Best Rock Song: The Black Keys – “Lonely Boy”
Best Rock Album: The Black Keys – El Camino

Mumford & Sons and The Black Keys should dominate this field; they were the two biggest rock releases in this period. Iron Maiden is a previous winner in that category and I think they’ll win, even if it’s with a live track.

ALTERNATIVE FIELD (winners complete)
Best Alternative Music Album: Gotye – Making Mirrors

Pretty sure Gotye can take this one home, which will bring his total to two Awards.

R&B FIELD (winners complete)
Best R&B Performance: Miguel – “Adorn” Usher – “Climax”
Best Traditional R&B Performance: Anita Baker – “Lately” Beyoncé – “Love On Top”
Best R&B Song: Miguel – “Adorn”
Best R&B Album: Robert Glasper Experiment – Black Radio
Best Urban Contemporary Album: Frank Ocean – channel ORANGE

Miguel got a ton of nominations at this year’s ceremony, and I think he’ll take at least Best R&B Performance and Best R&B Song. The song’s been at #1 forever on R&B radio. Anita Baker has won roughly half the time she’s been nominated; “Lately” was a great return for her and I’d like to see it win. Best R&B Album is sort of up in the air, but the Robert Glasper Experiment could perhaps take it. Ocean can probably take a win in that new Urban Contemporary category this year.

RAP FIELD (winners complete)
Best Rap Performance: Kanye West, Big Sean, Pusha T and 2 Chainz – “Mercy” Jay-Z & Kanye West – “N****s In Paris”
Best Rap/Sung Collaboration: Jay-Z, Kanye West, Frank Ocean and The-Dream – “No Church In The Wild”
Best Rap Song: Jay-Z & Kanye West – “N****s In Paris”
Best Rap Album: Drake – Take Care

Last year’s Awards seemed to be a Jay-Z and Kanye West lovefest, so I’m keeping that trend going for this year. Since Drake got snubbed in the Big Four categories, I’m guessing he’ll take home Best Rap Album. It did well commercially.

COUNTRY FIELD
Best Country Solo Performance: Dierks Bentley – “Home” Carrie Underwood – “Blown Away”
Best Country Duo/Group Performance: Taylor Swift featuring The Civil Wars — “Safe & Sound” Little Big Town – “Pontoon”
Best Country Song: Carrie Underwood – “Blown Away”
Best Country Album: Hunter Hayes — Hunter Hayes Zac Brown Band – Uncaged

With his performance slot, this should be Bentley’s year to pick up his first Award. The Civil Wars will likely pull off a repeat and Underwood’s always done well in the Country categories. Hayes will be blocked out of Best New Artist, so I’m really hoping he can take Country Album. He’s such a talented guy and the album’s great.

At this point, most of my nominees are based on either names I know or acts who have won the category before. If you need anything more specific on how I came to my decision, feel free to comment (as I mentioned above.)

NEW AGE FIELD (winners complete)
Best New Age Album: Loreena McKennitt – Troubadours Of The Rhine  Omar Akram – Echoes Of Love

JAZZ FIELD (winners complete)
Best Improvised Jazz Solo: Chick Corea – Alice in Wonderland Gary Burton & Chick Corea – Hot House
Best Jazz Vocal Album: Esperanza Spalding – Radio Music Society
Best Jazz Instrumental Album: Chick Corea & Gary Burton – Hot House Pat Metheny Unity Band – Unity Band
Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album: Bob Mintzer Big Band – For The Moment Arturo Sandoval – Dear Diz (Everyday I Think Of You)
Best Latin Jazz Album: Luciana Souza – Duos III Clare Fischer Latin Jazz Big Band – Ritmo!

GOSPEL/CONTEMPORARY CHRISTIAN MUSIC FIELD (winners complete)
Best Gospel/Contemporary Christian Music Performance: Mary Mary – “Go Get It” Matt Redman – “10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord)”
Best Gospel Song: Marvin Sapp – “My Testimony” Mary Mary – “Go Get It”
Best Contemporary Christian Music Song: Matt Redman – “10,000 Reasons (Bless The Lord)” / Israel Houghton – “Your Presence Is Heaven” (tie; I predicted Redman)
Best Gospel Album: Lecrae – Gravity
Best Contemporary Christian Music Album: Britt Nicole – Gold tobyMac – Eye On It

The title track from Nicole’s album is crossing over to mainstream radio; I think that’s grounds for her taking something in the field.

LATIN FIELD (winners complete)
Best Latin Pop Album: Juanes – MTV Unplugged: Deluxe Edition
Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album: Ana Tijoux – La Bala Quetzal – Imaginaries
Best Regional Mexican Album (Including Tejano): Lila Downs – Pecados y Milagros
Best Tropical Latin Album: Romeo Santos — Formula, Vol. 1 Marlow Rosado and La Riqueña Retro

AMERICAN ROOTS MUSIC FIELD (winners complete)
Best Americana Album: Mumford & Sons – Babel  Bonnie Raitt – Slipstream
Best Bluegrass Album: Dailey & Vincent – The Gospel Side Of… Steep Canyon Rangers – Nobody Knows You
Best Blues Album: Dr. John – Locked Down
Best Folk Album: Carolina Chocolate Drops – Leaving Eden Yo-Yo Mama, Stuart Duncan, Edgar Meyer and Chris Thile – The Goat Radio Sessions
Best Regional Roots Music Album: Wayne Toups, Steve Riley & Wilson Savoy – The Band Courtbouillon

Americana Album is probably either going to Mumford & Sons or The Lumineers, but I’m leaning towards the former, especially if they win Album Of The Year.

REGGAE FIELD (winners complete)
Best Reggae Album: Jimmy Cliff – Rebirth

WORLD MUSIC FIELD (winners complete)
Best World Music Album: Ravi Shankar – The Living Room Sessions, Part 1

Shankar recently passed away at the age of 92.

CHILDREN’S FIELD (winners complete)
Best Children’s Album: Bill Harley – High Dive and Other Things That Could Have Happened  The Okee Dokie Brothers – Can You Canoe?

SPOKEN WORD FIELD (winners complete)
Best Spoken Word Album: Michelle Obama – American Grown Janis IanSociety’s Child: My Autobiography

She’s back in the White House… that would probably help her chances, wouldn’t it?

COMEDY FIELD (winners complete)
Best Comedy Album: Jimmy Fallon – Blow Your Pants Off

Fallon has a strong chance of picking up the win for his collection of parodies and impressions of musicians singing television theme songs. Heck, I bought the “Tebowie” vinyl single at Record Store Day last year. Funny stuff.

MUSICAL THEATER FIELD (winners complete)
Best Musical Theater Album: Various Artists – Once: A New Musical

Haven’t seen the musical version, but the movie’s great, so I’m good with it getting a little more recognition.

MUSIC FOR VISUAL MEDIA FIELD (winners complete)
Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media: Original Soundtrack to The Muppets Midnight In Paris
Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media: Ludovic Bource – Original Score to The Artist Trent Reznor & Atticus RossThe Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Best Song Written For Visual Media: Taylor Swift & The Civil Wars – “Safe & Sound” (from The Hunger Games)

The only other potential nominee that could win Best Song is “Learn Me Right” by Birdy and Mumford & Sons, which would give the group four wins, the highest total of the night. We’ll have to wait and see.

COMPOSING/ARRANGING FIELD (winners complete)
Best Instrumental Composition: Chris Brubeck and Dave Brubeck for Music of Ansel Adams: America Chick CoreaMozart Goes Dancing
Best Instrumental Arrangement:
Gordon Goodwin, performed by Arturo Sandoval – Salt Peanuts! (Mani Salado) Gil Evans Project – How About You?
Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocals: Esperanza Spalding (with Thara Memory) – “City Of Roses”

The elder Brubeck, Dave, recently passed away at age 91.

CRAFTS FIELD (winners complete)
Best Album Notes: Holly George-Warren; Janis Joplin – The Pearl Sessions Billy Vera ‘Singular Genius: The Complete ABC Singles
Best Boxed/Special Limited Edition: Stephen Kennedy; Rolling Stones – Some Girls: Super Deluxe Edition Fritz KlaetkeWoody At 100: The Woody Guthrie Centennial Collection
Best Historical Album: Paul McCartney (producer), Simon Gibson, Guy Massey & Steve Rooke (mastering engineers) – Ram: Paul McCartney Archive Collection (Deluxe Edition) Alan Boyd, Mark Linett, Brian Wilson & Dennis Wolfe (producers), Mark Linett (mastering engineer) for The Smile Sessions (Deluxe Box Set) (Beach Boys)
Best Recording Package: Brett Kilroe; Alabama Shakes – Boys & Girls  Michael Amzalag & Mathias AugustyniakBiophilia, performed by Bjork

PRODUCTION FIELD
Best Engineered Album, Classical: Jesse Lewis & John Newton (engineers), Jesse Brayman (mastering engineer); Carlos Kalmar and the Oregon Symphony – Music for a Time of War Tom Caulfield & John Newton (engineers), Mark Donahue (mastering engineer) for Life & Breath – Choral Works by René Clausen, performed by Charles Bruffy & the Kansas City Chorale
Best Engineered Album (Non-classical): Glyn Johns (engineer), Bob Ludwig (mastering engineer); Ryan Adams – Ashes & Fire Richard KingThe Goat Road Sessions
Producer Of The Year, Classical: Blanton Alspaugh
Producer Of The Year (Non-classical): Jeff Bhasker  Dan Auerbach
Best Remixed Recording: Skrillex (remixer); Nero – “Promises”
Best Surround Sound Album: Morten Lindberg (engineer/mastering engineer/producer); Hoff Ensemble – Quiet Winter Night Jim Anderson (engineer), Darcy Proper (mastering engineer) and Michael Friedman (producer) for Modern Cool, performed by Patricia Barber

CLASSICAL FIELD (winners complete)
Best Orchestral Performance: Michael Tilson Thomas (conductor), San Francisco Symphony – Adams: Harmonielehre & Short Ride in a Fast Machine
Best Opera Recording: Vladimir Jurowski (conductor), Topi Lehtipuu, Miah Persson & Matthew Rose (soloists), Jean Chatauret (producer) – Stravinsky: The Rake’s Progress James Levine & Fabio Luisi (conductors), Hans Peter König, Jay Hunter Morris, Bryn Terfel & Deborah Voigt (soloists), Jay David Saks (producer)Wagner: Der Ring des Nibelungen
Best Choral Performance: Charles Bruffy (conductor); Matthew Gladden, Lindsey Lang, Rebecca Lloyd, Sarah Tannehill & Pamela Williamson and the Kansas City Chorale – Life & Breath: Choral Works by René Clausen
Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance: Boston Symphony Chamber Players – Profanes et Sacrées Eighth BlackbirdMeanwhile
Best Classical Instrumental Solo: Andras Schiff – Bach: Das Wohltemperierte Clavier Kim KashkashianKurtág & Ligeti: Music for Viola
Best Classical Vocal Solo: Renee Fleming – Poèmes
Best Contemporary Classical Composition: Ugis Praulins – The Nightingale Stephen HartkeMeanwhile – Incidental Music to Imaginary Puppet Plays
Best Classical Compendium: Partch (ensemble), John Schneider (producer) – Bitter Music Antoni Wit (conductor), Aleksandra Nagórko & Andrzej Sasin (producers) – Fonogrammi; Horn Concerto; The Awakening of Jacob; Anaklasis

MUSIC VIDEO FIELD (winners complete)
Best Short Form Music Video: Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris – “We Found Love”
Best Long Form Music Video: U2 – From The Sky Down  Mumford & Sons, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros & Old Crow Medicine ShowBig Easy Express

So, as you can see, I have no runaway winners according to my predictions, though fun., Jay-Z, Kanye West and Mumford & Sons would all receive three wins, with a number of other acts like The Black Keys and Miguel getting two. Again, check back on Sunday night to see the actual winners. Thanks for checking out the post!Big hits have been winning the Short Form category is recent years; otherwise, “Bad Girls” by M.I.A. might have a chance. U2 won the Long Form Award with other time in 1995.

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GRAMMY Flashback: Who? What? How Did That Win?

An unjustified loss.

An unjustified loss.

Welcome to GRAMMY Week! This week, from Monday to Friday, you’ll be treated to some special GRAMMY related topics, from the past to the present, all leading up to the music’s biggest night on Sunday at 8PM eastern on CBS. Let’s dive into today’s post…

Now, time for some GRAMMY wins from the weird and wacky corner of the music universe. Over the past fifty-four years, some of these choices haven’t exactly held up well are still criticized to this day. How and why did these happen? The voting committee shows us that, sometimes, they might just be a bit out of touch with the mainstream with a few of the results in these six different categories. Take a look.

THE BIG FOUR
A few entries have won Song Of The Year without hitting the top 40 on the Hot 100. In fact, they barely made the Hot 100 as is. 1966’s winner, “The Shadow Of Your Smile” by Tony Bennett, peaked at #95. Forty years later, “Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own” by U2 only went to #97. Both are GRAMMY darlings, but it seems sort of weird to have won such an honor without being a big national hit. Several Record Of The Year winners never made the Hot 100 at all: 2002’s “Walk On” by U2,  2005’s “Here We Go Again” by the late Ray Charles and Norah Jones and 2009’s “Please Read The Letter” by Alison Krauss and Robert Plant. I think we’re at the point where this phase is over… for now.

There have been some really questionable choices for Best New Artist since the category’s been around. In 1961, television’s Bob Newhart pulled off a win, the only time a comedian has won Best New Artist. Then, in 1963, Robert Goulet took Best New Artist in one of the stranger wins, beating out Peter, Paul and Mary and The Four Seasons. Goulet only had one big hit, but it was one year after the win. 2001’s winner, Shelby Lynne, had been making the Country chart since 1989… I mean, because getting an award twelve years after your first hit is really new. We’ve also had two really left-of-center choices in the past two years: 2011’s Esperanza Spalding and 2012’s Bon Iver. We won’t have this same kind of situation this year, even if Alabama Shakes wins. I don’t need to bring up Milli Vanilli once again. Cringe all you want.

I think we’d rather forget 2008 when Herbie Hancock and friends won for River: The Joni Letters, a jazz album that beat out the late Amy Winehouse, the Foo Fighters and Kanye West. It was one of the few times in recent years that an Album Of The Year failed to certify even Gold for shipments of 500,000 copies. I think the Academy learned from their mistake. There have been other peculiar choices, especially in last decade or so, but none as much as Hancock’s win.

GENRE-SPECIFIC CATEGORIES
Lots of great R&B songs came out in 1977, but for Best R&B Song at the 1978 ceremony, the winner ending up being “You Make Me Feel Like Dancing” by Leo Sayer, beating out big hits by The Emotions, Thelma Houston and two songs by The Commodores. Decent song, but one problem: it never made the R&B chart. Oops! It was Sayer’s only GRAMMY win and his charting days were done in the States by 1981.

Probably the worst offender in a genre category happened at the 1989 GRAMMY Awards with Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance Vocal or Instrumental. Metallica, who were the front-runners to win for their 1988 album, …And Justice For All, were defeated by Jethro Tull and their album Crest Of A Knave. Who knew a flute was metal? Guess this was a prime example of the panel “living in the past”. The controversy was well-publicized and it was such a joke that the category was dropped altogether at the next ceremony and split up into two distinct Awards.

They don’t always get it right, but at least we can look back and laugh once in a while. Any other outcomes at the GRAMMYs that you thought were totally wrong, whether in a big category or in a genre one? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter: @AdamFSoybel. All of my GRAMMY predictions for the upcoming ceremony are coming tomorrow! Better get to working on that post, right?

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GRAMMY Flashback: Decades Of Hits, No GRAMMY Wins

The Dogg days aren't over yet.

The Dogg days aren’t over yet.

Welcome to GRAMMY Week! This week, from Monday to Friday, you’ll be treated to some special GRAMMY related topics, from the past to the present, all leading up to the music’s biggest night on Sunday at 8PM eastern on CBS. Let’s dive into today’s post…

A lot of pages are out there about classic acts who never had the chance to win a GRAMMY for one reason or another. Some of those artists and bands include Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Lynyrd Skynyrd and Queen. This post, however, is focused on the acts who have been in the industry for at least a decade yet are still recording new material and making the hits. One big thing has eluded them: a win at the GRAMMY Awards. In fact, a few of the performers on this list haven’t even been nominated before. Here are ten acts of different genres who you swore won something, but came up empty:

BLAKE SHELTON
Born in Oklahoma, Shelton’s racked up 12 number-one hits on the Country chart since his debut single, “Austin”, in 2001. He’s also a judge on NBC’s hit reality series The Voice. Shelton’s won plenty of Academy of Country Music and Country Music Association Awards, and though he had three GRAMMY nominations last year, he lost all of them. This year, he’s up for Best Country Solo Performance for his #1 single, “Over”. I don’t think this is going to be one to do it for him, but he’s on such a hit streak now that a win can’t be far behind. Besides, his wife, Miranda Lambert, won a GRAMMY Award two years ago. He has to catch up while he still can!

DIERKS BENTLEY
Hard to believe that it was 2003 when Dierks Bentley scored a #1 single on the Country Chart with his first record, “What Was I Thinkin'”. Bentley’s had nine nominations over four different ceremonies, all in various Country categories, but he’s hasn’t picked up one single Award. Bentley has one nomination this year, his tenth, for Best Country Solo Performance for the #1 hit, “Home”. That one is a pretty strong contender and could be the one to break his losing streak. Bentley will be performing with Miranda Lambert on the live broadcast (perhaps a sign of a win?) and they’ll be in tour together this year.

GAVIN DEGRAW
Singer-songwriter DeGraw signed to J Records and put his first album, Chariot, in 2003. He’s best known for his 2004 single “I Don’t Want To Be”, which went to #10 on the Hot 100 and #1 at CHR radio. The guy has a solid fan base, but he’s never been nominated for a GRAMMY Award. Though his album sales have diminished over the year, his leadoff singles still chart decently on the national charts, so perhaps he’ll be due for a nomination in a lesser category sometime in the future.

GOO GOO DOLLS
With a new single “Rebel Beat” picking up some airplay gains in the last few weeks, the band out of Buffalo is looking for another winner as they enter their nineteenth year on the charts. The Dolls have been nominated for four GRAMMY Awards, including Record and Song Of The Year for their 1998 hit, “Iris”, but the band lost all four and haven’t been nominated since 2000. However, they’ve still managed to release several top ten albums and a handful of Hot 100 entries since then. Clearly past their peak, they won’t likely receive any more nominations in the future, but they’ll still get some airplay here and there even if it’s not as impacting as their 90’s material.

JENNIFER LOPEZ
She’s an actress, a dancer, a singer, and a television personality and she’s excelled in all of those departments. When it comes to Awards, however, she sometimes falls a little bit short. Case in point: the GRAMMY Awards. Lopez has been nominated just twice even though she’s been on the charts since 1999, and both came in the field of Best Dance Recording. In 2000, it was “Waiting For Tonight”, and in 2001, it was “Let’s Get Loud”, both from her On The 6 album. None of her new material from last year received a nomination at the upcoming ceremony. With more music in the works for this year, Lopez should eventually get something. It’s just a matter of what the competition looks like.

KENNY CHESNEY
He’s been on the Country Chart cranking out top ten hits for nearly twenty years and he still hasn’t won a GRAMMY. Huh? He scored his first big single in 1995, but Chesney wasn’t even nominated for his first Award until 2005, and all four of his nominations have been limited to collaborations with other performers. His most recent, last year, was “You And Tequila” with Grace Potter. He isn’t up for anything this year. I’m sure that doesn’t bother him one bit, though. Someday, he might announce his retirement and only then will he win a GRAMMY. Yes, it’s bothersome, but the Academy will do what they do.

LIFEHOUSE
This quartet turned trio turned quartet again made their chart debut in 2001 with the mega-hit “Hanging By A Moment”, but the Academy left them hanging when the song couldn’t propel them to a Best New Artist nomination at the 2002 Awards. In fact, they’ve never received a single nomination to date, which is surprising considering that they’re six albums deep into their career. Their latest release, Almería, came out in December, though lead single “Between The Raindrops” with Natasha Bedingfield hasn’t seen much attention. Will they ever take home a coveted prize? It’s looking less likely as time goes on.

PITBULL
It was back in 2004 that a then 23-year-old Pitbull hit the scene with “Culo”, which sampled the Coolie Dance riddim which about a thousand different acts used around that time. (Nina Sky‘s “Move Ya Body” was the biggest, hitting #4 on the Hot 100.) The rapper’s developed a big following at popular radio since 2009 with big songs like “Give Me Everything” with Afrojack, Nayer and Ne-Yo. He’s been nominated at the Latin GRAMMY Awards in two categories, though he lost both of them. I can’t ever see him being nominated for Album or Song Of The Year, but you’d think he would’ve at least been nominated for Best Rap/Sung Collaboration at least once by now. I guess it just proves that it’s a dog eat dog world.

SNOOP DOGG
Now, this one is a head-scratcher. How the heck does Snoop Dogg not have a GRAMMY Award? The Doggfather has been nominated fourteen times since 1994 on both featured and main credit singles, but nothing has been able to win the Award. Twelve of those nominations were in rap categories, with the most recent two of the fourteen being for a guest appearance on Katy Perry‘s hit, “California Gurls”. He’s up for a fifteenth nomination at this year’s awards for Best Rap Song on “Young, Wild, and Free” with rapper Wiz Khalifa and singer Bruno Mars. Could this finally give the guy his long-awaited recognition by the Academy? Don’t count on it, but hey, it would be a nice surprise if it happened.

THE KILLERS
Brandon Flowers and the boys have been on the scene since 2004 with several big albums in a row and hit singles like “Human” and “Mr. Brightside”. Between 2005-2007, the quartet received seven nominations in genre-specific categories (four singles, one album), though nothing managed to pick up an Award. Flowers also put out a solo album that didn’t garner any nominations. Last year, the band released Battle Born, which hasn’t done particularly well commercially, so it’s no surprise that the Academy snubbed them for another year. Their material won’t be recognized for any of the big categories, but I think they’re bound to win a lesser category if they keep putting out the great material.

Are there any performers that you think should be highlighted? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter: @AdamFSoybel. Stay tuned for more GRAMMY posts as the week continues!

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GRAMMY Flashback: Happy Two Year!

Shining a "Light" on two pretty ballads.

Shining a “Light” on two pretty ballads.

Welcome to GRAMMY Week! This week, from Monday to Friday, you’ll be treated to some special GRAMMY related topics, from the past to the present, all leading up to the music’s biggest night on Sunday at 8PM eastern on CBS. Let’s dive into today’s post…

“Moon River”. “You’ve Got A Friend”. “Every Breath You Take”. “My Heart Will Go On”. The songs listed here are just a few of the many winners of Song Of The Year. It’s an Award that every songwriter strives for: to have their composition recognized by the Academy. Yet, a strange occurrence happened at the 1978 GRAMMY Awards, which reflected the music of 1977. Six nominees and their lyricists patiently waited to hear the results read by singing star John Denver, who I’m sure shocked a few people when not one winner was announced, but two. It’s the only time in GRAMMY history that two nominees have tied the vote for a win in one of the Big Four categories. Two females. Two big ballads. Two number one singles. Two songs that originated in films. Two very different careers after the win.

BARBRA STREISAND – “Evergreen (Love Theme from A Star Is Born)”
Who can live up to the incomparable Barbra Joan? Up to that point, you might have considered her a GRAMMY darling, with thirteen nominations and four wins out of them, all from 1963-1965. After the initial success, her single and album positions faltered for a while, but her career was revived in the early 1970’s with hits like “Stoney End” and “The Way We Were”. Streisand had been nominated the previous year in the category Best Classical Vocal Soloist Performance for her album, Classical Barbra. “Evergreen” was the only song to be released from the 1976 remake of A Star Is Born, a soft ballad about love and the metaphors to it, ending with the message that “time won’t change the meaning of one love/ageless and ever, ever, evergreen.” It spent three weeks at #1 on the Hot 100 in March 1977 and ranked as the #4 song overall of the year. The soundtrack album also went to #1 for six weeks. She’s additionally won the GRAMMY for Best Pop Female Vocal Performance for the same song, as well one Academy Award and two Golden Globes for her efforts, one being Best Actress in a Motion Picture.

After the song won the Award, Streisand continued to pump out the hits and big albums like 1980’s Guilty and 1997’s Higher Ground. I mean, this is Barbra Streisand we’re talking about. 21 top-40 hits and 31 platinum/multi-platinum albums later, she’s obviously an icon, having spent fifty years in the music business and still going strong. She had several other GRAMMY wins, including a Legend Award in 1992, and a nomination as recent as last year. Not too shabby if I do say so myself. She’ll be performing at the Academy Awards on February 24 in what’s rumored to be a tribute to the late Marvin Hamlisch, her first live performance on the show since, you guessed it, singing “Evergreen” at the 49th ceremony in 1977.

DEBBY BOONE – “You Light Up My Life”
Music really ran in the Boone family. Debby’s father, Pat, was one of the top acts of the 1950’s, with #1 hits like “Ain’t That A Shame” and “Love Letters In The Sand”. Her grandfather, Red Foley, charted for twenty-five years on the Country chart, with one single becoming a national #1 hit: “Chattanoogie Shoe Shine Boy” in 1950. Written as a love song by songwriter Joe Brooks, Boone stated that she pictured God as the one who could “light up [her] life” and give her “hope to carry on”. As the third generation in the chain to hit the charts, she took her debut solo single (originated in the movie of the same name) all the way to the top of the Hot 100 for ten consecutive weeks, which was a record at the time and one that lasted for another fifteen years. It was the #1 song of the decade. She easily took the GRAMMY Award that year for Best New Artist (though thousands of teen girls were crushed when Andy Gibb and Shaun Cassidy were beat in the process) in addition to that split prize for Song Of The Year. Boone’s song also propelled her to a Top New Female Vocalist win at the Academy Of Country Music Awards that same year.

Life wasn’t so easy for her after the instant success of “Life”. She placed two more songs in the Hot 100, but considering their peaks were #50 and #74, respectively, they didn’t light up the airwaves or a lot of people’s lives. She turned back to Country music, where she accumulated eight top-40 hits, even scoring another #1 on that chart with 1980’s “Are You On The Road To Lovin’ Me Again?” However, by the next year, the hits had run out. Boone tried a career in Christian and Gospel music after that, which saw four GRAMMY wins between 1984-1989 in the category of Best Gospel Performance – Female. Did mainstream audiences really career? She’ll forever be a one-hit wonder as far as we’re concerned. She’s kept busy recently with an infomercial spot for Lifestyle Lifts, which I guess we’re supposed to assume lit up her lifestyle (?) but it’s mainly just drawn attention to that one song of hers that doesn’t seem to go away. Oh well. She moved on, at least.

That’s a look back at probably the only time something like that will happen in one of the major categories, a tie between two nominees. Never say never, though. Do you enjoy one of these classic tunes over the other? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter: @AdamFSoybel. Stay tuned for more GRAMMY posts as the week continues!

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