Tag Archives: Album of the Year

GRAMMY WEEK: Adam Picks The Winners for The Big Four

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.

As you may remember, I did my predictions for who was going to be nominated for the Big Four way back in October. As it turns out, I wasn’t 100% right, not that I was expecting to be. (For the record, I wasn’t 100% wrong either.) So, for the final GRAMMY Week post, let’s deal with the actual nominations and see who I think will be taking home the night’s top prizes at the big show!

(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.)

1. RECORD OF THE YEAR

“Get Lucky”, Daft Punk featuring Pharrell Williams & Nile Rodgers
Thomas Bangalter & Guy-Manuel De Homem-Christo, producers; Peter Franco, Mick Guzauski, Florian Lagatta & Daniel Lerner, engineers/mixers; Antoine “Chab” Chabert & Bob Ludwig, mastering engineers (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

“Radioactive”, Imagine Dragons
Alex Da Kid, producer; Manny Marroquin & Josh Mosser, engineers/mixers; Joe LaPorta, mastering engineer

“Royals”, Lorde
Joel Little, producer; Joel Little, engineer/mixer; Stuart Hawkes, mastering engineer

“Locked Out Of Heaven”, Bruno Mars
Jeff Bhasker, Emile Haynie, Mark Ronson & The Smeezingtons, producers; Alalal, Josh Blair, Wayne Gordon, Ari Levine, Manny Marroquin & Mark Ronson, engineers/mixers; David Kutch, mastering engineer

“Blurred Lines”, Robin Thicke featuring T.I. & Pharrell
Pharrell, producer; Andrew Coleman & Tony Maserati, engineers/mixers; Chris Gehringer, mastering engineer

PREDICTION: I think the general consensus is that “Blurred Lines” has the best shot of winning this category. It was the biggest song of last year and gave Robin Thicke his biggest hit ever on the charts. However, I’m more inclined to think that “Get Lucky” is going to take this category and give Daft Punk, Pharrell Williams and Nile Rodgers a big thrill. It was a slick and catchy summer hit and makes the French duo and American producer/singer my big winners of the night.

2. ALBUM OF THE YEAR

The Blessed Unrest, Sara Bareilles
Sara Bareilles, Mark Endert & John O’Mahony, producers; Jeremy Darby, Mark Endert & John O’Mahony, engineers/mixers; Greg Calbi, mastering engineer

Random Access Memories, Daft Punk
Julian Casablancas, DJ Falcon, Todd Edwards, Chilly Gonzales, Giorgio Moroder, Panda Bear, Nile Rodgers, Paul Williams & Pharrell Williams, featured artists; Thomas Bangalter, Julian Casablancas, Guy-Manuel De Homem-Christo, DJ Falcon & Todd Edwards, producers; Peter Franco, Mick Guzauski, Florian Lagatta, Guillaume Le Braz & Daniel Lerner, engineers/mixers; Antoine “Chab” Chabert & Bob Ludwig, mastering engineers (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

Good Kid, M.A.A.D CityKendrick Lamar
Mary J. Blige, Dr. Dre, Drake, Jay Rock, Jay Z, MC Eiht & Anna Wise, featured artists; DJ Dahi, Hit-Boy, Skhye Hutch, Just Blaze, Like, Terrace Martin, Dawaun Parker, Pharrell, Rahki, Scoop DeVille, Sounwave, Jack Splash, Tabu, Tha Bizness, THC & T-Minus, producers; Derek Ali, Dee Brown, Andrew Coleman, Dr. Dre, James Hunt, Mauricio ‘Veto”” Iragorri, Mike Larson, Jared Scott, Jack Splash & Andrew Wright, engineers/mixers; Mike Bozzi & Brian ‘Big Bass”” Gardner, mastering engineers

The HeistMacklemore & Ryan Lewis
Ab-Soul, Ben Bridwell, Ray Dalton, Eighty4 Fly, Hollis, Mary Lambert, Baffalo Madonna, Evan Roman, Schoolboy Q, Allen Stone, The Teaching & Wanz, featured artists; Ryan Lewis, producer; Ben Haggerty, Ryan Lewis, Amos Miller, Reed Ruddy & Pete Stewart, engineers/mixers; Tom Coyne & Brian Gardner, mastering engineers

Red, Taylor Swift
Gary Lightbody & Ed Sheeran, featured artists; Jeff Bhasker, Nathan Chapman, Dann Huff, Jacknife Lee, Max Martin, Shellback, Taylor Swift, Butch Walker & Dan Wilson, producers; Joe Baldridge, Sam Bell, Matt Bishop, Chad Carlson, Nathan Chapman, Serban Ghenea, John Hanes, Sam Holland, Michael Ilbert, Tyler Johnson, Jacknife Lee, Steve Marcantonio, Manny Marroquin, Justin Niebank, John Rausch, Eric Robinson, Pawel Sek, Jake Sinclair, Mark “”Spike”” Stent & Andy Thompson, engineers/mixers; Tom Coyne & Hank Williams, mastering engineers

PREDICTION: Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’s name has been tossed around a bit for the win here, but I’m not sure if the whole effort appeals to the committee. (I do think Best New Artist is theirs, however.) The most successful both on the Billboard 200 and on my own personal chart is Taylor Swift‘s Red, which I’m pegging as the winner. She may have won four years ago for Fearless, but she’s certainly grown since then, and scored major pop and country hits from this album.

3. SONG OF THE YEAR

“Just Give Me A Reason”, Pink featuring Nate Ruess
Jeff Bhasker, Pink & Nate Ruess, songwriters

“Locked Out Of Heaven”, Bruno Mars
Philip Lawrence, Ari Levine & Bruno Mars, songwriters

“Roar”, Katy Perry
Lukasz Gottwald, Max Martin, Bonnie McKee, Katy Perry & Henry Walter, songwriters

“Royals”, Lorde
Joel Little & Ella Yelich O’Connor, songwriters (***ACTUAL WINNER***)

“Same Love”, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Mary Lambert
Ben Haggerty, Mary Lambert & Ryan Lewis, songwriters

PREDICTION: Much like the huge Gotye and Kimbra duet of last year’s ceremony, “Somebody That I Used To Know”, Pink and Nate Ruess seems like a strong enough team to pull off double duty at this year’s show with Song of the Year, as well as Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for “Just Give Me A Reason”. Bruno Mars and Lorde will certainly stand their ground against the beautiful ballad, but “Reason” is such a timeless record that it will sway a lot of voters to get on its side.

4. BEST NEW ARTIST

James Blake (Day In The Life)
Kendrick Lamar (Day In The Life)
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis (DITL video not available) (***ACTUAL WINNER***)
Kacey Musgraves (Day In The Life)
Ed Sheeran (Day In The Life)

PREDICTION: This year’s pack, as many people have stated, is out of whack; what can you do? Of the five, the easiest choice for me is Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, who have four solid hits now and will likely produce a big second album. Ed Sheeran will too, but he would’ve made sense as a winner last year. Kacey Musgraves and Kendrick Lamar likely don’t stand a chance; however, James Blake could always be the Esperanza Spalding of this year. You never know!
_____

Watch to see how I did with my picks on Sunday night when the GRAMMY Awards air! 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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So, How’d I Do? The GRAMMYs Prediction Post, Revisited (Actual Nominees Included)

Thinking bout some GRAMMY wins.

Still swimming good.

A few days ago, I wrote a little post where I made my predictions for the “Big Four” categories at this year’s GRAMMY Awards, a few days before the GRAMMY Nominations Concert Live!!, which just aired tonight. Well, one Freshly Pressed award, several hundred views and five dozen likes later, it’s time to see how I did! (P.S. I’m very happy to be recognized by WordPress and all of you who reacted to the post, so many thanks!)

The guide shall go like this:
Successful Nominee Prediction or Close Call
Not Picked
Prediction To Win The Category

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Fun. – Some Nights
Frank Ocean – Channel ORANGE
Jack White – Blunderbuss
Mumford & Sons – Babel
The Black Keys – El Camino

I got a fair amount of this category right, successfully predicting Frank Ocean, Mumford & Sons and The Black Keys, as well as Fun. as a close call. Jack White was the only one I didn’t consider, but I never actually heard his album. It was pretty critically acclaimed though, so it deserves to be there. Of my original predictions, Bob Dylan and Coldplay are nowhere to be seen. Don’t know what went wrong there since the two of them are GRAMMY darlings. Ah, well. Coldplay‘s album garnered a Best Rock Album nod and has a Best Rock Performance nod for single “Charlie Brown”. I’ll keep Babel as the winner for this Award.

RECORD OF THE YEAR
fun. featuring Janelle Monae – We Are Young
Frank Ocean – Thinking Bout You
Gotye featuring Kimbra – Somebody That I Used To Know
Kelly Clarkson – Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)
Taylor Swift – We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
The Black Keys – Lonely Boy

Little bit of a curveball there with six nominees in the category instead of five. I successfully predicted two nominees (fun. and Frank Ocean) and had two as close calls (Frank Ocean and The Black Keys.) I’m happy for Kelly Clarkson as I really liked “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)”, just didn’t expect it in the Record Of The Year category. Taylor Swift‘s entry in the category is very surprising though. I, personally, don’t think it’s worthy of being in there compared to the rest of the entries. It’s a throwaway tune, even if it did really well. Then again, it isn’t going to win, so no need to worry there. Adele, Drake featuring Rihanna, and Mumford & Sons weren’t nominated as I predicted they would be. I thought Mumford would for sure be in there; that’s a shock. I’m still thinking “Somebody That I Used To Know” will carry the win for the category. It’s simply too big of a single to be ignored.

SONG OF THE YEAR
Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe
Ed Sheeran – The A-Team
fun. featuring Janelle Monae – We Are Young

Kelly Clarkson – Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)
Miguel – Adorn

Eeek! I predicted one correctly (Carly Rae Jepsen) and one close call (Kelly Clarkson). That Ed Sheeran nomination came out of nowhere, but I would love it if that one won. Miguel is totally not going to win this category; I’m not even sure how that one made it in there. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a likable song, but I thought it would only be a threat to the R&B categories. fun. and Janelle Monae are no surprise, but I think that they’ll get blocked out by “Stronger” in this category. Kelly needs to take home at least one award, right? The four of my original predictions that didn’t make it in are Bruce Springsteen, Frank Ocean (who I predicted to win), Katy Perry and Mumford & Sons.

BEST NEW ARTIST
Alabama Shakes
Frank Ocean
Fun.
Hunter Hayes
The Lumineers

This one I pretty much predicted correctly, getting three right (Frank Ocean, Fun. and Hunter Hayes) and one as a close call (Alabama Shakes.) “Ho Hey” by The Lumineers is still gaining at CHR radio, so I thought it would be too new for them to be considered as Best New Artist, but well done to them. Gotye and One Direction from my original predictions didn’t make it in. The former is a few albums into his career, so I guess the panel took that into consideration, and I’m not too fussed about the latter not getting in. I’m sticking with my prediction of Fun. to win the category, but Frank Ocean will put up a fight for it.

Well, this is why I’m not a psychic for a living, but I certainly did alright. Thanks for checking back and congrats to everyone who was nominated this year!

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PREDICTION: Frank Ocean, Mumford & Sons Could Be Among Top GRAMMYs Nominees

Thinking bout some GRAMMY wins.

Thinking bout some GRAMMY wins.

(Check this post for the actual nominations.)

It’s almost time once again for the GRAMMY Awards, “Music’s Biggest Night”, celebrating the best in music from the past year of many musical genres. The ceremony will take place on February 10, 2013, but on Wednesday night, December 5, CBS will be broadcasting the GRAMMY Nominations Concert Live!!, a one-hour event beginning at 10 PM Eastern and featuring performances by Dierks Bentley, Fun., Hunter Hayes, Luke Bryan, Maroon 5, Ne-Yo, The Band Perry, and The Who. Now, obviously, not every award will be announced during the telecast, but many where these performers are actually nominated in will be presented in full, and the complete list is usually updated online shortly afterwards. This means that’s it’s time to make some predictions. Continuing a trend over the past few years, I’m thinking that the nominations will trend more commercial as a whole, though there could be surprises as usual. Here’s what I’m anticipating for the Big Four Awards: Album Of The Year, Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year and Best New Artist.

(The actual eligibility period for the releases in contention for nominations is October 1, 2011 to September 30, 2012, so keep that in mind as you read these predictions.)

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Bob Dylan – Tempest
Coldplay – Mylo Xyloto
Frank Ocean – Channel ORANGE
Mumford & Sons – Babel
The Black Keys – El Camino

Close Calls:
Bonnie Raitt – Slipstream
Dave Matthews Band – Away From The World
Drake – Take Care
Fun. – Some Nights
Lionel Richie – Tuskegee

They’ve been nominated for six awards and lost all of them, so I’m thinking this will be the year for Mumford & Sons to finally clinch a big one with Album Of The Year for Babel. With the second-best opening of 2012 on the Album Chart (600,000 copies sold), it’s a commercial and critical success, the perfect storm for them to receive the win. Frank Ocean is my backup choice to win the Award. Ocean, who made waves in July when he came out in a blog note, has done alright commercially, but has been a huge critical effort, with glowing reviews from a number of writers. A win would push the album past Gold status and possibly to Platinum, while at the same time, make a huge statement for the R&B and hip-hop community. Past GRAMMY nominees for Album Of The Year Bob Dylan and Coldplay will most likely secure nominations once again, and The Black Keys, who won Best Alternative Album for Brothers in 2011, will most likely get their first nod for Album Of The Year with El Camino, which gained them an even bigger audience.

RECORD OF THE YEAR
Adele – Set Fire To The Rain
Drake featuring Rihanna – Take Care
fun. featuring Janelle Monae – We Are Young
Gotye featuring Kimbra – Somebody That I Used To Know
Mumford & Sons – I Will Wait

Close Calls:
Bruce Springsteen – We Take Care Of Our Own
Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe
Frank Ocean – Thinking Bout You
Katy Perry – Wide Awake
The Black Keys – Lonely Boy

Gotye and Kimbra are pretty much a lock for winning with their international smash. Mumford & Sons would be a backup as “I Will Wait” is another solid single for the band and would only ensure them winning Album Of The Year. The other three nominees were all commercial successes but even Adele, who swept at last year’s ceremony, won’t see a win this year in the category, though she’ll probably easily get a win for her Live At The Royal Albert Hall DVD in the Long Form Video category.

SONG OF THE YEAR
Bruce Springsteen – We Take Care Of Our Own
Carly Rae Jepsen – Call Me Maybe
Frank Ocean – Thinking Bout You
Katy Perry – Wide Awake
Mumford & Sons – I Will Wait

Close Calls:
Drake featuring Rihanna – Take Care
Kelly Clarkson – Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)
Phillip Phillips – Home
The Black Keys – Lonely Boy
The Lumineers – Ho Hey

This one is a tough choice because “Set Fire To The Rain” and “Somebody That I Used To Know” weren’t submitted by their respective labels to be considered for this Award. That being said, I think Frank Ocean will be walking away with this one. It’s been a slow burner at Urban radio and a win would probably guarantee at least a minor CHR radio crossover. The Boss, Bruce Springsteen, would be my second choice, which was included in the soundtrack to President Obama’s successful reelection campaign and saw notable gains because of it. Though Wrecking Ball won’t likely be nominated anywhere near the top tier of awards, the single is strong enough to hold its ground in this category. Mumford & Sons is another obvious nominee and would probably have an easier time winning Song Of The Year, but they’ll be denied. The two poppier releases by Carly Rae Jepsen and Katy Perry could pull off a surprise, but I have serious doubts about it. They would be lucky enough to be nominated.

BEST NEW ARTIST
Frank Ocean
Fun.
Gotye
Hunter Hayes
One Direction

Close Calls:
Alabama Shakes
Carly Rae Jepsen
Christina Perri
Ed Sheeran
Ellie Goulding

Best New Artist is for sure going to be a competitive category this year. Frank Ocean is a given, so is Gotye, but I’m predicting the Award goes to Fun. as they have two big hits under the belt and I’m pretty sure this category is going to skew way more commercial this year after two consecutive years of wins by artists far outside the mainstream, Esperanza Spalding in 2010 and Bon Iver in 2011. Hunter Hayes will be the token Country nominee, and yes, One Direction will get a nominee for Best New Artist. Even Justin Bieber got nominated for the category in 2010. The boy band has a better chance of collecting it than Bieber did, but they won’t.

Come back on December 5 to see how I did! If you have any alternative predictions for these four categories, let me know in the comments!

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