The 53rd Grammy nominations were unveiled on Wednesday to widespread cheers and boos. As is the case every year, this year’s voters seek to reward budding pop darlings (Bieber, Drake), rebels on the road to recovery (Eminem), along with the occasional nod to left-field (Arcade Fire).
1.”Fuck You” for Song of the Year
Yes. Thank you Jesus.
2. No Ke$ha
Also, thanks to the Grammy voters for shutting out that highly offensive, wildly trashy pop trifle Ke$ha.
3. Janelle Monae’s Triumph
Standing ovation for nominating the awesomely talented and weird Janelle Monae. Too bad she didn’t get any important acknowledgment for The ArchAndroid. She did get nominated for Best Urban/Alternative Performance and Best Contemporary Album.
4. The Roots’ How I Got Over for Best Rap Album
OK. This is only their annual left-field nomination designed to please all sides. Sadly, it probably won’t amount to a win, but you still have to admire their consistency.
5. Arcade Fire’s The Suburbs for Album of the Year
I noted the indestructible nature of this album last week. It’s really the dark horse in this category (Eminem and Lady Antebellum are front-runners), but it’s good to see them waving the indy flag amidst a commercial lineup.
6. Esperanza Spalding for Best New Artist
This is one of those left-field nominations I mentioned earlier. It’s really a pleasant surprise to see this jazz angel get major recognition. Sure, she’s been around for a minute but so has everyone in this category. She’ll probably lose to Bieber.
While a seemingly inconsequential point, this is probably the most diverse crew of Grammy nominations we’ve seen in years. Non-whites in traditionally white categories, minor triumphs for indy champs, and females in male-dominated fields all make it worthwhile this year.
1. Katy Perry’s Teenage Dream is up for album of the year?
Say it ain’t so. In the famous words of Cee-Lo Green, why? oh, why?
2. Big Boi snubbed for Best Rap Album?
The most inexcusable snub this year has to be Big Boi’s brilliant Sir Lucious Left Foot being left off Best Rap Album category. And, yes, this album is very much eligible for nomination. I had to double check that because I couldn’t think of any other reason why it didn’t make the cut.
3. “Empire State of Mind” for Record of the Year
Hell of an anthem. That beat is badass. But, let’s slow down on the slobfest. This isn’t either Jay’s illest song ever or the best NY tribute ever.
4. T.I.’s “I’m Back”
“I’m Back” was actually a flawed single that never made T.I.’s album. Not to worry, the Grammy voters enjoyed it so much that they nominated it for Best Rap Solo Performance. How crazy would it be if it actually wins?
5. Chris Brown Lovefest
Breezy, who was all but exiled from the industry, ends up racking up nominations for Graffiti. Grammys sure love to court controversy.
6. No Love for “B.M.F.”
Drake, whose “Over” got the nod for Best Rap Solo, should cede his spot to Rick Ross. NOW.
7. Producer of the Year, Non-Classical
(RedOne, The Smeezingtons, Dr. Luke, Rob Cavallo, Danger Mouse)
In a year that brought tons of good, innovative albums, the Academy didn’t seem to notice. This is a surprisingly weak, with the exception of The Smeezingtons and, to some degree, Danger Mouse.