Saturday, December 08, 2012

Grammy nominees 2013

Here's a list of the nominees in the major categories on Grantland, and Grady Smith wrote some good commentary about the nominees for EW.

Quick thoughts:

My first, cynical reaction to the spate of Frank Ocean nominees is that the Grammy voters won't take to the narrative like most critics are.

Fun will win Record of the Year.  Is this as obvious as it seems?  Gotye's "Somebody That I Used To Know" was a huge hit too, but might be too unconventional for Grammy voters.  Although I'm still shocked that it was such a megahit precisely because of its oddball nature, even nine months after the fact. So I guess it wouldn't be a shock if it were to win.  I suppose Taylor Swift could eke out a surprise win too.  But I'll still put my money on Fun.

Grantland's Amos Barshad thinks that Mumford and Sons have Album of the Year wrapped up, but never underestimate the potential for a surprise win by an old fart act (see: Robert Plant and Allison Krauss, Steely Dan, U2 in '06, Herbie Hancock, Ray Charles winning posthumously, etc.).  However, young acts have won  in each of the past three years, so is this a trend or does it mean an old fart win is overdue?  This year, the well established granddaddy rock act would be Jack White, and that's my pick.

No Canadian has ever won for Song of the Year, so I'm happy to root for Carly Rae Jespen and her songwriting partners here.  Other than that, I still don't understand how Song of the Year and Record of the Year are supposed to work, i.e. how they can only have two nominated songs in common between them.  It's not 1960, all eleven nominees (nine songs in total) are original songs!

Best Dance Recording ... yeah, let's just move on ... Best Dance Album ... moving on once again ...

Best Rock Performance.  Just engrave Sprinsteen's name on the trophy now.  He's won eleven Grammys with "rock" in the title in the last decade (Best Rock Songs, Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance, and some others with even more ridiculous titles), in other words, he wins this Grammy every time he releases a new album.  Jack White might grab a win in one of the other Rock categories, but otherwise this is Springsteen all the way.  

Best Hard Rock/Metal Performance nominees include Anthrax, Marilyn Manson, Iron Maiden, and Megadeth.  What year is it again?  Somehow this is the oldest of old fogey categories in the Grammys this year.

Best Alternative Music Album.  Grady Smith notes that these nominees have nothing in common, which goes to show that the Grammys have no idea what alternative music is or how to define it.  But that's what makes this group of nominees so interesting!  It's an interesting grouping of well regarded albums, and there's no  obvious cliched narrative that gives you a clue as to who might win.

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