Over halfway through the eligibility period for the Grammy Awards 2016 I thought it was finally time to do some early nomination predictions. I’d have done this earlier, but obviously I got a little distracted by a certain blog series. This year is an interesting one to consider, with some surprising acts alongside the old favourites competing for nominatons in the main categories. Let’s not wait any longer and get started with the first of many prediction articles for the Grammy Awards 2016.
Album of the Year
Definitely the toughest category to figure out before a full 12 months of eligibility, I could go through a list of potential nominees and possible winners including the likes of Florence & The Machine, Drake and Kendrick Lamar but there is one album that will definitely score a nomination here. 1989 hasn’t just taken over the US, it has taken over the world to become one of the biggest moments in pop music of the last decade. The princess of country finally ditching the genre that made her a star, she was the youngest winner of Album of the Year for Fearless. 1989 is an album in the truest form too, more than deserving a nomination on how tight it is as a pop LP. I would be very very surprised if she misses out on a nomination this year, though I said that back in 2011 when Speak Now didn’t make the cut.
I still don’t think she will win though. Despite not having any decent replacements for her so far in 2015-my long list of ideas contained Mumford & Sons and Sam Hunt, who I think could make a big splash at the 2016 show-I get the feeling the voters won’t give her Album of the Year twice just yet. We still have albums from Kacey Musgraves, Rihanna and Kanye (though probably not) to come before the eligibility period is over, so it’s still all to play for in the big award of the show.
Record of the Year/Song of the Year
Where there are so few potential Album of the Year nominees, there are way too many songs to choose for in the Record and Song of the Year categories. Let’s deal with the most obvious songs first. Taylor Swift will make yet another appearance in Record of the Year in 2016, probably for Blank Space, though I wouldn’t rule out current hit Bad Blood given it will be pushed in the Rap categories too. Her biggest competitor is most definitely Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth, who I could see having a chance at Record of the Year for See You Again. The Fast & Furious soundtrack hit has been holding onto number 1 for the last few months, though not for as many weeks as the obvious favourite for Record of the Year.
Uptown Funk will be nominated for both awards here I’m sure and will most probably pick up at least one of them. The monumental smash hit for Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars was inescapable for late 2014/early 2015 and has the advantage of being performed by two acts who are no stranger to The Grammys. I doubt many would try to deny Uptown Funk top honour next year, but there are a couple more songs that could scoop a nomination. Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran or Girl Crush by Little Big Town could make the cut, while Sam Hunt’s Take Your Time and Sugar by Maroon 5 are early favourites for multiple nominations. The two hits from the Fifty Shades of Grey soundtrack, Earned It and Love Me Like You Do could stand a chance too, while I’d say FourFiveSeconds is a certainty for bridging the gap between a classic act and the current leaders of the pack. Of course there are still a few months left for new potential nominees to emerge, last year Shake It Off debuted just weeks before the eligibility period ended and went on to score nominations in both categories. It will be an interesting year in the big two song categories for sure.
Best New Artist
Usually the toughest category to predict at this early stage, I’d say there are quite a few obvious suggestions for the 2016 show. Starting with the token British act, I’d say George Ezra is a good prediction given he’s just started to break out over there, especially with his biggest hit Budapest. Meghan Trainor was nominated for both Song and Record of the Year at this year’s show and remains eligible for Best New Artist in 2016. I’d say she’s a dead cert for a nomination here. The Weeknd is another act who has seen nominations before, but I can see his label really pushing for a big presence this time around.
That leaves us with the act I’d put my money on at this early stage. Sam Hunt has had an incredible year, his breakout hits Leave The Night On and Take Your Time may have claimed #1 on the Country charts alongside his album Montevello, but he’s a pure pop rock artist disguised as a country singer. His crossover appeal will help a lot when it comes to his chances in this category as his voters won’t be limited to his genre like other country acts who have received nominations here before. I’d say this is the most obvious choice of the Big Four at this stage.
Of course, there are still a few months left for my opinions to change completely, when I’ll be taking a detailed look at each of the Big Four categories while breaking down all of the genres one by one to see which artists have the best chance of walking away happy next February.