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Will the rap field ever change?

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  • PoweR
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    #383933

    This has got me thinking. In the last couple of years, the R&B field has been skewing towards obscure acts and/or material in some of the major R&B categories. The winners are usually the biggest names in the bunch, but if a major artist underperforms, they are snubbed. So, there is slight evidence that the voters are getting tired of checking off the same names and giving other artists a chance to be recognized, even if it just some nominations throughout the field.

    It’s sister field, the rap field, has been criticized for giving the same names the awards over and over again. The only difference is, they have stayed a big stagnant and predictable with the winners. Obscure acts or not-so-successful material have harder times breaking through with more successful and established acts taking all the glory. Drake has been a bridesmaid in this field since 2009. It looks like he could break through in the field this year, but that’s mainly because Jay-Z, Eminem and Kanye are ghost in most categories. But Drake now falls into that boat: he is now an established rap act and will most likely be a factor because of that and his sales. Someone like Nas has put out material with similar acclaim but has not met the success of Drake, so he will likely miss the mark yet again. Something like “Lotus Flower Bomb” probably won’t have a chance against a song like “Take Care”. And this isn’t to say that Drake wouldn’t be deserving of his awards if he ends up winning this year. But I just think even though this looks like his breakthrough Grammy year, he will be continuing the trend of highly successful and established acts winning and/or dominating the nominations.

    My question is, will the rap field have a year where obscure and less established/successful acts see Grammy glory? Will there be a similar situation where “You Got Me” beats out much bigger hits back in 1999? Could a situation like Life Is Good beating out Take Care happen?

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    erfrank
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    #383935

    I think this will continue with Drake (unless G.O.O.D. Music has great buzz). Same as rock – only Foo Fighters, Green Day, U2, Muse, RHCP, etc. win there. 

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    Leonardo
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    #383936

    The fact that ‘established’ acts win this field every year is kinda boring, I know, but it’s better than a different one-hit wonder or a lesser winning every two or three years. If Drake -now a household name in the rap and overall american music- wins his first grammy(s) this year he will join this club you mentioned, and that means that the club is getting bigger and a little more diverse. Drake’s music is a fresh change in my opinion, I’d say his style is way different to those of the rap trinity and his mentor Lil Wayne…

    Drake will win this year because he deserves it. Period.

    P.S.: Nas’ ‘Life is Good’ is an outstanding album, and the rapper not a one-hit wonder/lesser by no means, he’s a respected veteran in the industry.

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    Pieman1994
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    #383937

    It’s really a shame, because this period has had so many outstanding rap releases. We’ve had Killer Mike, El-P, Aesop Rock, Death Grips, etc. Now, I’d be fine with a few G.O.O.D. Music nods. Maybe it’s just me, but I love “Mercy,” and think this uber-collaboration could be very rewarding. In fact, even if a lot of mainstream rap artists fill the slots, we’d still have a pretty good set of nominees. We might get stuck with Nicki Minaj, but we’re sure to get Drake and Nas in on it too. This is probably the most promising of any field this year. Keep in mind, that rap is also pretty abrassive for a lot of NARAS, as it is with a lot of Americans in general. It’ll be a while before we see a ton of change. 

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    PoweR
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    #383938

    Drake will win this year because he deserves it. Period.

    I never denied that and I basically mentioned that in my post. I also don’t think the established acts winning is totally undeserved. Let’s be honest, some of their nearest competitors don’t give them much of a match. However, Eminem winning for Relapse was… unnerving, for example. It was his least successful album and had weak reviews.

    And I’m not talking about one-hit wonders winning this field. We’ve had quite a few of those who have had their Grammy glory (Sir Mix-a-lot, Chamillionaire, Estelle, just to name a few). I’m talking about artists like Mos Def, Q-Tip and others winning this field for great material that doesn’t usually win. The Roots with a non-hit winning over bigger artists with much bigger hits back in 1999 is an example of something like this occurring. We haven’t had situations like that in a while.

    Someone like Nas falls under what I’m talking about. He may be established and a well-known rap legend, but he’s also a “flop” by Grammy standards and has yet to win a Grammy. If he were to win a Grammy, that would be a shock. This is really not about Drake or whether or not he deserves it or if the favorites here deserve their awards. I’m just wondering if the rap field will have moments where non-established acts or “flop” artists with great material sees Grammy glory? Drake, while adding to the winners of the rap field, wouldn’t be a much different change in terms of what I’m referring to. Drake is still one of, if not, the top rapper of the moment and has the sales to do well, as long as Jay-Z, Eminem or Kanye isn’t competing against him. Someone like Mos Def or Nas doesn’t have that.

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