All five of these artists have one thing in common: they’ve never won a Grammy. It’s nearly unprecedented for so many Grammy-less acts to go into Grammy season as the undisputed frontrunners for Record, Song and Album of the Year.
You have to go back to 1995 to find a time when Grammy virgins dominated the top races in terms of wins and nominations. Alanis Morrisette (Album of the Year, “Jagged Little Pill”), Seal (Record and Song of the Year, “Kiss from a Rose”) and Hootie and the Blowfish (Best New Artist) won all of the top races. These top races were littered with other nominees -- including TLC, Shania Twain, Coolio, Joan Osborne, and Brandy -- who had never won Grammys.
In 2010, Mumford and Sons, Drake and Florence + the Machine were all nominated for Best New Artist; Esperanza Spalding won while Justin Bieber was the fifth nominee.
Since then, Mumford and Sons have racked up multiple Grammy nominations. Their 2010 single, “Little Lion Man,” was nominated for Best Rock Song while 2011’s “The Cave” racked up nods for Record and Song of the Year as well as Best Rock Performance and Song honors. This year Mumford and Sons’ “I Will Wait” could contend for Record, Song and Rock Song honors while their album “Babel” will surely reap bids for Album of the Year and Alternative Album.
Drake’s nine Grammy nominations include numerous ones for solo rap performances, collaborations and a Best Rap Album bid for “Thank Me Later.” His sophomore album, “Take Care,” is the frontrunner to win Best Rap Album and may vie for Album of the Year honors. Best Rap Performance and Rap/Sung collaboration nods are likely.
Florence + the Machine haven’t received any nominations since their Best New Artist bid. However, their critically acclaimed sophomore disc, “Ceremonials,” could find itself in the running for Album of the Year and Best Pop or Alternative Album. “Shake it Out,” one of the album’s most prominent singles, might compete for Record and Song as well as Best Pop Duo/Group Performance.
Ocean and Gotye have never been nominated for Grammys, but that is sure to change this year. Both are frontrunners for Best New Artist nominations.
Gotye’s number one hit, “Somebody I Used to Know,” features Kimbra and is sure to be nominated for Record, Song and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance. Gotye’s “Making Mirrors” may contend for Album of the Year and Alternative Album.
And Ocean is this year’s most buzzed-about new act. His single “Thinkin’ ‘Bout You” may land bids for Record, Song, R&B Performance and R&B Song. And his debut offering, “Channel Orange,” is one of the year’s most acclaimed albums. Look for him in Album of the Year and R&B Album, too.
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Read more about entry and rules here. Make your initial Oscar predictions now. Change them later as often as you wish up until Oscar Day. Below, meet our past winners of recent award prediction contests.
Oscar Nominations: New York state resident Tim Kressner (gufa54) won $1,000 for reaping the highest percentage (78%) when predicting Academy Award noms. Watch our video chat with him here and learn his strategy for making picks. See the leaderboard here. See Kressner's predix here.
Golden Globes (Film): Mario Gomez, a med studen in Mexico, won our contest with the highest percentage of correct picks (86%) and highest point score (2,693). See our video chat with him here. Two other contestants also scored 86%: lulo1989 and eastwest. Tom O'Neil reaped best Experts' score. David Schnelwar had top score among our Editors. See the leaderboard here to see if you made the top tier.
Critics Choice Nominations: Bryce H scored an impressive 83% when sizing up 20 categories. That was one percentage point ahead of our smartest Editor, Daniel Montgomery. Our top Expert was also one of our Editors, Paul Sheehan, who reaped 74%. To see how you performed, check out our leaderboard plus the score section of your account page.
Golden Globe (Film) Nominations: Jonathan was our top User, reaping a staggering 86% when forecasting the lineup of 10 categories. That put him six percentage points ahead of our best Expert -- Scott Mantz (Access Hollywood) -- and eight ahead of our leading Editor, Daniel Montogomery. Did you made the cut on the leaderboard score breakdown?
Los Angeles Film Critics Association Award Winners: Christian aced all rivals, scoring 82%. That was almost 20 percentage points ahead of our top Expert (Edward Douglas of ComingSoon ) and Editor (Matt Noble), both of whom earned scores of 64%. Christian foresaw that surprise screenplay win for "Before Midnight." See leaderboard.