Will Frank Ocean suffer same Grammy fate as Kanye West?

By Daniel Montgomery
By Daniel Montgomery
Dec 18 2012 15:30 pm
1
See Daniel's
Predictions
Nov 21 2014 15:04 pm
Get Gold Derby's free news alerts and predictions

During the Grammy nominations round, our predictors gave Frank Ocean best odds to win Best New Artist. His debut album, "Channel Orange," earned some of the year's best reviews, and his personal history -- he revealed that he fell in love with a man when he was 19 -- made him even more culturally relevant in a hip-hop community often beset by homophobia.

But when nominations were announced, a clear challenger emerged. The indie pop trio Fun. exceeded expectations, earning bids for Record and Song of the Year for their hit "We Are Young," but also a surprise nod for their album "Some Nights." They're the only artists nominated in all four general field categories; Ocean is up for Album and Record ("Thinkin Bout You"), but not Song.

Considering a head-to-head matchup between the two, history is not on Ocean's side. Urban artists are typically disadvantaged in the general field. None have ever won Record of the Year, and few have won Album of the Year: Lauryn Hill's "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill" and OutKast's "Speakerboxxx/The Love Below" are rare exceptions.

Hill was the last urban artist to win Best New Artist, unless you count Alicia Keys and John Legend, who are more traditional R&B singers than Ocean.

Grammy history also doesn't favor solo male artists. Legend was the only such artist to win New Artist in the last 20 years. In that same time, five male-fronted groups have won: Arrested Development (1992), Hootie & the Blowfish (1995), Maroon 5 (2004), Zac Brown Band (2009), and Bon Iver (2011).

The Maroon 5 example may be an especially revelant to this year's race. Like Fun, they were a breakout pop act up against a hip-hop critics' darling: Kanye West. Even more significant, Maroon 5 had less overall support than Fun do this year, with only one other nomination that year: a Pop Duo/Group bid for "She Will Be Loved."

West, on the other hand, had a whopping seven nominations, including Album and Song of the Year. It's rare for an artist with general-field nominations to lose New Artist to a competitor without any, indicating that Grammy's hip-hop bias may be especially strong. In subsequent years, West has earned multiple nominations for Record, Album, and Song of the Year, but he has never won. His 18 Grammy wins have all come in genre fields: 17 in rap categories, one in R&B.

This year, six artists are tied for the most nominations with six apiece: West, Ocean, and Fun, along with Jay-Z, Mumford and Sons, and Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys. Of those, only rap artists West and Jay-Z were left out of the general field. Can Ocean succeed where West didn't by winning Best New Artist? Or does Fun's surprising nominations haul make them the new frontrunners?

 
Related News
Make your Oscars & reality TV predictions. Win prizes.
pop up close

Advertisement

Content on this page requires a newer version of Adobe Flash Player.

Get Adobe Flash player

Inside Track: Oscar Predictions

Oscars predictions

Earliest Oscars Predictions Ever

Our Oscarologists are busy updating their predictions as they see more and more contenders. Make your early picks now -- click here -- and change them later as the derby heats up.

Odds   View %  
Experts
1 BoyhoodBoyhood
9/2
2 BirdmanBirdman
15/2
3 UnbrokenUnbroken
15/2
4 The Imitation GameThe Imitation Game
15/2
5 SelmaSelma
10/1
6 The Theory of EverythingThe Theory of Everything
12/1
7 Gone GirlGone Girl
16/1
8 FoxcatcherFoxcatcher
16/1
9 WhiplashWhiplash
25/1
10 InterstellarInterstellar
25/1
See complete statistics by Clicking Here
Hot Links from the Web
Photo Galleries: Oscars, Emmys, ...
Latest Forum Posts
Grammy SOTY winners 2000-2014 elimi..
- Not Ready to make Nice+ Viva la Vida"Rehab" by Amy Winehouse - 66"Viva La Vida..
Grammy ROTY winners 2000-2014 elimi..
- Rolling in the deep+ STIUTK"Boulevard of Broken Dreams" by Green Day - 43"Reha..
And Janis Joplin will be played by...
With the right make-up she can pull it off. Who would you cast?[/quote
What Film Have You Watched Today? P..
The Laughing PolicemanI love to watch movies set in San Francisco, which is the ..
Subscribe to our free news service

Advertisement