The Band Perry lead the Grammy race for Best New Artist

The Band Perry are the safe choice to win the Grammy for Best New Artist. Lead vocalist Kimberly Perry picked up a Best Country Song bid last year for penning the crossover hit “If I Die Young.” That song — released in June of 2010 — currently sits atop the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart nearly a year and a half later. The tune’s staying power makes them, at the very least, a sure thing for a nomination.

Country artists fill a slot in Best New Artist almost every year. Zac Brown Band and Carrie Underwood both won in the last ten years and superstars Taylor Swift and Lady Antebellum were nominees.

Another strong contender is Nicki Minaj. The hip-hop singer has had several hits in the last year including “Moment 4 Life” and “Super Bass.” Her album “Pink Friday” topped the Billboard album charts. Standing in her way is a bias against her genre. No hip-hop artist has won this award in recent years and even big names like Drake, 50 Cent, and Kanye West couldn’t prevail here.

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Rappers Tyler the Creator and J. Cole may also manage nominations this year, but they are outside shots to win.

Alternative artists Foster the People and Bon Iver could slide into the race. Foster the People had enormous success with their single “Pumped Up Kicks.” Bon Iver’s self-titled album hit No. 3 on the Billboard album chart.

British vocalists Jessie J and Ellie Goulding, R&B singer Miguel, and country duo The Civil Wars are among the other potential nominees.

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