For Eminem, it would extend his record for the most victories in the category. He has already won five times, and he’s only ever lost once when nominated: in 2005, he competed for “Encore,” but the award went to Kanye West‘s “Late Registration.”
For Azalea, it would be the first win for a female solo artist. The only other woman to win the category was Lauryn Hill, who prevailed as a member of the Fugees in 1996 for their album “The Score.”
Since the recording academy established the category in 1995, other solo women have been nominated – Missy Elliott, Eve, and Nicki Minaj – but without success. Azalea may have an advantage, though: she’s the only artist in this race who also competes in the general field, where she’s up for Record of the Year (“Fancy“) and Best New Artist. However, she was left out of Album of the Year.
Of the remaining four nominees for Best Rap Album, only one has any past experience in the race: Common, nominated for the fourth time for “Nobody’s Smiling.” He has yet to win the award, but even if that doesn’t change this year, he could get a nice consolation prize later in February, when he contends for Best Song at the Oscars (for “Glory” from “Selma“).
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