Grammys 2019: Will Kacey Musgraves or Chris Stapleton take the country slot for Album of the Year?

When it comes time to pick the Grammy nominees for Album of the Year, there’s often a space reserved for country that in the past has gone to artists ranging from Dixie Chicks to Lady Antebellum, to Sturgill Simpson. The nominees in the top four general field categories — and several others — are ultimately determined by nominations review committees, which often decide to spread the wealth among genres. But this year there are two country standouts that seem especially likely to break through in the top category: “Golden Hour” by Kacey Musgraves and “From A Room: Volume 2” by Chris Stapleton.

Our Top 24 Users got the highest scores predicting last year’s Grammy nominations, and 17 of them currently think Musgraves will get the nom, with 2 of them picking her to win. Musgraves is a two-time past Grammy winner: in 2014 she claimed Best Country Song (“Merry Go Round”) and Best Country Album (“Same Trailer Different Park”). In that latter category she actually upset “Red” by Taylor Swift, which was up for Album of the Year that year. But Musgraves herself has only been in the general field once: Best New Artist in 2014, which she lost to Macklemore and Ryan Lewis.

Stapleton has been a bigger Grammy favorite with 5 wins out of 10 nominations, and he previously contended for Album of the Year in 2016 for his solo breakthrough “Traveller.” In addition, “A Room” was a bigger hit than “Golden Hour,” and success sells at the Grammys. But only 9 of our Top 24 Users think he’ll make the cut this time around. Perhaps that’s because he was snubbed for Album of the Year last year for “From A Room: Volume 1,” even though he ended up sweeping the country field with that album.

But maybe the days of the country slot are over. This year the Grammys are expanding the general field categories from five nominees to eight, so maybe there could be country slots — plural. If that’s the case, this could turn out to be a “Golden Hour” for both Musgraves and Stapleton.

Be sure to make your Grammy predictions so that Hollywood record executives and top name stars can see how their music is faring in our Grammy odds. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before nominations are announced on Wednesday, December 5. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 Grammys taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our music forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.

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