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February 4, 2013 at 4:51 pm #387431
Place all pundits’ predictions here.February 4, 2013 at 4:52 pm #387433
It’s that time of year again: come Feb. 10 at 7 p.m., UA students will be glued to CBS, criticizing designer dresses on the red carpet and rooting for their favorite acts during the 55th Annual Grammy Awards.
The 2013 Grammys will certainly be filled with more surprises than last year’s ceremony; no one artist is likely to pull an Adele and sweep almost all of the main categories. That being said, six artists — Mumford & Sons, Frank Ocean, Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, Fun, Kanye West and Jay-Z — have six nominations each, so, provided the stars align appropriately, someone could go home with a plurality of golden gramophones once again.
But I predict it’s going to be different from last year, and that there’s likely to be a few more surprises and a wider distribution of awards among artists. Here are my predictions for the major categories at the Grammys.
Record of the Year
The Black Keys
Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)
We Are Young
Fun featuring Janelle Monae
Somebody That I Used to Know
Gotye featuring Kimbra
Thinkin Bout You
We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
The record category may be the biggest overall award at the Grammys, awarding a performer and a producer for one song. This is a tough category to predict, but I think it’s going to come down to either Kelly Clarkson, Fun or Gotye. I give it to Gotye for penning the song that no one could get out of their heads the entire year. The record category is often described as the award for song of the year, and “Somebody That I Used to Know” is most likely that in voters’ eyes.
Album of the Year:
The Black Keys
Mumford & Sons
The album category awards the performer and producer of an entire album. While I personally would be happiest to see Frank Ocean given the award, my bet is that it’s going to go to Mumford & Sons. A few reasons why: the British indie-folk band didn’t receive either award they were nominated for in 2011, and voters have been known to make up for past snubs; “Babel” had six singles in the Billboard 100, with lead single “I Will Wait” making it to No. 1 in rock and alternative categories; and Grammy voters tend to vote for uncontroversial, nice-guy performers whenever they can.
Song of the Year:
The A Team
Call Me Maybe
Carly Rae Jepsen
Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)
We Are Young
Fun featuring Janelle Monae
The song category is awarded to the writer of a song, so the voting committee considers the quality of the composition and lyrics rather than the performance or production here. Given voter prejudices against lighthearted songs and songs by unknown artists, I’d say this one is going to come down to either Fun or Kelly Clarkson. I’ll give the edge here to Fun and their irresistibly catchy anthem. Kelly’s a shoe-in for best pop vocal performance, anyway.
Best New Artist:
The best new artist category is always a bit vexing, as most of the artists in this category have been releasing music for a while. Grammy voters award the gramophone here to the artist who has released “the first recording which establishes the public identity of that artist” in a given year, which probably means whenever voters first discovered the artist. I am going to be shocked come Feb. 10 if Frank Ocean doesn’t receive this award: his “Channel Orange” was one of the most solid releases this year.
Snubs and Surprises
Timing hurt Drake’s chances this year. Although “Take Care” is eligible for awards this year, the long delay between the album’s release in November 2011 and the Grammy voting left him out of the top awards, and while he has nominations for best rap album and rap performance, a strong year for Nas and Kanye/Jay-Z may leave Drake out in the cold once again.
It was not a good year for teenyboppers, either: Justin Bieber, as well as One Direction, got entirely snubbed. This is less of a surprise and more of a testament to the Grammy voters, who are known to be less inclined to pick those who are younger and haven’t stood the test of time. Case in point: Britney Spears’ first Grammy was for her 2003 song “Toxic.”
Nicki Minaj also got snubbed this year, with neither hit single “Starships” nor album “Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded” being nominated for anything. I wouldn’t worry too much though, Nicki fans, as her career arc is looking longer than expected, and I’m betting her best music is yet to come.
Overall, it’s hard to be satisfied by the Grammys. The awards reward long-established stars and amend past mistakes, and rarely recognize the best of the best. Still, that’s the fun of watching them, because you never know when Kanye’s going to storm on stage and explain just how badly the Grammys got it wrong.February 4, 2013 at 4:57 pm #387434
2013 Grammy Awards predictions in all major categories
Unlike last year, when everyone knew Adele was going to walk away with all the big awards, the 2013 Grammys could go in a number of different directions.
This year’s top nominees are Kanye West, Jay-Z, Fun., Frank Ocean, Mumford & Sons, and Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, each of whom has six nominations.
We predict Fun. will walk away with two of the Big Three awards, taking Record and Song of the Year for their “We Are Young” single. Ocean will claim four awards, including Best New Artist and Best Urban Contemporary Album. Mumford & Sons also figure to pocket three trophies, while the Black Keys and Miguel will win two each.
Take a look at our predictions for all the major categories.
Record of the Year: “We Are Young,” Fun.
Album of the Year: Babel, Mumford & Sons
Song of the Year: “We Are Young,” Jack Antonoff, Jeff Bhasker, Andrew Dost & Nate Ruess (songwriters)
Best New Artist: Frank Ocean
Pop Solo Performance: “Set Fire to the Rain,” Adele
Pop Duo/Group Performance: “We Are Young,” Fun.
Pop Vocal Album: Stronger, Kelly Clarkson
Alternative Album: Making Mirrors, Gotye
Rock Performance: “Lonely Boy,” Black Keys
Rock Album: El Camino, Black Keys
Dance/Electronica Album: Bangarang, Skrillex
R&B Performance: “Adorn,” Miguel
R&B Song: “Adorn,” Miguel
Urban Contemporary Album: Channel Orange, Frank Ocean
Rap Performance: “Mercy,” Kanye West, Big Sean, Pusha T & 2 Chainz
Rap/Sung Collaboration: “No Church in the Wild,” Jay-Z & Kanye West featuring Frank Ocean & The-Dream
Rap Album: Life is Good, Nas
Country Duo/Group Performance: “Pontoon,” Little Big Town
Country Album: Four the Record, Miranda Lambert
Americana Album: Babel, Mumford & Sons
Comedy Album: Blow Your Pants Off, Jimmy Fallon
Best Song Written for Visual Media: “Learn Me Right,” Mumford & Sons
Best Short Form Music Video: “No Church in the Wild,” Jay-Z & Kanye West featuring Frank Ocean & The-DreamFebruary 5, 2013 at 4:50 am #387436
Entertainment Weekly is predicting Bruce Springsteen in Rock Album?February 5, 2013 at 8:09 am #387437
Slant:February 8, 2013 at 11:38 am #387438
Grammy Predictions: fun.? Frank Ocean? Black Keys?
NEW YORK (AP) — Adele dominated last year’s Grammy Awards, but this year there isn’t a clear winner in sight.
That’s because a slew of acts are up for top prizes, from fun. to Frank Ocean to Mumford & Sons. Those performers are nominated for six trophies, as are Kanye West, Jay-Z and Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys.
We here at The Associated Press let you know who to put money on when the awards show airs live Sunday from the Staples Center in Los Angeles at 8 p.m. EST on CBS. Now if only we could agree.
ALBUM OF THE YEAR: “El Camino,” The Black Keys; “Some Nights,” fun.; “Babel,” Mumford & Sons; “channel ORANGE,” Frank Ocean; “Blunderbuss,” Jack White.
FEKADU: I want to say that because there are four rock-based acts nominated here, they’ll split the vote, leaving R&B singer Frank Ocean with album of the year. His album should win, but he won’t take the prize. This is The Black Keys‘ year, and they’re deserving. The Ohio rockers have released back-to-back amazing albums and The Recording Academy can’t deny that. And they’ll want to reward it.
TALBOTT: The Keys are going to win a major Grammy, just not this one. These Grammys will belong to either Ocean or fun., and to the victor goes this category. Fun. pulled off an amazing feat earning nominations in each of the four major categories, but Ocean’s album has become part of the cultural discussion. It was so startlingly different and universally acclaimed — most of those year-end top 10 lists came out while voters mulled their options — it was impossible for voters to ignore.
RECORD OF THE YEAR: “Lonely Boy,” The Black Keys; “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You),” Kelly Clarkson; “We Are Young,” fun. featuring Janelle Monae; “Somebody That I Used to Know,” Gotye featuring Kimbra; “Thinkin Bout You,” Frank Ocean; “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” Taylor Swift.
TALBOTT: This category has been especially hard to predict over the last decade, with no real trend among the winners. And this year’s overstuffed field makes it no easier. If “Thinkin Bout You” wins here, there will be no doubt these are Ocean’s Grammys. And “Stronger” and “We Are Young” were nominated for song of the year as well, a sign voters pretty much universally loved them. But I’m going with something of an upset as The Black Keys horn in on Ocean’s fun.
FEKADU: The Black Keys are strong contenders, but this award has to go to Gotye, whose oddball pop song was last year’s biggest hit. His ex is probably super mad!
SONG OF THE YEAR (songwriters): “The A Team,” Ed Sheeran; “Adorn,” Miguel Pimentel; “Call Me Maybe,” Carly Rae Jepsen, Tavish Crowe and Josh Ramsay; “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You),” Jorgen Elofsson, David Gamson, Greg Kurstin and Ali Tamposi; “We Are Young,” Jack Antonoff, Jeff Bhasker, Andrew Dost and Nate Ruess.
FEKADU: Call you to the stage Carly Rae? Maybe not. Miguel and Ed Sheeran, I’m happy to see your epic tracks get attention here, but it’s not likely that either of your songs will take the Grammy gold. Instead, fun. — whose anthemic song, “We Are Young,” has a great balance of edge and mainstream appeal — will be named song of the year.
TALBOTT: The real test for a song of the year winner is how it sounds 10 or 20 years from now. In “We Are Young,” Nate Ruess and bandmates have crafted one of those songs that frames an era perfectly, and voters clearly recognized that while mulling nominations.
NEW ARTIST: Alabama Shakes; fun.; Hunter Hayes; The Lumineers; Frank Ocean.
TALBOTT: This is an especially strong group. You could envision each of these acts still at it 15 years from now. The category has been full of pleasant upsets over the last few years, but there will be nothing surprising about this year’s winner because these are turning out to be the Frank Ocean Grammys.
FEKADU: Does anyone seriously think an R&B singer who revealed that his first love was a man — who also produces for top hip-hop acts and who is a talented singer-songwriter with one of last year’s best albums — wouldn’t win this?
POP SOLO PERFORMANCE: “Set Fire to the Rain (Live),” Adele; “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You),” Kelly Clarkson; “Call Me Maybe,” Carly Rae Jepsen; “Wide Awake,” Katy Perry; “Where Have You Been,” Rihanna.
FEKADU: Adele: All day. Every day.
TALBOTT: Enough said.
ROCK PERFORMANCE: “Hold On,” Alabama Shakes; “Lonely Boy,” The Black Keys; “Charlie Brown,” Coldplay; “I Will Wait,” Mumford & Sons; “We Take Care of Our Own,” Bruce Springsteen.
TALBOTT: One of the more surprising things about this year’s list was that Bruce Springsteen didn’t get more nominations for the well-received album “Wrecking Ball” and its anthemic theme song. “Hold On” is a powerful statement of identity and “Lonely Boy” might be the most copied song nominated Sunday night. But in this case The Boss is in charge.
FEKADU: The Boss? False. “Lonely Boy” wins here.
R&B SONG: “Adorn,” Miguel; “Beautiful Surprise,” Tamia; “Heart Attack,” Trey Songz; “Pray for Me,” Anthony Hamilton; “Refill,” Elle Varner.
FEKADU: Miguel: Congrats on your first Grammy win! Elle, Tamia, Anthony: Congrats on your nominations! Trey: Maybe it’s time to step outside the box.
TALBOTT: Imagine how much we’d be talking about Miguel if Frank Ocean wasn’t currently stealing the night. Ocean may be reshaping the face of R&B, but Miguel’s carrying a chisel, too.
RAP ALBUM: “Take Care,” Drake; “Food & Liquor II: The Great American Rap Album, Pt. 1,” Lupe Fiasco; “Life Is Good,” Nas; “Undun,” The Roots; “God Forgives, I Don’t,” Rick Ross; “Based on a T.R.U. Story,” 2 Chainz.
TALBOTT: With all due respect to Nas, this should be Drake’s trophy. Remember back to the halcyon days of late 2011 when “Take Care” ruled with its blend of world-beating swagger and knowing self-awareness? Probably not, and there’s a good chance voters won’t either (only three nominations? Really?). Newer albums always have the advantage, so we’re going to predict Nas wins here … and anxiously await that new single from Drake.
FEKADU: We need to put you in a hip-hop 101 class. Drake over Nas by choice? I can’t even deal. You are right about one thing though — Nas wins here. And he should.
COUNTRY SOLO PERFORMNCE: “Home,” Dierks Bentley; “Springsteen,” Eric Church; “Cost of Livin’,” Ronnie Dunn; “Wanted,” Hunter Hayes; “Over,” Blake Shelton; “Blown Away,” Carrie Underwood.
FEKADU: A country song about Bruce Springsteen? Yeah, you win Eric Church.
TALBOTT: Hey, now, wait a minute, don’t go handing that trophy away so easily … just kiddin’. That’s pretty unassailable logic. I wonder if Church will wear his sunglasses onstage? That’d be pretty boss.February 8, 2013 at 11:44 am #387439
Grammys 2013: fun., Frank Ocean, Mumford & Sons will likely win major awards
It was hardly a shocker when Adele dominated last year’s Grammy
Albums like “21” don’t come around all that often. For proof,
consider that it was the top-selling album in the U.S. for both 2011 and 2012.
The last time an album topped the year-end sales charts in consecutive years was
Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” in 1983 and 1984. The only other album to do that,
at least since Billboard began publishing year-end sales totals in 1956, was the
“West Side Story” soundtrack in 1962 and 1963.
But there’s no “21” in the
mix for this year’s Grammys, and it’s hard to imagine any artist running away
with the ceremony on Sunday in Los Angeles.
There are, however, some
really intriguing matchups in the four so-called big “general field” categories
(where artists from different genres compete for the same award). And there
doesn’t appear to be any clear-cut favorite in the mix for album of the year,
song of the year, record of the year or best new artist.
are once again peering into our crystal ball, despite the fact that it has
provided only iffy results over the years, to try to predict who will win the
big Grammy Awards. Here goes.
Album of the
Nominees: “El Camino” the Black
Keys; “Some Nights,” fun.; “Babel,” Mumford & Sons; “Channel Orange,” Frank
Ocean; “Blunderbuss,” Jack White.
The breakdown: The
list is more notable for what’s missing. Grammy voters ignored such longtime
favorites as Bob Dylan and Bruce Springsteen, who released fine records in 2012,
as well as hip-hop in its entirety. The latter is truly tragic, but hardly
surprising, given Grammy’s track record of ignoring hip-hop in the top four
categories. But it’s inexcusable this year, given how many great records hip-hop
produced in 2012.
The result is a rather weak field, except for Frank
Ocean’s terrific “Channel Orange.” Yet, I’m afraid that Ocean’s soulful epic is
too adventurous for these voters, even in this new Grammy era. White is the
most-established artist in the mix, but “Blunderbuss” is the worst offering in
his overall catalog. If Grammy voters actually listened to “Blunderbuss” there’s
no way it should win.
The other three nominees seem like more likely
options, although each is flawed. Recognizing the Black Keys now seems a tad
late, since 2010’s “Brothers” was superior to last year’s “El Camino.” The pop
juggernaut known as fun. feels worthy — at least in 2013 — but there’s a good
chance that the band could end up being a flash in the pan. Then there’s Mumford
& Sons, which seems well on its way to becoming this generation’s Dave
Matthews Band. The combination of hipster appeal and massive commercial success
might prove too great to pass up for voters, even though “Babel” isn’t nearly as
good as Mumford’s first album.
Record of the
Nominees: “Lonely Boy,” the Black
Keys; “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You),” Kelly Clarkson; “We Are Young,” fun.,
featuring Janelle Monáe; “Somebody That I Used to Know,” Gotye, featuring
Kimbra; “Thinkin Bout You,” Frank Ocean; “We Are Never Ever Getting Back
Together,” Taylor Swift.
Breakdown: The Ocean and Keys
cuts are solid selections, but they’ll be crushed by the other three
blockbusters in the mix. Let’s also eliminate “Somebody That I Used to Know,” in
the hopes that even Grammy voters have grown tired of hearing that song by
Swift is a threat at any awards show, yet perhaps voters are tipping
their hand by nominating “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” for record of
the year (which goes to the artist) but not song of the year (a songwriter’s
award). That could mean voters are never ever going to anoint Swift’s ditty as
the single of the year.
It’s a real pick ’em between the remaining two
cuts, both of which qualify as first-tier pop anthems. Clarkson is a Grammy
favorite, but this just feels like fun.’s year — at least in this
Prediction: “We Are Young”
Song of the
Nominees: “The A Team,” Ed Sheeran
songwriter and performer; “Adorn,” Miguel Pimentel songwriter and performer;
“Call Me Maybe,” Tavish Crowe, Carly Rae Jepsen and Josh Ramsay songwriters,
Jepsen performer; “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You),” Jorgen Elofsson, David
Gamson, Greg Kurstin and Ali Tamposi songwriters, Kelly Clarkson performer; “We
are Young,” Jack Antonoff, Jeff Bhasker, Andrew Dost and Nate Ruess songwriters,
fun. with Janelle Monáe performers.
Breakdown: Carly Rae
Jepsen’s “Call Me Maybe” is an all-time earworm — one of the catchiest songs of
the last 10 years. It is the most deserving of all the nominated tracks, if,
indeed, the goal is to recognize well-crafted songwriting. The fact that it is
nominated for best song, but not best record, is a slap in the face to Jepsen,
who did everything that could’ve been asked with her performance on the tune.
Yet, it’s also a sign that voters might not be fully behind this piece of
perfect pop. So, reluctantly, we’ll zap “Call Me Maybe” from the
The Miguel and Sheeran cuts seem like pretenders to the throne,
so it once again comes down to a battle between the Clarkson and fun. numbers.
Both are fine choices, but one clearly feels more timeless than the
Prediction: “We Are Young.”
Nominees: Alabama Shakes, fun.,
Hunter Hayes, the Lumineers, Frank Ocean.
This is the strongest field of any of the four major categories. The Lumineers,
Hayes and, especially, Alabama Shakes are all worthy nominees. Still, it’s hard
to imagine this being anything other than a two-headed race between Ocean and
fun. Voters have basically said as much through nominating both acts in multiple
general field categories.
The favorite has to be fun., given all that it
accomplished in 2012. But is anyone truly convinced that fun. will still be
relevant in five years? On the other side of the coin is Ocean, who made one of
the year’s most striking artistic statements with “Channel Orange.” It’s hard to
believe that fun. will get better with age, while Ocean seems to have limitless
Prediction: Frank Ocean
Best of the
Best pop vocal album: Look for fun.
to win in a landslide for “Some Nights.”
Unless: Grammy voters try to impress
hipsters by picking Florence + the Machine’s “Ceremonials.”
Rap album: Voters
will momentarily realize that Nas’ “Life Is Good” isn’t just the best hip-hop
album of last year — it’s the best album of 2012, period.
Academy decides to reward Drake’s commercial blockbuster “Take
Country album: Miranda Lambert’s “Four the Record,”
with its four Top 40 country singles, is the obvious choice.
street cred that would come with honoring Jamey Johnson’s “Living for a Song: A
Tribute to Hank Cochran” proves irresistible.
The Black Keys take home the trophy for “El Camino” — consider it a consolation
prize for not winning in the overall album of the year category.
Bruce Springsteen busts up the Black Keys’ party with his “Wrecking
Alternative music album: Gotye’s “Making Mirrors” trumps a weak
Unless: Voters have a sense of humor and want to hear the person at
the podium try to recite the name of say Fiona Apple’s album, “The Idler Wheel
Is Wiser than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More
than Ropes will Ever Do.”
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