My Grammy Picks


Can you believe the Grammy Awards are almost here?  Have you also been having trouble sleeping because of the excitement and anticipation?  Did you also make a paper chain counting down the days?  I thought so!

Obviously I have to make predictions because it's the responsible thing for someone in my position to do, but I had more trouble than I anticipated.  I don't really think that the idea is for me to pick who I think should win but more who I think will win.  That is harder than it seems because who knows what criteria is used: what had the most downloads, what the "critics" liked best, what got played the most on the radio, who should have won 16 years ago but got shafted?  Hard to know.  I'll try to give you several perspectives.  I only chose the main categories and the ones that I actually know something about.  Here we go!

1. Record (Song) Of The Year
• "Nothin' On You" - B.o.B., feat. Bruno Mars
• "Love The Way You Lie" - Eminem, feat. Rihanna
• "F*** You" - Cee Lo Green
• "Empire State of Mind" - Jay-Z and Alicia Keys
• "Need You Now" - Lady Antebellum

All of these songs were big radio hits, although I'm positive "Empire State of Mind" began its popularity ascent in 2009.  No matter.  For me it is a close personal race between that song and "F*** You", but I liked "F*** You" better by an inch.  That being said, I think "Need You Now" will win since it's the kind of song anyone could like and based on the amount of radio play it received, everyone did.

2. Album Of The Year
• "The Suburbs" - Arcade Fire
• "Recovery" - Eminem
• "Need You Now" - Lady Antebellum
• "The Fame Monster" - Lady Gaga
• "Teenage Dream" - Katy Perry

How in the world is someone supposed to pick a winner in a category that has these five in it?  What's that saying- comparing apples to oranges?  The only two that I consider even comparable are Lady Gaga and Katy Perry, and I'm actually eliminating them the most easily because I think they were only nominated due to their popularity.  Eminem is tough because he's offensive to some, although his album is really good.  Arcade Fire is the critics' darling, and Lady Antebellum is likeable to just about anyone.  I think Eminem will win just to prove that the Grammys are legit, but I liked Lady Antebellum the best personally.  Now that Eminem is all rehabbed and recovered, the award will likely even be meaningful to him.

3. Song Of The Year (songwriter award)
• "Beg Steal Or Borrow" - performed by Ray LaMontagne
• "F*** You" - performed by Cee Lo Green
• "The House That Built Me" - performed by Miranda Lambert
• "Love The Way You Lie" - performed by Eminem and Rihanna
• "Need You Now" - performed by Lady Antebellum

Again, I have no idea how they came up with these five nominations over everything else, although they're all pretty good.  I just cannot get on board with "Love The Way You Lie" and its content, but maybe I'm a prude.  I thought "The House That Built Me" was too depressing, I'm frankly fairly sick of "Need You Now", and while I like "Beg Steal Or Borrow" I'm not sure it's special enough to win.  I am choosing "F*** You" because I think it's really, really good and well written.

4. Best New Artist
• Justin Bieber
• Drake
• Florence & The Machine
• Mumford & Sons
• Esperanza Spalding

Do you have Bieber Fever?  Neither do I.  The only full album I have from these five artists is Mumford & Sons and I didn't love it, although I do love the one song that became popular ("Little Lion Man").  I think Drake will win because there was so much hype for him prior to releasing his first solo album, which has subsequently done well.

5. Best Female Pop Vocal Performance
• "King of Anything" - Sara Bareilles
• "Halo (live)" - Beyoncé
• "Chasing Pirates" - Norah Jones
• "Bad Romance" - Lady Gaga
• "Teenage Dream" - Katy Perry

I liked all five of these songs, even the Katy Perry and Lady Gaga songs.  My favorite of the five was "Halo", but I think Lady Gaga may win this one.  She was nominated for quite a bit, but I doubt she'll win very much.

6. Best Male Pop Vocal Performance
• "Haven't Met You Yet" - Michael Bublé
• "This Is It" - Michael Jackson
• "Whataya Want From Me" - Adam Lambert
• "Just The Way You Are" - Bruno Mars
• "Half of My Heart" - John Mayer

Let's see, "Haven't Met You Yet" sounds like it's the theme song to a sitcom and John Mayer is kind of a wild card and/or a jerk, and awards don't normally go to people who might not appreciate them.  It's possible Michael Jackson will win because he's dead and all, although my personal favorite of this group was Adam Lambert's song.  I'm going with "Whataya Want From Me" even though I think there's a good chance MJ will win.

7. Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals
• "Don't Stop Believin'" - Glee Cast
• "Misery" - Maroon 5
• "The Only Exception" - Paramore
• "Babyfather" - Sade
• "Hey, Soul Sister (live)" - Train

When did Sade become a group?  I thought it was one person.  Anyway, it's hard to vote for "Hey, Soul Sister" because I only liked it the first 563 times I heard it and after that I swiftly changed the station.  My favorite of the group is the Paramore song, but I still think Train's song will win because it was SO popular.

8. Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals
• "Airplanes, Part II" - B.o.B., Hayley Williams and Eminem
• "Imagine" - Herbie Hancock, Pink, India.Arie, Seal, Konono No 1, Jeff Beck and Oumou Sangare
• "If It Wasn't For Bad" - Elton John and Leon Russell
• "Telephone" - Lady Gaga and Beyoncé
• "California Gurls" - Katy Perry and Snoop Dogg

It's interesting that two of these songs were played almost to death ("Airplanes" and "California Gurls") and two I had never heard before ("Imagine" and "If It Wasn't For Bad").  "Telephone" was somewhere in the middle.  I far and away liked the Elton John and Leon Russell song best- it's fantastic, but I think "California Gurls" will win.

There you have it, my very unscientific predictions.  I thought I would be in a much better position to predict since I actually pay attention to music, but who can ever tell how things will really shake out.  Set your DVR, get your laundry done early in the day and snuggle in for the Grammy Awards Sunday night.  Enjoy!

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