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What The 2019 Grammy Nominations Say About The Music Industry

The 2019 Grammy nominations were announced on Friday morning and contained many of the usual suspects, but not always in categories where we thought they were dominate. Snubs, surprises, and some groundbreaking nods all made for one of the most divisive Grammy lists in years. We break it down below.

The 2019 Grammy Awards air live from Los Angeles’ Staples Center  on Sunday, February 10, 2019 at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.

 

The K-pop Recognition

K-pop group BTS earned their first Grammy nomination this year, scoring a nod for Best Recording Packaging for their Love Yourself: Tear album. The nomination not only gives credit to the band’s commitment to making immersive and engaging art for their fans, but their inclusion in this year’s Grammys, which includes Seoul artist HuskyFox who designed the art, is a big step towards the North American music scene embracing the K-pop movement.

 

The Return of the Movie Soundtrack

The box office success of Black Panther and A Star Is Born carried over to yesterday’s Golden Globe nominations, with both films also heavily represented in Friday’s Grammy nominations. Kendrick Lamar, who curated the Black Panther soundtrack, earned multiple nods for his SZA duet “All The Stars,” with the song being recognized in major categories, including Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Rap Collaboration. Lady Gaga helped director and actor Bradley Cooper make his Grammy debut, with the pair earning nominations for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop/Duo Performance for “Shallow.” The success of both soundtracks marks a return to huge film scores, a trend that was last popular in the 1990s with films like Romeo + Juliet, The Bodyguard, Empire Records, Singles, Trainspotting, and Batman Forever.

 

Backstreet’s Back (Again)

The Backstreet Boys have never really left, but in 2018, the boy band have proved that they still have the right stuff (wrong band) to remain relevant on the charts. The group’s upcoming tenth studio album DNA features the Shawn Mendes-written single “Chances” and the high energy pop track “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” which earned the group their ninth Grammy nomination and first since 2002. A group still earning Grammy nominations in major categories 25 years into their career is pretty huge.

 

The Semi-Snubs

Ariana Grande, Taylor Swift, and Travis Scott, three of the biggest artists of 2018, only received a handful of nominations, with all three artists left out of the major categories. Beyoncé and Jay Z also earned three nods for their work as The Carters but didn’t garner a Record of the Year or Album of the Year nomination. As for Drake, the Toronto artist scored five nominations but failed to earn a spot in the list for Rap Album of the Year.

 

The Full-On Snubs

No Nicki Minaj, no Carrie Underwood, no Sam Smith, no Panic! At the Disco, and no The Weeknd.

 

Comedy and Rap’s Lack Of Women

Although women continue to dominate pop, with Shawn Mendes as the only male artist represented in the category for Best Pop Vocal Album, they’re still severely underrepresented in Rap, Rock and Comedy. Cardi B was the only female rapper nominated, with Christina Aguilera also scoring a nomination for her “Like I Do” duet with Goldlink.

As for comedy, we’re trying to understand how Hannah Gadsby’s Nanette, Ali Wong’s Hard Knock Wife, and Tig Notaro’s Happy To Be Here were all overlooked.

Hannah Gadsby

 

The Posthumous Nominations

Friday’s nomination announcement was a celebration of the past year’s achievements in music and comedy, but they also acted as a stark reminder of artists we lost too soon. Both Chris Cornell and Mac Miller received posthumous nominations, with Cornell’s “When Bad Does Good” up for Best Rock Performance and Miller’s Swimming up for Best Rap Album.

Check out the full list of nominations below.

Album of the Year
H.E.R. – H.E.R.
Brandi Carlile – By the Way, I Forgive You
Drake – Scorpion
Various Artists – Black Panther: The Album
Kacey Musgraves – Golden Hour
Post Malone – Beerbongs & Bentleys
Cardi B – Invasion of Privacy
Janelle Monáe – Dirty Computer

Record of the Year
Cardi B – I Like It
Brandi Carlile – The Joke
Childish Gambino – This Is America
Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow
Drake – God’s Plan
Kendrick Lamar & SZA – All the Stars
Post Malone & 21 Savage – Rockstar
Zedd & Maren Morris – The Middle

Song of the Year
Kendrick Lamar & SZA – All the Stars
Ella Mai – Boo’d Up
Drake – God’s Plan
Shawn Mendes – In My Blood
Brandi Carlile – The Joke
Zedd & Maren Morris – The Middle
Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow
Childish Gambino – This Is America

Best New Artist
Chloe x Halle
Luke Combs
Greta Van Fleet
H.E.R.
Dua Lipa
Margo Price
Bebe Rexha
Jorja Smith

Pop
Best Pop Solo Performance

Beck – Colors
Camila Cabello – Havana (Live)
Ariana Grande – God Is a Woman
Lady Gaga – Joanne (Where Do You Think You’re Goin’?)
Post Malone – Better Now

Best Pop Duo/Group Performance

Christina Aguilera ft. Demi Lovato – Fall In Line
Backstreet Boys – Don’t Go Breaking My Heart
Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper – Shallow
Maroon 5 ft. Cardi B – Girls Like You
Justin Timberlake ft. Chris Stapleton – Say Something
Zedd, Maren Morris, and Grey – The Middle

Best Pop Vocal Album

Camila Cabello – Camila
Kelly Clarkson – Meaning of Life
Ariana Grande – Sweetener
Shawn Mendes – Shawn Mendes
Pink – Beautiful Trauma
Taylor Swift – Reputation

Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album

Tony Bennett & Diana Krall – Love Is Here to Stay
Willie Nelson – My Way
Gregory Porter – Nat “King” Cole & Me
Seal – Standards (Deluxe)
Barbra Streisand – The Music… The Mem’ries… The Magic!

Rap
Best Rap Performance

Cardi B – Be Careful
Drake – Nice for What
Kendrick Lamar, Jay Rock, Future, & James Blake – King’s Dead
Anderson .Paak – Bubblin
Travis Scott, Drake, Big Hawk, & Swae Lee – Sicko Mode

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration

Christina Aguilera ft. Goldlink – Like I Do
6LACK ft. J. Cole – Pretty Little Fears
Childish Gambino – This Is America
Kendrick Lamar & SZA – All the Stars
Post Malone ft. 21 Savage – Rockstar

Best Rap Song

Drake – God’s Plan
Kendrick Lamar, Jay Rock, Future, & James Blake – King’s Dead
Eminem – Lucky You
Travis Scott, Drake, Big Hawk, & Swae Lee – Sicko Mode
Jay Rock ft. Kendrick Lamar – Win

Best Rap Album

Cardi B – Invasion of Privacy
Mac Miller- Swimming
Nipsey Hussle – Victory Lap
Pusha-T – Daytona
Travis Scott – Astroworld

Rock
Best Rock Performance

Arctic Monkeys – Four Out of Five
Chris Cornell – When Bad Does Good
THE FEVER 333 – Made An America
Greta Van Fleet – Highway Tune
Halestorm – Uncomfortable

Best Metal Performance

Between the Buried and Me – Condemned to the Gallows
Deafheaven – Honeycomb
High on Fire – Electric Messiah
Trivium – Betrayer
Underoath – On My Teeth

Best Rock Song

Greta Van Fleet – Black Smoke Rising
Twenty One Pilots – Jumpsuit
Bring Me the Horizon – MANTRA
St. Vincent – Masseduction
Ghost – Rats

Best Rock Album

Alice in Chains – Rainier Fog
Fall Out Boy – M A N I A
Ghost – Prequelle
Greta Van Fleet – From the Fires
Weezer – Pacific Daydream

Best Alternative Music Album

Arctic Monkeys – Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
Beck – Colors
Björk – Utopia
David Byrne – American Utopia
St. Vincent – Masseduction

R&B
Best R&B Performance
Toni Braxton – Long As I Live
The Carters – Summer
Lalah Hathaway – Y O Y
H.E.R. – Best Part [ft. Daniel Caesar]
PJ Morton – First Began

Best Traditional R&B Performance
Leon Bridges – Bet Ain’t Worth the Hand
Betty LaVette – Don’t Fall Apart on Me Tonight
MAJOR. – Honest
PJ Morton – How Deep Is Your Love [ft. Yebba]
Charlie Wilson – Made for Love [ft. Lalah Hathaway]

Best R&B Song
Ella Mai – Boo’d Up
Miguel – Come Through and Chill [ft. J. Cole and Salaam Remi]
Childish Gambino – Feels Like Summer
H.E.R. – Focus
Toni Braxton – Long As I Live

Best Urban Contemporary Album
The Carters – Everything Is Love
Chloe x Halle – The Kids Are Alright
Chris Dave and the Drumhedz – Chris Dave and the Drumhedz
Miguel – War & Leisure
Meshell Ndegeocello – Ventriloquism

Best R&B Album
Toni Braxton – Sex & Cigarettes
Leon Bridges – Good Thing
Lalah Hathaway – Honestly
H.E.R. – H.E.R.
PJ Morton – Gumbo Unplugged (Live)

Dance
Best Dance Recording
Above & Beyond – Northern Soul [ft. Richard Bedford]
Disclosure – Ultimatum [ft. Fatoumata Diawara]
Fisher – Losing It
Silk City & Dua Lipa – Electricity [ft. Diplo and Mark Ronson]
Virtual Self – Ghost Voices

Best Dance/Electronic Album
Jon Hopkins – Singularity
Justice – Woman
Sofi Tukker – Treehouse
SOPHIE – Oil of Every Pearl’s Un-Insides
TOKiMONSTA – Lune Rouge

Comedy
Best Comedy Album
Patton Oswalt – Annihilation
Dave Chappelle – Equanimity & the Bird Revelation
Jim Gaffigan – Noble Ape
Fred Armisen – Standup for Drummers
Chris Rock – Tamborine

Remix
Best Remixed Recording
Labrinth, Sia & Diplo present LSD – Audio (CID Remix Official Dance Remix)
Charlie Puth – How Long (EDX’s Dubai Skyline Remix)
Gabriel & Dresden feat. Sub Teal – Only Road (Cosmic Gate Remix)
Kygo, Justin Jesso – Stargazing [ft. Justin Jesso] (Kaskade Remix)
HAIM – Walking Away (Mura Masa remix)

Music for Visual Media
Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media
Call Me by Your Name
Deadpool 2
The Greatest Showman
Lady Bird
Stranger Things

Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media
Ludwig Göransson – Black Panther
Benjamin Wallfisch & Hans Zimmer – Blade Runner 2049
Michael Giacchino – Coco
Alexandre Desplat – The Shape of Water
John Williams – Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Best Song Written for Visual Media
Kendrick Lamar & SZA – All the Stars
Sufjan Stevens – Mystery of Love
Miguel – Remember Me [ft. Natalia Lafourcade]
Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper – Shallow
Keala Settle & the Greatest Showman Ensemble – This Is Me

Packaging
Best Recording Package
Mitski – Be the Cowboy
BTS – Love Yourself: Tear
St. Vincent – Masseduction
The Chairman – The Offering
Foxhole – Well Kept Thing

Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package
Guns N’ Roses – Appetite for Destruction (Locked N’ Loaded)
The Decemberists – I’ll Be Your Girl
Grateful Dead – Pacific Northwest ’73-74′: The Complete Recordings
“Weird” Al Yankovic – Squeeze Box: The Complete Works of “Weird Al” Yankovic
Sarah Dodds and Shauna Dodds – Too Many Bad Habits

Best Album Notes
Various Artists – Alpine Dreaming: The Helvetia Records Story, 1920-1924 (James P. Leary)
Charles A. Asbury – 4 Banjo Songs, 1891-1897: Foundational Recordings Of America’s Iconic Instrument (Richard Martin & Ted Olson)
Sonny Clark Trio – The 1960 Time Sessions (Ben Ratliff)
Various Artists – The Product Of Our Souls: The Sound And Sway Of James Reese Europe’s Society Orchestra (David Gilbert)
Bob Dylan – Trouble No More: The Bootleg Series Vol. 13 / 1979-1981 (Deluxe Edition) (Amanda Petrusich)
Various Artists – Voices Of Mississippi: Artists And Musicians Documented By William Ferris (David Evans)

Producer
Producer of the Year, Non-Classical
Boi-1da
Larry Klein
Linda Perry
Kanye West
Pharrell Williams

Music Video/Film
Best Music Video
The Carters – Apes***
Childish Gambino – This Is America
Joyner Lucas – I’m Not Racist
Janelle Monáe – PYNK
Tierra Whack – MUMBO JUMBO

Best Music Film
Eric Clapton: Life in 12 Bars
Whitney
Quincy
Itzhak
Elvis Presley: The King