Now that the nominees for the most coveted award in music has been released, The Grammy committee have now created a number of questions, surprises, curious decisions, and exposing my prognosticating ability (see yesterday's post with my predictions before the nominations came out) - making the drama for the 54th Annual Grammy Awards on Feb. 12th that much more intense.Looking at the nominees, let's start with Album Of The Year:

Adele, Lady Gaga, and Bruno Mars were no shock at all - 3 of the biggest albums of the last year (and three I called correctly - go back and check).   Rihanna was truly deserving with her Loud album but you may have forgotten this because the CD came out late last year, but still in time to qualify for this year's Grammys.  With 8 Million sold worldwide and three #1 songs (including one of the most played on the radio over the last year - "S&M"), Rihanna will be stiff competition.  The nice surprise was seeing the Foo Fighters earn a nomination for their Wasting Light release.  David Grohl is about as close to modern rock royalty as we get in this generation - from Nirvana drummer to the Foo's frontman and driving force.

Early Favorite - Adele's 21 (cannot deny sales of 12 Million, and her 6 nominations overall)

Dark Horse - Foo Fighters (two #1 Rock singles, but no major crossover this time around - the sales story is not as strong as the others but the critics have shown the Foo's much love over the years with 31 Grammy nominations over the years and 6 Grammy wins).

SNUBBEDJason Aldean/My Kinda Party - 3 Million sold in North America, two #1 country singles, two more #2 country singles, and his first Top-10 songs outside the country chart happened ("Don't You Wanna Stay" with Kelly Clarkson, and "Dirt Road Anthem" which has Jason rapping).  Aldean did score 3 nominations in the Country categories.

In the categories of Song Of The Year and Record Of The Year, Bruno Mars and Adele scored in both major Grammy awards with "Grenade" and "Rolling In The Deep" respectfully (yeah - got this right too!)  Mumford and Sons ("The Cave") joined Bon Iver ("Holoscene") to be nominated in both categories.  The difference came between Katy Perry and Kanye West - Perry got the nod for Record Of The Year (honoring the songwriter) with "Firework", while West got the Record Of The Year nomination (honoring the artist and production team) for "All Of The Lights"

Unique Situation - The artist who wins Song Of The Year should also nab Record Of The Year unless they feel Kanye's production value of his hip-hop track stands ahead.

Early Favorite - Adele (see previous reasons earlier)

Dark Horse - Mumford and Sons (scored a new legion of fans after last year's Grammy awards with their live performance and 2 nominations - 4 nominations this year but is it fair to honor a song that came from an album that came out in 2009?)

The Question You Are Asking - Who is Bon Iver?  The band has their root in indie rock/folk music.  Their album did reach #1 in the U.S., and Top-5  in five other countries.  The group has received numerous critical acclaim, the masses are staring to pick up on their vibe, and shape up to be this year's Arcade Fire (least year's "Who is this Group" who went on to win Album Of The Year and saw their sales jump significantly after their victory)

In the Kiss Of Death Award - I mean Best New Artist category:

The nominees are The Band Perry, Bon Iver, J. Cole, Skrillex, and Nicki Minaj.

Early Favorite - Nicki Minaj.  Yes she got the Best Rap Album nomination, but was ignored for Album Of The Year and in the R&B categories despite five Top-5 R&B hits (big SNUB!)  The Grammys could make it up to her here.

Dark Horse - Bon Iver, but don't be shocked here if they win.  remember last year's winner?  Answer is Esperanza Spalding (if you remembered that, then you are a true music geek and step away from the iTunes).

SNUBBED - Foster The People (Huh?  "Pumped Up Kicks" is only one of the biggest songs of the year, with over 44 MILLION YouTube plays of their video.  Who was asleep at the switch here?)

Kiss Of Death Award? - Past Best New Artist winners include Milli Vanilli, Tracy Chapman, Arrested Development, LeAnn Rimes, and Paula Cole (notice how their careers crashed and burned after their win).

Some other facts to pay attention to for this Grammy Award Show in February:

Tony Bennett would not be the oldest Grammy winner should he get the award for Best Pop Duo or Group Performance, but at 85 this may be his last go round.  The 15-time Grammy winner has sentiment on his side for another reason - the last recorded song for Amy Winehouse.

Speaking of the Best Pop Duo or Group category, videos by 4 of the nominees tallied over 136 MILLION YouTube plays (Maroon 5 / Christina Aguilera lead the way with over 61 Million hits for "Moves Like Jagger")

Bruno Mars has had quite a two-year stretch with the Grammy Awards - 13 nominations.  Kanye West leads this year's nominations with a total of 7.

Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam did receive a Grammy nomination - Best Folk Album for Ukulele Songs (and I'll bet you did not know this album existed, or that Eddie Vedder likes ukuleles).

All 4 judges/coaches from The Voice on NBC did receive Grammy nominations.

Last thought - notice how Taylor Swift, country's Entertainer Of The Year, was not nominated for Album Of The Year?  Mark these words down - she will not win Best Country Album Grammy on Feb. 12th.






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