December 4, 2014
GRAMMY EXPERT RON ROECKER PREDICTS TOP 4 CATEGORIES "IT'S GONNA BE THE BEYONCE VS SAM SMITH SHOWDOWN
The Recording Academy always has something up its sleeve (remember the shock of Sara Bareilles Album of the Year nom last year or the inclusion of then little known Esperanza Spaulding for Best New Artist a couple years ago?), so I will preface my predictions with that!
The technicalities of the GRAMMY Award eligibility guidelines also play a role in this year's nominations and could hinder two HUGE songs from making the cut: Both John Legend's All of Me and Pharrel Williams "Happy" came out during last year's eligibility timeframe so neither of those original recordings is eligible for Song of the Year or Record of the Year. So, each artist submitted live versions of their respective songs, which are only eligible for Record of the Year (performance award vs. songwriter's award with Song of the Year).
Also, it's gonna have to be All about that Bass if Meghan Trainor is going to be nominated as she isn't eligible to be considered for Best New Artist because Grammy guidelines say artists have to have released at least an EP of at least 5 tracks in the year that they came to prominence. Trainor's EP only had 4 tracks on it.
One person that I'm not sure of as far as Best New Artist goes is Ariana Grande: Yes, her sophomore album was a huge hit and has spawned 4 big singles so far from it....but if the GRAMMY guidelines say (again)..."the year the artist came to prominence" then there could be the argument that her first album was when she came to prominence. The Grammy screening committees would have had to decide if she came to prominence during her first album release or her "My Everything" to determine if she is eligible.
And away we go with the Top 4 GRAMMY Categories and My predictions: Album of the Year, Best New Artist, Song of the Year, Record of the Year.
Now I guarantee you if there is an artist performing on tomorrow night's GRAMMY Christmas special -- and they had product that was eligible -- they are getting some kind of nomination. Since they just announced Sam Smith I bet that means they realized he's gonna be a BIG winner...no Beyonce in the concert? She doesn't have to...she's Queen Bey.
BEST NEW ARTIST
Ariana Grande (if it was determined she was eligible this year)
The final 2-3 are a total crap shoot -- the Academy likes to really shock people with this category -- and they love to include country. So, I think Brandy Clark might have a shot at this as well as Haim, 5 Seconds to Summer, Sia ...and they just might blindside all of us and pick a group such as FKA Twigs or Pentatonix.
SONG OF THE YEAR (Award for songwriting)
Let it Go (Idena Menzel, performance)
Stay with Me (by Sam Smith)
Others with a really great shot include Eminem/Rihanna mega hit "The Monster," Beyonce & Jay Z's "Drunk in Love," or possibly a Great Big World with Christina Aguilera "Say Something"
RECORD OF THE YEAR (award for producer, artist and engineer or a "performance award")
Drunk in Love
Shake it Off (Taylor Swift not on the GRAMMYs? The Academy wouldn't dare...plus it was the only thing released from 1989 that was eligible this year)
Let it Go (this was a massive song and Frozen was the biggest album in the past year which some say may make it a viable Album of the Year contender -- I say they are going to give it noms in 2 out of the big 4 categories Song and Reocrd of the Year)
Other possibilities "All about that Bass," "Problems" (Ariana Grande, Iggy, Nikki), "Fancy" (Iggy), "The Monster" (Eminem/Rihanna), "Dark Horse" (Katy Perry/Juicy J) and "Say Something" (Gr8 Big World/Aguilera).
ALBUM OF THE YEAR (this is the hardest of them all)
Marshall Mathers LP II (Eminem)
Lazaretto (Jack White)
In the Lonely Hour (Sam Smith)
(the above mix of noms is a typical group the Academy likes to see in this category -- one rock, one rap, one r&b/pop, and one crooner pop...)
And there are several that could be vying for that last position (and they are all over the map): "Frozen" Soundtrack, "Cheek to Cheek" (Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga -- this is a project that the Academy usually would EAT UP at Grammy time), "Partners" Barbra Streisand (debuted at #1 and made her the only artist in history to have a #1 album in six consecutive decades! and it sold a TON so far!), Beck, Sia (1000 to Fear), Ed Sheeran's X, Arcade Fire, Bruce Springsteen...and there's no country so far so it wouldn't surprise me if the Academy threw on Miranda Lambert's hit album "Platinum"
So you won't get all the answers until 10 p.m. PT tomorrow (Friday) as the Academy has decided to announce 4 categories (there are 87) on CBS Early Show and then release videos of various artists announcing more categories throughout the day and the album of the year noms during the GRAMMY Christmas Special tomorrow night on CBS.