Rock makes a comeback at Grammys, top six diverse
The Grammy Awards celebrated the diversity of music as six different artists tied for top nominee - Kanye West, Jay-Z, Frank Ocean, Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys, Mumford & Sons and fun.
Auerbach received five nominations as a member of the Keys and also is up for producer of the year, earning a spot with the others at the top of the list as the Grammy's primetime television special came to his hometown Wednesday night.
The rockers little resemble any of the other acts at the top of the list. The top nominations for Jay-Z and West, two of hip-hop's most important figures, is a familiar refrain; each has routinely been at or near the top of the nominations list for the last several years.
Indie pop band fun., a featured performer during the show, aired live from Nashville's Bridgestone Arena on CBS, rode the success of its anthemic hit We Are Young, featuring Janelle Monae, to sweep of the major categories, earning nods for best new artist, song and record for We Are Young and album of the year for Some Nights. The band's producer Jeff Bhasker is up for four nominations.
"When you call your band fun. with a period at the end of the sentence, you set a very high standard for yourself and for fun itself," Taylor Swift, the concert's co-host, said in introducing them. "Fortunately this band from New York has lived up to the name in the best possible way
R&B singer Ocean made a bold social statement earlier this year when he noted he had a same-sex relationship in the liner notes of his new album channel ORANGE, and The Recording Academy rewarded him with the major nominations best new artist, record for Thinkin Bout You and album of the year.
And British folk-rock band Mumford & Sons, which made an auspicious debut in front of an international audience during the 2011 Grammys, is up for album of the year for Babel, one of 2012's best-selling releases.
Miguel, who helped Ocean shake up the R&B world this year, and jazz great Chick Correa join the Keys with five nominations apiece. Nas and recording engineer Bob Ludwig join Bhasker at four apiece.
There were no major snubs among the top nominees. Most of 2012's inescapable hits are represented in some way - Gotye's Somebody That I Used To Know is up for record of the year and Carly Rae Jepsen's Call Me Maybe garnered a song of the year nod. Drake, Rihanna and Nashville residents Swift, Kelly Clarkson, Jack White and best new artist nominee Hunter Hayes were among 16 nominees with three nods.
In many ways the nominations reflect a singles-driven year when no album rose to the level of acclaim as Adele's 21 or West's My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, which dominated the Grammys last February.
Rock, relegated to second stage in the era of electronic dance music, made something of a comeback and young bands are peppered in with the nominees we've come to expect each year.
The 55th annual Grammy Awards will be held February 10 in Los Angeles. Trophies will be handed out in 81 categories.
The five-year-old nominations show was held outside Los Angeles for the first time and showcased Music City for its growing role in the music industry. The Bridgestone Arena marked the largest venue the show has been held in and it may have been a dress rehearsal for a chance to host the main awards show sometime in the future.
LL Cool J returned as host, sharing duties with Swift, whose hit song We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together earned a nod in the jam-packed record of the year category. She was joined by fun., Gotye, Clarkson's Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You), The Black Keys' Lonely Boy and Ocean's Thinkin Bout You.
Swift and LL Cool J opened the show by putting together a beat-box version of Swift's hit Mean. Hayes displayed his versatility while announcing the best pop vocal album by singing snippets of each star's hit song. Maroon 5 played headliner, singing three songs mid-show before finishing off the live broadcast. The group stuck around for an hour-long performance afterward for the crowd in attendance.
Assisted by Monae, fun. reimagined We Are Young with orchestral strings as the crowd sang along, Ne-Yo, in wine-colored bowler, kicked things up with a cadre of dancers on his new club-infused song Let Me Love You.
And the show tipped it's hat to Nashville with a salute to Johnny Cash by Dierks Bentley and The Band Perry.
The Black Keys' El Camino was nominated for album of the year along with fun.'s Some Nights, Mumford & Sons' Babel, Ocean's channel ORANGE and White's Blunderbuss. For best new artist, fun. and Ocean were joined by Alabama Shakes, Hayes, The Lumineers.
Record of the year nominees were Lonely Boy by The Black Keys, Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You) by Clarkson, We Are Young by fun., Somebody That I Used to Know by Gotye featuring Kimbra, Think Bout You by Ocean and We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together by Swift.
Song of the year nominees were Ed Sheeran's The A Team, Miguel's Adorn, Jepsen's Call Me Maybe, Clarkson's Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You) and fun.'s We Are Young.
Here’s the list
Album of the year
The Black Keys – El Camino
fun. – Some Nights
Mumford & Sons - Babel
Frank Ocean - Channel Orange
Jack White - Blunderbuss
Record of the year
The Black Keys – Lonely Boy
Kelly Clarkson - Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)
fun. featuring Janelle Monae - We Are Young
Gotye featuring Kimbra - Somebody That I Used To Know
Frank Ocean - Thinkin Bout You
Taylor Swift - We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together
Best New Artist
Song of the Year (Songwriter award)
Ed Sheeran, songwriter - The A Team
Miguel Pimentel, songwriter – Adorn
Tavish Crowe, Carly Rae Jepsen & Josh Ramsay, songwriters - Call Me Maybe
J”rgen Elofsson, David Gamson, Greg Kurstin & Ali Tamposi, songwriters - Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You) by Kelly Clarkson
Jack Antonoff, Jeff Bhasker, Andrew Dost & Nate Ruess, songwriters - We Are Young
Best Pop Vocal Album
Kelly Clarkson – Stronger
Florence and the Machine – Ceremonials
fun. - Some Nights
Maroon 5 – Overexposed
Pink - The Truth About Love
Best Rock Album
The Black Keys - El Camino
Coldplay - Mylo Xyloto
Muse - The 2nd Law
Bruce Springsteen - Wrecking Ball
Jack White - Blunderbuss
Best Alternative Music Album
Fiona Apple - The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than The Driver Of The Screw And Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do
Björk - Biophilia
Gotye - Making Mirrors
M83 - Hurry Up, We’re Dreaming
Tom Waits - Bad As Me
Best R&B Album
Robert Glasper Experiment - Black Radio
Anthony Hamilton - Back To Love
R. Kelly - Write Me Back
Tamia - Beautiful Surprise
Tyrese - Open Invitation
Best Rap Album
Drake - Take Care
Lupe Fiasco - Food & Liquor II: The Great American Rap Album, Pt. 1
Nas - Life Is Good
The Roots – Undun
Rick Ross - God Forgives, I Don’t
2 Chainz - Based On A T.R.U. Story
Best Country Album
Zac Brown Band – Uncaged
Hunter Hayes - Hunter Hayes
Jamey Johnson - Living For A Song: A Tribute To Hank Cochran
Miranda Lambert - Four The Record
The Time Jumpers - The Time Jumpers