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Jay-Z Leads Grammy Noms; Kanye suffers, Tejanos Cry

December 7, 2013


Jay-Z scored nine nominations to the 56th Annual Grammy Awards to be held January 26, 2014, at Staples Center in Los Angeles and broadcast live on CBS at 10 p.m. Central. The rapper leads the nominee pack, followed by Kendrick Lamar, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Justin Timberlake and Pharrell Williams with seven and Drake and mastering engineer Bob Ludwig with five.

However, most Jay-Z noms came in the rap categories, while Macklemore & Ryan Lewis scored three in the big ones: Album of the Year (The Heist), Best New Artist and Song of the Year (“Same Love”).

Someone who’s probably pissed right now and getting ready for a Twitter rant is Kanye West, whose Yeezus only got two nominations in the rap categories. But no one should be more pissed than the Tejanos, who were completely ignored in the new, controversial Best Regional Mexican Music Album (Including Tejano). How the Tejanos were going to compete with top-selling, PR-heavy Mexican Regional artists was always a mystery, and last night’s announcement only confirmed it. The nominees in this category were Joan Sebastian, Paquita la del Barrio, Mariachi Divas de Cindy Shea, Intocable (from Zapata, the only ones vaguely resembling a Tejano sound) and Banda Los Recoditos. Not that the Tejanos produced Sgt. Pepper or Pet Sounds in 2013, but getting rid of the category in its entirety and claiming they are now “included” in the Regional Mexican area, is pure b.s. It would have been more honest for the Academy to say: “You’re finished, Tejanos. You suck. We don’t want you anymore.”

In the now (also) smaller Latin categories, Draco Rosa (already a recent Latin Grammy winner) shouldn’t have a problem winning Album of the Year for Vida, and Café Tacuba should win Best Latin Rock, Urban or Alternative Album for El Objeto Antes Llamado Disco (easily the best Latin alternative album of the year, even though the Latin Academy didn’t see it that way).

All these nominees released albums or songs before September 30, the last day of the nomination eligibility period. That’s why, for example, Miley Cyrus could have been nominated for one of her Bangerz songs, but the album itself won’t be eligible until the 2015 Grammy Awards. The same applies to Arcade Fire’s Reflektor, Eminem’s The Marshall Mathers LP2, Katy Perry’s Prism, Lady Gaga’s ARTPOP and Paul McCartney’s New, some of the big-profile albums of the second half of 2013.

A curiosity: Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain, Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic are nominated for Best Rap Song for Jay-Z’s “Holy Grail” (included in Magna Carta…Holy Grail) which uses lyrics from “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” Grohl, Novoselic and Pat Smear are also nominated in the Best Rock Song category for “Cut Me Some Slack,” their collaboration with Paul McCartney included in the 12-12-12 Hurricane Sandy benefit gig and album.

Here’s the nominees in some of the top categories. Go to for the complete list.

Record of the Year
Daft Punk & Pharrell Williams – “Get Lucky”
Imagine Dragons – “Radioactive”
Lorde – “Royals”
Bruno Mars – “Locked Out of Heaven”
Robin Thicke Featuring T.I. & Pharrell Williams – “Blurred Lines”

Album of the Year
Sara Bareilles – The Blessed Unrest
Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
Kendrick Lamar – Good Kid, M.A.A.D. City
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – The Heist
Taylor Swift – Red

Song of the Year
Pink feat. Nate Ruess – “Just Give Me a Reason”
Bruno Mars – “Locked Out of Heaven”
Katy Perry – “Roar”
Lorde – “Royals”
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – “Same Love”

Best New Artist
James Blake
Kendrick Lamar
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
Kacey Musgraves
Ed Sheeran

Best Pop Solo Performance
Sara Bareilles – “Brave”
Lorde – “Royals”
Bruno Mars – “When I Was Your Man”
Katy Perry – “Roar”
Justin Timberlake – “Mirrors”

Best Pop Vocal Album
Justin Timberlake – The 20/20 Experience: The Complete Experience
Lorde – Pure Heroine
Lana Del Rey – Paradise
Robin Thicke – Blurred Lines
Bruno Mars – Unorthodox Jukebox

Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
Daft Punk & Pharrell Williams – “Get Lucky”
Pink Featuring Nate Ruess – “Just Give Me A Reason”
Rihanna Featuring Mikky Ekko – “Stay”
Robin Thicke Featuring T.I. & Pharrell Williams – “Blurred Lines”
Justin Timberlake & Jay Z – “Suit & Tie”

Best Dance/Electronica Album
Daft Punk – Random Access Memories
Disclosure – Settle
Calvin Harris – 18 Months
Kaskade – Atmosphere
Pretty Lights – A Color Map Of The Sun

Best Rock Performance
Alabama Shakes – “Always Alright”
David Bowie – “The Stars (Are Out Tonight)”
Imagine Dragons – “Radioactive”
Led Zeppelin – “Kashmir” (Live)
Queens Of The Stone Age – “My God Is The Sun”
Jack White – “I’m Shakin’”

Best Rock Album
Black Sabbath – 13
David Bowie – The Next Day
Kings of Leon – Mechanical Bull
Led Zeppelin – Celebration Day
Queens Of The Stone Age – …Like Clockwork
Neil Young With Crazy Horse – Psychedelic Pill

Best Rock Song
Paul McCartney, Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, Pat Smear – “Cut Me Some Slack”
Gary Clark Jr. – “Messin’ Around”
The Rolling Stones – “Doom and Gloom”
Muse – “Panic Station”
Black Sabbath “God Is Dead?”

Best Alternative Music Album
Neko Case – The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You
The National – Trouble Will Find Me
Nine Inch Nails – Hesitation Marks
Tame Impala – Lonerism
Vampire Weekend – Modern Vampires Of The City

Best R&B Performance
Tamar Braxton – “Love And War”
Anthony Hamilton – “Best Of Me”
Hiatus Kaiyote Featuring Q-Tip – “Nakamarra”
Miguel Featuring Kendrick Lamar – “How Many Drinks?”
Snarky Puppy With Lalah Hathaway – “Something”

Best Urban Contemporary Album
Tamar Braxton – Love And War
Fantasia – Side Effects Of You
Salaam Remi – One: In The Chamber
Rihanna – Unapologetic
Mack Wilds – New York: A Love Story

Best R&B Album
Faith Evans – R&B Divas
Alicia Keys – Girl On Fire
John Legend – Love In The Future
Chrisette Michele – Better
TGT – Three Kings

Best Rap Performance
Drake – “Started From The Bottom”
Eminem – “Berzerk”
Jay Z – “Tom Ford”
Kendrick Lamar – “Swimming Pools (Drank)”
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis Featuring Wanz – “Thrift Shop”

Best Rap Song
ASAP Rocky Featuring Drake, 2 Chainz & Kendrick Lamar – “Fuckin’ Problem”
Jay Z featuring Justin Timberlake – “Holy Grail”
Kanye West – “New Slaves”
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – “Thrift Shop”
Drake – “Started From the Bottom”

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration
J.Cole Featuring Miguel – “Power Trip”
Jay Z Featuring Beyoncé – “Part II (On The Run)”
Jay Z Featuring Justin Timberlake – “Holy Grail”
Kendrick Lamar Featuring Mary J. Blige – “Now Or Never”
Wiz Khalifa Featuring The Weeknd – “Remember You”

Best Rap Album
Drake – Nothing Was The Same
Jay Z – Magna Carta…Holy Grail
Kendrick Lamar – Good Kid, M.A.A.D City
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – The Heist
Kanye West – Yeezus

Best Country Album
Jason Aldean – Night Train
Tim McGraw – Two Lanes Of Freedom
Kacey Musgraves – Same Trailer Different Park
Blake Shelton – Based On A True Story
Taylor Swift – Red

Best Song Written For Visual Media
Coldplay – “Atlas” (The Hunger Games: Catching Fire)
Jessie J – “Silver Lining” (The Silver Linings Playbook) Adele – “Skyfall” (Skyfall)
Colbie Caillat Featuring Gavin DeGraw – “We Both Know” (Safe Haven)
Lana Del Rey – “Young and Beautiful” (The Great Gatsby)
Regina Spektor – “You’ve Got Time” (Orange Is the New Black)

Producer of the Year
Rob Cavallo
Dr. Luke
Ariel Rechtshaid
Jeff Tweedy
Pharrell Williams


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