Although I have never really shared this with anyone, I think you, my trusty reader, should be in on my little secret: I prep for the Grammys the way a football fan preps for the Super Bowl. While I haven’t always watched it every single year (trust me, I try), mainly due to other pressing engagements, when it comes to the season for music awards, I am ready. I read every category over, familiarizing myself with the artists that the industry deems worthy of recognition. I know their strengths, weaknesses, best singles, worst moments, and everything in between!
I always calculate that the Best New Artist is more than likely going to be the one nominee that I’m not familiar with, while the Album of the Year is one that I haven’t bought yet, but would pick immediately. (And I normally hit the mute button on the Country category, sorry. Just not really my type of music; I am getting better though!) But that doesn’t deter me, because I still have my thoughts and opinions as to who should win….and who will win. Therefore, as a special treat this week, I will present to you a little mini-series of my picks for the top four (since weighing in on every one will take a whole year) categories! (I promise, you’ll love it.)
First and foremost, let’s start with Best New Artist. (I’m saving the big one, Album of the Year, for later.) While hip-hop and rap have not made it onto my radar in years, I can’t discount its ever-present influence in the category with two phenomenal nominees (that I have never really listened to—well, ever.) I mean, they have to be great if they’ve made it here, right? But then aside from Nicki Minaj & J. Cole, there are three completely different genres to choose from. You have The Band Perry (country), Skrillex (Electronic Dance), and my personal favorite Bon Iver (indie folk).
So who has a chance? Well, if we were going purely on name, Nicki Minaj could clearly take it. I’ve heard snippets of her hit songs and while I’m sure to her fans she is a genius, (even though her music just doesn’t appeal to me.) J. Cole embodies the rap/hip-hop scene that currently influences most of the music we hear on the radio today. But then there’s also something to be said for The Band Perry, since country always carry the allure of great story-telling…and they’ve been on fire this year with their big hit, “If I Die Young”. The music is actually quite good, something I would not normally place on my iPod, but still good. DJ Skrillex has quite the following as part of the club scene. Strangely enough, his avant-garde metal approach to the electronic sound really draws me in. He takes the role of a DJ and creates rhythms and beats unlike those I have ever heard. And of course, Bon Iver has really come around with their 2011 self-titled release; the genre of folk finally having more of a voice in the Grammy scene pleases me greatly.
Jenn’s Pick: Bon Iver. Justin Vernon has put in his dues and I want to see them shine, enough said.
Who will most likely win: Nicki Minaj. Clearly, she’s popular and while it breaks my rule of not knowing the artist who wins, the trend of female artists might grant her a better chance to snag the coveted award.
The Wild-card: DJ Skrillex. With the way music has been moving, the lines between genres have been blurred. From people remixing his songs with artists such as Adele and Katy Perry, there seems to be no limits to his music. (As an added treat, to hear a killer mash-up of Adele’s “Someone Like You” and Skrillex's remix of “Cinema” by Benny Benassi, please go and check out this link: http://soundcloud.com/coinjar/someone-like-you-adele-vs.)
***Stay tuned as I share more picks with all of you throughout the week!***