Music opinion

2018 GRAMMY PREDICTIONS

Peep my totally biased predictions for the award show that almost always gets it wrong.

The 2018 Grammys are upon us. It is now the time for all music aficionados and casual music fans to descend upon the award show to see which of our favorite artists were able to capture the love of the critics. The academy can be very unpredictable at times, so I’ve decided to task myself with providing on the nose predictions for all of you to enjoy. So here we go…

 

Record of the Year

  • Redbone – Childish Gambino
  • Despacito – Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber
  • The Story of O.J. – Jay-Z
  • HUMBLE – Kendrick Lamar
  • 24K Magic – Bruno Mars

This is without a doubt one of the most exciting group of nominations for Record of the Year that there has been in a while. There isn’t one track here that doesn’t deserve to be on this list. However, the little work of gentrification the Justin Bieber worked on “Despacito” lowered the value of the song, making it not as strong in my personal opinion. “The Story of O.J.” was one of the standout singles from Jay-Z’s masterpiece 4:44, with an incredible sample and the expert lyricism that Hov is known for. Kendrick and Bruno Mars brought two of the most energetic singles of the years, but my pick for record of the year is “Redbone”, with multimedia superstar Donald Glover (or if you prefer, Childish Gambino) delivering stellar vocals with the support of impeccable production from Ludwig Goransson lifting the track as the best of the year.

Winner: Redbone – Childish Gambino

 

Album of the Year

  • “Awaken, My Love!” – Childish Gambino
  • 4:44 – Jay-Z
  • DAMN. – Kendrick Lamar
  • Melodrama – Lorde
  • 24K Magic – Bruno Mars

In a year dominated by hip hop and R&B at the Grammys, 4 out of the 5 nominees for Album of the Year are from these two genres. The only stand-alone pop album is Melodrama, a fantastic sequel to Lorde’s debut album a couple of years ago. With the stark jump in the popularity of Childish Gambino, his third funk and psychedelic soul album achieved huge mainstream success unlike he had seen before. But realistically, the Grammy is between the hip-hop titans in the form Jay-Z and Kendrick Lamar. Jay-Z’s reemergence with 4:44 shocked the music world and showed that the 48-year-old business mogul still had the flow and lyricism that old hip hop heads love so much. However, the nod should go to Kendrick, whose DAMN. masterpiece solidified his spot at the top of the rap game. And after his previous snubs where he was passed over for Taylor Swift and Macklemore (like, seriously?), the academy owes him one.

Winner: DAMN. – Kendrick Lamar

 

Best New Artist

  • Alessia Cara
  • Khalid
  • Lil Uzi Vert
  • Julia Michaels
  • SZA

This is probably my least favorite award of the night solely for the reason that the majority of artists nominated for the “Best New Artist” have been around for a significant number of years. Examples of these type of nominees are present in the form of Lil Uzi Vert, SZA, and Khalid, all of which achieved amazing mainstream success this year with their respective albums. Alessia Cara brought a refreshing R&B sound to the music world this year. I can’t even pretend that I know who Julia Michaels is. You could show me a picture of any random millennial and tell me that she’s Julia Michaels and I’d believe you (update: I found out that she’s a blonde lady from Iowa, so there’s that). I’m predicting that SZA will win half because Ctrl was absolutely amazing, and half because if she sees this review, she’ll know that I support her and love her.

Winner: SZA

Best Country Album

  • Cosmic Hallelujah – Kenny Chesney
  • Heart Break – Lady Antebellum
  • The Breaker – Little Big Town
  • Life Changes – Thomas Rhett
  • From A Room: Volume 1 – Chris Stapelton

HAHAHAHAHAHA. Just kidding.

Winner: Nobody who listens to country

 

 Best Rap Album

  • 4:44 – Jay-Z
  • DAMN. – Kendrick Lamar
  • Culture – Migos
  • Laila’s Wisdom – Rapsody
  • Flower Boy – Tyler, the Creator

This is an eclectic mixture of different subsets of rap. Two of the most shocking and intriguing nominees were Culture, which is the poster child for Atlanta trap rap, and Flower Boy, the reinvention of Tyler, the Creator into a more positive and alternative version of rap. My favorite nominee is Laila’s Wisdom, which displayed Rapsody’s highly overlooked lyricism and wordplay. She deserves more attention and praise because she had one of the best albums I’d heard in quite a long time. But again, it looks like it’s a two-horse-race, between Kendrick and Jay-Z. They’ll most likely give it to Jay-Z because they will give Kendrick Album of the Year.

Winner: 4:44 – Jay-Z

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