Friday, December 2, 2011

The 2012 Grammy Nominations: Who Should Win?

As A NARAS voting member, of course, not only are the annual Grammy nominations the ultimate representation of the year in music, but I have the opportunity to take part in choosing the losers.

No, really. For the past several years, the pool of "talent" has been so lame that much of my voting has typically railed against songs & artists rather than in favor of what alleges to be the best.

But this year, for the 54th Grammys (except for Kanye West's seven nods), we were dealt a better hand. In a word: Adele. You better believe I'll be checking the box beside most of her six noms: for Record of the Year, Song of the Year, Album of the Year, Best Pop Solo Performance, Best Pop Vocal Album and uh, Best Short Form Music Video.

Adele’s sophomore 21 is the biggest-selling album of the year: 13 million worldwide. The disc spent 39 consecutive weeks in the top 5 of the Albums chart since its February release, the most by any artist in the chart’s 55-year history. And the songs: "Rolling In the Deep" is third in line for me behind heartbreaking "Someone Like You" and the Moto Blanco edit of "Set Fire To the Rain." And so:

Album Of The Year
Come on, the biggest-selling, most critically heralded, hit-producing CD of 2011. I hope to god Adele's 21 is an obvious win.
* 21, Adele 
Wasting Light, Foo Fighters 
Born This Way, Lady Gaga (man, it hurts me not to vote for this) 
Doo-Wops & Hooligans, Bruno Mars
Loud, Rihanna 

Record Of The Year
Easy as pie: Adele ruled the world with the song that best represents 2011. But where the hell are Gaga's "Born This Way" or "The Edge of Glory"?
* Rolling In The Deep, Adele 
Holocene, Bon Iver 
Grena, Bruno Mars 
The Cave, Mumford & Sons 
Firework, Katy Perry 

Best New Artist
Sheena Easton won in 1982... and look at these pathetic candidates. Nicki Minaj, who has less talent than my toilet, for such a pivotal award? A sham. This category is as irrelevant as 2011, when Esperanza Spalding won. But because you recommend them, it's Band Perry.
* The Band Perry 
Bon Iver 
J. Cole Nicki 
Minaj Skrillex 

Song Of The Year (songwriters)
Bruno Mars' "Grenade" is a fine pop song and he deserves props as one of the best performers of the year... no contest.
"All Of The Lights," Jeff Bhasker
"The Cave," Mumford & Sons
* "Grenade," Bruno Mars
"Holocene," Adele

Best Pop Solo Performance
As much as I love Gaga, this is my least fave single from Born This Way. Yup, Adele again, hands down. One of few strong categories, where every song is a winner.
* "Someone Like You," Adele 
"You And I," Lady Gaga 
"Grenade," Bruno Mars 
"Firework," Katy Perry 
"Fuckin' Perfect," Pink 

 Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
Cool category... I'll vote for Maroon 5, but no doubt, Tony & Amy will win; death becomes her.
"Body And Soul," Tony Bennett & Amy Winehouse 
"Dearest," The Black Keys 
"Paradise," Coldplay "Pumped Up Kicks"
* "Moves Like Jagger," Maroon 5 & Christina Aguilera 

Best Pop Vocal Album 
And here's where I'm giving it to Gaga. Let Adele have the "big album, Gaga deserves this one.
Adele, 21
Cee Lo Green, The Lady Killer
* Lady Gaga, Born This Way
Bruno Mars, Doo-Wops & Hooligans
Rihanna, Loud

Other: Nice to see Christina Aguilera nominated for Burlesque under soundtrack album... Best song for Visual Media: The fab Diane Warren nabs two: for Burlesque and a Justin Bieber track for Never Say Never. The Grammy Awards air Feb. 12 at 8 p.m. on CBS.