Grammys preview: Which artists will snag the top prizes?


Ruby Rosenquist

The trophy, a miniature version of a gilded gramophone, acts as a memento for winners of this prestigious title and launches them into an exclusive stratosphere with the likes of Stevie Wonder, Rihanna and Amy Winehouse.

Ruby Rosenquist, Staff Reporter

The 65th annual Grammy Awards, broadcasting live from Los Angeles on Feb. 5, released a list of nominees for this year’s ceremony in November. The ballot for Album of the Year is stacked with star-studded names — including a female powerhouse, a lyrical genius and a flute-playing diva. 

Presented by the Recording Academy, the Grammys recognizes outstanding achievements in the music industry. The trophy, a miniature version of a gilded gramophone, acts as a memento for winners of this prestigious title and launches them into an exclusive stratosphere with the likes of Stevie Wonder, Rihanna and Amy Winehouse. 

This year, Beyoncé has the most nominations with nine, followed closely by Kendrick Lamar with eight, Brandi Carlile and Adele with seven and Mary J. Blige, DJ Khaled and Harry Styles with six. Each of these artists received a nod in the award to beat all others: Album of the Year.

Below, I’ll hash out the Recording Academy’s faves and misses for the biggest award of the night.

Leading the pack, with 28 Grammys already under her belt, Beyoncé is likely to make history in the music industry once again. Just when you thought Beyoncé could not get any better, she surprised us with her futuristic, dance-pop album “RENAISSANCE”. An incredible body of work, Beyoncé’s album infuses pop, reggae, soul, R&B, electronic and disco tunes to create a seamless masterpiece that seems to get better with each listen. This album pays homage to Beyoncé’s career path so far, screaming with intention and pride.

As of now, Beyoncé is tied with Jay-Z for the most Grammy nominations of all time. It is very likely that she will win at least four of the nine categories that she is nominated in, easily picking up low-profile trophies in the Dance/Electronic and R&B categories. However, if she does not end up winning any of her nominations, she’ll still have plenty of time to set a daunting record for future generations.

Coming straight from left field is Brandi Carlile, whose story may not be familiar to the youth of today. Nevertheless, her folk rock style resonates with many individuals. “In These Silent Days” was Carlile’s seventh studio album to date, and it did not disappoint her devoted audience. The singer-songwriter sounds assured and often content when tackling sore subjects. The breathtaking harmonies and jaw-dropping acoustics support the narratives. The final product undoubtedly surpasses her previous album “By The Way, I Forgive You”. 

“You and Me On The Rock” is one of the most popular songs from the album. She dedicated the heartwarming ballad to her struggles as a parent. As she wrote the bulk of her album during quarantine, there is an abundance of emotion and passion. This song is honest about isolation during the pandemic, emphasizing the importance of depending on your partner. Carlile’s loyalty to her Indie roots has earned her extra respect from the Recording Academy.

However, Kendrick Lamar, who told us in 2017 to “be humble” and “sit down”, is very close on her heels. The artist continues to explore his musical abilities by rapping in great detail about the trauma that he has experienced in his lifetime. 2022’s “Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers”, one of Lamar’s most personal and raw albums yet, immerses the listener in death, cancel culture, fatherhood struggles, toxic relationships, abuse and mental illness — a platform for the artist to vent about his frustration and guilt. 

The rap star has won 14 Grammys already but has never received an award for Album of the Year, despite previous nominations in the category. In fact, he was nominated as a feature artist in Beyoncé’s Lemonade album and a leading contributor to the Black Panther soundtrack. His name is out there, as he has multiple credits in popular works, but will he ever be Top Dawg? That answer is hard to predict.

What can be said is that the Recording Academy pays very close attention to public opinion. In 2022, the Grammy Awards was held without assistance from the Recording Academy. Voters from a closely knit community in the music industry were able to contribute to the ultimate decision. That year, the artists nominated for Album of the Year were primarily pop stars. However, the R&B album “We Are” by Jon Batiste ended up beating out big names such as Doja Cat, Justin Bieber, Billie Eilish and Olivia Rodrigo. This was a surprise to many viewers at home because it proved that, even without the committee, voters do not always default to the most popular hits. 

Ultimately, the public’s voice alongside the committee’s support of lower-profile music, seems to offer all the nominated artists a fair chance at winning. This year, that trend should favor Mary J. Blige and Adele, whose soulful music styles appeal to a wide range of audiences. But what does this mean for the most listened-to artists of the year? “As It Was” by Harry Styles emerged as the most streamed song globally in 2022, followed closely by Bad Bunny with “Me Porto Bonito” and “About Damn Time” by Lizzo. Despite being polar opposites, their styles have proven wildly popular across the United States. However, the likelihood of any of these solo acts winning is low. 

On the other hand, bands have not had a victorious history in the Album of the Year category. With ABBA and Coldplay also nominated, will their creative collaboration be enough to secure the win? It is clear to me that, although they are masters at their craft, the award should be gifted to an individual artist. In my opinion, Beyoncé has the “it” factor. She has continuously built up her reputation as the Queen B and deserves to have her name on that trophy. 

It is true that all of the nominated artists have worked tirelessly to compose this music — the only peculiar contestant for Song of the Year being DJ Khaled, whose “another one” catchphrase is stuck in everyone’s heads. In my eyes, Brandi Carlile and Kendrick Lamar are the only people that are close to beating Beyoncé. Next on the pyramid is Lizzo and Harry Styles, leaving Mary J. Blige, Adele, Bad Bunny, ABBA and Coldplay hanging onto the bottom rung. Go ahead and place your bets, but we all know that Beyoncé is going to eat up the other contestants and leave no crumbs.