The Grammy Nominations Are Coming: Can You Feel The Excitement?

noah | December 3, 2008 12:00 pm

Tonight, the Grammys try to stoke some excitement for their February broadcast—and the record industry in general—with an hour-long nomination special featuring Taylor Swift, John Mayer, the Foo Fighters (above), and Christina Aguilera, among others. We’ll be right here at 9 p.m. ET—right before the Victoria’s Secret Cross-Promotional Chance To Show Cleavage In Prime Time—to liveblog the whole affair, and to switch the channel to Top Chef as soon as possible once everything’s over. To whet your appetite for this year’s festivities, and to stoke a little argument, I’ve placed a few predictions regarding the big categories after the jump. (Warning: Lots of Coldplay ahead!)

RECORD OF THE YEAR Leona Lewis, “Bleeding Love”: Because it sounds like something Whitney would have recorded back in the day, or something Mariah should have put on E=MC2. Plus, it was completely inescapable.Alicia Keys, “No One”: Even I am unable to resist that “oh-oh-oh-oh-oh” breakdown at the end. So, thanks to this song being relegated to the R & B categories last year, I forgot that it had already been nominated. But can we say that “Like You’ll Never See Me Again” will take its place? Yes? OK. Coldplay, “Viva La Vida”: The closest thing to a U2 song this year can rustle up. Plus, that iTunes ad was so pretty! Katy Perry, “I Kissed A Girl”: Typing this pains me on every level. But it’ll probably get at least one nod thanks to its running-everyone-over success. Lil Wayne, “A Milli”: Ha ha, just kidding. But wouldn’t a big old medley with everyone who ever laid down a verse over the track really shake up this year’s ceremony?

SONG OF THE YEAR Alicia Keys, “No One” “Like You’ll Never See Me Again”: She’s an artist, you know. Leona Lewis, “Bleeding Love”: If this song doesn’t get nominated in both “big song” categories, I will be shocked. Coldplay, “Viva La Vida”: The closest thing to a U2 song this year can rustle up. Jason Mraz, “I’m Yours”: A slow-burn hit by a singer-songwriter? Sure, why not. Yael Naim, “New Soul”: Yeah, I know—an iTunes one-hit wonder who will probably be a punchline on Best 2008 Ever soon enough. But I have a weird feeling about this one.

ALBUM OF THE YEAR Coldplay, Viva La Vida: The obvious choice, and the likely winner. Hope Chris Martin has his extra hand-Sharpies ready! Radiohead, In Rainbows / The Eagles, Long Road Out Of Eden: Two rock heavyweights, two big retail stories of last autumn (don’t forget how Billboard changed its rules on single-store exclusives in the wake of Eden‘s success). Paired because probably only one of them will get a nod. (And it’ll probably be the damn Eagles.) Alicia Keys, As I Am: She should get points off for that awful bit of James Bond-branded yelling her and Jack White tried to pass off as a song earlier this year, but alas. Ne-Yo, Year Of The Gentleman: I’m totally showing my cards here, because I love this album, but I really do think that its maturity and top-notch songwriting will fare well with voters. And don’t underestimate the fact that it actually hung in there, sales-wise. Metallica, Death Magnetic: This album seems to be showing up on lots of year-end “best-of” lists by people who don’t specialize in writing about metal, which would seem to be something of a leading indicator, no? Plus, everyone loves a good “we’re sorry” story.

BEST NEW ARTIST Duffy: We’ve been over this already. Leona Lewis: The last gasp of the old model. Adele: A dark horse, sure, but the overwhelming response to her Saturday Night Live appearance a few months back makes me wonder if her overall presence doesn’t get a lot of people right in the gut. (19 is actually quite good.) Estelle: Shine is actually her second album, but technicalities like that never seemed to matter to Grammy voters before. Plus, Shine is kind of awesome. Santogold: As Dan noted, her self-titled album is becoming the 2008 equivalent of Play, for better or worse. And having friends in the business certainly can’t help her getting at least a nod.

BEST ALTERNATIVE MUSIC ALBUM Radiohead, In Rainbows: Well, duh. Kind of pointless to list the other nominees, because there’s no way this doesn’t win this category, right? Unless there’s a sudden groundswell for Gnarls Barkley, although I’d think that they’ll probably get tossed a lot of music-video related love instead:

(Pity the song doesn’t really go anywhere, eh?)

51st Grammy Awards [CBS.com]