Hip-hop continued its dominance among the nominations for the 2019 Grammy Awards with Kendrick Lamar and Drake leading the pack.
But women – including Atlanta residents Janelle Monae and (at least for now) Cardi B – asserted their visibility as well with nominations for the most prestigious of the awards, album of the year.
Lamar received a leading eight nominations for executive producing the soundtrack to “Black Panther,” while Drake factored in seven awards tied to his double album, “Scorpion.”
Stone Mountain native Donald Glover (as Childish Gambino)– who earned his first Grammy last year – scored another five nominations, including record and song of the year and best music video for his bracing “This is America.”
But while two of the most ubiquitous award show faces – Taylor Swift and Beyonce – were relegated to secondary categories (Swift’s “Reputation” has a lone nod for best pop vocal album and Beyonce’s collaboration with husband Jay-Z as The Carters picked up three quiet nominations for best R&B performance, best urban contemporary album and best music video), fresher female faces roared.
Monae’s inclusion in album of the year certifies the potency of her long-awaited “Dirty Computer” and Cardi B, given a trifling appearance with Bruno Mars at last year’s ceremony, storms the list with her “Invasion of Privacy” garnering album of the year and best rap album kudos, and straddles genres with her nominated performance in best pop duo/group with Maroon 5 (“Girls Like You”).
Also spotlighting the hometown is Chloe x Halle, the Atlanta-born sisters who opened for Beyonce and Jay-Z on their massive summer stadium tour and now will vie for best new artist (along with Luke Combs, Greta Van Fleet, H.E.R., Dua Lipa, Margo Price, Bebe Rexha and Jorga Smith) and best urban contemporary album for their debut, “The Kids are Alright.”
Some category changes were instituted for the 61st annual awards, airing live from the Staples Center Los Angeles on Feb. 10; up to eight nominees are eligible in the record, album and song of the year categories, as well as best new artist.
Neil Portnow, the outgoing president and CEO of the Recording Academy - which presents the awards - credited “reflection, reevaluation and implementation” as the “driving forces” to implement the alterations to the categories. The academy also installed a task force on diversity and inclusion and increased their efforts to enroll new members.
Those competing for record of the year along with Glover are Cardi B (“I Like It”), Brandi Carlile (“The Joke”), Drake (“God’s Plan”), Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper (“Shallow”), Kendrick Lamar and SZA (“All the Stars”), Post Malone with Atlanta’s 21 Savage (“Rockstar”) and Zedd with Maren Morris (“The Middle”).
Keeping pace with Monae and Cardi B for album of the year honors are Carlile (“By the Way, I Forgive You”), Drake (“Scorpion”), H.E.R. (“H.E.R.”), Malone (“Beerbongs and Bentleys”), Kacey Musgraves (“Golden Hour”) and Lamar (“Black Panther: The Album”).
And for song of the year, an award bestowed on the songwriter, Childish Gambino shares the category with Lamar and SZA (“All the Stars”), Ella Mai (“Boo’d Up”), Drake (“God’s Plan”), Shawn Mendes (“In My Blood”), Carlile (“The Joke”), Zedd with Morris (“The Middle”) and Lady Gaga with Cooper (“Shallow”).
As well, former President Jimmy Carter earned his ninth Grammy nomination – he’s won two – for best spoken word album for his book “Faith – A Journey for All,” released in March.
A full list of nominations can be found here.
Here is a look at the other Georgia nominees:
Childish Gambino: Record of the Year, Song of the Year, Best Rap/Sung Performance and Best Music Video (“This is America”); Best R&B Song (“Feels Like Summer”)
Janelle Monae: Album of the Year (“Dirty Computer” - Atlanta’s Nate “Rocket” Wonder is a producer/engineer and Nathaniel Irvin III a songwriter); Best Music Video (“Pynk”)
Chloe x Halle : Best New Artist; Best Urban Contemporary Album (“The Kids are Alright”)
Cardi B: Album of the Year and Best Rap Album (“Invasion of Privacy”); Record of the Year (“I Like It” – Atlanta’s Leslie Brathwaite is an engineer/mixer and Colin Leonard mastering engineer); Best Pop Duo/Group Performance with Maroon 5 (“Girls Like You”); Best Rap Performance (“Be Careful”)
Future: Best Rap Performance (“King’s Dead” with Kendrick Lamar, Jay Rock and James Blake); Best Rap Song “King’s Dead,” songwriter)
Backstreet Boys (Brian Littrell is an Alpharetta resident): Best Pop Duo/Group Performance (“Don’t Go Breaking My Heart”)
Swae Lee of Rae Sremmurd (featured): Best Rap Performance (“Sicko Mode” with Travis Scott, Drake and Big Hawk) and Best Rap Song (“Sicko Mode” – Atlanta’s Cydel Young is a songwriter)
Mike.Will.Made.It: Best Rap Song (“King’s Dead” - songwriter)
6lack (with J. Cole): Best Rap/Sung Performance (“Pretty Little Fears”)
21 Savage (featured): Record of the year and Best Rap/Sung Performance (Post Malone’s “Rockstar”)
Florida Georgia Line: Best Country Duo/Group Performance (“Meant to Be” with Bebe Rexha)
Little Big Town: Best Country Duo/Group Performance (“When Someone Stops Loving You”)
Freddy Cole: Best Jazz Vocal Album (“My Mood is You”)
Jimmy Carter: Best Spoken Word Album (“Faith – A Journey for All”)
April and Steven Lance Ledbetter, William Ferris: Best Historical Album (“Voices of Mississippi: Artists and Musicians Documented By William Ferris”)
Skylark: Best Choral Performance (Matthew Guard, conductor, “Seven Words From the Cross”), Best Immersive Audio Album (“Seven Words From the Cross”).
Whitney Houston: Best Music Film (“Whitney”)