Vulture’s 2019 Grammy Predictions

This yr’s Grammys are completely unpredictable. For the primary time in a very long time, the establishment, which has historically played favorites (irrespective of in the event that they’re the favored vote), has chucked the rule e-book and moved away from monolithic cultural optics. This yr, the Grammys have expanded their Big Four categories to eight nominees within the hopes a extra various area that higher displays what individuals are really listening to. What they’ve additionally achieved, although, is made the chances profitable much more a crapshoot than traditional. It’s not Adele versus Beyoncé, or Kendrick Lamar versus Jay-Z, or Taylor Swift versus everybody, however a fairer recreation with much less large canine and fewer outliers alike. How will this all shake out? No one is aware of! But we’ve made some educated guesses (and, er, some photographs in the dead of night) about who’ll acquire a shiny new gold toy. Check again on Sunday, February 10, to see how on (or laughably f) the mark we have been.

Album the Year
Invasion Privacy, Cardi B
By the Way I Forgive You, Brandi Carlile
Scorpion, Drake
H.E.R., H.E.R.
Beerbongs & Bentleys, Post Malone
Dirty Computer, Janelle Monáe
Golden Hour, Kacey Musgraves
Black Panther the Album, Various Artists

Who Will Win: If I have been a betting girl, I’d … keep far-off from this class as a result of I’d go broke. Its solely actual loser is rock’s waning relevancy — regardless of the expanded nominee pool, the style was fully shut out in favor extra rap, R&B, and nation. It’s doable Cardi B, Drake, and Post Malone will cancel one another out on the rap entrance. Meanwhile, Kendrick Lamar is a Grammy favourite, however by no means within the AOTY class (he’s a three-time loser there), which might both imply persevering with the custom him falling quick, or perhaps he’s lastly due. Working in opposition to him, although, is that it’s additionally unlikely soundtrack will win. It’s solely occurred 4 occasions in Grammy historical past. (We can determine that the Grammys will desperately angle for a feminine winner after the disastrous “step up” feedback that tainted final yr’s ceremony.) It’ll even be tough for newcomer H.E.R. — already the largest shock entry right here — to search out sufficient votes. That leaves Kacey Musgraves and Brandi Carlile as nation music’s representatives — however they could break up the vote — and Janelle Monáe. Given that Musgraves would possible be extra recognized to Grammy voters than Carlile, we’re most likely taking a look at a Musgraves-Monáe buzzer-beater. Both Golden Hour and Dirty Computer have been celebrated, career-shifting albums that topped year-end lists, so this might go both means. But I’ll give it to Musgraves, whose earlier Grammy wins might give her the slight edge.

Who Should Win: There has by no means been a tie in Album the Year historical past, however there have been a lot in different classes through the years (most just lately in 2016). The proper name in a race this evenly matched can be a three-way break up between Janelle Monáe, Kacey Musgraves, and Cardi B, an successfully balanced illustration the sounds the previous yr.

Song the Year
“All the Stars,” Kendrick Lamar and SZA
“Boo’d Up,” Ella Mai
“God’s Plan,” Drake
“In My Blood,” Shawn Mendes
“The Joke,” Brandi Carlile
“The Middle,” Zedd, Maren Morris, and Grey
“Shallow,” Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper
“This Is America,” Childish Gambino

Who Will Win: Before we get into it, right here’s your annual reminder that this award goes to the songwriters, not the performers. And a songwriter’s award may have a tough time ignoring the anthem written for a movie dedicated to songwriting integrity whose male lead huffs and puffs about what he considers to be trite pop songwriting about asses. So give it up for “Shallow,” y’all. Thankfully, Bradley Cooper wasn’t a author on the music so — spoiler! — you don’t have to fret that he’ll rise up there and piss himself.

Who Should Win: But if this was actually in regards to the best-written music the bunch, “The Joke” ought to run away with it. (A music that A Star Is Born’s Aly would’ve additionally positively written and Jackson “Real Country Music” Maine would’ve permitted , thanks very a lot.)

Record the Year
“I Like It,” Cardi B ft. Bad Bunny and J Balvin
“The Joke,” Brandi
“This Is America,” Childish Gambino
“God’s Plan,” Drake
“Shallow,” Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper
“All the Stars,” Kendrick Lamar and SZA
“Rock Star,” Post Malone ft. 21 Savage
“The Middle,” Zedd, Maren Morris, Grey

Who Will Win: In a world with any sense left, Cardi B would take this, as a result of who of their proper thoughts didn’t like “I Like It”? It’d additionally turn into the primary (principally) Spanish-language music to ever win this award, which ought to’ve already occurred final yr with “Despacito.” Don’t fuck this up once more, Grammys. (Interestingly although, if “Rockstar” have been to win, it’d be an opportune second for Post Malone to attract much more nationwide consideration to 21 Savage’s potential deportation, because it’s unlikely 21 will be capable of attend.)

Who Should Win: I stated what I stated.

Best New Artist
Chloe x Halle
Luke Combs
Jorja Smith
Dua Lipa
Bebe Rexha
Greta Van Fleet
Margo Price
H.E.R.

Who Will Win: Though she’s nonetheless a fresh face the SoundCloud generation whose literal face and id wasn’t even recognized till mid-2017, H.E.R. got here out nowhere to rack up 5 nominations. It’s clear that somebody on the Grammys is in her nook, which could make her the favourite even over greater names like Dua Lipa and Bebe Rexha. Or the Grammys may actually Grammy and provides it to the ever-polarizing band Greta Van Fleet for no logical motive, per custom on this baffling class.

Who Should Win: Though it’d be one other case the Grammys showing up late to the party, I’m inclined to say Dua Lipa. (She’s been placing out some the perfect pop hits her technology since 2015.)

Best Pop Solo Performance
“Colors,” Beck
“Havana” (Live), Camila Cabello
“God Is a Woman,” Ariana Grande
“Joanne (Where Do You Think You’re Goin’?)” Lady Gaga
“Better Now,” Post Malone

Who Will Win: It’s a troublesome name between Gaga and Ari — let’s not even talk about what the hell Post Malone is doing here — however Joanne is already a distant reminiscence to most individuals, Grammy voters possible included, whereas “God Is a Woman” is a more-recent powerhouse vocal efficiency.

Who Should Win: #JusticeForSweetener.

Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
Christina Aguilera and Demi Lovato, “Fall in Line”
Backstreet Boys, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart”
Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, “Shallow”
Maroon 5 and Cardi B, “Girls Like You”
Justin Timberlake and Chris Stapleton, “Say Something”
Zedd, Maren Morris, and Grey, “The Middle”

Who Will Win: Though it’ll be a slap within the face to the actual musicians within the class, Bradley Cooper’s most likely gonna be a Grammy winner thanks largely to his co-star Lady Gaga.

Who Should Win: This class is skinny — “Shallow” is smart.

Best Pop Vocal Album
Camila, Camila Cabello
Meaning Life, Kelly Clarkson
Sweetener, Ariana Grande
Shawn Mendes, Shawn Mendes
Beautiful Trauma, Pink
Reputation, Taylor Swift

Who Will Win: Now that the Taylor Swift’s reign appears to be over, there’s a pleasant probability Pink wins it right here. She’s a three-time loser on this class, and Beautiful Trauma is yet one more glorious album from probably the most veteran artist the bunch (“But We Lost It” our bodies all of your faves). It’s about time she will get some shine. Though, greater than possible, if Swift will get missed, Ariana Grande received’t.

Who Should Win: I’m with Pink, but in addition, nonetheless, #JusticeForSweetener.

Best Rap Performance
Cardi B, “Be Careful”
Drake, “Nice for What”
Kendrick Lamar, Jay Rock, Future, & James Blake, “King’s Dead”
Anderson .Paak, “Bubblin”
Travis Scott, Drake, Big Hawk, & Swae Lee, “Sicko Mode”

Who Will Win: Probably Kendrick if for no different motive than the Grammys owe him all of the reparations, but in addition as a result of, like, he positively freaked it.

Who Should Win: But “Sicko Mode” is the higher music, and it’s excessive time Travis bought some Grammy love.

Best Rap/Sung Collaboration
Christina Aguilera ft. Goldlink, “Like I Do”
6LACK ft. J. Cole, “Pretty Little Fears”
Childish Gambino, “This Is America”
Kendrick Lamar & SZA, “All the Stars”
Post Malone ft. 21 Savage, “Rockstar”

Who Will Win: It’ll be a toss-up between “This Is America” and “All the Stars.” But if music with a message is the tiebreaker, then it’s Childish Gambino’s to lose.

Who Should Win: I personally desire “All the Stars.”

Best Rap Song
Drake, “God’s Plan”
Kendrick Lamar, Jay Rock, Future, & James Blake, “King’s Dead”
Eminem, “Lucky You”
Travis Scott, Drake, Big Hawk, & Swae Lee, “Sicko Mode”
Jay Rock ft. Kendrick Lamar, “Win”

Who Will Win: If it doesn’t choose up Best Rap Performance, then I’m calling it for “Sicko Mode” right here. It wasn’t only one the perfect rap songs the 2018, however one the perfect songs interval.

Who Should Win: But — plot twist! — “Win” is even higher nonetheless. You can’t deny a music referred to as “Win” the win!

Best Rap Album
Invasion Privacy, Cardi B
Swimming, Mac Miller
Victory Lap, Nipsey Hussle
Daytona, Pusha T
Astroworld, Travis Scott

Who Will Win: Beyond the Big Four, Best Rap Album has more and more been the class to observe, and that’s by no means been more true than this yr. Mac Miller is a first-time Grammy nominee for an album launched previous to his demise final yr. The Grammys have at all times been a fan of a posthumous win, however they received’t merely acknowledge an artist as a result of their premature demise: I consider Miller will win as a result of Swimming was additionally extremely well-received, thought to be the work an artist simply settling into their prime, making his loss earlier than he may totally see that potential by all of the extra devastating. Miller was additionally a rapper’s rapper — a good friend to everybody within the trade who was extra well-connected and well-liked than most. It’s necessary to do not forget that whereas, sure, it’s true that a lot Grammy voting committees are overrun with older white males, theirs are usually not the one voices that matter. Miller will possible have a lot mates casting ballots, and that may simply be sufficient to present him the Grammy.

Who Should Win: Much as Miller deserves it, for so long as they’ve been within the recreation, Pusha T or Nipsey deserve it extra.

Best R&B Performance
Toni Braxton, “Long As I Live”
The Carters, “Summer”
Lalah Hathaway, “Y O Y”
H.E.R., “Best Part ft. Daniel Caesar]”
PJ Morton, “First Began”

Who Will Win: Since they appear to like her a lot, I’m predicting a H.E.R. win on this class. (The music can also be rattling good.)

Who Should Win: H.E.R. is smart.

Best Traditional R&B Performance
Leon Bridges, “Bet Ain’t Worth the Hand”
Bettye LaVette, “Don’t Fall Apart on Me Tonight”
Major, “Honest”
PJ Morton, “How Deep Is Your Love ft. Yebba]”
Charlie Wilson, “Made for Love ft. Lalah Hathaway]”

Who Will Win: No disrespect, however there isn’t a greater music on this class than “Bet Ain’t Worth the Hand.”

Who Should Win: As a card-carrying member the Leon Bridges hive, he will get all my votes.

Best R&B Song
Ella Mai, “Boo’d Up”
Miguel, “Come Through and Chill” ft. J. Cole and Salaam Remi]
Childish Gambino, “Feels Like Summer”
H.E.R., “Focus”
Toni Braxton, “Long As I Live”

Who Will Win: It’s positively not the most-known music the class, however there’s simply one thing about H.E.R. that the Grammys are obsessed with, so the sweep ought to stay intact.

Who Should Win: But if there’s anybody who’s going to sluggish her roll, it’s Ella Mai, whose “Boo’d Up” was one the largest R&B songs the final 5 years.

Best R&B Album
Sex & Cigarettes, Toni Braxton
Good Thing, Leon Bridges
Honestly, Lalah Hathaway
H.E.R., H.E.R.
Gumbo Unplugged Live, PJ Morton

Who Will Win: Again, that is H.E.R.’s style award to lose.

Who Should Win: But I’d give it to Leon Bridges.

Best Urban Contemporary Album
The Carters, Everything Is Love
Chloe x Halle, The Kids Are Alright
Chris Dave and the Drumhedz, Chris Dave and the Drumhedz
Miguel, War & Leisure
Meshell Ndegeocello, Ventriloquism

Who Will Win: I can’t see the Grammys fully denying Beyoncé and Jay-Z but once more (although they is perhaps put f by his comments on “Apeshit”). If bygones will be bygones, Everything Is Love will possible win.

Who Should Win: Too dangerous the higher album is definitely from Beyoncé’s label signees, Chloe x Halle.

Best Country Solo Performance
Loretta Lynn, “Wouldn’t It Be Great
Maren Morris, “Mona Lisas and Mad Hatters”
Kacey Musgraves, “Butterflies”
Chris Stapleton, “Millionaire”
Keith Urban, “Parallel Line”

Who Will Win: Just pull up a chair on the pre-broadcast particularly for Kacey Musgraves. She’s gonna be up there just a few occasions.

Who Should Win: I personally would’ve nominated “Slow Burn” right here, however nonetheless, Kacey all the best way.

Best Country Duo/Group Performance
Brothers Osborne, “Shoot Me Straight”
Dan + Shay, “Tequila”
Little Big Town, “When Someone Stops Loving You”
Maren Morris ft. Vince Gill, “Dear Hate”
Bebe Rexha & Florida Georgia Line, “Meant to Be”

Who Will Win: It most likely wasn’t meant to be a Grammy winner, however by some curse, “Meant to Be” virtually definitely will likely be because of it turning into a large hit final yr.

Who Should Win: But you’re mendacity when you say “Tequila” doesn’t slap more durable, regardless of it being a ballad.

Best Country Song
Cole Swindell, “Break Up within the End”
Maren Morris ft. Vince Gill, “Dear Hate”
Blake Shelton, “I Lived It”
Kacey Musgraves, “Space Cowboy”
Dan + Shay, “Tequila”
Little Big Town, “When Someone Stops Loving You”

Who Will Win: Without a doubt, Kacey Musgraves.

Who Should Win: “Slow Burn” remains to be higher, however get yours, Kacey.

Best Country Album
Unapologetically, Kelsea Ballerini
Port Saint Joe, Brothers Osborne
Girl Going Nowhere, Ashley McBryde
Golden Hour, Kacey Musgraves
From a Room: Volume 2, Chris Stapleton

Who Will Win: Must I say it once more? This is a Kacey Musgraves sweep.

Who Should Win: You get the purpose!

Best Rock Performance
Arctic Monkeys, “Four Out Five”
Chris Cornell, “When Bad Does Good”
The Fever 333, “Made an America”
Greta Van Fleet, “Highway Tune”
Halestorm, “Uncomfortable”

Who Will Win: This Grammy has gone to a posthumous winner for 2 years in a row — David Bowie and Leonard Cohen — so all indicators would say they’d make it a three-peat with Chris Cornell, who died in 2017. It helps that it’s additionally deserved.

Who Should Win: I’d additionally give it to Chris Cornell.

Best Metal Performance
Between the Buried and Me, “Condemned to the Gallows”
Deafheaven, “Honeycomb”
High on Fire, “Electric Messiah”
Trivium, “Betrayer”
Underoath, “On My Teeth”

Who Will Win: For no matter motive, the Grammys out of the blue have their ear to the bottom to the metallic that’s made waves in the previous few years as a substitute always solely saving reward for the previous guard. This is Deafheaven’s first-ever nomination, however I be ok with them taking it dwelling.

Who Should Win: But when you have been a scene child in, say, 2005, then you definately’re contractually obligated to root for Underoath profitable a Grammy virtually 15 years later.

Best Rock Song
Greta Van Fleet, “Black Smoke Rising”
Twenty One Pilots, “Jumpsuit”
Bring Me the Horizon, “MANTRA”
St. Vincent, “Masseduction”
Ghost, “Rats”

Who Will Win: In some elaborate troll, Greta Van Fleet.

Who Should Win: The gentle my life, Annie Clark (St. Vincent), one solely two solo ladies nominated on this entire trash pit a style area.

Best Rock Album
Alice in Chains, Rainier Fog
Fall Out Boy, M A N I A
Ghost, Prequelle
Greta Van Fleet, From the Fires
Weezer, Pacific Daydream

Who Will Win: In an much more elaborate troll, Weezer.

Who Should’ve Been Nominated within the First Damn Place: checks notes] Mitski or Snail Mail or Courtney Barnett or Cat Power or ….

Best Alternative Music Album
Arctic Monkeys, Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
Beck, Colors
Björk, Utopia
David Byrne, American Utopia
St. Vincent, Masseduction

Who Will Win: Welp, we all know the Grammys love Beck.

Who Should Win: Don’t insult me with this query. St. Vincent!

Best Dance Recording
Above & Beyond, “Northern Soul” ft. Richard Bedford]
Disclosure, “Ultimatum” ft. Fatoumata Diawara]
Fisher, “Losing It”
Silk City & Dua Lipa, “Electricity”
Virtual Self, “Ghost Voices”

Who Will Win: Diplo and Mark Ronson are the largest names right here, and although their supergroup, Silk City, is brand-new, it says rather a lot that they’re already nominated.

Who Should Win: You haven’t lived till you’ve gone Super Saiyan in your front room to “Northern Soul.”

Best Dance/Electronic Album
Jon Hopkins, Singularity
Justice, Woman
Si Tukker, Treehouse
Sophie, Oil Every Pearl’s Un-Insides
TOKiMONSTA, Lune Rouge

Who Will Win: I would like so badly to consider it’ll be Sophie.

Who Should Win: Go hearken to “Immaterial” on loop for a pair hours and also you’ll know the one true and proper reply is Sophie.

Best Song Written for Visual Media
Kendrick Lamar & SZA, “All the Stars”
Sufjan Stevens, “Mystery Love”
Miguel, “Remember Me ft. Natalia Lafourcade]”
Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper, “Shallow”
Keala Settle & the Greatest Showman Ensemble, “This Is Me”

Who Will Win: It’s quick on its strategy to an Oscar, so course “Shallow” will choose up just a few Grammys first. This is the one class the place a win is all however assured.

Who Should Win: #JusticeForSufjan

Producer the Year, Non-Classical
Boi-1da
Larry Klein
Linda Perry
Kanye West
Pharrell Williams

Who Will Win: The Grammys have a option to make: Forget Kanye West’s unapologetically non-PC yr and solely concentrate on his prolific manufacturing work to present him an accolade that’s lengthy been overdue or … do actually anything. If the latter, Pharrell, a two-time earlier winner on this class (solo and with the Neptunes) is a dependable favourite.

Who Should Win: After placing up extra MVP numbers with manufacturing work for everybody from Cardi B to the Carters to Drake, it’s about time Boi-1da bought a trophy.

Best Music Video
The Carters, “Apeshit”
Childish Gambino, “This Is America”
Joyner Lucas, “I’m Not Racist”
Janelle Monáe, “PYNk”
Tierra Whack, “Mumbo Jumbo”

Who Will Win: It was the most-talked-about video 2018 and the Grammys like to be a component the dialog, so “This Is America” is the possible winner.

Who Should Win: Aside from the inclusion that pathetic “I’m Not Racist” video, this class will get it almost completely right. The large names are onerous to disregard, however I’d like to see Tierra Whack take this one. I feel Beyoncé would agree visible movie is in a unique league than the remaining the nominees right here.