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Sunday, February 3, 2008

2008 Grammy predictions and odds



I've been picking Grammy winners for several years now, and this year has been one of the most difficult, as there are several categories which are tossups. Here are my picks in some key categories. I'll add more categories as the week goes on.

RECORD OF THE YEAR
• Rehab, Amy Winehouse (3-2)
• Umbrella, Rihanna Featuring Jay-Z (3-1)
• Irreplaceable, Beyoncé (5-1)
• The Pretender, Foo Fighters (7-1)
• What Goes Around…Comes Around, Justin Timberlake (7-1)

Should win: Umbrella
Will Win: Rehab
This is a really tough call. Umbrella was the consensus choice for pop single of the year, but hip hop doesn't tend to win here. My gut says Rehab will win, if voters overlook Winehouse's personal problems. Beyonce probably has a shot since her non-threatening style has always made her a Grammy favorite. Even the Foo Fighters have an outside shot. The Academy loves them, and if the pop vote is split between the other four songs, the rock vote could carry them to a win. In recent years, rock acts have unexpectedly won this award a few times (Coldplay, Green Day, not to mention U2).

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
• Back To Black, Amy Winehouse (2-1)
• Graduation, Kanye West (3-1)
• Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace, Foo Fighters (10-1)
• These Days, Vince Gill (10-1)
• River: The Joni Letters, Herbie Hancock (100-1)

Should win: Graduation
Will win: Back to Black
What a sorry group of nominees. This should be a two-horse race between Amy and Kanye. Kanye has been close a couple of times, and the time seems right for him to breakthrough in this category, but I feel like the Academy will prefer Winehouse's retro style.

SONG OF THE YEAR (awarded to songwriter)
• Before He Cheats, Josh Kear & Chris Tompkins (1-1)
• Rehab, Amy Winehouse (2-1)
• Umbrella, Shawn Carter, Kuk Harrell, Terius "Dream" Nash & Christopher Stewart (5-1)
• Hey There Delilah, Tom Higgenson (10-1)
• Like A Star, Corinne Bailey Rae (50-1)

Should win: Hey There Delilah
Will Win: Before He Cheats
If there's an award Amy Winehouse doesn't win, this will be it. Before He Cheats has massive crossover appeal and is a decent bet to win here. Hey There Delilah is a great song but it's unlikely to contend. Corinne Bailey Rae's nomination is befuddling.

BEST NEW ARTIST
• Amy Winehouse (1-2)
• Feist (7-1)
• Taylor Swift (7-1)
• Paramore (100-1)
• Ledisi (150-1)

Should win: Taylor Swift
Will win: Amy Winehouse
This is the biggest no-brainer of this year's awards. I've been singing Taylor Swift's praises for months, and she has an outside shot, along with Feist, but it would be a major upset if Winehouse didn't take this one.

BEST FEMALE POP VOCAL PERFORMANCE
• Rehab, Amy Winehouse (1-1)
• 1234, Feist (3-1)
• Candyman, Christina Aguilera (5-1)
• Big Girls Don't Cry, Fergie (5-1)
• Say It Right, Nelly Furtado (8-1)

Should win: 1234
Will win: Rehab
If Winehouse wins all the other awards, she'll take this one too. Feist and Fergie have a shot.



BEST MALE POP VOCAL PERFORMANCE

• Belief, John Mayer (7-2)
• What Goes Around...Comes Around, Justin Timberlake (4-1)
• Dance Tonight, Paul McCartney (5-1)
• Amazing, Seal (6-1)
• Everything, Michael Bublé (9-1)

Should win: None
Will win: Belief
This is always a bizarre category, typically pitting young, trendy newcomers against fogeys like Neil Young and John Fogerty. This year is no different. The smart choice is Timberlake, but that wasn't his best song, and Mayer is beloved by the Academy. I'm going against conventional wisdom here and picking Mayer.

BEST POP VOCAL PERFORMANCE BY GROUP
• Window In The Skies, U2 (1-1)
• Makes Me Wonder, Maroon 5 (3-1)
• Hey There Delilah, Plain White T's (4-1)
• (You Want To) Make A Memory, Bon Jovi (8-1)
• Home, Daughtry (10-1)

Should win: Hey There Delilah
Will win: Window in the Skies
U2 doesn't lose at the Grammys, so even though I've never heard of this song, I'm quite certain it will triumph. If Daughtry wins, I'm slitting my throat.

BEST POP VOCAL COLLABORATION
• Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On), Robert Plant & Alison Krauss (5-2)
• Steppin' Out, Tony Bennett & Christina Aguilera (4-1)
• Give It To Me, Timbaland Featuring Nelly Furtado & Justin Timberlake (5-1)
• Beautiful Liar, Beyoncé & Shakira (7-1)
• The Sweet Escape, Gwen Stefani & Akon (10-1)

Should win: Give it to Me
Will win: Gone Gone Gone
Alison Krauss has won more Grammys than any woman in history. More than Diana Ross. More than Madonna. More than Aretha Franklin! But most of those came in country and bluegrass categories. Will she fare as well in the pop field? I'm guessing yes, but it's no guarantee.

BEST POP VOCAL ALBUM
• Back To Black, Amy Winehouse (3-2)
• Memory Almost Full, Paul McCartney (5-2)
• It Won't Be Soon Before Long, Maroon 5 (3-1)
• The Reminder, Feist (5-1)
• Lost Highway, Bon Jovi (15-1)

Should win: The Reminder
Will win: Back to Black
I feel weird predicting Winehouse to win 5 awards, because I don't think she'll get that many, but logically, this is another one she should take home. McCartney and Maroon5 could challenge.

BEST ELECTRONIC/DANCE ALBUM
• Sound Of Silver, LCD Soundsystem (1-1)
• We Are The Night, The Chemical Brothers (2-1)
• †, Justice (5-2)
• We Are Pilots, Shiny Toy Guns (10-1)
• Elements Of Life, Tiësto (10-1)

Should win: †
Will win: Sound of Silver
Justice's album was one of the freshest things in dance music this year, but LCD Soundsystem and the Chemical Brothers are more well-known names. All three are in serious contention here.

BEST SOLO ROCK PERFORMANCE
• Radio Nowhere, Bruce Springsteen (1-1)
• Only Mama Knows, Paul McCartney (2-1)
• Come On, Lucinda Williams (4-1)
• Timebomb, Beck (5-1)
• Our Country, John Mellencamp (6-1)

Should win: Radio Nowhere
Will win: Radio Nowhere
Holy crap, what a high-profile group of nominees. There isn't one song that couldn't win, and that's exceedingly rare at the Grammys. I list Springsteen as the favorite, though for some reason, Bruce has never gotten that "veteran rock band love" that so many others get at the Grammys. McCartney really hasn't either. Lucinda Williams and Beck are Grammy whores, and Mellancamp's song was the biggest hit, having been featured in truck commercials.

BEST ROCK PERFORMANCE BY A GROUP
• Icky Thump, The White Stripes (1-1)
• Working Class Hero, Green Day (2-1)
• Instant Karma, U2 (5-2)
• It's Not Over, Daughtry (7-1)
• If Everyone Cared, Nickelback (10-1)

Should win: Icky Thump
Will win: Icky Thump
I just said U2 never loses at the Grammys, but neither do Green Day, and since they're going to cancel each other out, the White Stripes will take this one.

BEST HARD ROCK PERFORMANCE
• The Pretender, Foo Fighters (1-3)
• Sick, Sick, Sick, Queens Of The Stone Age (8-1)
• Sweet Sacrifice, Evanescence (10-1)
• I Don't Wanna Stop, Ozzy Osbourne (12-1)
• The Pot, Tool (12-1)

Should win: The Pretender
Will win: The Pretender
The Foo Fighters have inexplicably been Grammy favorites for years, so this one's theirs without a doubt.



BEST ALTERNATIVE ALBUM
• Icky Thump, White Stripes (2-3)
• Neon Bible, Arcade Fire (2-1)
• Volta, Bjork (5-1)
• Alright, Still..., Lily Allen (6-1)
• Wincing the Night Away, The Shins (14-1)

Should win: Neon Bible
Will win: Icky Thump
An Arcade Fire win here would be excellent. A White Stripes win is much more likely.

BEST FEMALE R&B PERFORMANCE
• No One, Alicia Keys (1-2)
• Just Fine, Mary J. Blige (3-1)
• When I See You, Fantasia (5-1)
• Hate On Me, Jill Scott (9-1)
• If I Have My Way, Chrisette Michele (50-1)

Should win: No One
Will win: No One
Alicia's best song in years earns her yet another Grammy.



BEST RAP SOLO PERFORMANCE
• Stronger, Kanye West (1-2)
• Show Me What You Got, Jay-Z (4-1)
• The People, Common (10-1)
• I Get Money, 50 Cent (12-1)
• Big Things Poppin, T.I. (12-1)

Should win: Stronger
Will win: Stronger
This one's a slam dunk for Kanye.

BEST RAP ALBUM
• Graduation, Kanye West (1-4)
• Kingdom Come, Jay-Z (7-1)
• T.I. vs T.I.P, T.I. (10-1)
• Finding Forever, Common (13-1)
• Hip Hop is Dead, Nas (15-1)

Should win: Graduation
Will win: Graduation
Another slam dunk.

BEST COUNTRY ALBUM
• These Days, Vince Gill (1-1)
• It Just Comes Natural, George Strait (4-1)
• Let it Go, Tim McGraw (6-1)
• 5th Gear, Brad Paisley (7-1)
• Long Trip Alone, Dierks Bentley (20-1)

Should win: 5th Gear
Will win: These Days
Vince Gill won at least one Grammy every year of the '90s. Ten straight years. That's absurd! He wins again here, even though Brad Paisley was the most outstanding male country artist of 2007.

BEST SHORT FORM MUSIC VIDEO
• D.A.N.C.E., Justice (3-2)
• 1234, Feist (2-1)
• God's Gonna Cut You Down, Johnny Cash (5-2)
• Typical, Mute Math (4-1)
• Gone Daddy Gone, Gnarls Barkley (8-1)

Should win: D.A.N.C.E.
Will Win: D.A.N.C.E.
Whoever the Grammy music video voters are know what they're doing, because they always seem to make the right choice in this category. Justice has a slight edge here over Feist and Johnny Cash. All made brilliant videos that are deserving.

3 comments:

BeckEye said...

Ick. The Grammys are just a joke anymore. Although, it would be funny to see Amy Winehouse beat out Kanye West for album of the year, so he can go on another one of his tirades prompting a coked-up Amy to beat the living shit out of him.

Scott said...

That would be hilarious!

Kanye's tirades have almost become parodies at this point. And I doubt Amy will show up in person. But we can hope!

Bob the Butcher said...

The grammys always recognize talent over someone who keeps putting out the same alblum over and over again. Remember I called it The Pot will be yet another win for TOOL.....and the reason being...because they can't give them alblum of the year to them because they have to reward the payola crap that the major labels pay so much to put on the radio so the mindless can chant this years meaningless chants.