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The same old story: the Grammy 2023 nominations

On Tuesday, the nominees for next year's Grammy Awards were announced. We can't say there were any big surprises, in fact we can see that there is nothing new under the sun, with previous years' Grammy favourites dominating the nominations.

Beyoncé scored the most nominations, with a total of nine in the three main categories: album of the year for ‘Renaissance’ and recording and song of the year for ‘Break My Soul’. This year’s total makes her the most nominated artist in Grammy history with 88 nominations, tied with her husband Jay-Z. Jay-Z also received five nominations this year for his work on “Renaissance” and DJ Khaled’s “God Did”.

The presence of Latin music was not as ground-breaking in the overall categories as some had expected. Bad Bunny was nominated for what many consider the most important award, Album of the Year, for his hit “Un Verano Sin Ti”, a feat achieved by few other non-English language albums since the Grammys began in the 1950s. That was the good news; the bad news is that Bad Bunny received only two nominations in total. Also disappointing was Rosalía’s omission, with her critically acclaimed Motomami album finally receiving just one nomination, in the Best Music Film category. Brazil’s Anitta was included in the Best New Artist field, as expected.

Kendrick Lamar is also a favourite with the Academy: he received eight nominations and will compete with Beyoncé for Album, Song and Record of the Year. Other nominees for Album of the Year include Abba, Brandi Carlile, Steve Lacy, Harry Styles, Lizzo, Doja Cat, Mary J. Blige and Adele.

In the category of Best New Artist, there is no clear favourite like Olivia Rodrigo was last year. The mix of genuinely new artists is interesting, but also includes some who have been around for a few years but may finally be “new” to Grammy voters: the aforementioned Anitta, Omar Apollo, Latto, Wet Leg, DOMi and JD Beck, Muni Long, Samara Joy, Molly Tuttle, Tobe Nwigwe, and 2021 Eurovision winner Måneskin.

Although the big categories for the 2023 Grammys are full of major pop hits, it seems inevitable that the narrative around next year’s show will eventually come down to Beyoncé and Adele. Although Beyoncé is the most awarded female performer in Grammy history, she has only won a major category once (for Song of the Year for “Single Ladies”) and feels particularly overdue for an Album of the Year award. The last time she had a great chance to win album, song or record of the year was in 2017 with “Lemonade” and “Formation”, but Adele ended up sweeping all three awards with “25” and “Hello”. (Adele even seemed to be discouraged at the time, and raved about Lemonade in part of her Album of the Year acceptance speech). We’ll be curious to see who wins next year.