Some 2008 Grammy Nominees Who Actually Cares About & Wants To Win (or Something)

I'm a strange one with my tastes in music for not caring for just all Top 40 (so I've been told by a few folks throughout the years), so if you don't win the office pool off of who I say should win the 2008 Grammy Awards, it ain't my fault.

However, if you DO win through checking the list out and contacting your friendly neighborhood bookie/loan shark/"this just fell of the truck" person, my cut is a mere 10% and a dinner at a restaurant where its $10 and above for an appetizer (eating at Quinzo's or Red Lobster once in a blue moon like it's a special occasion is NOT balling). :)

Anyway, it looks like a LOT (definitely more than normal) of this year's nominees are leaning towards the "mainstream" audience, big sales types with a few surprises here and there....

I'm going to show in bold who I think should be seriously considered for the win and write out my commentary on who the overall winner should be of the entire deal (so I hope).

I can't cover everything for 2 reasons:

Uno: There are genre categories I don't know terribly much about in regards to the artists, etc. to make anything worth commenting about in any sort of dept (classical, best surround sound, children's albums, cajun music/zydeco, bluegrass, new age, latin rock, etc.) or who just bored me this year (2008 rock and dance nominees are pretty much one big y-a-w-n).

Dos: There are MAD categories - even w/ this blog, the radio show and the 9 to 5, much less anything else resembling a "life", I'd be doing this forever.

If folks wants to check out the full list of Grammy Award nominees, click here.

Here we go for the ride...let me know what you think in the comments:

Album Of The Year:
Echoes, Silence, Patience & Grace -- Foo Fighters
These Days -- Vince Gill
River: The Joni Letters -- Herbie Hancock
Graduation -- Kanye West
Back To Black -- Amy Winehouse

Herbie's album is tight, but a real long shot in this pool - besides some jazz stations, it didn't get airplay like that at all. His being a living legend will give him some advantage, but that's about it. He'll probably cop that Best Jazz Album of the Year joint though and some of the other nominations in that category.

I think for the golden statue, it's going to be a dead heat between Kanye West and Amy Winehouse. Both of them should win and be in this category, but whomever does, its going to be for different reasons, unfortunately, not totally artistic.

Tie/Dead Heat: Amy & Kanye

Record Of The Year:
"Irreplaceable" -- Beyoncé
"Umbrella" -- Rihanna Featuring Jay-Z
"Rehab" -- Amy Winehouse

"The Pretender" -- Foo Fighters
"What Goes Around...Comes Around" -- Justin Timberlake

Dead heat for the ladies, its going to be a three way race, especially since all three songs were pretty much on blast at the same time during the year as summer hits.

Tie/Dead Heat: Beyonce (1st), Amy Winehouse (2nd) and Rihanna (3rd).

Nominees for Best Rap Song:
"Ayo Technology" - N. Hills, Curtis Jackson, Timothy Mosley & Justin Timberlake, songwriters (50 Cent Featuring Justin Timberlake & Timbaland)
"Big Things Poppin' (Do It)" - Clifford Harris & Byron Thomas, songwriters (T.I.)
"Can't Tell Me Nothing" - A. Davis & Kanye West, songwriters (Kanye West)
"Crank That (Soulja Boy)" - Soulja Boy Tell'Em, songwriter (Soulja Boy Tell'Em)
"Good Life" - A. Davis, F. Najm & K. West, songwriters (Kanye West Featuring T-Pain)

First off, if Soulja Boy wins, I'm going to wait for the frogs and locusts to start falling from the sky and the horizon to turn blood red because truly, the world will be on a time clock to end.

Or this means that too many of the old heads in the committee drank some Patron and started imitating the dance on YouTube and felt "young again". * rolls eyes *

Imagine THAT scenario: Wu-Tang Clan Grammys = 0; Soulja Boy Grammys = 1
* shudders at the record label A&R choices after this happens*

I dig the Kanye joints on this roster the most (T.I. and 50 Cent got nominated for the most medicore joints on their respective albums this year) and am riding with the better of the two with "Can't Tell Me Nothing".

Best Rap Album:
Finding Forever - Common
Kingdom Come - Jay-Z
Hip Hop Is Dead - Nas
T.I. vs T.I.P. - T.I.
Graduation - Kanye West

None of these are bad albums (especially in this year of "meh" joints) and all of them had some on point singles and individual tracks, but personally, I wasn't really driven crazy by any of them as a whole to the point of sweating any of these cats winning this category.

Its going to be a Chi-Town throwdown between Common and Kanye unless someone from the awards committee replaces "Hip-Hop Is Dead" with "Illmatic" for Nas and "Kingdom Come" with "Reasonable Doubt" for Jay-Z in the CD player.

Best New Artist:
Amy Winehouse

Taylor Swift

I don't know who Taylor Swift or Paramore is and I heard about Feist while getting a grande Caramel Apple Cider at Starbucks (because it was payday like that - the music is pretty decent).

Amy Winehouse will probably win since she's everywhere (whether singing really well or looking cracked out) but Ledisi's album is absolutely out of control talentwise and just did its thing a bit on the low - she could provide the upset.

Song Of The Year:
"Before He Cheats" - John Kear & Chris Tompkins, songwriters (Carrie Underwood)
"Hey There Delilah" - Tom Higgenson, songwriter (Plain White T's)
"Like A Star" - Corinne Bailey Rae, songwriter (Corinne Bailey Rae)
"Umbrella" - Shawn Carter, Kuk Harrell, Terius "Dream" Nash & Christopher Stewart, songwriters (Rihanna Featuring Jay-Z)
"Rehab" - Amy Winehouse, songwriter (Amy Winehouse)

It will be a crime if "Rehab" doesn't win. "Umbrella" will run as the main competition in this, but i see it being distant. I never listened to Plain White T's and Corinne Bailey Rae, while her music is nice and mellow, is mad sleepy time music - just doesn't grab me like that.

Best Urban/Alternative Performance:
"Make A Baby" - Vikter Duplaix
"That's The Way Of The World" - Dwele
"Daydreamin'" - Lupe Fiasco Featuring Jill Scott
"Fantasy" - Meshell Ndegeocello
"Dream" - Alice Smith

I like EVERYONE on this roster(a rare thing)...damn. I'm going to say its a dead heat between Dwele's song and Lupe & Jill Scott's "Daydeamin'" for this one.

Best Female R&B Vocal Performance
Just Fine - Mary J. Blige
When I See You - Fantasia
No One - Alicia Keys
If I Have My Way - Chrisette Michele
Hate On Me - Jill Scott

Jill Scott is an awesome talented lady, but this is the wrong song for this particular category to have been chosen, especially with the better songs that are on her recent album.

"When I See You" gets on my nerves and poor Fantasia had the bad end of the stick w/ singles pushed.

Mary J. and Alicia Keys just keep winning music trophies, so them getting it, while they had good singles, would be kind of anti-climatic.

Chrisette Michele should get the win as the underdog and so the talented sis can get some sales (Def Jam was damned sure were slow as hell pushing her album * cough * Jay-Z's Kingdom Come promotions took over, maybe? * cough *).

Best Male R&B Vocal Performance
Woman - Raheem DeVaughn
B.U.D.D.Y. - Musiq Soulchild

Because Of You - Ne-Yo
Future Baby Mama - Prince
Please Don't Go - Tank

Being a D.C. Metro born and raised native, I would like the hometeam to win with Raheem DeVaughn since he is so slept on (and "Woman" is a tight track).

Best R&B Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals
Same Girl - R. Kelly Featuring Usher
Disrespectful - Chaka Khan Featuring Mary J. Blige
Hate That I Love You - Rihanna Featuring Ne-Yo
Baby - Angie Stone Featuring Betty Wright
Bartender - T-Pain Featuring Akon

"Same Girl" was just a mess of a song, sorry. In the meantime, Rihanna and Ne-yo's joint was cute, but not that killin' it sort of vibe with the song.

I just don't think that the Grammy committee is bold/crazy enough to put T-Pain and Akon in the running realistically for "Bartender", with two duets with the top 10 of the best of the female New School R&B vocalists with the Old School.

Its going to be a slight edge of a win with Angie Stone & Betty Wright's "Baby" over Chaka and Mary J..

Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance
Walk A Mile In My Shoes - Otis Clay
All Night Long - Randy Crawford & Joe Sample
In My Songs - Gerald Levert
I Apologize - Ann Nesby

I Am Your Man - Ryan Shaw

My mother listens to The Tom Joyner Morning Show and the regular and kept telling me they played "In My Songs" over and over again (especially after Gerald Levert's passing - R.I.P.). I say that Gerald's song going to go for the win with some competition from Ann Nesby's dope performance of "I Apologize".

Best Contemporary R&B Album
Konvicted - Akon
Just Like You - Keyshia Cole
Fantasia - Fantasia
East Side Story - Emily King
Because Of You - Ne-Yo

Um...not really terribly excited about this group much....if I have to choose a winner, its going to lean towards the Akon, the "Nate Dogg - I'm Everywhere On Songs B****es 2008 Award" nominee and Ne-yo.

The Keyshia Cole album is still growing on me and Fantasia's joint was aiight, but that's about it. I can't give a heads up or down on Emily King since I haven't listened to the album yet (nice singles though).

Best R&B Album
Funk This - Chaka Khan
Lost & Found - Ledisi
Luvanmusiq - Musiq Soulchild
The Real Thing - Jill Scott
Sex, Love & Pain - Tank

Ledisi needs to win SOMETHING - if she doesn't get best artist, this award should do, especially with the artists on par in the roster (good enough to make it a real competition).

Her and Jill Scott's albums are the best of the bunch here and it going to go either way.

Best Rap Solo Performance
The People - Common
I Get Money - 50 Cent

Show Me What You Got - Jay-Z
Big Things Poppin' (Do It) - T.I.
Stronger - Kanye West

Common should grab this one up - the song is the strongest of the bunch rhyme and flow wise. "I Get Money" is typical 50, but then again, it was the best track on "Curtis" and this strong all-around single. Jay-Z kind of did an auto-pilot move with "Show Me What You Got" but it was pretty cool. "Meh" to "Big Things Poppin'".

I say Common for the common sense (ha) win, Jay-Z or 50 Cent for the "who do I see on TV everyday" contingent and/or "The Make Up Award For Not Giving You An Award for Your Best a.k.a. First Albums)".

Best Rap Performance By A Duo Or Group
Southside - Common Featuring Kanye West
Make It Rain - Fat Joe Featuring Lil Wayne
Party Like A Rockstar - Shop Boyz
Int'l Players Anthem (I Choose You) - UGK Featuring OutKast
Better Than I've Ever Been - Kanye West, Nas & KRS-One

UGK had the definitive joint of the year with "International Player's Anthem" and should win for just that reason, much less the passing of Pimp C (R.I.P.). I'm kind of shocked that the B-Boy contingent seemed to be reached out to with "Better Than I've Ever Been" and if UGK doesn't get it, Kanye West, Nas & KRS-One should grab it up.

Plus IMAGINE the speech KRS and Nas would would be a wrap and a half.

Other Quick Nomniee Notes:

Best Jazz: Terrance Blanchard & Dee Dee Bridgewater should win something in their categories...

Best Gospel: One of the Winans' family members will get an award (it seems to always happen that way), Smokie Norful has mad talent and "Never Gonna Break My Faith" with Aretha Franklin, Mary J. Blige and The Harlem Boys Choir would make a dry cat like Justice Clarence Thomas get the Holy Spirit (and should win). I also never knew there was a "Best Rock or Rap Gospel" category - learn something new every day.

Best Video: It's gonna be on two different extremes for the Long Form Video win with R. Kelly's "Trapped In The Closet" Saga-o-Rama (Lord Have Mercy) or "Liberacion - The Songs Of The New Cuban Underground", especially since Madonna is now boring as hell. Short Video will be a tie between Gnarls Barkley with "Gone Daddy Gone" and Johnny Cash's "God's Gonna Cut You Down".

Producer of the Year: Timbaland vs. Mark Ronson - anything else would be uncivilized like not having Grey Poupon

Best Song Written For Motion Picture, Television Or Other Visual Media: Prince should win just so we can see what he'll be wearing (and Happy Feet is that kiddie movie heat rock).

Pop: Beastie Boys, Ben Harper & The Innocent Criminals, Seal and Amy Winehouse should be taken seriously and that's it. Maybe Christina Aguilera (even though "Candyman" joint she's been nominated for was some old 1940s WWII sounding ish, she gets bonus points for DJ Premier producing 1/2 of her album and doing that "Back in the Days" track which was criminally slept on). If Fergie wins, someone needs to be beat upside the head with a Timbaland boot.


Anonymous said...

I'm pretty much i2i with you on this list but to be honest I haven't been excited about the Grammy Awards since I was in high school. I had no idea Alice Smith got a nomination--kudos to her.

DJ Fusion/FuseBox Radio Broadcast said...

What Up Florida,

Yeah, the Grammy's have been boring as all get out for a minute, but there were enough folk to get excited about for me to write this up (and a slow work day or 2 helped out a bit).

Alice Smith should win, but I dunno - her music is pretty fly. For the main lady underdog though, I have to run with Leidsi since her album is CRAZY and I had to damn near hit people upside the head with them to hear the joint.

Chrisette Michelle leads a close second - I just hope that Def Jam just regulates her to just "hook girl" status since she has so much more talent.

SupremeAntBee said...

WTF! at Soulja Boy even being nominated!!
They couldn't even be bothered to use his real name as the "songwriter." SMDH...
I don't bother watching or caring about the Grammys, haven't for a long long time.
I was just interested to see what Mary(DJ Fusion) had to say. I am appalled that they have had to break the nominations down into all these gotdamn categories. I'm glad to see people like Ledisi, Raheem, Dwele, Me'shell and Jill finally getting some recognition, but still, it's too damn bad they had to create new categories for them.

DJ Fusion/FuseBox Radio Broadcast said...

Hey There

I feel you on Soulja Boy - just seeing that nomination made my head hurt.

Phaorohe Monch (sorry if I spelled the name wrong - rushing to get out of work) can't even get his album promoted properly for it to go double platinum, but this dude gets 2 Grammy nominations.

SMH all around

And maybe I'm slow, but "Best Urban/Alternative Performance" is something I've never heard of in my life - I think it Grammy Committee decided this was the "where can we put these outside of the box, yet talented negroes without upsetting the status quo" category.

Yet its the one I'm most amped about. * shrugs *