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59th Grammys

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For some reason, I look forward to the Grammys every year. I know they’re a joke. I know they represent the worst of the industry. I know it’s just an exploitive ploy for winter ratings. But I still look forward to them every year, and I continue to carve out time each February to sit through the ridiculously long broadcast even though it baffles me more than it entertains me. I’m a glutton for punishment I guess, but also a hopeless idealist who believes in what they could be.

Sadly, there’s no quick fix for the Grammys. The eligibility period, the “tributes,” the voting criteria, the sheer number of awards; it’s all troubling and can make your head hurt if you really think about how bad it’s gotten, though you have to wonder if it was ever that good when you look at past winners (cough-Christopher-cough-Cross-cough). Despite all of this though, it’s still a chance to look back on a year of music, celebrate some deserving artists, and make a lasting memory or two, and it’s always been this way even at its worst moments.

I wanted to share my thought on this year’s ceremony before it happens — who should have been nominated, who shouldn’t have, my picks to win. I didn’t dive into every category — 84 this year! — but I did touch down on the 27 I felt comfortable commenting on, which includes the big four as well as pop, rock, country, R&B, and some others. Below all that is my full predictions for this year’s Grammys, with plenty of educated guesses because I’m far from an expert on Gospel. Take a look at it all below and I’ll be back Monday with some additional thoughts as well as a tally on what I got wrong and right compared to a ballot full of guesses courtesy of my wife Sarah (who will probably beat me handily).

Record Of The Year

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Drone Bomb Me” – ANOHNI
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Work” – Rihanna
Who Should Win: “Formation” – Beyonce
Who Will Win: “Hello” – Adele

Time for the yearly lesson on the difference between Record and Song to the Grammys. Song Of The Year is for song itself and is reserved for the songwriter. Record Of The Year is for the recording of a song/performance and is reserved for the artist, producers, et cetera. People get smug detailing this, but think about it this way: in the Country, Rock, Rap, and R&B categories, it’s split up as Song and Performance, instead of Song and Record. So yeah, a little confusion is warranted, especially since the nominations tend to just duplicate themselves in both categories.

Anyway, this year’s Record Of The Year nominees… kind of uninspired outside of “Hello” and “Formation,” two powerhouse songs that deserve the adulation. “Work” is not even the fourth or fifth best song on Rihanna’s record, though it was a huge hit. Bieber seems there to placate a younger audience, as does “7 Years” which also serves as its “outlier” pick though it’s hardly that. I really wish both Record Of The Year and Song Of The Year would embrace the dark horse nomination like Album Of The Year has over the last few years. It could have helped spread the music of someone like ANOHNI around and maybe even given the artist her first Grammy. Probably not though, this is Adele’s and Beyonce’s to lose and while I could see Lukas Graham stealing it, it’s pretty much a lock that Adele’s vocal performance is going to take this home, even if “Formation” dwarfs it.

Album Of The Year

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Blackstar – David Bowie
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Views – Drake
Who Should Win: Lemonade – Beyonce
Who Will Win: A Sailor’s Guide To Earth – Sturgill Simpson

Super surprised Bowie’s last record wasn’t nominated here, considering how beloved he is and how the record dominated end-of-the-year lists. Yes, it produced no hit, but that seems like splitting hairs considering the statement it made about his career. The fact that a terrible record like Views was put up only fuels my surprise and slight anger. Chalk it up to Grammys being Grammys, I guess. Anyway, I think the real smart money would be on Adele winning this. Yes, Lemonade was, by all accounts, a superior record that was more ambitious and more impactful, but 25 surely earned its nomination and isn’t a horrible choice to win. Despite that, I think the voting body is going to go in another direction this year a la Beck and Arcade Fire. Sturgill just has a background and sound that speaks much more to the traditional vibe the Grammys loves to honor (see the ugly Album Of The Year winners of the 2000s). While Sturgill’s record was underrated and deserving of attention, it’s going to be a bittersweet victory if it happens because it’s clear it wasn’t a better record than 25 or Lemonade, or even dozens that weren’t nominated in its place.

Song Of The Year

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Cranes In The Sky” – Solange
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “I Took A Pill In Ibiza” – Mike Posner
Who Should Win: “Formation” – Beyonce
Who Will Win: “Hello” – Adele

I get why people love the context of that Posner song and he is an overlooked songwriter, but come on — Song Of The Year? Over “Cranes In The Sky?” Anyway, the same thoughts and arguments can be made here that I made above so I won’t go into much detail except to add that I wouldn’t be surprised to see Lukas Graham steal this one from Adele, but not both and I think the smart money is still on Adele to topple Beyonce for a myriad of reasons, one of which has to be the blackness of “Formation” that still seems to rub people the wrong way.

Best New Artist

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Lucy Dacus
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Maren Morris
Who Should Win: The Chainsmokers
Who Will Win: The Chainsmokers

In today’s age, this is the most ridiculous Grammy category. From its obfuscation of the word “new” to its ignorance of history and reputation, every year just ends up a head-scratching affair with no real rhyme or reason offered. There have been some ridiculous collection of nominees over the last few years, but this one has to take the cake starting with Maren Morris. “When was her recording debut,” you may ask. 2005. “That seems odd,” you may reply. “Maybe it was just a one-off like Katy Perry/Katy Hudson. When did her next album come out?” 2007. “Yeah, that’s no good. So they’re nominating her based on her third record?” Fourth, her third record came out in 2011. “Yeah, I’m out.”

Chance The Rapper is similarly an egregious nominee considering the adulation Acid Rap received, while Anderson .Paak’s long list of guest appearances dating back to 2009 just doesn’t exist in the Grammys’ eyes apparently. Kelsea Ballerini and The Chainsmokers are the closest to being actual new nominees, though the former had a hit country song in 2014 and the latter began aggressively climbing the charts in 2015. Excluding all but these two though, it’s very clear The Chainsmokers should win and they probably will, given the monumental year they had in 2016. Even if we factor in the others though, the group — like them or love them — has an extremely strong case for winning this award considering how quickly they cemented themselves in the public consciousness.

Best Pop Solo Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Pillowtalk” – Zayn
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Hold Up” – Beyonce
Who Should Win: “Hello” – Adele
Who Will Win: “Hello” – Adele

I’m not a fan of “Pillowtalk,” but it seems left out here. On the other hand, “Hold Up” is a great song and one of 2016’s absolute best, but it feels weird to throw Beyonce out into so many different categories for a record that was nominated for Urban Contemporary. In that vein, her inclusion her is just unwarranted and could have been rectified by either removing her from Urban or simultaneously nominating her for Pop Vocal Album. Anyway, “Hello” should dominate the Pop category and most likely will. I could see Ariana Grande snatching it from her as a small possibility, but neither Clarkson nor Bieber have the quality or sheer impact to knock Adele off here.

Beat Pop Duo/Group Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “This Is What You Came For” – Rihanna & Calvin Harris
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Work” – Rihanna
Who Should Win: “Stressed Out” – Twenty One Pilots
Who Will Win: “7 Years” – Lukas Graham

I expressed my thoughts on “Work” above, but of these, “Stressed Out” or “Closer” have the best case to win, though I think “Cheap Thrills” and “7 Years” would be considered the favorites to me, with Lukas Graham getting a slight edge.

Best Pop Vocal Album

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Illuminate – Shawn Mendes
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: This Is Not Acting – Sia
Who Should Win: 25 – Adele
Who Will Win: 25 – Adele

Again, Adele’s to lose here and I don’t see any of the nominees bumping her or even coming close. Meanwhile, of the nominees, I would have swapped Shawn Mendes in with Illuminate if only because it’s weird the Grammys didn’t use this year to celebrate his success. Giving up a spot would be Sia who just had a disappointing album with a surprise hit it seemed. It was nothing like her last record, while everyone else’s seemed to be usual work.

Best Rock Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Dark Necessities”
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “The Sound Of Silence” – Disturbed
Who Should Win: “Blackstar” – David Bowie
Who Will Win: “Blackstar” – David Bowie

Look, I do think Grammys should celebrate live recordings more, but a Conan appearance? Come on, this Distrubed nomination is a joke. I’m also going to throw out that I was extremely surprised Red Hot Chili Peppers didn’t get a nod for either song category considering how well-received their return single was, and how strongly it charted on the rock side of things. Of the actual nominations, it’d be a massive upset and shock if anything but Bowie won here.

Best Rock Song

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Red Hot Chili Peppers – “Dark Necessities”
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Highly Suspect – My Name Is Human
Who Should Win: Radiohead – Burn The Witch
Who Will Win: Radiohead – Burn The Witch

Had Radiohead been up for performance, I might have changed my last sentence because the Grammy voters do love themselves some Radiohead and “Burn The Witch” sounds just like the classic Radiohead song. Bowie has a strong case to win here, but I do slightly prefer the Radiohead song. Meanwhile, Highly Suspect? Really?

Best Rock Album

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Lucy Dacus – No Burden
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Death Of A Bachelor – Panic! At The Disco
Who Should Win: Magma – Gojira
Who Will Win: California – Blink-182

That Gojira record is crazy good, and I don’t even like the genre that much. Meanwhile, the other records range from meh to terrible so it should be a no-brainer for someone paying attention, but for recognition and return status, I can see Blink-182 stealing this. As for what should have been nominated, it’s hard to tell what wouldn’t cross over into alternative, but No Burden is a rock record true and true so why not?

Best Alternative Music Album

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Skeleton Tree – Nick Cave And the Bad Seeds
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Iggy Pop – Post Pop Depression
Who Should Win: Blackstar – David Bowie
Who Will Win: Blackstar – David Bowie

Part of me wants to lambast the Grammys for nominating Iggy Pop in this category, but I believe Bowie is deserving of not just nomination, but the award itself. I would say Bowie’s award had impact and Pop’s didn’t, but that seems exploitive of his death when Pop’s record was fairly well-received all things considered. It’s a weird conversation, but Pop’s record just doesn’t seem to belong in this mix. I could see Radiohead sneaking away with this one, considering past voting habits, but I feel like they’re going to have to do something big for Bowie and this one seems apt. Meanwhile, Skeleton Tree should have been nominated, but come on — nothing that dark is ever going to get celebrated by the Grammys.

Best R&B Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Kiss It Better” – Rihanna
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated:
Who Should Win: “Cranes In The Sky” – Solange
Who Will Win: “Needed Me” – Rihanna

As much as people lambast the rock category, R&B gets it just as wrong with the words “traditional” and “urban contemporary” thrown out like they actually mean something. All it does is expose the Grammys more for having an outdated view on music. On the nominations itself, I guess it’s not too odd that Rihanna got nominated for two different songs in R&B Song and Performance, but “Kiss It Better” is miles ahead of “Needed Me” and most songs on ANTi so it really should have been nominated here. Meanwhile, no offense to Ro James, but “Permission” is just out of place here. I’d love to see Solange win here if only for the image of her and her sister holding Grammys together, but I think the crowd is going to skew towards Rihanna here who continues to rack up the awards at these events.

Best R&B Song

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Cranes In The Sky” – Solange
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Exchange” – Bryson Tiller
Who Should Win: “Kiss It Better” – Rihanna
Who Will Win: “Kiss It Better” – Rihanna

Regardless of how you view song versus performance, “Cranes In The Sky” should have gotten in here. Even if it did get the nomination though, “Kiss It Better” is a better song (and performance) in my eyes. It’s just a blistering track that should have replaced “Work” in all these categories, but oh well.

Best Urban Contemporary Album

Who Should Have Been Nominated: A Seat At The Table – Solange
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Ology – Gallant
Who Should Win: Lemonade – Beyonce
Who Will Win: Lemonade – Beyonce

Scoffing again at the idea of urban contemporary. Technically, A Seat At The Table missed the cut-off date, but so did “Cranes In The Sky” and they nominated that with no explanation so why not celebrate this record? All the records nominated here are actually great, but if I had to pick one to bump for Solange, it’d sadly be Gallant. As it stands though, amongst these soulful giants, Lemonade is very clearly the best and the rightful winner.

Best Rap Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Black Beatles” – Rae Sremmurd
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Pop Style” – Drake
Who Should Win: “No Problem” – Chance The Rapper
Who Will Win: “Panda” – Desiigner

“Hotline Bling” should be the only thing celebrated from Views and that’s not originally from that record. This isn’t hyperbole either — Views is lyrically that bad with only the production saving it from being an all-time dud. Also, I barely even like “Black Beatles” and think it’s exclusion is deplorable. Seriously, that had critical and commercial success… what’s the deal? In the same vein, this is Desiigner’s to lose, though it’s painfully apparent “No Problem” was the year’s best rap song when you factor out Tribe Called Quest for missing the cut-off.

Best Rap/Sung Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Am I Wrong” – Anderson .Paak
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Famous” – Kanye West
Who Should Win: “Freedom” – Beyonce
Who Will Win: “Ultralight Beam” – Kanye West

Don’t care who you are — no one should ever be nominated in the same category twice for a plethora of reasons ranging from “give someone else a chance” to “it could seriously split voters in an unfortunate way.” Of the two, “Famous” is clearly the lesser song and one I don’t think society has any business praising, but that’s a point for another day. As it stands, I wonder how low Kanye has fallen in his peers’ eyes over the last year, and not just because of the Trump stuff. He’s clearly troubled, but Pablo still had bright moments like “Ultralight Beam” which I can see splitting this award and the next with “Hotline Bling.” Of the two, it seems more right for Performance to go to Kanye and Song to go to Drake so here we are.

Best Rap Song

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Black Beatles” – Rae Sremmurd
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Famous” – Kanye West
Who Should Win: “No Problem” – Chance The Rapper
Who Will Win: “Hotline Bling” – Drake

Pretty much all repeated thoughts from the last two categories except I want to reiterate my distaste for “Famous” and my shock over the absence of “Black Beatles.”

Best Rap Album

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Atrocity Exhbition – Danny Brown
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Views – Drake
Who Should Win: Coloring Book – Chance The Rapper
Who Will Win: Coloring Book – Chance The Rapper

Again, Views was utterly terrible, while Atrocity Exhibition was simply tremendous. On to the rest, this award boils down to Kanye versus Chance and I have to give the edge to Chance here. Even if Kanye hadn’t damaged his brand so much last year, I still think Chance would take this one considering how un-polarizing his music is, despite being equally as bold and imaginative as any of Kanye’s records.

Best Country Solo Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Brace For Impact (Live A Little)” – Sturgill Simpson
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Blue Ain’t Your Color” – Keith Urban
Who Should Win: “My Church” – Maren Morris
Who Will Win: “Vice” – Miranda Lambert

Sturgill getting snubbed from all song/performance categories just seems wrong considering he’s up for Album Of The Year. Actually, when you look at the people who got in over him here, it’s even worse. Of the actual nominees though, I think “My Church” is a career defining song that deserves celebration while “Vice” is a good song that will most likely be relegated to the tail-end of a greatest hits mix. But it’s Miranda Lambert and she is quite awesome so I don’t see anyone besting her in this category.

Best Country Duo/Group Performance

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Daddy Lessons” – Beyonce & Dixie Chicks
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Different For Girls” – Dierks Bentley & Elle King
Who Should Win: “Jolene” – Pentatonix & Dolly Parton
Who Will Win: “Jolene” – Pentatonix & Dolly Parton

Come on, Dolly Parton joining a celebrated a capella group covering her best song? This is one of the safest picks of the goddamn night. Meanwhile, the less said about Dierks Bentley and Elle King on the same song, the better.

Best Country Song

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Brace For Impact (Live A Little)” – Sturgill Simpson
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Humble And Kind” – Tim McGraw
Who Should Win: “My Church” – Maren Morris
Who Will Win: “Vice” – Miranda Lambert

Same exact thoughts as Country Solo Performance, with McGraw and Urban being practically interchangeable in my mind.

Best Country Album

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Midwest Farmer’s Daughter – Margo Price
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Ripcord – Keith Urban
Who Should Win: A Sailor’s Guide To Earth – Sturgill Simpson
Who Will Win: A Sailor’s Guide To Earth – Sturgill Simpson

Considering Stapleton won off of mimicking Sturgill, I can’t see him losing this one, though the appeal of celebrating a late career Loretta Lynn is strong. Meanwhile, Keith Urban’s collection of exploitive, wannabe pop songs should never be considered “best” anything. Not one album in his career comes close to Margo Price’s debut, and considering the respect Jack White has, its exclusion was very telling about what the Grammy voters think about the country genre.

Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Sing Street
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Suicide Squad
Who Should Win: Straight Outta Compton
Who Will Win: Amy

Sing Street was a collection of awesome original tracks and era-defining songs, while Suicide Squad is as cluttered and scattered as the movie itself. You tell me what’s right here. It’d be nice to see the Academy recognize a movie that got so viciously overlooked last year, but I think Amy Winehouse’s troubled legacy is going to sway more than enough people here.

Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media

Who Should Have Been Nominated: Arrival
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Stranger Things Volume 2
Who Should Win: Stranger Things Volume 1
Who Will Win: Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Remember the whole split-vote thing I talked about earlier? This is a category where I think it’s going to matter because people could split their votes considering how the Stranger Things soundtracks are structured, which could result in both losing by a landslide. Combine the split-vote thing with the fact that it’s John freakin’ Williams and I think it’s a safe bet Star Wars takes this one home.

Best Song Written For Visual Media

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Drive It Like You Stole It” – Sing Street
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Purple Lamborghini” – Skrillex
Who Should Win: “Can’t Stop The Feeling” – Justin Timberlake
Who Will Win: “Can’t Stop The Feeling” – Justin Timberlake

Again, no Sing Street? “Drive It Like You Stole It” was a jam! Seems weird to really complain though because Timberlake winning this is perhaps the most guaranteed thing to happen at the Grammys this year.

Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical

Who Should Have Been Nominated: The Social Experiment
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: Ricky Reed
Who Should Win: Max Martin
Who Will Win: Max Martin

Really, this award is just Max Martin (Justin Timberlake, Ariana Grande, Pink, Katy Perry, Adele, Nicki Minaj) versus Greg Kurstin (Sia, Sean Paul, Adele, Ellie Goulding, Tegan And Sara). A part of me really thinks Kurstin should get it alone on the strength of “Hello” and Love You To Death, but Max Martin’s work also includes Adele and three other monumental hits from last year so you have to give him the edge. Meanwhile, I continue to be completely underwhelmed by Ricky Reed, and would have really liked to see The Social Experiment recognized.

Best Music Video

Who Should Have Been Nominated: “Daydreaming” – Radiohead
Who Should Not Have Been Nominated: “Upside Down & Inside Out” – OK Go
Who Should Win: “Formation” – Beyonce
Who Will Win: “Formation” – Beyonce

Considering the scope of the music video, it’s crazy “Daydreaming” was overlooked, while I’m as tired as everyone from OK Go’s antics. Their music is underrated and they’re definitely creative, but every new video just seems like a desperate attempt to reinsert themselves into the conversation… and it’s not even getting close. Meanwhile, “Formation” was such a landmark release that I don’t think anyone can overlook it, even the mercurial Grammy voters.

Full Predictions

Record Of The Year: “Hello” – Adele
Album Of The Year: A Sailor’s Guide To Earth – Sturgill Simpson
Song Of The Year: “Hello” – Adele
Best New Artist: The Chainsmokers
Best Pop Solo Performance: “Hello” – Adele
Beat Pop Duo/Group Performance: “7 Years” – Lukas Graham
Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album: Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin – Willie Nelson
Best Pop Vocal Album: 25 – Adele
Best Dance Recording: “Don’t Let Me Down” – The Chainsmokers
Best Dance/Electronic Album: Skin – Flume
Best Contemporary Instrumental Album: Culcha Vulcha – Snarky Puppy
Best Rock Performance: “Blackstar” – David Bowie
Best Metal Performance: “Dystopia” – Megadeth
Best Rock Song: “Burn The Witch” – Radiohead
Best Rock Album: California – Blink-182
Best Alternative Music Album: Blackstar – David Bowie
Best R&B Performance: “Needed Me” – Rihanna
Best Traditional R&B Performance: “Can’t Wait” – Jill Scott
Best R&B Song: “Kiss It Better” – Rihanna
Best Urban Contemporary Album: Lemonade – Beyonce
Best R&B Album: BJ The Chicago Kid – In My Mind
Best Rap Performance: “Panda” – Desiigner
Best Rap/Sung Performance: “Ultralight Beam” – Kanye West
Best Rap Song: “Hotline Bling” – Drake
Best Rap Album: Coloring Book – Chance The Rapper
Best Country Solo Performance: “Vice” – Miranda Lambert
Best Country Duo/Group Performance: “Jolene” – Pentatonix
Best Country Song: “Vice” – Miranda Lambert
Best Country Album: A Sailor’s Guide To Earth – Sturgill Simpson
Best New Age Album: Dark Sky Island – Enya
Best Improvised Jazz Solo: I Concentrate on You” – Brad Mehldau
Best Jazz Vocal Album: Sound Of Red – René Marie
Best Jazz Instrumental Album: Country For Old Men – John Scofield
Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album: MONK’estra, Vol. 1 – John Beasley
Best Latin Jazz Album: Entre Colegas – Andy González
Best Gospel Performance/Song: “God Provides” – Tamela Mann
Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song: “Thy Will” – Hillary Scott & The Scott Family
Best Gospel Album: Losing My Religion – Kirk Franklin
Best Contemporary Christian Music Album: Love Remains – Hillary Scott & The Scott Family
Best Roots Gospel Album: Various Artists – God Don’t Never Change – The Songs Of Blind Willie Johnson
Best Latin Pop Album: Similares – Laura Pausini
Best Latin Rock, Urban Or Alternative Album: Amor Supremo – Carla Morrison
Best Regional Mexican Music Album (Including Tejano): Tributo A Joan Sebastian Y Rigoberto Alfaro – Mariachi Divas de Cindy Shea
Best Tropical Latin Album: Conexión – Fonseca
Best American Roots Performance: “Ain’t No Man” – The Avett Brothers
Best American Roots Song: “Wreck You” – Lori McKenna
Best Americana Album: True Sadness – The Avett Brothers
Best Bluegrass Album: Coming Home – O’Connor Band With Mark O’Connor
Best Traditional Blues Album: Live At The Greek Theatre – Joe Bonamassa
Best Contemporary Blues Album: Everybody Wants A Piece – Joe Louis Walker
Best Folk Album: Factory Girl – Rhiannon Giddens
Best Regional Music Album: It’s A Cree Thing – Northern Cree
Best Reggae Album: Ziggy Marley – Ziggy Marley
Best World Music Album: Walking In The Footsteps Of Our Fathers – Ladysmith Black Mambazo
Best Children’s Album: Novelties – Recess Monkey
Best Spoken Word Album (Includes Poetry, Audio Books And Storytelling): M Train – Patti Smith
Best Comedy Album: Talking For Clapping – Patton Oswalt
Best Musical Theater Album: Waitress – Jessie Mueller
Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media: Amy – Salaam Remi & Mark Ronson
Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media: Star Wars: The Force Awakens – John Williams
Best Song Written For Visual Media: “Can’t Stop The Feeling” – Justin Timberlake
Best Instrumental Composition: “Bridge Of Spies (End Title)” – Thomas Newman
Best Arrangement, Instrumental Or A Cappella: “Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds” – John Daversa
Best Arrangement, Instruments And Vocals: “The Music” – Alan Broadbent
Best Recording Package: Blackstar – Jonathan Barnbrook
Best Boxed Or Special Limited Edition Package: Tug Of War – Simon Earith & James Musgrave
Best Album Notes: The Complete Monument & Columbia Albums Collection – Mikal Gilmore
Best Historical Album: The Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 12 – Steve Berkowitz & Jeff Rosen
Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical: Blackstar – David Bowie, Tom Elmhirst, Kevin Killen & Tony Visconti
Best Engineered Album, Classical: Reflections – Morten Lindberg
Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical: Max Martin
Producer Of the Year, Classical: David Frost
Best Remixed Recording, Non-Classical: “Nineteen Hundred And Eighty-Five” – Timo Maas & James Teej
Best Surround Sound Album: Primus & The Chocolate Factory – Les Claypool
Best Orchestral Performance: Ibert: Orchestral Works – Neeme Järvi
Best Opera Recording: Handel: Giulio Cesare – Giovanni Antonini
Best Choral Performance: Janáček: Glagolitic Mass – Edward Gardner
Best Chamber Music/Small Ensemble Performance: Reflections – Øyvind Gimse, Geir Inge Lotsberg & Trondheimsolistene
Best Classical Instrumental Solo: Daugherty: Tales Of Hemingway – Zuill Bailey
Best Classical Solo Vocal Album: Shakespeare Songs – Ian Bostridge
Best Classical Compendium: Wolfgang: Passing Through – Judith Farmer & Gernot Wolfgang
Best Contemporary Classical Composition: Winger: Conversations With Nijinsky – C. F. Kip Winger
Best Music Video: “Formation” – Beyonce
Best Music Film: Lemonade – Beyonce

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