Jon Batiste could be the Grammy Biggest surprise: The multi-genre actor and recent Oscar winner made such an impression on voters that he garnered the most nominations with 11 on Tuesday.
Batiste won an album of the year award for “We Are” along with record of the year for “Freedom,” a feel-good ode to the city of New Orleans. His nominations span various genres including R&B, jazz, American-rooted music, classical music, and music videos.
Justin Bieber, Doja Cat and HER garnered the second-most nominations with eight when the Recording Academy finished announcing its nominees for its January 31 show. Billie Eilish and Olivia Rodrigo made seven nods.
Along with Batiste’s surprise dominance, another hit was The Weeknd garnering three nominations after the pop star claimed he would not allow his label to feature his music. Earlier this year, he angrily criticized the Grammys, calling them “corrupt.” after receiving zero nominations despite the biggest single of 2020, “Blinding Lights”.
Although The Weeknd said he would boycott the Grammy Awards in the future, he became a nominee for his work on album of the year projects, including the deluxe edition of Doja Cat’s “Planet Her” and Kanye West’s “Donda.” His third nomination was for his appearance on West’s single “Hurricane,” which also features Lil Baby.
“What I like is the fact that no one is thinking about what happened before, what was the controversy, what was the noise, or where was this artist making music last year,” said Harvey Mason jr., CEO of the Recording Academy. He said voters focused on “music excellence” when considering nominees like Batiste and Kacey Musgraves, whose work also intersects in different categories.
“Voters are really evaluating the music and are not getting caught up in the reputation of any other outside noise or the history of the artists,” he continued. “With that in mind, I think they are voting for things that they recognize as excellence.”
Mason said he was satisfied with the new peer-driven voting system. after seeing the list of nominees. He instituted the 10-3 initiative, which allows the more than 11,000 members of the academy to vote for up to 10 categories in three genders. All voters can vote for the top four prizes.
The new system replaced the anonymous nominations review committee, a group that determined key award contenders. Some claimed that committee members favored projects based on personal relationships and promoted projects that they favored and worked on.
Harvey knows the new voting system might not be perfect at first, but he believes the initiative will produce fair results in the long run.
“I know we didn’t get all of them perfect,” Harvey said. “I know there will be some people who will feel left out or that we missed a nomination here or there. That makes me sad because I don’t want anyone to have that feeling. But I feel like we are going in the right direction. I am satisfied with the way our voters did the job. “
For the first time, the academy expanded the number of nominees in the general field categories from eight to 10. The change impacts categories such as album, album, song of the year and best new artist.
Harvey said the academy increased slots in the general field categories after seeing an increase in voting turnout over the past year along with the acceptance of new member invitations and a high number of more than 21,730 entries submitted for consideration. Grammy.
“We thought the time was right,” he said. “We saw an opportunity to do what academia does, which is highlighting music, highlighting the industry and highlighting excellence more broadly. With the change in our voting structure, we do not have a nomination review committee. This gives our voters the opportunity to have their voices heard, but it also gives them the opportunity to have a larger group to draw from when it comes time for that winner to take home the Grammy. “
Other Album of the Year nominees include: Bieber’s “Justice (Triple Chucks Deluxe)”, Eilish’s “Happier Than Ever”, West’s “Donda”, Tony Bennett’s “Love for Sale” and Lady Gaga, Olivia’s “Sour” Rodrigo, “Sour” by Taylor Swift “always” and “MONTERO” by Lil Nas X.
Batiste, the bandleader for “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” was awarded an offer for best soundtrack in the visual media category for his work on Pixar’s “Soul,” which earned him an Oscar for best band. sonora earlier this year. Arriving Tuesday, he had three Grammy nominations, but has yet to win.
Batiste will compete for the record of the year against a group of candidates including “I Get a Kick Out of You” by Bennett & Gaga, “I Still Have Faith in You” by ABBA, “Peaches” by Bieber with Daniel Caesar and Giveon, Brandi Carlile “Just in Time”, “Kiss Me More” by Doja Cat with SZA, “MONTERO (Call Me by Your Name)” by Lil Nas X, “Driver’s License” by Rodrigo, “Happier Than Ever” by Eilish and Silk Sonic’s “Leave The Door Open”: Bruno Mars and Anderson’s super duo .Paak.
Jay-Z, who was nominated for three Grammy Awards on Tuesday, now has the most nominations of all time with 83. The 23-year-old Grammy award-winning rapper surpassed Quincy Jones, who has been nominated 80 times.