2015 was a great year for music, which means there is some serious competition for the 2016 Grammy Awards including great musicians and bands such as The Weeknd, Tame Impala, Miguel, Alabama Shakes and many more.
While there are dozens of categories, I’m mainly interested just a few. To keep this post from being too long, I’ll focus on Best Alternative Album, Best Country Album and Album of the Year.
Best Alternative Album: This year’s nominees for Best Alternative Album include “Sound and Color” by Alabama Shakes, “Vulnicura” by Bjork, “The Waterfall” by My Morning Jacket, “Currents” by Tame Impala and “Star Wars” by Wilco.
For this category I don’t have any definitive winner because two of the nominated albums were at the top of the list for my favorite albums of last year — “Sound and Color” and “Currents.” I love both these albums dearly, and they each have a very unique sound.
“Sound and Color” impressed me with its mix of soulful blues and sultry southern rock. Alabama Shakes experimented with their sound, and it worked really well for them.
“Currents,” on the other hand, is so smooth and danceable. Every song is catchy and makes you want to move. Tame Impala crafted the perfect alternative/indie album.
The other nominees are certainly good as well, but I’m hoping either Alabama Shakes or Tame Impala walk away with a Grammy.
Best Country Album: I’ll admit I’ve just started to pay attention to country music. The past year has been a great time for discovery in terms of country music finds, and unlike Best Alternative Album, I have a clear winner in mind for Best Country album. The nominees this year are “Montevallo” by Sam Hunt, “Pain Killer” by Little Big Town, “The Blade by Ashely Monroe, Pageant Material” by Kasey Musgraves and “Traveller” by Chris Stapleton.
“Traveller” is by far my favorite among the nominees because of its mix of classic country and southern rock. Stapleton made an excellent album reminiscent of the story-telling country music of old, and I think he’s definitely in the running for a Grammy this year.
Album of the Year: Nominees for Album of the Year are “To Pimp a Butterfly” by Kendrick Lamar, “Sound and Color” by Alabama Shakes, “Traveller” by Chris Stapleton, “1989” by Taylor Swift and “Beauty Behind The Madness” by The Weeknd.
Again, this category has some very strong contenders. Swift has won Album of the Year once before, but her competition is extremely tough.
“To Pimp a Butterfly” is wildly inventive and topped countless “Top albums of 2015” lists. “Sound and Color” was one of my personal favorites from last year as well as “Traveller” and “Beauty Behind The Madness.”
All in all though, I’m giving my top picks to Lamar or Alabama Shakes because musically speaking, these albums are the most diverse out of the nominees.
The 2016 Grammy Awards kick off Monday night at 5 p.m., and while it’s always fun to see who goes home with a Grammy, the lack of one doesn’t take away from an album or musician’s merit. Still, I hope some of my favorites get the recognition they deserve.