The 64th Annual GRAMMY Awards show has been moved to Sunday, April 3, at Las Vegas’s MGM Grand Garden Arena. We moved the show to a new location and updated the article below on January 18th.
If you’re a musician one of your ultimate goals should be to win the GRAMMY for Album of the Year. Competition for the top honors at the 64th GRAMMY Awards which will be held in 2022, will be fierce.
We Are by Jon Batiste, Love for Sale by Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga, Justice by Justin Bieber, Planet by Doja Cat, Happier by Billie Eilish, Back by H.E.R., Montero by Lil Nas X, Sour by Olivia Rodrigo, Evermore by Taylor Swift and Donda by Kanye West are all up for Album of the Year at the 2022 GRAMMY Awards.
Which artist will win the coveted gramophone trophy in this highly regarded field? Bennett, who has just left his mark on the world might be the one. How did Lil Nas X go from being a one-trick pony to a bona fide, out-and-proud pop star?
Maybe Olivia Rodrigo, is one of the few artists to successfully blend pop-punk, emo and indie pop. Maybe one of the other famous people on the list?
This article provides a list of the Album of the Year candidates for the upcoming 2022 GRAMMY Awards which will be held on April 3.
The GRAMMY Award nominations for the 2022 ceremony have been announced. Check out all of the nominees here.
Jon Batiste — WE ARE
The leader of Stay Human has released music in a variety of formats from film scores to an upcoming symphonic work to be performed at Carnegie Hall titled American Symphony.
“I’m involved in so many different types of things that so much of my life is balancing the number of things I have going on while maintaining artistic integrity and keeping my values intact,” he told GRAMMY.com in 2021. To sum up, a single presentation would be an enormous undertaking.
As an album artist, however, he is as creative and bright as ever, as evidenced by his genre-hopping 2021 release WE ARE which also features other rootsy, GRAMMY-honored greats such as PJ Morton, Trombone Shorty and the Hot 8 Brass Band.
It’s clear from songs like “FREEDOM,” “TELL THE TRUTH” and the album’s title track that this one-of-a-kind American talent isn’t just a jack-of-all-trades but can hone his many skills to perfection.
Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga, Love for Sale
Bennett, a vocal jazz titan and Frank Sinatra’s friend retired at the age of 95 due to his worsening Alzheimer’s disease. He has been performing professionally for more than seven decades.
The 18-time GRAMMY winner signed off with this elegant performance of Cole Porter standards with Lady Gaga who has won 12 times in her own right.
Bennett’s wife, Susan Benedetto, recently said in light of his diagnosis, “There’s a lot about him that I miss because he’s not the old Tony anymore.” However, “when he sings, he’s the old Tony.”
Gaga’s inspired counterpoint is a major reason why Love for Sale succeeds so well. It is the work of an American icon who is not fading away but rather going out on top.
Justin Bieber — Justice (Triple Chucks Deluxe)
The album Changes, released in 2020 was a major step forward for the once-cute teen-pop star. And if the sequel is any indication that trend won’t be slowing down anytime soon.
The two-time GRAMMY winner and fourteen-time nominee found his vocal range and platform in the spring of 2021’s Justice. He had moved beyond presenting himself as a “bad boy” or a “redeemed sinner” and was instead focusing on his art.
With songs like “As I Am,” “Hold On” and “Peaches,” Bieber delivered a message to the world that was both deeply personal and fitting for the unpredictable environment in which he came of age.
Doja Cat — Planet Her (Deluxe)
The undulating TikTok prodigy in a cow costume, Doja Cat, has broken through to the very top of the music industry making his rise to fame one of the more peculiar pop trajectories of recent memory. Even with the phenomenal success of Planet Her, she has not yet reached her full potential.
She has assembled a collection of pop delights, including “Payday,” “Need to Know” and “Kiss Me More” with the assistance of guests like Young Thug, Ariana Grande, the Weeknd, J.I.D. and SZA. Now that “Mooo!” is in the past and Doja Cat has released her massive debut album, the world is her oyster.
Billie Eilish — Happier Than Ever
No one could have predicted how far Eilish (and her talented brother FINNEAS) would take their sound after When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? but the seven-time GRAMMY winner ended up exploring territory no one could have predicted.
Happier Than Ever is a masterclass in candor, restraint and elegance featuring a dyed-blonde Billie on the cover and gems like “My Future,” “Your Power” and the title track in the grooves.
For some, the high point of Happyder Than Ever is the interlude “Not My Responsibility” in which Eilish has some choice words for the internet trolls who criticize her appearance. The song is a musical reflection of her IDGAF attitude in this new era which began with her viral Vogue cover story in May.
Are my shoulders an irritant to you? Does my upper torso look okay to you? Is my stomach me? Where are my hips?” she asks in a barely audible voice in the song. Is this not the body you envisioned for me at birth?
H.E.R. — Back of My Mind
H.E.R. fits the mold of a singer-songwriter-dancer-actor triple threat in the vein of Prince. Singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Gabriella Sarmiento Wilson can do it all. The four-time GRAMMY winner has finally released her audacious and revealing debut album Back of My Mind (her third Album of the Year contender overall).
Wilson told MTV News in 2021, “I often say things that I think we’re afraid to say.” To paraphrase, “I sing the things that are sometimes hard to articulate, the things that sit in the back of our minds that we don’t pay much attention to.”
She has found tremendous success in this spiritual endeavor with songs like “We Made It,” “Bloody Waters” and “Hold On” which speak to the struggles we all face.
Lil Nas X — Montero
Some people believed that after Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross collaborated on Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” and its various remixes, that was it for him and that his legacy would be hung on that one song in the same way that “Mambo No. 5” and “Incense and Peppermints” were.
Fortunately, that wasn’t the case and with the release of his debut album, Montero, the openly gay and Black rapper, singer and songwriter made his detractors eat crow.
Lil Nas X’s bright and emotional highlights like “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” “Industry Baby” and “That’s What I Want” show that he can go in many different directions musically all of which lead to the center of pop’s future.
Olivia Rodrigo — Sour
The success of a “Driver’s License” would be enough for any artist but Rodrigo was just getting started. It turns out that indie pop, pop-punk and emo along with all the other musical subgenres popular among the iPod generation are all fair game.
She was a fully formed artist by the time she turned 18 and her debut album, Sour, is a freewheeling, emotionally rending trip through all those styles and more.
Although Rodrigo has a wide range of musical inspirations—Paramore and Billie Eilish are just two examples—she is unmistakably her person. Furthermore, this is largely attributable to the wealth of sentimental nuance present in her music.
Telling Teen Vogue in 2021, “I hope people know that deep down, all that I do is write songs and talk about how I feel and that’s the most important thing to me,” Rodrigo expressed this sentiment. “I don’t think the rest of it matters too much.”
Taylor Swift — Evermore
Now that we’re well into Taylor’s Version era and still reeling from the 10-minute extended cut of “All Too Well,” it’s important to remember how revolutionary Folklore and Evermore were when they were released in 2020.
With Folklore, Swift first established her cottagecore aesthetic and honed her storytelling skills. Then with the assistance of frequent partners Aaron Dessner and Jack Antonoff, she embraced both even more fully.
To put it simply, we just couldn’t stop writing songs,” Swift wrote on social media. “To try to put it more poetically,” he continues, “it feels like we were standing on the edge of the folkloric woods and had a choice: to turn and go back or to travel further into the forest of this music.”
Evermore doesn’t suffer from sequelitis one iota as evidenced by gems like “Willow,” “No Body, No Crime” (featuring Haim), and “Coney Island” (featuring the National).
Kanye West — Donda
The likes of John Lennon, Kurt Cobain, and Kanye West come along once every few generations at most.
When all the rumors, tabloid drama and album delays involving Drake and other artists were finally put to rest, Donda was finally able to show its true colors. A Govinda-like seeker, Ye’s newest is a rambling, experimental ode to loss and God.
You can trace a fairly straight line from the bravado of “I’m pulled over and I got priors!” in “Jail” to the pleading for divine forgiveness in “Come to Life” which begins, “Come and purify me, come and sanctify me/ You the air that I breathe, the ultra-ultralight beam.”
The Full Nominee List for the 2022 GRAMMY Awards.
- 1 The GRAMMY Award nominations for the 2022 ceremony have been announced. Check out all of the nominees here.
- 1.1 Jon Batiste — WE ARE
- 1.2 Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga, Love for Sale
- 1.3 Justin Bieber — Justice (Triple Chucks Deluxe)
- 1.4 Doja Cat — Planet Her (Deluxe)
- 1.5 Billie Eilish — Happier Than Ever
- 1.6 H.E.R. — Back of My Mind
- 1.7 Lil Nas X — Montero
- 1.8 Olivia Rodrigo — Sour
- 1.9 Taylor Swift — Evermore
- 1.10 Kanye West — Donda