The Grammys are anyone’s game as music A-listers descend on Vegas | Showbiz

The 64th Grammy Awards will take place in Las Vegas on Sunday. —Photo Reuters

LAS VEGAS, April 1 — Music’s biggest names will gather on Sunday to honor their own at the Grammys, now in their 64th year, with pop juggernauts joining jazzman Jon Batiste as the main nominees.

This year’s gala will take place in Las Vegas for the first time, after organizers postponed the original January 31 event due to a rise in Covid-19 cases, then moved it from Los Angeles to America’s gambling capital.

The field is wide open, especially after the Recording Academy once again expanded the top four categories, this time to include 10 nominees, in a bid to improve diversity.

The timing of the Grammys just a week after Will Smith stunned the world by slapping Chris Rock onstage at the Oscars adds an extra layer of unpredictability to what is already generally one of the most bizarre nights on the showbiz awards circuit. .

Justin Bieber will be vying for eight trophies at the ceremony hosted by late-night host Trevor Noah, as will R&B favorite HER and singer-rapper Doja Cat.

Grammys darling Billie Eilish is up for seven awards. The same goes for Olivia Rodrigo, a former Disney Channel actress who exploded onto the pop scene last year with her smash hit. Drivers Licence.

Rodrigo, 19, landed the expected nods for his highly touted debut album Acidand is a close shoo-in to best new artist ― she takes on Eilish’s brother Finneas, rapper Saweetie, experimental pop group Japanese Breakfast and others.

Like Eilish in 2020, Rodrigo has the opportunity to sweep the top four categories, which would make him the third artist to do so.

But it’s Jon Batiste―the jazz and R&B artist and bandleader, who won an Oscar last year for his soundtrack to the Pixar animated film. Soul ― who has the best chance of winning Grammy gold, with 11 nominations, including two in the top categories.

The longtime musical director of the popular The Late Show with Stephen ColbertBatiste in recent years has established himself as a voice of social justice and protest.

The black artist born into a major New Orleans musical dynasty will compete primarily on the strength of his album We Are and its catchy single Freedom.

The leader of dormant nominations is also up for awards in areas spanning genre and medium, including R&B, Jazz, American Roots and Contemporary Classic, as well as nods for Best Music Video and his compositional work on Soul.

Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett, the beloved 95-year-old crooner, have a strong chance to add to their Grammys charts ― their album love for sale won six nominations.

Rodrigo, Eilish, Lil Nas X on stage

Kanye West scored several nominations for his album donda ― and will take on longtime nemesis Taylor Swift in the Album of the Year category, where she has her only shot at winning Grammy gold for “evermore.”

Swift did not submit Fearless (Taylor version) ― his 2021 re-recording of his 2008 album ― for Grammy consideration, having won four awards for the original in 2010.

Rap categories include West with Nas, J. Cole and Tyler, The Creator — but not Drake, who withdrew both of his nominations in December without explanation.

In the past, the Canadian number one had accused the Recording Academy, with which he fought for a long time, of classifying his music in the rap categories because he is black.

Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion will face off in the Best Rap Performance category, the only area in which the artists behind the “WAP” smash are up for grabs.

Korean pop juggernauts BTS scored a nomination in the pop categories for the huge commercial hit “Butter” – less than expected for the massively popular boy group who struggled to make inroads at the Grammys.

But BTS is expected to perform on the night watched as much for its showmanship as for the actual awards, as are Rodrigo, Eilish, Batiste, and HER with Lil Nas X.

West, who has five total nominations, was reportedly removed from the lineup due to his sometimes troubling behavior, but sources said he could still join the lineup at the last minute.

Mercurial West has been airing personal attacks on comedian Pete Davidson, who is dating West’s ex-wife, Kim Kardashian, for weeks.

The 44-year-old megastar was also banned from Instagram for 24 hours after he insulted Grammy host Noah, who said West was getting “more and more belligerent in the way he tries to get Kim back.” -AFP

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