by Albert Rodriguez -
SGN A&E Writer
Adele should already have a bottle of champagne chilling at Staples Center. The British singer-songwriter (on the recovery trail from vocal cord surgery) is not only expected to perform on Sunday night's Grammy Awards, she's also widely picked to leave the arena with an armful of hardware, including three of the ceremony's top prizes. Other performers include Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band, Katy Perry, Jason Aldean with Kelly Clarkson, Coldplay with Rihanna, Nicki Minaj, Paul McCartney, Taylor Swift, Foo Fighters, Glen Campbell with Blake Shelton and the Band Perry, and Bruno Mars. Last-minute additions are sure to be announced, which might include Madonna and/or Lady Gaga. In total, 78 gramophones will be handed out this weekend, although a mere 10 (or fewer) are likely to be presented during the main broadcast (CBS, check local listings) - the slew of awards will be given at a pre-telecast ceremony. Fashionistas can watch the red carpet arrivals on the TV Guide, E!, or MTV channels. Here's a look at 10 categories going into music's biggest night on February 12.
Record of the Year nominees: 'Rolling in the Deep' - Adele, 'Holocene' - Bon Iver, 'Grenade' - Bruno Mars, 'The Cave' - Mumford & Sons, 'Firework' - Katy Perry
Will / Should win: Rolling in the Deep'
The only viable threat to 'Rolling in the Deep,' the Goliath of 2011's music singles, is Bon Iver's whispery ballad. Even then, this is the British chanteuse's award to lose.
Album of the Year nominees: 21 - Adele, Wasting Light - Foo Fighters, Born This Way - Lady Gaga, Doo-Wops & Hooligans - Bruno Mars, Loud - Rihanna
Will / Should win: 21
Grammy voters went commercial this year, choosing four humdrum recordings by big name artists to challenge the one credible nominee, Adele's 21. She'd win in any year, though it would've been nice to give her stiffer competition.
Song of the Year nominees: 'All of the Lights,' 'The Cave,' 'Grenade,' 'Holocene,' 'Rolling in the Deep'
Will win: 'Rolling in the Deep.'
Keeping score? Adele's three for three.
Should win: 'Holocene'
This is a songwriting award, and based on the composition (not the execution), the Wisconsin native's gorgeous, melancholy, and poetic entry is slightly more deserving.
Best New Artist nominees: The Band Perry, Bon Iver, J. Cole, Nicki Minaj, Skrillex
Will win: Nicki Minaj
Nobody had the kind of year Minaj did - she was everywhere, and continued that streak to a Super Bowl appearance with Madonna. It'll mark the first time a rap artist takes home this award.
Should win: Bon Iver or Nicki Minaj
Artistically, it belongs to Bon Iver. Then again, no one emerged onto the scene like Minaj. I'm swaying both ways.
Best Pop Duo/Group Performance nominees: 'Body and Soul' - Tony Bennett & Amy Winehouse, 'Dearest' - The Black Keys, 'Paradise' - Coldplay, 'Pumped Up Kicks' - Foster the People, 'Moves Like Jagger' - Maroon 5 & Christina Aguilera
Will win: 'Body and Soul'
The Grammys never miss an opportunity to laud dead people (e.g., Roy Orbison, Ray Charles, Luther Vandross), and paired with veteran jazz crooner Bennett (who's still alive and kicking, surprisingly), the odds heavily favor this award going to last year's greatest loss: Winehouse.
Should win: 'Pumped Up Kicks'
I loves me some Black Keys, but how can I go against one of 2011's catchiest tunes?
Best Dance/Electronica Album nominees: Zonoscope - Cut Copy, 4x4=12 - Deadmau5, Nothing But the Beat - David Guetta, Body Talk Pt. 3 - Robyn, Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites - Skrillex
Will win: Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites
With multiple nominations, including Best New Artist, the L.A. dubstep whiz has his best shot here.
Should win: 4x4=12
Here's hoping the more experienced and polished turntablist wins his first gramophone.
Best Alternative Music Album nominees: Bon Iver - Bon Iver, Codes and Keys - Death Cab for Cutie, Torches - Foster the People, Circuital - My Morning Jacket, The King of Limbs - Radiohead
Will / Should win: Bon Iver
It's Bon Iver for the gold unless Radiohead, a three-time champ in this category, pulls an upset.
Best Rap Album nominees: Watch the Throne - Jay-Z and Kanye West, Tha Carter IV - Lil Wayne, Lasers - Lupe Fiasco, Pink Friday - Nicki Minaj, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy - Kanye West
Will win: Watch the Throne
How can Grammy voters resist two hip-hop titans with bloated egos?
Should win: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
Self-inflated ego aside, West is unparalleled here.
Best Country Album nominees: My Kinda Party - Jason Aldean, Chief - Eric Church, Own the Night - Lady Antebellum, Red River Blue - Blake Shelton, Here for a Good Time - George Strait, Speak Now - Taylor Swift
Will win: Own the Night
Last year's celebrated trio probably has enough support to post a repeat victory. Aldean, however, skyrocketed to country fame in 2011 and could snag it.
Should win: Speak Now
Released at the tail end of 2010 and eligible by the September-through-October voting period, Swift's junior release was a wonderful, mature-sounding record. Hats off to Church, another deserving contender.
Best Folk Album nominees: Barton Hollow - The Civil Wars, I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive - Steve Earle, Helplessness Blues - Fleet Foxes, Ukulele Songs - Eddie Vedder, The Harrow & the Harvest - Gillian Welch
Will win: I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive
Veteran acts are regularly feted in this category, which doesn't bode well for anyone except previous winner Earle.
Should win: Helplessness Blues
The Seattle band finally got noticed, but pride is likely the only thing they'll bring home from the Staples Center.
Share on Facebook
Share on Delicious
Share on StumbleUpon!