58 Reasons To Watch The GRAMMYs

Cool facts about the 58th GRAMMY nominees that will make rooting for your favorite artists more fun
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January 14, 2016 -- 12:23 pm PST
GRAMMY.com

So you've been hard at work binge studying the full list of 58th GRAMMY nominees. Now that you've sized up the entire GRAMMY field, we've dissected all 83 categories to bring you 58 interesting and informative factoids about this year's nominees that will help skyrocket your GRAMMY IQ near genius level. Read all 58 facts below.

1. Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick Lamar is the leading nominee for the 58th Annual GRAMMY Awards. The critically acclaimed rapper received 11 nominations, a total topped by only two artists in GRAMMY history. Michael Jackson received 12 nods for 1983, as did Babyface for 1996. 

2. Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift received noms for Album, Record and Song Of The Year. It's the second time she has achieved this sweep. She first accomplished it six years ago. Only one other female artist in GRAMMY history has received nominations in all three categories more than once. Mariah Carey achieved the triple play for both 1990 and 2005.

3. Max Martin

Max Martin co-produced two of the contenders for Record Of The Year — Taylor Swift's "Blank Space" and The Weeknd's "Can't Feel My Face." It's the first time in five years that one producer (or team of producers) has produced or co-produced two of the nominees in this category. The Smeezingtons (Bruno Mars, Philip Lawrence and Ari Levine) produced two of the 2010 nominees — Cee Lo Green's "F*** You" and "Nothin' On You" by B.o.B Featuring Bruno Mars.

4. Alabama Shakes

Alabama Shakes are nominated for Album Of The Year for Sound & ColorThe band received a GRAMMY nomination for Best New Artist three years ago. (Two other Album Of The Year candidates this year, Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar, are also past Best New Artist nominees.)

5. Ronald Isley

R&B legend Ronald Isley is a featured artist on Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp A Butterflya current Album Of The Year nominee. Isley received his first two GRAMMY nominations 46 years ago for the Isley Brothers' classic "It's Your Thing." The trio won for Best R&B Vocal Performance By A Duo Or Group.

6. Courtney Barnett

Courtney Barnett is vying to become the second Australian artist to win Best New Artist. Men At Work won for 1982.

7. Maroon 5

Maroon 5 are vying for their third award in the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance category. The Los Angeles-based quintet is nominated this year for "Sugar." The group won the 2005 award for "This Love" and the 2007 award for "Makes Me Wonder."

8. The Chemical Brothers, Skrillex

The Chemical Brothers and Skrillex are each contending to become the first three-time winner in the category of Best Dance/Electronic Album. The Chemical Brothers, nominated for Born In The Echoes, previously won for Push The Button and We Are The NightSkrillex, nominated along with Diplo for Skrillex And Diplo Present Jack Ü, previously won for Scary Monsters And Nice Sprites and Bangarang.

9. D'Angelo And The Vanguard

D'Angelo could be headed for his second award for Best R&B Album. He and the Vanguard are nominated this year for Black Messiah. He won the 2000 award for Voodoo. To date, only three artists have won multiple awards in this category. Alicia Keys has won three. John Legend and TLC have each won two.

10. Nicki Minaj

Nicki Minaj is vying to become the first female solo artist to win for Best Rap Album. She is nominated for The Pinkprint. Lauryn Hill shared the 1996 award in this category as a member of Fugees for The Score. (The title of Minaj's album is a nod to Jay Z's The Blueprint, which was a 2001 nominee in this category.)

11. Kacey Musgraves

Kacey Musgraves could become the first female solo artist to win twice in the category of Best Country Album. Musgraves is nominated this year for Pageant MaterialShe won two years ago for Same Trailer Different Park.

12. Joey Alexander

Joey Alexander, who is nominated for Best Jazz Instrumental Album and Best Improvised Jazz Solo, is just 12 years old. If the piano prodigy wins either award, he'll become the youngest individual artist to win a GRAMMY. The current record-holder is LeAnn Rimes, who was 14 1/2 when she won her first GRAMMY. (The Peasall Sisters were even younger when they won for their contribution to the O Brother, Where Art Thou? soundtrack. But they were a group.)

13. Emmylou Harris, Rodney Crowell

Emmylou Harris and Rodney Crowell could be headed for their second GRAMMY in three years in the Best Americana Album category. They're nominated this year for The Traveling Kind. They won two years ago for Old Yellow Moon. To date, Levon Helm is the only two-time winner in this category.

14. Empire: Season 1

Empire: Season 1 is nominated for Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media. It's vying to become the second television soundtrack to win in this category. The first was Boardwalk Empire: Volume 1, which won four years ago.

15. Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical

One thing's for sure: There will be a first-time winner for Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical. Three of the nominees (Jeff BhaskerDiplo and Larry Klein) have been nominated in this category once before (though they didn't win). The other two contenders, Dave Cobb and Blake Mills, are first-time nominees.

16. Lalah Hathaway

Lalah Hathaway is vying to win for Best Traditional R&B Performance for the second year in a row. She is nominated this year for "Little Ghetto Boy." She won last year as a featured artist on Robert Glasper Experiment's "Jesus Children." Only two other artists, Aretha Franklin and Beyoncé, have won twice in this category — and neither of them won in back-to-back years.

17. GRAMMY Creators Alliance

What do 58th GRAMMY nominees Kenny "Babyface" EdmondsCharles KelleyAdam Levine, and Ryan Tedder have in common? They are co-founders of the GRAMMY Creators Alliance, a collective established by The Recording Academy to help today's leading artists, songwriters and studio professionals form a powerful voice in shaping music's future.

18. Jay Mohr

Jay Mohr is a first-time nominee for Best Comedy Album for Happy. And A Lot. Should he emerge victorious, Mohr would become the fourth former "Saturday Night Live" cast member to win the category. The SNL cast alumni who have previously won Best Comedy Album are Jimmy Fallon, Chris Rock and Eddie Murphy. Mohr's SNL tenure ran from 1993–1995.

19. Roger Waters

Roger WatersThe Wall is nominated for Best Music Film. Pink Floyd's original recording of The Wall received a 1980 GRAMMY nomination for Album Of The Year. That album was voted into the GRAMMY Hall Of Fame in 2008.

20. Pharrell Williams

Pharrell Williams could be headed for his second consecutive award in the category of Best Music Video. The multitalented star is nominated this year for "Freedom." He won last year for "Happy." To date, Peter Gabriel is the only artist to win back-to-back awards in this category. He won the 1992 award for "Digging In The Dirt" and the 1993 award for "Steam."

21. Jimmy Carter

Jimmy Carter could become the first former U.S. President to win twice for Best Spoken Word Album (Includes Poetry, Audio Books & Storytelling). The 39th president is nominated this year for A Full Life: Reflections At Ninety. He won the 2006 award for Our Endangered Values: America's Moral Crisis. (Barack Obama won twice in this category before he became president.)

22. Keith Urban

Keith Urban is nominated in the category of Best Country Solo Performance for "John Cougar, John Deere, John 3:16." John Cougar, as the artist was then known, won a 1982 GRAMMY for Best Rock Vocal Performance, Male for "Hurts So Good." Urban won four GRAMMYs in the Best Male Country Vocal Performance category.

23. Big Sean

In addition to contending for his first career GRAMMY for "One Man Can Change The World," Big Sean is a curator for the fourth annual GRAMMY Amplifier, which provides aspiring artists with the opportunity to showcase their talent. The Detroit rapper — along with fellow 58th nominee Sam Hunt and Lzzy Hale of the GRAMMY-winning band Halestorm — will select the program's top three winners, who will be announced during GRAMMY Week.

24. Tamar Braxton

Tamar Braxton is a finalist for Best R&B Performance for "If I Don't Have You." This could be her first GRAMMY win. Braxton's older sister, Toni Braxton, has won seven GRAMMYs, including one just last year for Love, Marriage & Divorce, a collaboration with Babyface. It was voted Best R&B Album.

25. Björk

Björk is vying to become the second female solo artist in a row to win Best Alternative Music Album. She's nominated for Vulnicura. Last year the award went to St. Vincent for her eponymous album. Only one other female solo artist has won in the category — Sinéad O'Connor, who took the 1990 award for I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got.

26. James Bay

Englishman James Bay is a finalist for Best New Artist. Another Englishman, Sam Smith, won the award last year. If Bay wins, this will be the second time that artists from England have won in this category in successive years. Amy Winehouse and Adele won for 2007 and 2008, respectively.

27. "Girl Crush"

"Girl Crush" is nominated for Song Of The Year. The song, co-written by Hillary Lindsey, Lori McKenna and Liz Rose, could become the second song written by an all-female songwriting team to win in this category. The first was "Bette Davis Eyes," the 1981 winner, which was co-written by Jackie DeShannon and Donna Weiss. (Four female songwriters have won the award solo: Carole King, Julie Gold, Alicia Keys, and Amy Winehouse.)

28. "See You Again"

"See You Again" from Furious 7 is nominated for Song Of The Year. It's the first film soundtrack song in 12 years to receive a nom in the category. "Lose Yourself" from 8 Mile was a 2003 nominee. Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth co-wrote their hit "See You Again" with Andrew Cedar and Justin Franks. Eminem co-wrote "Lose Yourself" with Jeff Bass and Luis Resto.

29. Ed Sheeran

Ed Sheeran is represented in the Album Of The Year category for the third year in a row. This year, he is a featured artist on The Weeknd's Beauty Behind The Madness. Last year, he was nominated for his own album, X. Two years ago, he was a featured artist on Taylor Swift's Red.

30. The Weeknd

The Weeknd's Beauty Behind The Madness is nominated for both Album Of The Year and Best Urban Contemporary Album. It's the fourth album to be nominated in both categories in the four years that the GRAMMYs have had an urban contemporary category. Beyoncé's self-titled album and Pharrell Williams' Girl were nominated for both awards last year. Frank Ocean's Channel Orange was nominated for both awards three years ago.

31. Ian Brennan

Producer Ian Brennan is nominated for Best World Music Album for his work on Zomba Prison Project's I Have No Everything Here. Brennan recorded the album over 10 days in 2013 with a group of male and female maximum security prisoners. Brennan won the same award for 2011 for his co-producer role on Tinariwen's Tassili.

32. Glen Campbell: I'll Be Me

Glen Campbell: I'll Be Me is competing for Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media. Two tracks from the album won GRAMMYs last year. "I'm Not Gonna Miss You," which Campbell co-wrote with Julian Raymond, was voted Best Country Song. The Band Perry's version of Campbell's 1967 hit "Gentle On My Mind" won for Best Country Duo/Group Performance. Campbell, a six-time GRAMMY winner, received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Recording Academy in 2012.

33. Carrie Underwood

Carrie Underwood is vying to take home the award for Best Country Solo Performance for the third time in the past four years. She's nominated this year for "Little Toy Guns." She won the 2012 award for "Blown Away" and last year's award for "Something In The Water."

34. "Glory"

"Glory," which won an Academy Award last year, is nominated for three GRAMMYs: Best Rap/Sung Collaboration, Best Rap Song and Best Song Written For Visual Media. Common and John Legend, whose recording of the song was heard at the end of Selma, co-wrote the song with Che Smith.

35. Paul McCartney

Paul McCartney has won GRAMMYs in the Pop, Rock and Traditional Pop Fields. Could he be headed for an award this year in the Rap Field? He's nominated in two rap categories — Best Rap Performance as a featured artist on Kanye West's "All Day" and Best Rap Song as a co-writer of that song.

36. Anoushka Shankar

Anoushka Shankar, a nominee for Best World Music Album for Home, is vying for her first career GRAMMY. Shankar is the daughter of the late Ravi Shankar, a recipient of a Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award. Ravi Shankar: A Life In Music is on display at the GRAMMY Museum through April 1. The exhibit offers visitors a glimpse into the sitar legend's early life and his impact on Western music.

37. Slipknot

Slipknot could be headed for their second award in the category of Best Metal Performance. The band is nominated for "Custer," a track from.5: The Gray Chapter. Slipknot won the 2005 award for "Before I Forget."

38. Best Rock Performance

Three female-fronted groups are nominated for Best Rock Performance: Alabama Shakes (fronted by Brittany Howard), Florence & The Machine (fronted by Florence Welch) and Wolf Alice (fronted by Ellie Rowsell).

39. Sam Hunt

Sam Hunt is a finalist for Best New Artist. He is just the fourth male country solo artist to receive a nomination in this category. He follows Billy Ray Cyrus, Brad Paisley and Hunter Hayes. Historical note: For two years in the mid-'60s, the GRAMMYs awarded a separate Best New Country & Western Artist award. Roger Miller (1964) and the Statler Brothers (1965) were the winners.

40. Kelly Clarkson

Kelly Clarkson, the only two-time winner for Best Pop Vocal Album, could be headed for her third award in the category. She's nominated this year for Piece By Piece. Clarkson won the 2005 award for Breakaway and the 2012 award for Stronger. Her competition includes two other past winners in the category: James Taylor (who won the 1997 award for Hourglass) and Mark Ronson (who shared the 2007 award for co-producing Amy Winehouse's Back To Black).

41. MusiCares Person of the Year

Current GRAMMY nominees Charles KelleyJohn Legend and Pharrell Williams are slated to perform at the tribute gala honoring 2016 MusiCares Person of the Year Lionel Richie. Taking place Feb. 13 in Los Angeles, the gala raises funds to support the mission of MusiCares, which ensures music people have a place to turn in times of financial, medical and personal need.

42. Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan's Shadows In The Night is nominated for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album. The album is a collection of songs made famous by Frank Sinatra. Both of these artists have received Lifetime Achievement Awards from The Recording Academy — Sinatra in 1965; Dylan in 1991. (Coincidentally, both artists were 49 at the time they received those honors.)

43. Snoop Dogg

Snoop Dogg has never received an Album Of The Year nomination as a lead artist, but he has been a featured artist on two nominated albums in the category. He's featured on Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp A Butterfly, a nominee this year. He was previously featured on Katy Perry's Teenage Dream, a 2010 nominee.

44. Mark Ronson, Bruno Mars

"Uptown Funk" by Mark Ronson Featuring Bruno Mars is a finalist for Record Of The Year. This is the second time these two musicians have shared a nomination in that top category. Ronson co-produced Mars' "Locked Out Of Heaven," which was a nominee two years ago.

45. Irving Azoff

Irving Azoff will be honored at Clive Davis' and The Recording Academy's annual Pre-GRAMMY Gala on Sunday, Feb. 14. Known as the manager of bands such as the Eagles, Fleetwood Mac and Journey, Azoff now runs Azoff MSG Entertainment — a multifaceted company overseeing publishing rights, artist management, branding, and venue management. His current roster of clients includes 58th GRAMMY nominees Maroon 5 and Don Henley.

46. Best Music Film

Three of the films nominated for Best Music Film are focused on great artists from the past. What Happened, Miss Simone looks at Nina Simone, who died in 2003. Mr. Dynamite: The Rise Of James Brown focuses on the R&B legend, who died in 2006. Amy tells the story of Amy Winehouse, who died in 2011.

47. Charles Kelley

Charles Kelley is nominated for Best Country Duo/Group Performance for "The Driver," a collaboration with Dierks Bentley and Eric Paslay. As a member of Lady Antebellum, Kelley won back-to-back awards in this category. The trio took the 2009 award for "I Run To You" and the 2010 award for "Need You Now."

48. Foo Fighters

Foo Fighters are nominated for Best Music Film for Sonic Highways. They won this award four years ago for Foo Fighters: Back And Forth. Two artists, Sting and Madonna, each won twice in a predecessor category, Best Music Video — Long Form.

49. Sam Hunt

Current nominee Sam Hunt will perform at GRAMMY In The Schools Live! — A Celebration Of Music & Education during GRAMMY Week. The event features participants from the GRAMMY Foundation's GRAMMY Camp programs, including GRAMMY Camp — Jazz Session students.

50. Best Song Writtern For Visual Media

Two songs from the 2015 film Fifty Shades Of Grey — "Love Me Like You Do" and "Earned It (Fifty Shades Of Grey)" — are vying for Best Song Written For Visual Media. It's the first time in three years that two songs from the same film have been nominated in this category. Two songs from The Hunger Games were nominated for 2012.

51. Little Big Town

Little Big Town may be on their way to a second win for Best Country Duo/Group Performance. The co-ed quartet is nominated this year for "Girl Crush." They won three years ago for "Pontoon."

52. Drake

Drake could be headed for his second award for Best Rap Album. The superstar rapper is nominated for If Youre Reading This Its Too Late. He came out on top in this category three years ago for Take Care.

53. Muse

Muse are vying to become the first British band to win twice in the category of Best Rock Album. The band is nominated this year for Drones. They won the award five years ago for The Resistance. To date, the only bands to win two or more times in the category are either American (Foo Fighters, Green Day) or Irish (U2).

54. Bill Charlap

Jazz pianist Bill Charlap, who is nominated for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for The Silver Lining: The Songs Of Jerome Kern, a collaboration with Tony Bennett, is the son of two past GRAMMY nominees. His mother, Sandy Stewart, received a 1962 nomination for Best Solo Vocal Performance, Female for "My Coloring Book." His father, Moose Charlap, shared a 1966 nod for Best Recording For Children for Alice Through The Looking Glass.

55. Kendrick Lamar

Kendrick Lamar could be headed for his second consecutive award for Best Rap Performance. He's nominated this year for "Alright." He won last year for "I." This would make him the second artist to win back-to-back awards in this category. Jay Z and Kanye West took the 2011 award for "Otis" and the 2012 award for "N****s In Paris."

56. GRAMMY Hall Of Fame

James Brown's "Cold Sweat — Part 1" is part of the 2016 GRAMMY Hall Of Fame induction class. Often called the first true funk recording, its influence — along with that of later Brown acolytes such as Prince and the Time — can be heard in Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars' Record Of The Year-nominated "Uptown Funk."

57. Max Martin

This is the third year in a row that Max Martin has received a Song Of The Year nomination. The Swedish hit-maker is nominated for co-writing Taylor Swift's "Blank Space." He was nominated in the same category last year for co-writing Swift's "Shake It Off" and two years ago for co-writing Katy Perry's "Roar." Martin received his first nom in the category 16 years ago for co-writing Backstreet Boys' "I Want It That Way."

58. Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift received her third nomination for Album Of The Year for 1989. She won the 2009 award for Fearless. If she wins again this year, she'll become the first female to win Album Of The Year twice for albums on which she was the lead artist. (Lauryn Hill, Norah Jones and Alison Krauss have each won Album Of The Year twice, but each won at least once for an album that was not a solo project.)

The 58th Annual GRAMMY Awards will be held Feb. 15 at Staples Center in Los Angeles and broadcast live in high-definition TV and 5.1 surround sound on CBS from 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT). For updates and breaking news, visit The Recording Academy's social networks on Twitter and Facebook.

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