2007 Grammy Nominations

As readers of this site know, I am a big fan of the Grammy Awards. They have a tendency to acknowledge many of the artists that I enjoy the most with their nominations every year, and often encourage me to check out music I’ve missed. This year is no exception, with a typically eclectic group of country artists populating the ballot. After discussing the General and Country categories, I’ll run down every other category that includes a nominee connected to country music.

General Field

The Grammys have been regularly including country nominees in the big four categories for nearly twenty years now, and this year five of the twenty nominees in the general field are associated with country music.

Record of the Year

  • “Be Without You”, Mary J. Blige
  • “Crazy”, Gnarls Barkley
  • “Not Ready To Make Nice”, Dixie Chicks
  • “Put Your Records On”, Corinne Bailey Rae
  • “You’re Beautiful”, James Blunt

This is the first appearance for the Dixie Chicks in this category; they’ve been regularly nominated for Album, but didn’t have a blockbuster single out during the nomination window for Fly or Home. The biggest competition they have is probably James Blunt. Everybody knows that song and the three R&B-leaning hits are likely to split voters like they did last year, resulting in a Green Day win.

Album of the Year

  • Gnarls Barkley, St. Elsewhere
  • Dixie Chicks, Taking the Long Way
  • John Mayer, Continuum
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers, Stadium Arcadium
  • Justin Timberlake, FutureSex/LoveSounds

Interesting race. I had assumed if the Chicks were nominated, they’d lose to Bob Dylan. I’m shocked that Modern Times didn’t get a nod. It feels like the Timberlake and Mayer albums just came out, but voters have a long time to live with them before the awards in February. Still, I think Green Day would’ve won this award if their album had been released earlier. As for the Chicks, there seems to be a lot of buzz suggesting they may win this one, but I can’t get my head around this race. The Chili Peppers are overdue for recognition, so it may go to them for their awesome 2-CD set.

Song of the Year

  • “Be Without You” – Johnta Austin, Mary J. Blige, Bryan-Michael Cox & Jason Perry
  • “Jesus, Take the Wheel” – Brett James, Hillary Lindsey & Gordie Sampson
  • “Not Ready To Make Nice” – Martie Maguire, Natalie Maines, Emily Robison & Dan Wilson
  • “Put Your Records On” – John Beck, Steve Chrisanthou & Corinne Bailey Raye
  • “You’re Beautiful” – James Blunt, Amanda Ghost & Sacha Skarbek

Two country songs on the list, which is no small feat in its own right. I’ve been surprised to see the country awards shows pick “Believe” over “Wheel”, so I’m glad to see the writers have a shot at Grammy gold. Carrie Underwood is an amazing singer, but that song has a lot to do with how quickly her career took off. As I wrote when I first reviewed “Not Ready To Make Nice” earlier this year, the song is a catharsis for me. I think it’s the best song nominated, and I can actually see it winning, though my gut says Blunt will take it.

Best New Artist

  • James Blunt
  • Chris Brown
  • Imogen Heap
  • Corinne Bailey Rae
  • Carrie Underwood

Underwood is by far the biggest new act of the past year in any genre. If any Idol is going to win this award, it will be her. If she takes it, she’ll be the first country artist since LeAnn Rimes to win.

Country

Best Female Country Vocal Performance

  • Miranda Lambert, “Kerosene”
  • Martina McBride, “I Still Miss Someone”
  • LeAnn Rimes, “Something’s Gotta Give”
  • Carrie Underwood, “Jesus, Take the Wheel”
  • Gretchen Wilson, “I Don’t Feel Like Loving You Today”

Not a bad lineup. Isn’t it amazing that Rimes is now one of the veterans of the field, with only McBride predating her as a recording artist? Lambert’s best single to date is “Kerosene”, and I like the Wilson single a lot more than I’ve liked her overall lately. McBride acquits herself nicely on “I Still Miss Someone”, but I prefer Rosanne Cash’s version. Underwood is the best of the bunch, in my opinion.

Best Male Country Vocal Performance

  • Dierks Bentley, “Every Mile a Memory”
  • Vince Gill, “The Reason Why”
  • George Strait, “The Seashores of Old Mexico”
  • Josh Turner, “Would You Go With Me”
  • Keith Urban, “Once In A Lifetime”

Wow, a BMG-free category! What a refreshing change from the country shows. These are all decent records, though I’m not crazy about the Strait single. Going on vocals alone, I think Gill or Bentley should get it, but Urban’s record is the most entertaining listen.

Best Country Vocal Performance By a Duo or Group with Vocal

  • Dixie Chicks, “Not Ready To Make Nice”
  • The Duhks, “Heaven Is My Home”
  • Little Big Town, “Boondocks”
  • Rascal Flatts, “What Hurts the Most”
  • The Wreckers, “Leave the Pieces”

When they invited Rascal Flatts to help announce the Grammys, I expected them to garner a few nominations, but this is their only appearance on the ballot. I think the Chicks will win this in a walk, but kudos to NARAS for picking up on The Duhks; “Heaven Is My Home” is pretty darn good record.

Best Country Collaboration with Vocals

  • Bon Jovi & Jennifer Nettles, “Who Says You Can’t Go Home”
  • Solomon Burke & Dolly Parton, “Tomorrow Is Forever”
  • Kenny Rogers & Don Henley, “Calling Me”
  • Rhonda Vincent & Bobby Osborne, “Midnight Angel”
  • Trisha Yearwood & Garth Brooks, “Love Will Always Win”

Your guess is as good as mine. I hope the voters get a chance to hear all five so they can compare these five very different records.

Best Country Instrumental Performance

  • Casey Driessen, “Jerusalem Ridge”
  • Tommy Emmanuel, “Gameshow Rag/Cannonball Rag”
  • Bryan Sutton & Doc Watson, “Whiskey Before Breakfast”
  • Chris Thile, “The Eleventh Reel”
  • Jim VanCleve, “Nature of the Beast”

Thile all the way. A genius at work.

Best Country Song

  • “Every Mile a Memory” – Brett Beavers, Dierks Bentley & Steve Bogard
  • “I Don’t Feel Like Loving You Today” – Matraca Berg & Jim Collins
  • “Jesus, Take the Wheel” – Brett James, Hillary Lindsey & Gordie Sampson
  • “Like Red On A Rose” – Melanie Castleman & Robert Castleman
  • “What Hurts the Most” – Steve Robson & Jeffrey Steele

I think all five of these songs are fantastic, so I’d be happy with any winner.

Best Country Album

  • Dixie Chicks, Taking the Long Way
  • Alan Jackson, Like Red On A Rose
  • Little Big Town, The Road to Here
  • Willie Nelson, You Don’t Know Me: The Songs of Cindy Walker
  • Josh Turner, Your Man

The Chicks made the best album, with Jackson a reasonably close second. I’ll be surprised if they don’t win. Nelson’s put out so much music this year that I can hardly keep track, but I like his new Songbird project more than the Walker tribute.

Other Categories

Best Bluegrass Album

  • The Grascals, Long List of Heartaches
  • Jim Lauderdale, Bluegrass
  • Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder, Instrumentals
  • Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives, Live at the Ryman
  • Rhonda Vincent, All American Bluegrass Girl

Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album

  • Jackson Browne, Solo Acoustic Vol. 1
  • Rosanne Cash, Black Cadillac
  • Guy Clark, Workbench Songs
  • Bob Dylan, Modern Times
  • Mark Knopfler & Emmylou Harris, All the Roadrunning

Best Southern, Country or Bluegrass Gospel Album

  • Kenny Bishop, Kenny Bishop
  • Gaither Vocal Band, Give It Away
  • Alan Jackson, Precious Memories
  • The Del McCoury Band, The Promised Land
  • Randy Travis, Glory Train

Best Song Written for Film, Television or Other Visual Media

  • “Can’t Take It In” – Imogen Heap
  • “I Need To Wake Up” – Melissa Etheridge
  • “Our Town” – Randy Newman
  • “There’s Nothing Like a Show On Broadway” – Mel Brooks
  • “Travelin’ Thru” – Dolly Parton

Best Short Form Music Video

  • “8th of November” – Big & Rich
  • “Dani California” – Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • “Here It Goes Again” – OK Go
  • “When You Were Young” – The Killers
  • “Writing On The Walls” – Underoath
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2 Responses to 2007 Grammy Nominations

  1. FELIX JONES is on the ballot for ’08 nomination in SEVEN CATEGORIES!

    http://www.sonicbids.com/felixjones
    http://www.felixjones.com