2018 Grammy Winners

The 60th Annual Grammy Awards were a big night for Chris Stapleton, who added three Grammys to his collection, bringing him to a career total of five.  Jason Isbell won two, making him four for four at the ceremony. Reba McEntire has thirteen nominations to her credit, and her Best Roots Gospel Album victory was her third win overall. And Little Big Town also earned their third career Grammy award, out of twelve total nominations.

In the general categories, Alessia Cara won Best New Artist while Bruno Mars swept the big three: Record, Song, and Album of the Year.  He won six Grammys in total, bringing his career victories to eleven wins in 27 nominations.

General Categories

Album of The Year

Bruno Mars, 24K Magic

Record of the Year

Bruno Mars, “24K Magic”

Song of the Year

Christopher Brody Brown, James Fauntleroy, Philip Lawrence, Bruno Mars, Ray Charles McCullough II, Jeremy Reeves, Ray Romulus, Jonathan Yip, “That’s What I Like”

Best New Artist

Alessia Cara

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Country and Country-Adjacent Categories

Best Country Album

Chris Stapleton, From a Room, Volume 1

Best Country Solo Performance

Chris Stapleton, “Either Way”

Best Country Song

Mike Henderson and Chris Stapleton, “Broken Halos”

Best Country Duo/Group Performance

Little Big Town, “Better Man”

 

Best Americana Album

Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, The Nashville Sound

Best American Roots Song

Jason Isbell, “If We Were Vampires”

Best American Roots Performance

Alabama Shakes, “Killer Diller Blues”

Best Roots Gospel Album

Reba McEntire, Sing it Now: Songs of Faith and Hope

Best Bluegrass Album

TIE

The Infamous Stringdusters, Laws of Gravity

Rhonda Vincent and the Rage, All the Rage – In Concert, Volume One

16 Comments

  1. I’m glad to see Jason Isbell do so well!

    Great to see Reba win a Grammy at this point in her career!

    Re. Bluegrass Album: I had no idea there could be two winners for an award.

  2. Jason Isbell is now four for four at the Grammys. He won American Roots Song (“24 Frames”) and Americana Album (Something More Than Free) the last time out, too!

    Reba McEntire, amazingly, only has three Grammys. She won Best Female Country Vocal Performance for “Whoever’s in New England” and Best Country Vocal Collaboration for “Does He Love You” with Linda Davis.

    I noted last year that Davis winning two Grammys last year for her work with the Scott Family meant she actually had more Grammys than Reba. Now they’re tied.

    Ties are very rare at the Grammys, but they do happen! Must be extra hard to still lose when two people win!

  3. Well done, Grammys! Stapleton taking both Song and Solo Performance was welcome surprise. With Stapleton set to perform on the main broadcast, he’s a lock for Best Country Album. Really hoped to see Midland or Brothers Osborne pull off best Group Performance, but LBT is fine and I expected it. Thrilled Isbell sweeps, as I was worried to see the voters fall back on old ways and pick an older artist. Now I just hope Kendrick keeps stacking the awards, although Bruno Mars appears poised for a big night too.

  4. The Grammys have always seemed to be the most hap-hazard of the award shows. This year’s bluegrass album awards exemplify the problem. While both of the winners produced good albums, for Rhonda Vincent the album nominated was far from her best album. The Queen of Bluegrass should have won many Grammys by now, but not for this particular album

    As for the country nominees, let’s just say I’m glad Chris Stapleton won, because very little of the other stuff was even worthy of a nomination. Reba’s gospel album was okay but I’ve heard several better roots gospel albums this year that didn’t even receive nominations

  5. Not sure where to post this, but it’s relevant to “Better Man” in Country Song so…Did anyone else see where Quincy Jones criticized Taylor Swift’s songs/writing as only being about hooks? My guess is he’s only heard a couple of her hits or something, but you’d think someone with his experience would know not to judge an artist based on just a few songs. Weird.

  6. Jason,
    While I haven’t heard her most recent album, I feel like most of her songs don’t say much beyond airing grievvances and her own personal heartbreak. I’d love to hear her, as a young woman in this climate who is admired by so many young people, sing about some deeper topics. So, in a way, while I do think she’s singing her truth, her songs do mostly seem to service hooks rather than have a deeper purpose than that.

  7. While folks may be really flummoxed about Quincy Jones’ scathing remarks about Taylor, one has to remember that this is a man who has worked with folks like Frank Sinatra, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder and tons of other legends over a career of well over 60 years, so it’s kind of a trick to impress him.

    And beyond all the talk about hooks and stuff, I still find it more than a bit maddening that her voice has not gotten noticeably any better from where she first started out, and she is now 28 years old. Her voice, for whatever reason, production gimmickry or lack of voice projection, is still irritating to listen to; and so far as I can tell, she hasn’t done much of anything to rectify that problem, the very thing that haters hate her on about. If she can’t or won’t do anything about it, then her time in this business is going to be numbered (IMHO).

  8. Leann – Most of the songs Quincy Jones did with Michael Jackson were about relationships and dancing and were certainly hook-filled, so that’s where I take issue. He can hope that Swift writes about other things, but it also stuck out to me because in the same interview he praised Bruno Mars, Mary J Blige, and Jennifer Hudson. How does their music have any more ‘depth’ than Swift’s music?

    Erik – Most of Sinatra’s music and Charles’ music was about relationships, no? Especially their early music.

  9. @ Jason:

    Yes, but they had decades of maturity to draw upon, and they communicated their emotions to the world like nobody’s business. The same held true for Linda Ronstadt. Does Taylor have that ability to be a lasting artist? In my opinion, she won’t unless she makes great strides in her vocal projection.

  10. Re TS, I agree with Erik’s comment that “Her voice, for whatever reason, production gimmickry or lack of voice projection, is still irritating to listen to”. I’m not as surprised at her success as I would have been just a few years ago – but I still have no intention of buying any of her recordings.

  11. Jason,
    I have not read the Jones interview, so I don’t know the context of what he said. Is it possible that he thinks that the artists that he’s worked with were also mostly about the hooks too?

  12. Leann – In the interview Jones says, “Yeah, i love Kendrick Lamar, I love Bruno Mars, I love Drake, I love Ludacris, I love Common. Mary J Blige. Jennifer Hudson.” He is then asked about Taylor Swift because her latest album was set to debut at #1. He made a face. When asked about it he said, “We need more songs, man. Fucking songs, not hooks.” When he is told people say she has great songs, he says, “They don’t know.”

    If you can explain to me how Bruno Mars or Drake are about songs more than hooks (especially in contrast to Swift) I’d love to read it. If you can tell me any great songs Jennifer Hudson has, I’d love to hear them. I don’t even mean that as criticism; I am just saying I don’t see where Swift’s songs are less than Mars, Blige, Hudson, etc. Kendrick Lamar is a different story.

  13. I will admit that I don’t know the music of any of those people that he mentioned. That was a pretty rude way of answering the question about Swift though. I understand why you’re annoyed!

  14. I find both of the Quincy Jones interviews from the past week to be fascinating: They’re a mix of “Get Off My Lawn” / “Old Man Yells At Cloud” crust and grump with a whole lot of, “I’m an 85 year-old genius, and I have *seen some shit*” / DGAF candor. They’re utterly wild and captivating.

    I definitely think the dig at Swift’s songwriting is based in generational and genre bias. I mean, in his interview with Vulture, he’s out here stanning for ***Tevin Campbell*** in 2018. I can’t speak to whatever degree of formal music training Swift has had, but I have more than a decade of classical piano training, and her songs like “All Too Well” and “Treacherous” demonstrate a gift for melody (particularly in how she accounts for her limited vocal range) and especially for construction. Yes, she can write a mean hook, and the content of her lyrics has often been thin. But her best songs are exceptionally well-constructed.

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