Nominations for the 61st Grammy Awards are out for the show to broadcast 10 February 2019.
Brandi Carlile makes a strong showing across the board, with a nomination for Record of the Year for The Joke with Dave Cobb & Shooter Jennings, producers, Album of the Year for By The Way, I Forgive You, and Song of the Year for “The Joke”. Carlile is a favorite in the Folk Roots/Americana camp, and that’s great, but she never made much of an impression on me. Meh.
Kacey Musgraves is also nominated for Album of the Year for Golden Hour. Again, Meh. She can do better, but the glitterati like it and she is better than most anything else you might here on the radio, country or pop for that matter. I tend to link Margo Price to Kacey’s wagon, and Ms. Price has a nod for Best New Artist–frankly the only candidate I even recognize. And that’s OK.
Americana folks crowed when they were written in to the American Roots Music categories. It serves to remind me that there’s really no good definition of the “Americana” genre aside from Country/Rock Music for People who Read. Whatever. Willie Nelson (Roots, not Country, how?) is nominated for Best American Roots Performance for “Last Man Standing”–that he is, and a good effort to my ear. Carlile of course has a nod in the same category for “The Joke”. For Best American Roots Song, Lee Ann Womack’s “All The Trouble” off her last year’s album goes up against Carlile’s “The Joke” and John Prine’s “Summer’s End” (listen to that one without a tear in your eye, I dare you). The difference between Performance and Song is always beyond me, tho I guess you can have an awesome performance of a really crummy song.
I’m OK with any of three nominations winning Best Americana Album–John Prine’s strong performance with The Tree of Forgiveness, Lee Ann Womack’s The Lonely, The Lonesome & The Gone which grew on me over the course of the last year, and The Wood Brothers’ catchy One Drop of Truth. Carlile gets a nod (meh) and I didn’t listen to Bettye LaVette’s Things Have Changed. I’ve only listened to one of the noms for Best Bluegrass Album, Wood & Wire North of Despair is two-thumbs up though I’m not sure I’d call it bluegrass. Mary Guathier’s Rifles & Rosary Beads came out early in the year and deserves the nod for Best Folk Album.
Ms. Musgrave is also represented in Country categories–Best Country Solo for “Butterflies”, with Chris Stapleton for “Millionaire” and actual Country artist & legend Loretta Lynn for “Wouldn’t it be Great?” which isn’t half bad. Musgrave’s “Space Cowboy” has a nod for Best Country Song. And Musgrave’s Golden Hour has a nod for Best Country Album, tho I liked Ashley McBryde’s Girl Going Nowhere better, and Chris Stapleton’s From a Room: Volume 2 was pretty good, but with the theme, I expect better from the best. I haven’t paid much attention to Maren Morris but that might change–hey, I’m willing to give to popular kids a chance now and then.
If you want to buy me music for Christmas, I would really like real CDs of:
* Lee Ann Womack’s The Lonely, The Lonesome & The Gone
* Brandon Jenkins’ Tail Lights in a Boomtown (RIP)
* Colter Wall’s Songs of the Plains
Spotify is great but we gotta support the guys & gals making the music, too.