Grammy Nominees Announced: Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Bruno Mars Lead the Way

2018 GRAMMY Nominations: Where to Watch and the Expected Frontrunners

Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Migos, Tyler, The Creator and Rapsody Nominated for Best Rap Album at 2018 Grammy Awards

The nominees for AOTY are Jay-Z for 4:44, Lamar for DAMN, Childish Gambino for Awaken, My Love! Jay will also go head-to-head with Mars for Song of the Year. Even though black artists make music that's actually more popular than what's in the "pop" categories, they don't usually win in the big name categories like Album of the Year or Record of the Year.

Best New Artist: Alessia Cara, Khalid, Lil Uzi Vert, Julia Michaels, SZA. It was only in 1989, 40 years after the Grammys originally aired, that the Academy introduced an award for Best Rap Performance, despite hip-hop having been big for years.

Surprisingly absent from these main categories are Kesha and Harry Styles, both of whom seemed like obvious choices.

With two nominations, Cardi B is shaking up the category. The album debuted at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and all 14 songs charted. Though he's won four of the six Grammys he's been nominated for, Sam Smith didn't get a single nod this year, getting shut out for his disappointing sophomore album The Thrill of It All.

Los Angeles California.                       Frederick M. Brown
Los Angeles California. Frederick M. Brown

You might remember last year when Adele, crying and cradling her Grammy for Album of the Year at the end of the night, tearfully told audiences that Beyoncé actually deserved the award.

Among the nominees with Chicago ties, Lyric Opera music director Andrew Davis received a nod for best choral performance (Handel's "Messiah"), Justin Roberts received a nomination for best children's album ("Lemonade") and Austin-via-Chicago music writer Michael Corcoran was acknowledged for best album liner notes and best historical album ("Washington Phillips and his Manzarene Dreams").

Come January 28, when the 60th Grammys take place in NY, it should hopefully be a showdown between Childish Gambino, Jay-Z, and Kendrick Lamar. Other artists that are up for major awards include Bruno Mars and Childish Gambino.

You can see the full list of this year's Grammy nominees on the Grammy's website.

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