GRAMMY Predictions

Christy Clark

On the evening of Sunday the 4th, the 66th Annual Grammy Awards will be presented by Trevor Noah in Los Angeles. Whilst the last few years have tarnished the awards with further controversy, and a continued lack of diversity in the main categories, the reality remains that winning a GRAMMY award is the pinnacle of musical achievement. Impact’s Christy Clark reviews his picks for who should win, and who will win in the big four categories.

I’d put my money on the academy going for SZA’s laid-back, revenge ballad

  1. Record Of The Year

Worship by Jon Batiste

Not Strong Enough by boygenius

Flowers by Miley Cyrus

What Was I Made For? [From The Motion Picture “Barbie”] by Billie Eilish

On My Mama by Victoria Monét

vampire by Olivia Rodrigo

Anti-Hero by Taylor Swift

Kill Bill by SZA

Who should win: Kill Bill by SZA

Who will win: Kill Bill by SZA

Looking at this list, there’s two songs that stand out because everybody knew and loved them: What Was I Made For and Kill Bill. I think from a sonic and production point of view, SZA has the upper hand over Billie. It also doesn’t help Billie’s cause that she’s already won this award twice in the last several years, and I’d be surprised if the voters went for her again. There’s an outside chance for Taylor, too, who has never won in this category, but I’d put my money on the academy going for SZA’s laid-back, revenge ballad that seems to have satisfied both commercial and critical opinion.


out-plays Swift at her own game on ‘GUTS’

  1. Album Of The Year

‘World Music Radio’ by Jon Batiste

‘the record’ by boygenius

‘Endless Summer Vacation’ by Miley Cyrus

‘Did you know that there’s a tunnel under Ocean Blvd’ by Lana Del Rey

‘The Age Of Pleasure’ by Janelle Monáe

‘GUTS’ by Olivia Rodrigo

‘Midnights’ by Taylor Swift

‘SOS’ by SZA

Who should win: ‘GUTS’ by Olivia Rodrigo

Who will win: ‘Midnights’ by Taylor Swift

Now for the big one: winning Album of the Year is a high point of any artist’s career – Taylor Swift having had several of those high points. Swift’s track-record in this category is testament to her super-honed ability to compose an album critics will love, time after time, ‘Fearless’, ‘1989’, and ‘folklore’ having already won, giving her the joint most wins in GRAMMY history. Though ‘Midnights’ didn’t blow me away, awarding it would not only satisfy the fans who propelled 10 of its songs into the top 10 first week, but place Swift in the headlines, record books, and keep the GRAMMYs relevant.

If the trophy doesn’t go Swift’s way, it can only go to SZA for ‘SOS’. Though the genre-hopping, eclectic project felt a little long at 23 tracks – SZA might have increased her chances by releasing an extended version as Swift did with ‘Midnights’ – it produced multiple mega-hits, as well as earning immense cultural relevance. In this two-horse race, the Academy will have to choose between two albums that you had to go to great lengths to avoid in the last year.

If you ask me, ‘GUTS’ is the pick of the bunch. Rodrigo’s sophomore album is electric, witty, and encapsulates the late-teen-years expertly. A step up from ‘SOUR’, which might’ve won in its own right, Rodrigo is making music with more personality than many of her contemporaries, and a touch of the angsty vibe of the early 2000s. She even, in my opinion, out-plays Swift at her own game on ‘GUTS’, which plays almost like a traditional Swift album and quite rightly sits in contention.

A&W goes from acoustic and emotional to trap and experimental, almost a microcosm of its album

  1. Song Of The Year

A&W by Lana Del Rey

Anti-Hero by Taylor Swift

Butterfly by Jon Batiste

Dance The Night (From ‘Barbie The Album’) by Dua Lipa

Flowers by Miley Cyrus

Kill Bill by SZA

Vampire by Olivia Rodrigo

What Was I Made For? [From The Motion Picture “Barbie”] by Billie Eilish

Who should win: A&W by Lana Del Rey

Who will win: What Was I Made For? [From The Motion Picture “Barbie”] by Billie Eilish

The likelihood of any music ceremony passing and Eilish not walking away with at least one trophy is pretty unlikely. Add the notoriety of Barbie into the picture and Eilish has history, popularity, as well as critical acclaim in the picture. What Was I Made For? changes the pace to its Barbie contemporaries in a slow, straight-from-the-heart ballad of girlhood. Eilish looks set, also, to win the Oscar, so it seems unlikely that she will be ousted by even her strongest competitors in Kill Bill and Anti-Hero.

If we’re using the criteria and looking at the songwriting above all else, Lana Del Rey takes this. A&W goes from acoustic and emotional to trap and experimental, almost a microcosm of its album, ‘Ocean Blvd’. It’s not like anything else on the list, nor is it like anything she’s ever written and quite rightly earns both song and record nominations. Del Rey has also never won a GRAMMY, and this could just be her year. But if ‘Norman Rockwell’ didn’t satisfy the voters’ appetites, it could not be, too.


I can see the voters going against the grain

  1. Best New Artist

Gracie Abrams

Fred again..

Ice Spice

Jelly Roll

Coco Jones

Noah Kahan

Victoria Monét

The War And Treaty

Who will win: Noah Kahan

Who should win: Ice Spice

It feels rare that looking at this category doesn’t bring to mind one definite winner, Billie Eilish, Megan Thee Stallion, and Olivia Rodrigo winning in recent years. You could make good cases for Victoria Monét, Jelly Roll, or Fred again… to take this home, though their lack of a big hit might diminish their chances. Ice Spice has several hits on her hands, as well as a carefree, infectious personality that has proved inescapable in the last year or so. She was involved with Barbie, climbed the charts with Boys A Liar (Part 2), and even joined forces with Taylor Swift – something not so often done, especially so early in an artist’s career.

Given the lack of male nominations in the other categories, I can see the voters going against the grain – the last male winner was Chance The Rapper in 2017 – and giving it to a man. Noah Kahan fits the bill perfectly, boasting arguably the biggest hit, Stick Season, amongst the nominees, as well as generally writing music that isn’t going to divide the Academy as someone like Ice Spice might. As with many of these awards, it all depends on whether the voters feel like awarding ingenuity or sticking with what they know and enjoy.


Christy Clark

Featured image courtesy of Sudhith Xavier via Unsplash. Image license found here. No changes made to this image.

In-article images courtesy of @genius and @recordingacademy via instagram.com. No changes made to these images.

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