THE name Marley continues to dominate the reggae scene and yesterday’s announcement of the nominees for this year’s Grammy awards continues the trend.
Two Marleys, Ziggy and Stephen — sons of reggae icon Bob Marley, are among five acts up for the golden gramophone in the category Best Reggae Album. Stephen is nominated for Revelation Part 1: The Root of Life, while for Ziggy it is his project Wild and Free
The Marley brothers are joined in the category by pianist Monty Alexander with Harlem Kingston Express Live; Reggae Knights from Israel Vibration and Summer in Kingston by diamond-selling artiste Shaggy. In total, Stephen and Ziggy Marley have six Grammy awards. Three of which were won by the sibling group Ziggy Marley and the Melody Makers. Stephen has two individual wins, while Ziggy has one. Shaggy has also won a Grammy for his 1996 release Boombastic. Meanwhile, 2011 was Adele’s year, and when the Grammy Awards are revealed next February, it very well may be her night. But on Wednesday night, the British songstress shared in the Grammy nominations glory. While she was nominated for six trophies, including album of the year for 21 and record and song of the year for her bitter groove Rolling in the Deep, Bruno Mars and the Foo Fighters also received six, and it was Kanye West who was the night’s top leader, with seven nominations. West was nominated for song of the year for his all-star anthem All of the Lights, which featured everyone from Rihanna to Elton John. But even though the album from which it came, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, heralded an epic album by critics when it was released last year, it was not featured in the best album category.
Other multiple nominees were Lady Gaga, Nicki Minaj, Lil Wayne, Radiohead, and dubstep artiste Skrillex, who landed a bid for best new artiste among his surprising five nominations. Among the evening’s biggest eye-openers were the artistes not mentioned in certain categories. Taylor Swift, who won best album in 2010 for Fearless and was considered to be a key favourite for her multiplatinum Speak Now, only got her three nominations in the country fields, and Tony Bennett, who had a feel-good story as his Duets II album made him the oldest act to debut an album at No 1 at age 85, was not nominated for album of the year, as some critics had predicted. West’s joint album with Jay-Z, Watch the Throne, was also ignored for best album. Mars, who like Adele was nominated in all the top three categories — record, album and song of the year — was estatic about his night. He was nominated for song and record of the year for Grenade, album for Doo-Wops & Hooligans, and best pop solo performance, among other bids. Adele’s 21 is the year’s top-selling album with more than 4.5 million albums sold, and the singer-songwriter’s mournful post-break-up album produced smash hits like the torch ballad Someone Like You. Besides 21, the best album candidates inclduded Lady Gaga; Gaga garnered her third straight nod in the category for Born This Way, while veteran rockers the Foo Fighters were nominated for Wasting Light, along with Mars’ debut album,and Rihanna’s steamy dance album Loud.
For Record of the Year, besides Bon Iver, Adele, Mars and Mumford & Sons, Katy Perry’s inspirational anthem Firework got a nod. The 54th Grammys will be held February 12 in Los Angeles. The ceremony will mark the first since the academy shaved its categories from 109 to 78 this year, amid some protest. Some of the more niched categories, like best Zydeco or Cajun music album, were eliminated.In addition, men and women now compete together in vocal categories for pop, R&B and country, instead of having separate categories for each sex.