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Grammys 2018: A listening guide to this weekend’s nominees

Get to know the nominated songs and artists in all 30 televised categories.

Jay-Z In Concert - Miami, FL Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images

The 2018 Grammy Awards are almost here. And while this year’s ceremony may not promise the drama of 2017’s match of the titans, Adele versus Beyoncé (if you’re still not over Lemonade walking away with nothing but Best Urban Album, raise your hand), there are still a few races that will be interesting to watch play out.

Album of the Year promises to be a close race, with Jay-Z’s 4:44 facing off against Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN., Bruno Mars’s 24K Magic, Lorde’s Melodrama, and Childish Gambino’s Awaken, My Love!”

The record-breaking song of summer 2017 — Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee's “Despacito” remix, featuring Justin Bieber — is officially in the running to win Song of the Year, and Record of the Year as well. (It’s a confusing distinction.)

In the Song of the Year category, "Despacito" will be facing off against Jay-Z's "4:44," Bruno Mars's "That's What I Like," Julia Michaels's "Issues," and Logic's "1-800-273-8255" featuring Alessia Cara and Khalid.

For Record of the Year, “Despacito” will compete against Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble,” Bruno Mars’s “24K Magic,” and Jay-Z’s “The Story of O.J.” “Despacito” is the only song to appear in both categories.

Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, and Bruno Mars are this year’s most-nominated artists. Jay-Z landed eight nominations for 4:44, including Album, Record, and Song of the Year. Kendrick Lamar earned seven nominations for DAMN., including one for Album of the Year, and Bruno Mars landed eight for 24K Magic, including Album, Record, and Song of the Year.

Here is a listening guide to the nominees in all of the categories expected to be televised at this year’s ceremony; visit the Grammys website for the full list of nominees, which spans over 80 categories in total. The winners will be announced at the 60th annual Grammys ceremony in New York on January 28.

Record Of The Year

Redbone” — Childish Gambino

Despacito” — Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee Featuring Justin Bieber

The Story Of O.J.” — Jay-Z

HUMBLE.” — Kendrick Lamar

24K Magic” — Bruno Mars

Album Of The Year

“Awaken, My Love! — Childish Gambino

4:44 — Jay-Z

DAMN. — Kendrick Lamar

Melodrama — Lorde

24K Magic — Bruno Mars

Song Of The Year

Despacito” — Ramón Ayala, Justin Bieber, Jason "Poo Bear" Boyd, Erika Ender, Luis Fonsi & Marty James Garton, songwriters (Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee Featuring Justin Bieber)

4:44” — Shawn Carter & Dion Wilson, songwriters (Jay-Z)

Issues” — Benny Blanco, Mikkel Storleer Eriksen, Tor Erik Hermansen, Julia Michaels & Justin Drew Tranter, songwriters (Julia Michaels)

1-800-273-8255” — Alessia Caracciolo, Sir Robert Bryson Hall II, Arjun Ivatury, Khalid Robinson, songwriters (Logic Featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid)

That's What I Like” — Christopher Brody Brown, James Fauntleroy, Philip Lawrence, Bruno Mars, Ray Charles McCullough II, Jeremy Reeves, Ray Romulus & Jonathan Yip, songwriters (Bruno Mars)

Best New Artist

Alessia Cara


Lil Uzi Vert

Julia Michaels


Best Pop Solo Performance

Love So Soft” — Kelly Clarkson

Praying” — Kesha

Million Reasons” — Lady Gaga

What About Us” — P!nk

Shape Of You” — Ed Sheeran

Best Pop Duo/Group Performance

Something Just Like This” — The Chainsmokers & Coldplay

Despacito” — Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee Featuring Justin Bieber

Thunder” — Imagine Dragons

Feel It Still” — Portugal. The Man

Stay” — Zedd & Alessia Cara

Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album

Nobody But Me (Deluxe Version) — Michael Bublé

Triplicate — Bob Dylan

In Full Swing — Seth MacFarlane

Wonderland — Sarah McLachlan

Tony Bennett Celebrates 90 — (Various Artists) Dae Bennett, Producer

Best Pop Vocal Album

Kaleidoscope EP — Coldplay

Lust For Life — Lana Del Rey

Evolve — Imagine Dragons

Rainbow — Kesha

Joanne — Lady Gaga

÷ (Divide) — Ed Sheeran

Best Dance Recording

Bambro Koyo Ganda” — Bonobo Featuring Innov Gnawa

Cola” — Camelphat & Elderbrook

Andromeda” — Gorillaz Featuring DRAM

Tonite” — LCD Soundsystem

Line Of Sight” — Odesza Featuring WYNNE & Mansionair

Best Dance/Electronic Album

Migration — Bonobo

3-D The Catalogue — Kraftwerk

Mura Masa — Mura Masa

A Moment Apart — Odesza

What Now — Sylvan Esso

Best Rock Performance

You Want It Darker” — Leonard Cohen

The Promise” — Chris Cornell

Run” — Foo Fighters

No Good” — Kaleo

Go To War” — Nothing More

Best Metal Performance

Invisible Enemy” — August Burns Red

Black Hoodie” — Body Count

Forever” — Code Orange

Sultan’s Curse” — Mastodon

Clockworks” — Meshuggah

Best Rock Song

Atlas, Rise!” — James Hetfield & Lars Ulrich, songwriters (Metallica)

Blood In The Cut” — JT Daly & Kristine Flaherty, songwriters (K.Flay)

Go To War” — Ben Anderson, Jonny Hawkins, Will Hoffman, Daniel Oliver, David Pramik & Mark Vollelunga, songwriters (Nothing More)

Run” — Foo Fighters, songwriters (Foo Fighters)

The Stage” — Zachary Baker, Brian Haner, Matthew Sanders, Jonathan Seward & Brooks Wackerman, songwriters (Avenged Sevenfold)

Best Rock Album

Emperor Of Sand — Mastodon

Hardwired…To Self-Destruct — Metallica

The Stories We Tell Ourselves — Nothing More

Villains — Queens Of The Stone Age

A Deeper Understanding — The War On Drugs

Best Alternative Music Album

Everything Now — Arcade Fire

Humanz — Gorillaz

American Dream — LCD Soundsystem

Pure Comedy — Father John Misty

Sleep Well Beast — The National

Best R&B Performance

Get You” — Daniel Caesar Featuring Kali Uchis

Distraction” — Kehlani

High” — Ledisi

That's What I Like” — Bruno Mars

The Weekend” — SZA

Best Traditional R&B Performance

Laugh And Move On” — The Baylor Project

Redbone” — Childish Gambino

What I’m Feelin’” — Anthony Hamilton Featuring The Hamiltones

All The Way” — Ledisi

Still” — Mali Music

Best R&B Song

First Began” — PJ Morton, songwriter (PJ Morton)

Location” — Alfredo Gonzalez, Olatunji Ige, Samuel David Jiminez, Christopher McClenney, Khalid Robinson & Joshua Scruggs, songwriters (Khalid)

Redbone” — Donald Glover & Ludwig Goransson, songwriters (Childish Gambino)

Supermodel” — Tyran Donaldson, Terrence Henderson, Greg Landfair Jr., Solana Rowe & Pharrell Williams, songwriters (SZA)

That's What I Like” — Christopher Brody Brown, James Fauntleroy, Philip Lawrence, Bruno Mars, Ray Charles McCullough II, Jeremy Reeves, Ray Romulus & Jonathan Yip, songwriters (Bruno Mars)

Best Urban Contemporary Album

Free 6LACK — 6LACK

"Awaken, My Love!" — Childish Gambino

American Teen — Khalid

Ctrl — SZA

Starboy — The Weeknd

Best R&B Album

Freudian — Daniel Caesar

Let Love Rule — Ledisi

24K Magic — Bruno Mars

Gumbo — PJ Morton

Feel The Real — Musiq Soulchild

Best Rap Performance

Bounce Back” — Big Sean

Bodak Yellow” — Cardi B

4:44” — Jay-Z

HUMBLE.” — Kendrick Lamar

Bad And Boujee” — Migos Featuring Lil Uzi Vert

Best Rap/Sung Performance


Crew” — Goldlink Featuring Brent Faiyaz & Shy Glizzy

Family Feud” — Jay-Z Featuring Beyoncé

LOYALTY.” — Kendrick Lamar Featuring Rihanna

Love Galore” — SZA Featuring Travis Scott

Best Rap Song

Bodak Yellow” — Dieuson Octave, Klenord Raphael, Shaftizm, Jordan Thorpe, Washpoppin & J White, songwriters (Cardi B)

Chase Me” — Judah Bauer, Brian Burton, Hector Delgado, Jaime Meline, Antwan Patton, Michael Render, Russell Simins & Jon Spencer, songwriters (Danger Mouse Featuring Run The Jewels & Big Boi)

HUMBLE.” — Duckworth, Asheton Hogan & M. Williams II, songwriters (Kendrick Lamar)

Sassy” — Gabouer & M. Evans, songwriters (Rapsody)

The Story Of O.J.” — Shawn Carter & Dion Wilson, songwriters (Jay-Z)

Best Rap Album

4:44 — Jay-Z

DAMN. — Kendrick Lamar

Culture — Migos

Laila’s Wisdom — Rapsody

Flower Boy — Tyler, The Creator

Best Country Solo Performance

Body Like A Back Road” — Sam Hunt

Losing You” — Alison Krauss

Tin Man” — Miranda Lambert

I Could Use A Love Song” — Maren Morris

Either Way” — Chris Stapleton

Best Country Duo/Group Performance

It Ain’t My Fault” — Brothers Osborne

My Old Man” — Zac Brown Band

You Look Good” — Lady Antebellum

Better Man” — Little Big Town

Drinkin’ Problem” — Midland

Best Country Song

Better Man” — Taylor Swift, songwriter (Little Big Town)

Body Like A Back Road” — Zach Crowell, Sam Hunt, Shane McAnally & Josh Osborne, songwriters (Sam Hunt)

Broken Halos” — Mike Henderson & Chris Stapleton, songwriters (Chris Stapleton)

Drinkin’ Problem” — Jess Carson, Cameron Duddy, Shane McAnally, Josh Osborne & Mark Wystrach, songwriters (Midland)

Tin Man” — Jack Ingram, Miranda Lambert & Jon Randall, songwriters (Miranda Lambert)

Best Country Album

Cosmic Hallelujah — Kenny Chesney

Heart Break — Lady Antebellum

The Breaker — Little Big Town

Life Changes — Thomas Rhett

From A Room: Volume 1 — Chris Stapleton

Best Song Written For Visual Media

City Of Stars” — Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek & Justin Paul, songwriters (Ryan Gosling & Emma Stone), from La La Land

How Far I’ll Go” — Lin-Manuel Miranda, songwriter (Auli’i Cravalho), from Moana

I Don’t Wanna Live Forever (‘Fifty Shades Darker’)” — Jack Antonoff, Sam Dew & Taylor Swift, songwriters (Zayn & Taylor Swift), from Fifty Shades Darker

Never Give Up” — Sia Furler & Greg Kurstin, songwriters (Sia), from Lion

Stand Up For Something” — Common & Diane Warren, songwriters (Andra Day Featuring Common), from Marshall

Best Music Video

Up All Night” — Beck

Makeba” — Jain

The Story Of O.J.” — Jay-Z

HUMBLE.” — Kendrick Lamar

1-800-273-8255” — Logic Featuring Alessia Cara & Khalid

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