You may or may not know, but the Grammy Awards are coming up this Wednesday, February 8th. I’ve always had a bittersweet relationship with the Grammy’s. They are enjoyable, but I’ve never thought they were anything super-important. Why? Any show that is willing to say “…and the Grammy for best song of the year goes to Shawn Colvin for Sunny Came Home” has no credibility in my book. The Grammy’s seem to get a few artists they like and give them award after reward regardless of whether or not they deserve it. Do you realize that when Kanye West wins best Rap Album this year, it will mean that only Kanye West, Eminem, and Outkast have won the Best Rap Album award since 1999? This is the group of people who deemed Nelly’s “Shake Ya Tailfeather,” the Lenny Kravitz version of “American Woman,” and Metallica’s “St. Anger” as being songs of such high quality that they needed to be awarded a trophy. Unbelievable. Anyway, here are my thoughts on the award categories… I didn’t do the awards I don’t know or care about. Honestly, I’m probably not the best judge whether Conway Twitty or Garth Brooks had the best Country Solo Performance by a Male with Divorced Parents. That’s not what I’m all about…

Record of the Year

Mariah Carey – We Belong Together

Gorillaz – Feel Good Inc.

Green Day – Boulevard of Broken Dreams

Gwen Steffani – Hollaback Girl

Kanye West – Gold Digger

Brent’s Thoughts – The Oscars generally give awards to actors who have put in their time and had unbelievable performances over and over again like Denzel. If you are watching the Emmys, you are likely to see CJ from the West Wing or Carmella from the Sopranos win year in and year out for the outstanding work that they do. The Grammy’s? Well, they consistently nominate artists that have no staying power. In 20 years, do you honestly think “Feel Good Inc” will be one of those songs that you still listen to? Plus, didn’t Green Day’s cd come out last year? I know it was released as a single this year, but it still was on the cd that was up for so many awards last year. Give me a break…

Should Win Instead… – Death Cab for Cutie – Soul Meets Body

Album of the Year

Mariah Carey – The Emancipation of Mimi

Paul McCartney – Chaos and Creation in the Backyard

Gwen Stefani – Love. Angel. Music. Baby

U2 – How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb

Kanye West – Late Registration

Brent’s Thoughts – There should be a rule that you are ineligible to win this award for an album that isn’t your best work. This rule would eliminate every single on of these albums. Seriously…

Should Win Instead… – The Academy Is… – Almost Here

Song of the Year

Rascal Flatts – Bless the Broken Road

Bruce Springsteen – Devils and Dust

John Legend – Get Lifted

U2 – Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own

Mariah Carey – We Belong Together

Brent’s Thoughts – I can’t say I’ve heard the Bruce song or the Rascall Flatts song, but how does “song of the year” differ from “record of the year?” I’ve been asking this for the past two years that I’ve done a preview, but no one is willing to answer. C’mon people…

Should Win Instead – since I can’t distinguish between “song” and “record”, I’m sticking with Death Cab.

Best New Artist


Fall Out Boy


John Legend


Brent’s Thoughts – I love how a “new artist” is someone who broke out this year. Didn’t matter that Fall Out Boy’s last record sold a ton of records. They didn’t get any mainstream recognition until this year, so they are a new artist. This would be the equivalent of Mike Bibby winning the 2001 rookie of the year award even though he was drafted in 1998 simplly because nobody really knew he was a good player until he almost beat Shaq and Kobe in the Conference finals.

Should Win Instead – The Academy Is…

Best Female Pop Vocal Performance

Mariah Carey – It’s Like That

Kelly Clarkson – Since U Been Gone

Sheryl Crow – Good is Good

Bonnie Raitt – I Will Not Be Broken

Gwen Stefani – Hollaback Girl

Brent’s Thoughts – It’s a crime that Fiona Apple’s “Tymps” wasn’t included in here. Sadly, I must admit that I’m a fan of “Since U Been Gone” although I still refuse to watch American Idol. I wish something by M.I.A. would’ve been included on this list.

Should Win Instead – Fionna Apple – Tymps

Best Male Pop Vocal Performance

Jack Johnson – Sitting, Waiting, Wishing

Paul McCartney – Fine Line

Seal – Walk On By

Rob Thomas – Lonely No More

Stevie Wonder – From the Bottom of My Heart

Brent’s Thoughts – I like that Jack Johnson is included here… I guess this isn’t the category I’m most concerned with. So sue me.

Should Win – I’m going to be unoriginal and go with Jack Johnson. What can I say… I like the guy.

Best Pop Performance by a Duo or Group

The Black Eyed Peas – Don’t Lie

The Killers – Mr. Brightside

Los Lonely Boys – More Than Love

Maroon 5 – This Love

The White Stripes – My Doorbell

Brent’s Thoughts – OK, for the record, why would The White Stripes and The Killers be considered pop yet later on, Coldplay is up for a slew of rock awards. This makes absolutely no sense. Anyway, The Black Eyed Peas can’t win because they released “My Humps” which should win the musical version of a “Razzie” for being the worst song of the year. In fact, any song with the phrase “…my lovely lady lumps…” in it should automatically be disqualified from any future award considerations.

Should Win Instead – Wyclef Jean and Norah Jones – Any Other Day

Best Pop Vocal Album

Fiona Apple – Extraordinary Machine

Kelly Clarkson – Breakaway

Sheryl Crow – Wildflower

Paul McCartney – Chaos and Creation in the Backyard

Gwen Stefani – Love. Angel. Music. Baby.

Brent’s Thoughts – Finally, my girl Fiona Apple gets some credit!

Should Win – Fiona Apple – Extraordinary Machine

Best Solo Rock Vocal Performance

Eric Clapton – Revolution

Robert Plant – Shine It All Around

Bruce Springsteen – Devils & Dust

Rob Thomas – This is How a Heart Breaks

Neil Young – The Painter

Brent’s Thoughts – This is the 2005 Grammy’s, correct? Seriously… I have nothing against Clapton, Plant, Springsteen, and Young. They are all great artists. None of them have done any of their finest work in the past 10 years.

Should Win Instead – Beck – Guero

Best Rock Performance by Duo or Group

Coldplay – Speed of Sound

Foo Fighters – Best of You

Franz Ferdinand – Do You Want To

The Killers – All These Things That I’ve Done

U2 – Sometimes You Can’t Make It On Your Own

I don’t mind Coldplay being on this list (although I don’t consider them rock). I also have no real beef with Foo Fighters or The Killers. Franz Ferdinand doesn’t do much for me. That isn’t U2’s best song, either.

Should Win Instead – The White Stripes – Blue Orchid

Best Hard Rock Performance

Audioslave – Doesn’t Remind Me

Nine Inch Nails – The Hand That Feeds

Robert Plant – Tin Pan Valley

Queens of the Stone Age – Little Sister

System of a Down – B.Y.O.B.

Brent’s Thoughts – System of a Down, NIN, and Queens of the Stone Age all belong on this list. Other songs I’d include would be Thrice – Image of the Invisible and maybe My Chemical Romance – Helena or Avenged Sevenfold – Bat Country. By the way, if “Little Sister” is considered a hard rock song, I can be creative with my picks.

Should Win – System of a Down – B.Y.O.B.

Best Rock Song

Foo Fighters – Best of You

Weezer – Beverly Hills

U2 – City of Blinding Lights

Bruce Springsteen – Devils & Dust

Coldplay – Speed of Sound

Brent’s Thoughts – I love Weezer, but they can’t win simply because everyone in the world is sick of that song. Honestly, none of these five songs would be on my list for best rock song of the year.

Should Win Instead – The White Stripes – Blue Orchid

Best Rock Album

Coldplay – X&Y

Foo Fighters – In Your Honor

The Rolling Stones – A Bigger Bang

U2 – How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb

Neil Young – Prairie Wind

Brent’s Thoughts – Once again, the Academy goes “old” on us including the Stones (what?) and Neil Young (what?!?) on this list. To all of the people who are 40+ years old that read my site: I apologize in advance. They were great in their hayday and I hear they still are decent live, but the Stones no longer “rock.”

Should Win Instead – The Mars Volta – Frances the Mute

Best Alternative Music Album

The Arcade Fire – Funeral

Beck – Guero

Death Cab for Cutie – Plans

Franz Ferdinand – You Could Have It So Much Better

The White Stripes – Get Behind Me Satan

Brent’s Thoughts – For the record, how is the best alt music album any different than the best rock album? Ah well… I actually love these choices. I’d put The Academy Is in place of Franz Ferdinand and you’d have just about a perfect list. I love that they included The Arcade Fire.

Should Win – Death Cab for Cutie – Plans

Best Rap Solo Performance

Common – Testify

Eminem – Mockingbird

50 Cent – Disco Inferno

Ludacris – Number One Spot

TI – U Don’t Know Me

Kanye West – Gold Digger

Brent’s Thoughts – Ohh… a lot of artists should be disqualified for the before-mentioned “you can’t win a Grammy for something that isn’t your best work” stipulation. Seriously, all six would be kicked off the ballot. The best song by each of these artists: Common – I Used to Love H.E.R., Eminem – Stan, 50 Cent – P.I.M.P., Ludacris – Southern Hospitality, TI – Bring Em Out, Kanye West – Through the Wire. Some of these songs (Mockingbird, Number One Spot) aren’t any good at all!

Should Win Instead – Atmosphere – Watch Out

Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group

The Black Eyed Peas – Don’t Phunk With My Heart

Common – The Corner

Eminem – Encore

The Game – Hate It or Love It

Ying Yang Twins – Wait

Brent’s Thoughts – Besides Common’s “The Corner,” I’m not really liking anything on this list. Meh…

Should Win – Common – The Corner

Best Rap Song

50 Cent – Candy Shop

Kanye West – Diamonds from Sierra Leone

The Black Eyed Peas – Don’t Phunk With My Heart

The Game – Hate It or Love It

Missy Elliot – Lose Control

Brent’s Thoughts – I like Diamonds froM Sierra Leone, but where this list is seriously lacking. Is it just me or does Missy Elliot get included on this list every year by default?

Should Win Instead – Atmosphere – Watch Out

Best Rap Album

Common – Be

Missy Elliot – The Cookbook

Eminem – Encore

50 Cent – The Massacre

Kanye West – Late Registration

Brent’s Thoughts – I like Common and Kanye on this list, but where is the Blackalicious – The Graft, De La Soul – The Grind Date, Atmosphere – You Can’t Imagine How Much Fun We’re Having, or Z-Trip – Shifting Gears? These were all great under-the-radar albums that came out in the past time.

Should Win – Common – Be

Final Thoughts – The Grammy’s are sure to disappoint. Seriously, I’m not trying to sound like an elitist or anything, but what they consider “the best in music” are many of the songs that turn me off the most. It’s more about what’s trendy and popular rather that what is good. Whereas I think the other award shows do a good job of awarding some of the finest performances, every year watching the Grammy’s, I’m taken back to high school. Eight out of ten times, the winner of best artist or best album seems entirely too much like the musical homecoming king or queen. Will I watch it? I dunno… in the past, I’ve done a running diary. I may have a running diary of the Super Bowl on Monday and a running diary of the Grammy’s on Thursday. Then again, I may do neither. We’ll see…

If you’re out on your bike tonight, do wear white,