2018 Grammy nominations revealed: Kendrick Lamar, Lorde, Childish Gambino, JAY-Z lead the way

Foo Fighters, Gorillaz, LCD Soundsystem, Arcade Fire, The National, and Father John Misty among the other notable contenders


Photo by Philip Cosores (Lorde), David Brendan Hall (Kendrick), Nathan Dainty (Foo Fighters)

Today, the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences revealed the nominees for the 2018 Grammy Awards. Now in its 60th year, the ceremony recognizes the best recordings, compositions, and artists of the eligibility year (Oct. 1st, 2016 – Sept. 30th, 2017).

The award for Album of the Year offers one of the more impressive slate of nominees in recent memory, with Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN., JAY-Z’s 4:44, Lorde’s Melodrama, Childish Gambino’s “Awaken, My Love!”, and Bruno Mars’ 24K Magic all in the running.

Kendrick, JAY-Z, Gambino, and Mars are all also nominated for Record of the Year. Though, it remains to be seen whether Kendrick’s “HUMBLE.”, JAY-Z’s “The Story of O.J.”, Gambino’s “Redbone”, or Mars’ “24K Magic” can topple Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee’s massive hit “Despacito” featuring Justin Bieber as next year’s winner.

“Despacito” is also up for Song of the Year alongside JAY-Z’s “4:44”, Mars’ “That’s What I Like”, and Logic’s suicide awareness anthem “1-800-273-8255”.

Best New Artist candidates include Top Dawg rapper/singer SZA, rising pop phenom Alessia Cara, R&B singer Khalid, rapper Lil Uzi Vert, and pop/dance singer Julia Michaels.

(Read: Top 50 Albums of 2017)

As it relates to the genre-specific categories…

Best Rock Performance nominees include Foo Fighters’ “Run” alongside two posthumous contenders in Chris Cornell’s “The Promise” and Leonard Cohen’s “You Want it Darker”. Foo Fighters’ “Run” is also up for Best Rock Song, but the band’s latest album, Concrete and Gold, failed to secure a Best Rock Album nod. Instead, Queens of the Stone Age’s Villains, Mastodon’s Emperor of Sand, Metallica’s Hardwired…to Self-Destruct, and The War on Drugs’ A Deeper Understanding (!) will duke it out for the accolade.

Alternative Album of the Year contenders include Gorillaz’s Humanz, LCD Soundsystem’s American Dream, Arcade Fire’s Everything Now, The National’s Sleep Well Beast, and Father John Misty’s Pure Comedy. Gorillaz and LCD Soundsystem also find themselves nominated for Best Dance Recording for “Andromeda” and “Tonite”, respectfully.

On the hip-hop front, Kendrick Lamar rules the day with nominations in all four categories: “LOYALTY.” is up for Best Rap/Sung Performance”, “HUMBLE.” is nominated for both Best Rap Song and Best Rap Performance, and DAMN. is in contention for Best Rap Album.

Appropriately, Jay-Z featuring Beyoncé scored a joint Best Rap/Sung nomination for “Family Feud”; Cardi B’s “Bodak Yellow” was surprisingly left out of the major categories, but it did pick up nods for Best Rap Performance and Best Rap Song. The mighty Migos see their album Culture up for Best Rap Album and their song “Bad and Boujee” up for Best Rap Performance. Also of note: Run the Jewels and Big Boi’s collaboration with Danger Mouse, “Chase Me”, is nominated for Best Rap Song.

In addition to his nominations for Album of the Year and Record of the Year, Childish Gambino is up for Urban Contemporary Album and Best R&B Song (“Redbone”). Best New Artist contender SZA is also nominated for Urban Contemporary Album (Ctrl), R&B Song (“Supermodel”), R&B Performance (“The Weekend”), and Rap/Sung Performance (“Love Galore”).

Other notable nominees: Portugal. the Man’s “Feel It Still” scored a Best Pop Duo/Group Performance nomination; Lana Del Rey’s Lust For Life earned a nod for Best Pop Vocal Album; Sylvan Esso’s What Now is up for Best Dance/Electronic Album; former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders received a Grammy nod for Best Spoken Word Album (Our Revolution: A Future to Believe In); and composer Hans Zimmer scored two Best Score Soundtrack nominations for Dunkirk and Hidden Figures.

The 2018 Grammy Awards take place on Sunday, January 28th, 2018 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The ceremony will be broadcast live on CBS, hosted by James Corden.

See all the notable nominees below, and check out the full list here.

Album of the Year:
Childish Gambino – “Awaken, My Love!”
JAY-Z – 4:44
Kendrick Lamar – DAMN.
Lorde – Melodrama
Bruno Mars – 24K Magic

Record of the Year:
Childish Gambino – “Redbone”
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber – “Despacito”
JAY-Z – “The Story of O.J.”
Kendrick Lamar – “HUMBLE.”
Bruno Mars – “24K Magic”

Song of the Year:
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber – “Despacito”
JAY-Z “4:44”
Julia Michaels – “Issues”
Logic – “1-800-273-8255”
Bruno Mars – “That’s What I Like”

Artist of the Year:
Alessia Cara
Lil Uzi Vert
Julia Michaels

Best Solo Pop Performance:
Kelly Clarkson – “Love So Soft”
Kesha – “Praying”
Lady Gaga – “Million Reasons”
P!nk – “What About Us”
Ed Sheeran – “Shape Of You”

Best Pop Duo/Group Performance:
The Chainsmokers and Coldplay – “Something Just Like Us”
Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee featuring Justin Bieber – “Despacito”
Imagine Dragons – “Thunder”
Portugal. the Man – “Feel It Still”
Zedd and Alessia Cara – “Stay”

Best Pop Vocal Album:
Coldplay – Kaleidoscope EP
Lana Del Rey – Lust For Life
Imagine Dragons – Evolve
Kesha – Rainbow
Lady Gaga – Joanne
Ed Sheeran – ÷ (Divide)

Best Dance Recording:
Bonobo featuring Innov Gnawa – “Bambro Koyo Ganda”
Camelphat and Elderbrook – “Cola”
Gorillaz featuring DRAM – “Andromeda”
LCD Soundsystem – “Tonite”
Odesza featuring WYNNE and Mansionair – “Line of Sight”

Best Dance/Electronic Album:
Bonobo – Migration
Kraftwerk – 3-D The Catalogue
Mura Masa – Mura Masa
Odesza – A Moment Apart
Sylvan Esso – What Now

Best Rock Performance:
Leonard Cohen – “You Want It Darker”
Chris Cornell – “The Promise”
Foo Fighters – “Run”
Kaelo – “No Good”
Nothing More – “Go To War”

Best Rock Song:
Metallica – “Atlas, Rise!”
K.Flay – “Blood in the Cut”
Nothing More – “Go to War”
Foo Fighters – “Run”
Avenged Sevenfold – “The Stage”

Best Rock Album:
Mastodon – Emperor of Sand
Metallica – Hardwired…To Self-Destruct
Nothing More – The Stories We Tell Ourselves
Queens of the Stone Age – Villains
The War on Drugs – A Deeper Understanding

Best Alternative Music Album:
Arcade Fire – Everything Now
Gorillaz – Humanz
LCD Soundsystem – American Dream
Father John Misty – Pure Comedy
The National – Sleep Well Beast

Best Metal Performance:
August Burns Red – “Invisible Enemy”
Body Count – “Black Hoodie”
Code Orange – “Forever”
Mastodon – “Sultan’s Curse”
Meshuggah – “Clockworks”

Best R&B Performance:
Daniel Caesar featuring Kali Uchis – “Get You”
Kehlani – “Distraction”
Ledisi – “High”
Bruno Mars – “That’s What I Like”
SZA – “The Weekend”

Best R&B Song:
PJ Morton – “First Began”
Khalid – “Location”
Childish Gambino – “Redbone”
SZA – “Supermodel”
Bruno Mars – “That’s What I Like”

Best Urban Contemporary Album:
6LACK – Free 6LACK
Childish Gambino – “Awaken, My Love!”
Khalid – American Teen
SZA – Ctrl
The Weeknd – Starboy

Best R&B Album:
Daniel Caesar – Freudian
Ledisi – Let Love Rule
Bruno Mars – 24K Magic
PJ Morton – Gumbo
Musiq Soulchild – Feel the Real

Best Rap Performance:
Big Sean – “Bounce Back”
Cardi B – “Bodak Yellow”
JAY-Z – “4:44”
Kendrick Lamar – “HUMBLE.”
Migos featuring Lil Uzi Vert – “Bad and Boujee”

Best Rap/Sung Performance:
6LACK – “Prblms”
Goldlink featuring Faiyaz & Shy Glizzy – “Crew”
JAY-Z featuring Beyoncé – “Family Feud”
Kendrick Lamar featuring Rihanna – “LOYALTY.”
SZA featuring Travis Scott – “Love Galore”

Best Rap Song:
Cardi B – “Bodak Yellow”
Danger Mouse featuring Run the Jewels and Big Boi – “Chase Me”
Kendrick Lamar – “HUMBLE.”
Rapsody – “Sassy”
JAY-Z – “The Story of O.J.”

Best Rap Album:
JAY-Z – 4:44
Kendrick Lamar – DAMN.
Migos – Culture
Rapsody – Laila’s Wisdom
Tyler, the Creator – Flower Boy

Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media:
Baby Driver
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2.: Awesome Mix Vol. 2
Hidden Figures
La La Land
Moana: The Songs

Best Score Soundtrack For Visual Media:
Jóhann Jóhannsson – Arrival
Hans Zimmer – Dunkirk
Ramin Djawadi – Game of Thrones: Season 7
Benjamin Wallfisch, Pharrell Williams & Hans Zimmer – Hidden Figures
Justin Hurowitz – La La Land

Best Comedy Album:
Dave Chappelle – The Age of Spin & Deep in the Heart of Texas
Jim Gaffigan – Cinco
Jerry Seinfeld – Jerry Before Seinfeld
Sarah Silverman – A Speck of Dust
Kevin Hart – What Now?

Best Spoken Word Album:
Neil deGrasse Tyson – Astrophysics for People in a Hurry
Bruce Springsteen – Born to Run
Shelly Peiken – Confessions of a Serial Songwriter
Bernie Sanders and Mark Ruffalo – Our Revolution: A Future to Believe In
Carrie Fisher – The Princess Diarist

Best Song Written For Visual Media
Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone – “City of Stars” (La La Land)
Lin Manuel Miranda – “How Far I’ll Go” (Moana)
Zayn and Taylor Swift – “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” (Fifty Shades Darker)
Sia – “Never Give Up” (Lion)
Andra Day featuring Common – “Stand Up For Something” (Marshall)

Producer of the Year, Non-Classical:
Calvin Harris
Greg Kurstin
Blake Mills
No I.D.
The Stereotypes

Best Music Video:
Beck – “Up All Night”
Jain – “Makeba”
JAY-Z – “The Story of O.J.”
Kendrick Lamar – “HUMBLE.”
Logic featuring Alessia Cara and Khalid – “1-800=273-8255”