Record Of The Year
2018 has been the YEAR of Cardi B and Post Malone. There is no doubt that Rhythm will dominate this year's show.
- I Like It / Cardi B, Bad Bunny & J Balvin - Predicted Winner
- The Joke / Brandi Carlile - Could this be the surprise winner? It's a powerful song by a powerful singer.
- This Is America / Childish Gambino - There is no doubt that this song had an amazing cultural impact
- God's Plan / Drake - Honorable mention: Scorpion was one of the biggest albums of the year
- Shallow / Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper
- All The Stars / Kendrick Lamar & SZA
- Rockstar / Post Malone Featuring 21 Savage
- The Middle / Zedd, Maren Morris & Grey - Honorable mention: This was one of the biggest crossover the year.
Album Of The Year
- Invasion Of Privacy / Cardi B - Honorable mention: Cardi's single "I Like It" was one of the biggest songs of the year.
- By The Way, I Forgive You / Brandi Carlile
- Scorpion / Drake - Honorable mention: Every single song streamed in the top 15
- H.E.R. / H.E.R.
- Beerbongs & Bentleys / Post Malone - Predicted winner: This album absolutely deserves the win, similar to Scorpion from Drake, almost every song on the album was top 15, however, songs from this album still get regular streaming numbers and power radio play.
- Dirty Computer / Janelle Monáe
- Golden Hour / Kacey Musgraves
- Black Panther: The Album, Music From And Inspired By
- (Various Artists) Kendrick Lamar
Song Of The Year - A Songwriter(s) Award
There were countless examples of great songwriting this year. This has to be one of the toughest decisions to make. I would say that every song in this category is deserving of the award.
- All The Stars / Kendrick Duckworth, Solána Rowe, Al Shuckburgh, Mark Spears & Anthony Tiffith, songwriters (Kendrick Lamar & SZA)
- Boo'd Up / Larrance Dopson, Joelle James, Ella Mai & Dijon McFarlane, songwriters (Ella Mai)
- God's Plan / Aubrey Graham, Daveon Jackson, Brock Korsan, Ron LaTour, Matthew Samuels & Noah Shebib, songwriters (Drake)
- In My Blood / Teddy Geiger, Scott Harris, Shawn Mendes & Geoffrey Warburton, songwriters (Shawn Mendes) - Honorable mention: This song makes a pure impact on the listener, you can just hear the passion in the writing.
- The Joke / Brandi Carlile, Dave Cobb, Phil Hanseroth & Tim Hanseroth, songwriters (Brandi Carlile) - Honorable mention: I would not be surprised if this wins, the writing is powerful and just a pure song.
- The Middle / Sarah Aarons, Jordan K. Johnson, Stefan Johnson, Marcus Lomax, Kyle Trewartha, Michael Trewartha & Anton Zaslavski, songwriters (Zedd, Maren Morris & Grey)
- Shallow / Lady Gaga, Mark Ronson, Anthony Rossomando & Andrew Wyatt, songwriters (Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper) - Honorable mention: I assume writing a song for a movie is tough - being given a specific topic and having to create this moving track deserves recognition for sure.
- This Is America / Donald Glover & Ludwig Goransson, songwriters (Childish Gambino) - Predicted Winner: This is the song that blasted to the movement. It created a buzz unlike many songs did this year.
Best New Artist
- Chloe x Halle
- Luke Combs - Honorable mention: Luke had a great first REAL year in Country music. His powerful vocals and hints of older style country mixed with the necessary nuances of today's country make for a great sounding artist. Plus, he had 8 of Billboard's top country tracks of the year. That's the second most of any country artist. I almost think Luke is the most deserving of the award.
- Bebe Rexha
- Greta Van Fleet - Honorable mention: Although we saw the initial success of GVF in 2017, they really achieved mainstream success this year. Their 2018 album was not received well at first-mainly because of their similarity to Led Zeppelin, but we have definitely seen people coming around on that. I think they deserve the recognition solely due to the buzz around the group that came in 2018.
- Dua Lipa - Predicted winner: Dua had an amazing breakout year. She is the quintessential pop vocal. Her song "New Rules" is by far the biggest pop hit in years, and will live on for many to come. She was also featured on a number of charting singles, and had a second song in the top pop songs of 2018 in IDGAF.
- Margo Price
- Jorja Smith
Best Pop Solo Performance
Rap and rhythm had their year, but we also saw a great resurgence of pop hit makers in 2018.
- Colors / Beck
- Havana / Camila Cabello - Predicted winner: The Latina flare Camila brought us with her first big single was massive. This was a multi-format hit that continues to show power for radio stations, fans, and listeners alike. It's just so catchy!
- God Is A Woman / Ariana Grande - Honorable mention: If this was the album category, I truly think Ari deserves it. No one has created a buzz and interest like her in recent memory. In this category, I do think there are a couple more deserving records.
- Joanne (Where Do You Think You're Goin'?) / Lady Gaga
- Better Now / Post Malone - Honorable mention: This song's form and feel is almost like that of "Havana" - in that it's a massive, super catchy hit that people are still listening to despite its growing age. I go with Camila over this record just due to her mass-appeal across age ranges.
Best Pop Duo/Group Performance
"For new vocal or instrumental duo/group or collaborative pop recordings. Singles or Tracks only. This is such a tough category for me to pick from." The amazing soulful duets that Lady Gaga/Bradley and JT/Chris Stapleton brought us are moving well-composed songs, while the absolute quintessential pop hits in Zedd and Maroon 5 remind us what pop is and why catchy, well-produced pop music could be more important than exceptional songwriting. Plus, we saw the Backstreet Boys completely reinvent themselves with "Don't Go Breaking My Heart". They were able to transform into the perfect pop sound of 2018. Any "Honorable Mention" could win.
- Fall In Line / Christina Aguilera Featuring Demi Lovato
- Don't Go Breaking My Heart / Backstreet Boys - honorable mention
- 'S Wonderful / Tony Bennett & Diana Krall
- Shallow / Lady Gaga & Bradley Cooper
- Girls Like You / Maroon 5 Featuring Cardi B - honorable mention
- Say Something / Justin Timberlake Featuring Chris Stapleton- honorable mention
- The Middle / Zedd, Maren Morris & Grey - Predicted winner
Best Pop Vocal Album
- Camila / Camila Cabello - honorable mention
- Meaning Of Life / Kelly Clarkson
- Sweetener / Ariana Grande - Predicted winner
- Shawn Mendes / Shawn Mendes
- Beautiful Trauma /P!nk
- Reputation / Taylor Swift - honorable mention
Best Rock Performance
Rock is so hard to pick because of the loose definition around it. I truly don't believe that Halestorm and Arctic Monkeys can be in the same category. What is rock and what is alternative?
- Four Out Of Five / Arctic Monkeys - honorable mention
- When Bad Does Good / Chris Cornell
- Made An America / THE FEVER 333
- Highway Tune / Greta Van Fleet - Predicted winner
- Uncomfortable / Halestorm - honorable mention
Best Rock Song - A Songwriter(s) Award
Again, another category that's hard to pick from. A category where twenty one pilot, Ghost, and Bring Me The Horizon, AND St. Vincent are all grouped together does not make sense at all in any way.
- Black Smoke Rising / Jacob Thomas Kiszka, Joshua Michael Kiszka, Samuel Francis Kiszka & Daniel Robert Wagner, songwriters (Greta Van Fleet) - Predicted winner
- Jumpsuit / Tyler Joseph, songwriter (Twenty One Pilots) - honorable mention: if this was an alt category, there's a good chance this would win, and it still may just because of their popularity
- MANTRA / Jordan Fish, Matthew Kean, Lee Malia, Matthew Nicholls & Oliver Sykes, songwriters (Bring Me The Horizon)
- Masseduction / Jack Antonoff & Annie Clark, songwriters (St. Vincent)
- Rats / Tom Dalgety & A Ghoul Writer, songwriters (Ghost) - honorable mention, this is a true rock track
Best Alternative Music Album
This is a tough one to choose too. It's a category this year defined by a new, adult album alt wave with Bjork, David Byrne, and St. Vincent all nominated, while we see mainstream Alt represented by the return of Beck and Arctic moneys with long awaited albums. All of these albums could win. Each tells a unique story through their composition, and the writing on all are thoughtful. It's kind of a powerhouse of friends this year, considering David Byrne and St. Vincent are very close, and even released an album together recently. Do you go with the artful or mainstream to win?
- Tranquility Base Hotel + Casino / Arctic Monkeys - Predicted winner
- Colors / Beck
- Utopia / Björk
- American Utopia / David Byrne - Honorable mention
- Masseduction / St. Vincent - Honorable mention
Best Rap Performance
- Be Careful / Cardi B - Predicted winner
- Nice For What / Drake- honorable mention
- King's Dead / Kendrick Lamar, Jay Rock, Future & James Blake
- Bubblin / Anderson Paak
- Sicko Mode / Travis Scott, Drake, Big Hawk & Swae Lee - honorable mention
Best Rap Album
- Invasion Of Privacy / Cardi B - Predicted winner
- Swimming / Mac Miller - honorable mention
- Victory Lap / Nipsey Hussle
- Daytona / Pusha T
- Astroworld / Travis Scott - honorable mention
Best Country Song - A Songwriter(s) Award
- Break Up In The End / Jessie Jo Dillon, Chase McGill & Jon Nite, songwriters (Cole Swindell) - Honorable mention
- Dear Hate / Tom Douglas, David Hodges & Maren Morris, songwriters (Maren Morris Featuring Vince Gill)
- I Lived It / Rhett Akins, Ross Copperman, Ashley Gorley & Ben Hayslip, songwriters (Blake Shelton) - honorable mention
- Space Cowboy / Luke Laird, Shane McAnally & Kacey Musgraves, songwriters (Kacey Musgraves)
- Tequila / Nicolle Galyon, Jordan Reynolds & Dan Smyers, songwriters (Dan + Shay) - Predicted winner
- When Someone Stops Loving You / Hillary Lindsey, Chase McGill & Lori McKenna, songwriters (Little Big Town)
Best Country Album
- Unapologetically / Kelsea Ballerini - honorable mention
- Port Saint Joe / Brothers Osborne - honorable mention
- Girl Going Nowhere / Ashley McBryde
- Golden Hour / Kacey Musgraves
- From A Room: Volume 2 / Chris Stapleton - Predicted winner