is gearing up for what is sure to be a huge moment at this Sunday's Grammy Awards. The British soul-singer is set to take the stage with nine-time Grammy winner Mary J. Blige
and is also up for six Grammys
of his own-- tying only Beyonce
and Pharrell Williams
for the most nominations of any other artists this year.
ET's Brooke Anderson caught up with the 22-year-old backstage of his sold-out concert at the LA Forum to talk about his transformative year and his thoughts on facing off against heavyweights such as Bey and Pharrell in the Album of the Year category.
"It's a little odd for me," Smith admits. "They have been around for a long, long time and for me to get the same amount of nominations as them for my first record is crazy. I am just honored."
While Smith, a longtime Beyonce superfan
, toldRolling Stone
that if he were to beat out the 17-time Grammy winner for the coveted trophy that he'd give it to her, he explains it was all in jest but that it's still hers to lose.
"If I was to win [Album of the Year], I would be very weirded out," Smith adds. "I just think Beyonce is going to get it. Her album is incredible."
But rest assured that so long as the Grammy has his name on it, Smith says he's keeping it. "People would say, 'Are you going to give them to your mom?' and I would be like, 'No,'" he jokes. "It doesn't have her name on it. She can touch it once."
His Grammy-nominated debut album, In The Lonely Hour, has been certified platinum and has sold 2 million copies in the U.S., and 4 million copies total. Smith says he owes the success of the album to the personal connection audiences made to his music.
"I didn’t have to change who I was for this album," he explains. "I was just myself and honest and I went through something. And I keep going around in my head what has made my album so successful and every single day I come down to the word honesty. And its true, it’s all I have to do. Is just be honest."
So how is the UK crooner celebrating his monumental year? Like any 22-year-old, he admits he likes to "go out and have drinks" with friends, but don't count on seeing him at lavish industry parties.
"I don't go to celebrity parties a lot," he reveals. "I don't really enjoy them because I really like going for it in parties. And sometimes at celebrity parties, there is no dancing on tables because people... it can be a little judgmental at times
. So I tend not to go unless it is Taylor Swift's birthday party, then it’s amazing."
Smith was among a long list of Swift's famous friends
-- which includes Beyonce, Jay Z
, Justin Timberlake
, Selena Gomez
and Nick Jonas
-- who all gathered to celebrate the "Blank Space" singer's 25th birthday in December.
"In the moment, it just feels normal because they are people," he says."But afterwards, you do step back and think, 'I looked up to these people my whole life and it is incredible."
To say Smith has had an epic year would be a complete understatement and all of his success has led up to his big Grammy moment. Of his six record nominations, he is the first male artists in 34 years to snag noms in the "Big Four" categories: Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year and Best New Artist. A huge feat for any artist, let alone a new artist who was just scrubbing toilets in a London bar two years ago.
"The thing I am most proud of out of this whole thing is how I feel the same in my mind and how I feel a year and a half ago," he says. "I still have the same morals, the same dreams, the same wants and I hope I haven't changed that much."
Start dusting of your shelves, Smith, because something tells us come Grammy Sunday your life is about to change in a major way.