GRAMMYs 2017: ET Breaks Down the Best New Artist Category

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The GRAMMY Awards' Best New Artist category is always a fan favorite, and this year's race is a tight one. ET's Cameron Mathison joined ETonline's senior music editor, Sophie Schillaci, in our brand new Absolut Lime Green Room to give you a closer look at the nominees who could join the ranks of artists like Meghan Trainor, John Legend and The Beatles to earn the coveted distinction.

Absolut partnered with the GRAMMYs this year to celebrate the launch of their newest flavor, Absolut Lime, so in keeping with the theme of new, we are breaking down one of this year's biggest categories.

Kelsea Ballerini

The 23-year-old country star has a promising future ahead of her, win or lose. "You could say she doesn't really need this award," Schillaci says. "Kelsea has had so much success. She broke an interesting record last year, and Kelsea is the first female artist in country music history -- including duos and groups -- to have launched three consecutive No. 1 hits from her debut album, and she writes all her own music."

The Chainsmokers

The DJ duo are widely regarded to be the frontrunners. "My money is on The Chainsmokers," Schillaci says. "One thing that's really interesting is that this band hasn't even released its debut album yet. It's out this year, but they really blew up with their singles 'Don't Let Me Down,' 'All We Know' and 'Closer.'"

Chance the Rapper

The Chicago native is considered to be a game changer in the music industry. "Coloring Book is the first streaming-only album to ever be nominated for a GRAMMY. He has no record label! He's up for 7 awards. He will definitely take home a trophy in at least one of those categories -- most likely for 'Ultralight Beam.' That's his collaboration with Kanye [West]. And he'll also perform on the telecast."

Maren Morris

Morris might be the wild card of the bunch. "She is a darling of the country critic community," Schillaci points out. "Maren will perform with Alicia Keys, who won Best New Artist back in 2002 15 years ago!"

Anderson .Paak

The singer/rapper actually released his first album in 2012, which could make him a long shot. "He's not as 'new' as you might think," says Schillaci. "He's released a few albums in the past but his latest, Malibu, is really what got him noticed."

ET teamed up with Absolut Lime to bring you GRAMMY news all week long. The 59th Annual GRAMMY Awards, hosted by James Corden, will air live on Feb. 12 at 8 p.m. ET/ 5 p.m. PT on CBS.