GRAMMYs 2020: Lizzo's 'Truth Hurts,' Lil Nas X's 'Old Town Road' and Other Eligibility Questions, Answered
The GRAMMYs are right around the corner!
On Wednesday morning, nominations for the 2020 GRAMMY Awards were announced live from New York City, and while there are certainly a few snubs and surprises, fans are already speculating on who might score a big win in one of the major categories. Of course, with any awards show comes a bit of controversy over eligibility periods and submission criteria, so we're here to answer a few of this year's biggest questions.
The 2020 GRAMMYs, which will be held at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Sunday, Jan. 26, will cover music released from Oct. 1, 2018 - Aug. 31, 2019, with a few exceptions -- including the always-murky Best New Artist category. Read on below for more and stay tuned to ET Live for all things GRAMMY-related!
How is Lizzo's "Truth Hurts" eligible two years later?
One of the biggest stars we're watching for at this year's GRAMMYs, Lizzo is having herself quite the year, with breakthrough success on the charts, numerous awards and even a film debut role in Hustlers. She scored the most nominations of any artist this year, with eight in total, and got a nod in each of the "Big 4" categories -- Best New Artist, Album of the Year for Cuz I Love You, and Record of the Year and Song of the Year for her biggest hit of 2019, "Truth Hurts."
But how? "Truth Hurts" was released as a standalone single back in 2017, well before this year's eligibility period. However, because the song hasn't been submitted to the GRAMMYs before, and appears on an album released during the eligibility period -- "Truth Hurts" appears on the deluxe edition of Lizzo's third studio album, Cuz I Love You, which was released in April 2019 -- the GRAMMYs have given it the go-ahead.
Wait, didn't A Star Is Born get nominated last year?
Yes and no. While the lead single from the Lady Gaga-Bradley Cooper awards darling, "Shallow," was eligible last year -- and was nominated for four GRAMMYs, winning two: Best Pop Duo/Group Performance and Best Song Written for Visual Media -- the full soundtrack was not released within the eligibility period and will thus be eligible for nominations at this year's awards.
While A Star Is Born missed out on Album of the Year in the 2020 nominations, it did land a nod for Best Compilation Soundtrack For Visual Media, as well as a Song of the Year recognition for "Always Remember Us This Way."
The true weirdness comes, however, in the category of Best Song Written For Visual Media. "Shallow" won this GRAMMY in 2019, and Gaga is nominated again in 2020 for "I'll Never Love Again." If she wins in January, she'll almost certainly be the first person to win back-to-back GRAMMYs in the same category for the same project. Just, don't let Jackson Maine be up there for the acceptance speech.
Could Taylor Swift break any GRAMMY records?
Not this year. Swift earned three more nominations at the 2020 GRAMMYs -- scoring nods for Song of the Year for "Lover," Best Pop Solo Performance for "You Need to Calm Down" and Best Pop Vocal Album for Lover -- which could be just the good news the singer needs amid her battle with Big Machine, however she was snubbed once again from Album of the Year.
On the bright side, Swift is the only solo songwriter to be nominated in the Song of the Year category, breaking back into the Big 4 after 2019's Reputation snubs. If she wins all three of her awards come GRAMMY night, it will bump her up the list of female artists with the most wins -- tying her for sixth place along with Ella Fitzgerald, Emmylou Harris and Leontyne Price, pretty good company.
The "You Need to Calm Down" singer could also potentially lose a record on GRAMMY night. Billie Eilish is a frontrunner for Album of the Year with her debut, When We All Fall Asleep, Where Do We Go? If she wins the honor, 18-year-old Eilish will dethrone Swift -- who was 20 when she won for Fearless -- as the youngest winner ever in that category.
Which category is "Old Town Road" competing in?
Lil Nas X was a shoo-in for a Best New Artist nod, but after that, things got a little confusing, what with the seemingly endless remixes of his massive, record-breaking, cross-genre hit. The GRAMMYs screening committee, which has the final say in who gets nominated where, made the decision that Nas' "Old Town Road" remix featuring Billy Ray Cyrus would compete in the Best Pop Duo/Group Performance -- rather than a rap or country category -- and it paid off. The song scored a nomination in that category, as well as Record of the Year and Best Music Video, and Lil Nas' debut EP, 7, landed him an Album of the Year nod. He was also nominated for Best Rap/Sung Performance for "Panini," in addition to Best New Artist.
"Old Town Road" is just the 10th song to spend 14 or more weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 -- totaling a record-breaking 19 weeks before it was dethroned by Billie Eilish's "Bad Guy." Of those songs, eight were nominated for Record of the Year and two won -- Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You" and Mark Ronson's "Uptown Funk!" (featuring Bruno Mars) -- meaning Lil Nas has a fair shot at putting himself in good company with another big win come GRAMMY night.
What about Beyoncé?
Don't worry about Queen Bey. Even in a year without a Lemonade-style album drop, Beyoncé still landed herself plenty of recognition come GRAMMY night. Though she was shut out of the major general field categories, she ended up with four nominations in total: Best Pop Solo Performance and Best Song Written for Visual Media for "Spirit" from The Lion King: The Gift, as well as Best Pop Vocal Album nod for the soundtrack as a whole, and a Best Musical Film nod for the Homecoming documentary.
Those nominations move Queen Bey up to seventh overall on the list of total nominations, tying her with composer John Williams at 70 career nods. She is still, by far, the most nominated female artist of all time.
The 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards will take place in Los Angeles on Sunday, Jan. 26, 2020 and broadcast live on CBS at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT.
This article was originally published on Nov. 18, 2019 at 12:33 p.m. PT.
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