LOS ANGELES (AP) — Beyoncé has propelled herself to the top Grammy echelon: The star singer claimed a leading nine nominations on Tuesday, tying her — with husband Jay-Z — as the most nominated music act in awards history.
Beyoncé’s “Break My Soul” earned nominations for record and song of the year, while “Renaissance” – which ventured into the world of dancehall music – earned Album of the Year. With Jay-Z also earning five nominations this year, each spouse now holds the record for most Grammy nominations ever with 88 apiece.
Kendrick Lamar came away with the second most nominations, with eight. Adele and Brandi Carlile both received seven nods. Harry Styles, Mary J. Blige, Future, DJ Khaled, The-Dream and mastering engineer Randy Merrill each grabbed six.
Nearly half of this year’s top nominees — announced by the likes of Olivia Rodrigo, John Legend, Machine Gun Kelly and Smokey Robinson — are women and more than half are people of color, according to the recording academy. The ceremony will take place on February 5 in Los Angeles.
“I’m very proud of this, but it makes me aware that we need to continue the work we’ve been doing,” said Harvey Mason Jr., the CEO of the Recording Academy. He said progress has been made in the peer-driven voting system and increased membership, but he still believes more progress can be made.
“This year I am satisfied with the result and the voters’ work,” he continued. “We now have almost 13,000 voters. It’s really important work. I’m happy to think they spent the time listening to the music and evaluating it. I think you can tell by the kind of nominations that they don’t just go for popular music or music with a lot of streams. It’s just high quality music.”
The academy added a special song for social change and five new categories, including songwriter of the yearwhich Harvey says will help further diversify the 65th edition of the annual awards.
The non-classical songwriters category will recognize one person who was the “most prolific” non-performing and non-producing songwriter for a range of new work during an appropriate year. It will take a different approach than the song of the year, which rewards the songwriters who wrote the lyrics or melodies for one song.
Harvey said implementing the songwriter category is a “significant” step forward for the music industry. Last year, a rule update allowed any songwriter, producer, engineer, or artist on a work nominated for Album of the Year to eventually earn a nomination.
“The academy and voters place a great deal of importance on the craft of songwriting,” Harvey said of the new category, which includes The-Dream, Amy Allen, Nija Charles, Tobias Jesso Jr. and Laura Veltz are nominated. “Personally, as a songwriter, I’m happy that it’s an important part of our process. We realize that songwriting is at the heart of our industry. It is one of the building blocks of any artist’s career.”
Beyoncé, the most decorated woman in Grammy history with 28 wins, could break the late Hungarian-British conductor Georg Solti’s record for most awards won if she wins four awards. Solti, who has 31 Grammys, has held the record since 1997.
For the first time in Beyoncé’s acclaimed career, she was nominated in the dance category. Her seventh studio project “Renaissance” is nominated for Best Dance Electronic Music Album and “Break My Soul” is nominated for Best Dance Electronic Recording. Other nominations include Best R&B Song for “Cuff It,” R&B Performance for “Virgo’s Groove,” Traditional R&B Performance for “Plastic Off the Sofa,” and Visual Media Written Song for “Be Alive.” Oscar nominated song from the ‘King Richard’ soundtrack.
Merrill garnered two nominations in the Record of the Year category for the second year in a row for his work on Adele’s “Easy on Me” and Styles’ “As It Was.” It is also the first time he has been nominated three times for album of the year in the same year.
Other nominees for Album of the Year include: Adele’s “30”, ABBA’s “Voyage”, Bad Bunny’s “Un Verano Sin Ti”, Mary J. Blige’s “Good Morning Gorgeous” (Deluxe), Carlile’s “In These Silent Days”, Coldplay’s “Music of the Spheres,” Lamar’s “Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers,” Lizzo’s “Special,” and Styles’ “Harry’s House.”
Tracks competing with “Break My Soul” for record of the year include Styles’ “As It Was”, Doja Cat’s “Woman”, Adele’s “Easy On Me”, ABBA’s “Don’t Shut Me Down”, Blige’s ” Good Morning Gorgeous”, Steve Lacy’s “Bad Habit”, Lamar’s “The Heart Part 5”, Lizzo’s “About Damn Time” and Carlile’s “You and Me On the Rock” featuring Lucius.
Three of Jay-Z’s nominations came through DJ Khaled’s “God Did,” a track featuring Rick Ross, Lil Wayne, John Legend, and Fridayy. The song is nominated for Best Rap Performance and Rap Song, along with Song of the Year, which Jay-Z is also nominated for for his writing efforts on Beyoncé’s “Break My Soul”. The rapper also received an album of the year nomination for his work on his wife’s “Renaissance” album.
Young Thug and Gunna both received nominations despite being currently locked up in a racketeering case. The rappers gear up for the best rap song and rap performance through Gunna’s “Pushin P”, featuring Thug and Future.
Christina Aguilera’s comeback to Latin music with her self-titled album earned her two nominations for Best Latin Pop Album and Immersive Audio Album. Among the 10 nominees for best new artist are Muni Long, Latto and Eurovision winner Maneskin.