Boomers Make a Splash with 2016 Grammy Nominations
Names like Canuck singer/songwriter The Weeknd, Taylor Swift and Kendrick Lamar may have dominated the 58th Grammy nomination announcements this morning, but a number of classic and boomer artists fought their way into contention for music’s most sought-after awards, including Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, James Taylor, Diana Krall and even former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.
The Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album category stands out as a bastion of boomer contenders – Tony Bennett, 89, and Bill Charlap, 49 (The Silver Lining: The Songs Of Jerome Kern); Bob Dylan, 74 (Shadows In The Night); and Barry Manilow, 72 (My Dream Duets) – who boast a combined age of 284 years and a combined Grammy count of 28.
James Taylor, 67, nabbed three nominations for his album Before This World, including Best Pop Vocal Album (where he goes head-to-head with the pop superstar du jour named after him, Taylor Swift), Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical (that pits him against Canadian jazz singer and pianist Diana Krall, 51, and her album Wallflower) and Best Historical Album (where he faces Bob Dylan and the Band’s The Basement Tapes Complete: The Bootleg Series Vol. 11). Meanwhile, R&B singer Charlie Wilson, 62, earned two nominations, for Best Traditional R&B Performance (“My Favorite Part Of You”) and Best R&B Album (Forever Charlie).
Rapper Dr. Dre, 50, is nominated for best rap album for Compton while Roger Waters, 72, landed two nominations for Best Surround Sound Album (Amused to Death) and Best Music Film (The Wall).
The Best Blues Album category boast three nominees in or near their 70s – Buddy Guy, 79 (Born to Play Guitar), Bettye LaVette, 69 (Worthy) and John Primer, 70 (Muddy Waters 100).
Emmylou Harris, 68 and Rodney Crowell, 65, earned a nomination in the Best Americana Album category for their disc The Traveling Kind, while legendary Canadian singer/songwriter Joni Mitchell, 72, is nominated for Best Album Notes for Love Has Many Faces: A Quartet, A Ballet, Waiting to Be Danced.
Former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, 91, announced last week that he’s officially cancer-free and today he learned he’s nominated for a Grammy for Best Spoken Word Album for A Full Life: Reflections At Ninety, alongside other nominees Patti Smith, 68 (Blood On Snow by Jo Nesbø), Dick Cavett, 79 (Brief Encounters: Conversations, Magic Moments, And Assorted Hijinks) and Janis Ian, 64, and Jean Smart, 64 (Patience And Sarah by Isabel Miller).
The Rolling Stones (Sticky Fingers, Super Deluxe Edition) and The Grateful Dead (30 Trips Around the Sun) will battle it out for Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package while comedians Lisa Lampanelli, 54 (Back to the Drawing Board), Jay Mohr, 45 (Happy. And A Lot.), Craig Ferguson, 53 (Just Being Honest) and Louis C.K., 48 (Live at Madison Square Garden) go head-to-head for Best Comedy Album.
And those are just the highlights of the boomer Grammy nominees, which also feature prominently in categories like Best Contemporary Christian Music Album, Best Contemporary Instrumental Album, Best Folk Album, Best Gospel Album, Best Jazz Instrumental Album, Best Latin Pop Album, Best Reggae Album and Best Regional Roots Music Album. Click here for the full list of nominees.