Believe it or not, we’re already more than halfway through the eligibility year for the 64th annual Grammy Awards in 2022! The eligibility window runs from September 1, 2020 to August 31, 2021. Since more than half of the Grammy window has already passed, we can start to make some informed calls and early 2022 Grammy predictions. Let’s run down some of the contenders!
2022 Grammy Predictions: Early Contenders
Let’s start with Taylor Swift, who’s always in the conversation. She was nominated for six Grammys in 2021 for Folkore, the sparse, folk-adjacent recorded in seclusion during lockdown. That album’s follow-up, Evermore, was released in December, so it will be eligible in 2022.
How many nominations might Evermore secure? Probably not as many as Folklore, but it could still nab a few. Lead single “Willow” would be a possible contender for Song of the Year or Pop Solo Performance. Her Haim collaboration “No Body, No Crime” stands a good shot in the Pop Duo/Group Performance category since Haim are Grammy favorites.
Perhaps the top newcomer of the year so far is 18-year-old Olivia Rodrigo, the Disney actress who broke out in a massive way with her debut single “Drivers License,” which as of this writing has earned 8 weeks at #1 (and counting.) The song is surprisingly mature and thoughtful, and will at least be in the conversation for Record and Song of the Year at the 2022 Grammys.
Rodrigo should definitely be in the Best New Artist field, and she could be among the favorites to win – but that will largely depend whether she releases any more music this year. If we only get the one single, the Recording Academy may decide not to honor her.
In 2015, Annie Clark (aka St. Vincent) became one of the few women to win the Best Alternative Music Album Grammy, and she earned a second nod in that category in 2019. With the May release of Daddy’s Home, she is back in the running for that category again, and potentially some bigger awards such as Album of the Year.
Although Cardi and Megan Thee Stallion’s mega-smash “WAP” was eligible for the Grammys last year, Cardi chose not to submit it for consideration. She wanted to hold it back until her full album dropped. Now that her second studio album is officially on the way, expect Cardi to earn some Grammy love in 2022 – either for “WAP,” or the new album’s lead single “Up,” or something else from the record.
Bruno Mars famously took home six awards in 2018, including Album of the Year for 24K Magic. Critics may not have been happy with that win, but Bruno is going to remain a Grammy contender whether rock critics like it or not. His new project with Anderson .Paak, called Silk Sonic, would appear to have loads of Grammy potential.
Other Possible Contenders
Phoebe Bridgers famously broke through to earn her first taste of Grammy acclaim in 2021. Could her boygenius bandmate Julien Baker do the same in 2022? Baker’s February release Little Oblivions has earned rave reviews.
Other possible 2022 Grammy nominees include Eric Church, Foo Fighters, Lana Del Rey, Jazmine Sullivan, Barry Gibb, and Kings of Leon.
Artists Who Will Be Grammy Contenders if They Release New Music
Every year, Adele is the first name we mention in this section. The powerhouse vocal diva hasn’t yet confirmed that she’ll be releasing a new album in ’21, but if she does, she instantly becomes the favorite to win all the big categories.
Adele won Best New Artist in 2009 and went on to ridiculous numbers of Grammys for her last two albums, 21 and 25. She has won 15 Grammys out of 18 nominations, an obscene winning percentage of 83.3% that is one of the highest in history.
Rapper Kendrick Lamar is another Grammy favorite. Although his last two records sadly didn’t win Album of the Year, he’s still managed to take home 13 Grammys over the past seven years. A Kendrick album would be guaranteed to earn multiple nominations.
Beyonce must always be in the discussion. Bey didn’t even release a new album in 2020 and still earned a whopping 9 nominations from just one single, “Black Parade,” and a feature on Megan Thee Stallion’s “Savage.” Just imagine how many nods she could earn with a full album! Beyonce, by the way, is just 1 nomination shy of the all-time career record for most nominations.
Billie Eilish would be back in the picture if she drops a new album. Presumably, Post Malone would as well. He has been nominated for Record of the Year for three consecutive years, tying the longest streak in Grammy history.
And of course, there are the artists who haven’t released new albums in a while, but would most likely be welcomed back with open arms by the Recording Academy. That list includes names like Rihanna, Frank Ocean, Lizzo, SZA, and Lorde.
What are your 2022 Grammy predictions?