Next week, I'll tackle the big four Grammy categories: album, record, song and new artist of the year, but I'm diving back into the pop pool today where the water's a little crowded in the best female pop vocal performance category.
The nominees are:
"Love Song," Sara Bareilles
"Bleeding Love," Leona Lewis
"I Kissed A Girl," Katy Perry
"So What," Pink
You know what I love about this category? In a time when the music industry is in such dire straits and it seems like there are no new artists breaking, five of these six artists-everyone but Pink-- are brand new and a number of them look like acts who could develop healthy careers. I don't remember another year when there were so many newbies in this category.
The Scoop: We're knocking Katy Perry out. For a lot of folks, the jury is still out as to whether she's a novelty act. I think that's nothing that a few more hits-maybe a ballad-won't solve. I'm eliminating Pink too. I love the song, I love Pink and her feistiness, but she's outsung in this category. Sara Bareilles' song is too old but radio still loves it ("Love Song" is still in the top 5 on Billboard's Adult Contemporary chart after 55 weeks. Granted, this is a chart that holds onto songs and wrenches every last bit of life out of them, but still. Leona Lewis was the biggest breakout artist of the year and she was robbed when she didn't get a best new artist nomination. I think she should win here, but I don't know if she can mount a strong enough offense against the rising momentum that Adele had been building. Duffy has outsold Adele and had the earlier buzz, but that roar has diminished a little. I'm really happy with whomever wins because it's just such a delight to see how strong female singers are right now.
The Winner: "Bleeding Love," Leona Lewis