There’s a very crass saying that death is a good career move. Michael Jackson is proving the axiom true. Not only is he the top-selling artist of 2009 because of the sales surge that occurred following his June death, he just received five American Music Award nominations. That’s more than such living breathing acts as Eminem, Lady GaGa or Kings of Leon. In fact, the only artist to snare more nominations than Jackson is Taylor Swift, who tops all nominees with six nods.
The 37th annual AMAs, which are much more populist and mainstream than the Grammys, will air live Nov. 22 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC. The winners in the 20 categories are voted on by the fans via amavote.com and mycokerewards.com.
Although no performers have been officially announced, "American Idol" runner-up Adam Lambert told Ryan Seacrest this morning that he will perform his debut single on the show, which airs two days before his CD hits stores.
Competing with Jackson in the artist of the year category are Kings of Leon, Swift, Lady GaGa and Eminem. Artists who cross over to various genres benefitted in a big way: Swift is nominated in pop, country and adult contemporary categories. Jackson is in both pop/rock and soul/R&B categories.
Jackson’s “Number One” is also a contender for favorite pop/rock album, competing with Lady GaGa’s “Fame” and Swift’s “Fearless.” Unlike the Grammys, the AMAs do not have song categories.
The AMAs have always loved Jackson. In fact, he shares the record for most AMA received in a single year with Whitney Houston. In 1984, he captured eight awards for “Thriller.” Another little trivia fact: Jackson hosted the first AMA ceremony in 1973 with Donny Osmond.
For a complete list of nominees, go here.