Kings of Leon and their critically acclaimed album Only By The Night lead the way for the RCA Music Group, earning 4 Grammy nominations, including Song of the Year and Record of the Year for their hit single “Use Somebody” for the 52nd Annual Grammy Awards announced last night in Los Angeles. Kings of Leon’s “Use Somebody” also garnered nominations in the Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group and Best Rock Song categories. “Use Somebody,” which has now sold over one million tracks, was #1 at Hot AC for 11 weeks, tying for the longest running #1 song of 2009. The single also claimed the #1 spot at Modern Rock for three weeks straight and is currently one of the biggest rock crossovers of the year at pop radio with a peaked position at #1. Their 4th studio album, Only By The Night, was released on September 23, 2008 and debuted in the top five on the Billboard Top 200 and #1 at iTunes. It has sold 1.5 million albums in the US and nearly 6 million worldwide. The band was nominated for three Grammys and won their first earlier this year for “Best Rock Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals” for “Sex On Fire,” which was #1 on Billboard’s Modern Rock chart for nine weeks in a row.
The Dave Matthews Band received Album of the Year and Best Rock Album nominations for their first studio album in four years, Big Whiskey and the GrooGrux King (RCA Records). Certified platinum Big Whiskey… pays tribute to the group’s saxophonist, LeRoi Moore and debuted at #1 on The Billboard Top 200 in June 2009, marking the band’s fifth consecutive studio album to enter the chart in the top position – thus tying Dave Matthews Band with Metallica as the only two groups in chart history to have five consecutive studio albums bow at #1. Produced by Rob Cavallo (Green Day, My Chemical Romance), the record has been hailed by Rolling Stone as the group’s “most electric album yet.” Formed in Virginia in the early 1990’s, the group has sold a collective 35 million units (CD and DVD combined) and its four most recent studio albums have each entered The Billboard 200 at #1. With over 15 million tickets sold, Dave Matthews Band was named the top-drawing American band in the world by Billboard magazine.
Jamie Foxx’s third studio album, Intuition (J Records), received a Best Contemporary R&B Album nomination along with Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals and Best R&B Song for his hit single “Blame It,” featuring T-Pain. Intuition debuted at #3 on the Billboard Top 200 and #2 on the R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. The single “Blame It” was #1 on the Urban Mainstream radio chart for 12 consecutive weeks and garnered ringtone and digital single sales over one million. During the peak of the album, Foxx appeared on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart with 3 singles simultaneously within the Top 10: “Blame It,” “She Got Her Own,” and “Just Like Me;” at #1, #2 and #8, respectively. Foxx is currently in the studio working on his follow up album due for release in 2010.
Kelly Clarkson received a Best Pop Vocal Album nomination for All I Ever Wanted. Entertainment Weekly claimed All I Ever Wanted, which debut at # 1 on the Billboard Top 200 as “…sassy, confident and full of power-ballad energy” and USA Today claimed, “…everything about this project screams hit album”. The album’s first hit single “My Life Would Suck Without You” shattered the Billboard record when it jumped from #97 to #1 in it’s first week of release. Clarkson’s latest smash “Already Gone” is # 1 on the Hot AC Chart and is currently at #5 on the Top 40 Chart. Kelly Clarkson has sold more than 20 million albums worldwide since she made her debut in 2002.
Singer-songwriter Ray LaMontagne’s latest release Gossip in the Grain, received a Best Engineered Album nomination while the album’s producer Ethan Johns earned a Producer of the Year, Non-Classical nomination. Gossip in the Grain debuted at #3 on the Billboard charts and was the top selling album on iTunes. LaMontagne has won over music critics with a unique voice that Rolling Stone magazine describes as “full of the warm yearning of a young Van Morrison.” His debut release Trouble was a top 40 hit in the United Kingdom and the album hit #5 in that country. It sold over 400,000 copies worldwide.
British singer-songwriter-producer Imogen Heap (and previous 2 time Grammy nominee) received 2 nominations – Best Engineered Album for Ellipse and Best Pop Instrumental Performance for “The Fire.” Heap’s critically acclaimed Ellipse (RCA Records) debuted at #5 on the Billboard Top 200, #1 on the Internet Album Chart and #2 on the Digital Album chart. The release is Heap’s first Top 5 record and marks her highest-ever chart position. This summer, Heap’s first single off the album “First Train Home” was named “Pick of the Week” by USA Today, saying: “…Heap offers a shimmering, percolating electro-pop soundscape that is grounded by her warm, breathy vocals.” Wired Magazine called it “…her densest, richest work yet” with The Wall Street Journal adding: “Ellipse is modern pop full of invention.”
Last year’s five time Grammy nominee, Jazmine Sullivan returns with 2 nominations – Best R&B Song and Best R&B Female Vocal Performance for “Lions, Tigers & Bears” from her debut album Fearless (J Records). Last year, Sullivan was nominated for Best New Artist, Best Contemporary R&B Album, while her debut single “Need You Bad” was nominated for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance, follow up single “Bust Your Windows” for Best R&B Song and her track “In Love With Another Man” for Best Traditional R&B Vocal Performance.
Dido’s Safe Trip Home was nominated for Best Engineered Album while her “Don’t Believe In Love” was nominated for Best Remixed Recording Non-Classical. Dido’s critically-acclaimed third studio effort and was co-produced by Jon Brion and Ark, the new production company of Rollo Armstrong (Faithless) and Dido. Since her debut with No Angel, Dido has sold over 20 millions copies worldwide to date. She was nominated for a Grammy in 2003 for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for “White Flag” from Life for Rent.
The 52nd Annual Grammy Awards will be broadcast live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles on the CBS network beginning at 8:00 pm (ET) on Sunday, January 31st, 2010.