2017 Grammy Awards: Sturgill Simpson Nominated for Album of the Year

Sturgill Simpson

Nominations for the 2017 Grammy Awards have arrived with surprises in tow. Country troubadour and Waylon Jennings reincarnation, Sturgill Simpson, has nabbed a nom for Album of the Year alongside Drake, Justin Bieber, Beyonce, and Adele. I'm sure he'll enjoy said company at the top. Simpson's latest record, A Sailor's Guide to Earth, took on a heavier, druggier rock feel than its psychedelic country predecessor, Metamodern Sounds in Country Music.

Other surprising nominations include Bob Dylan's Fallen Angels for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album, Robbie Fulks's Upland Stories for Best Folk Album, and Loretta Lynn's Full Circle for Best County Album.

Records from Aoife O'Donovan, Sara Watkins, and case/lang/veirs are among the snubs this year, each of their records earning critical acclaim yet no recognition from the recording academy. 

So how did the Grammys do this year? What did they miss? Let us in know the comments.

Scroll down to find all nominations related to roots music, country, Americana, and folk.

Best Country Solo Performance:

Brandy Clark — "Love Can Go to Hell"
Miranda Lambert  — "Vice"
Maren Morris  — "My Church"
Carrie Underwood — "Church Bells"
Keith Urban — "Blue Ain't Your Color"

Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album:

Andrea Bocelli — Cinema 
Bob Dylan — Fallen Angels
Josh Groban — Stages Live
Willie Nelson — Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin
Barbra Streisand — Encore: Movie Partners Sing Broadway

Best Roots Gospel Album:

Gaither Vocal Band — Better Together
The Isaacs — Nature's Symphony In 432
Joey+Rory — Hymns 
Gordon Mote — Hymns and Songs of Inspiration
(Various Artists) — God Don't Never Change: The Songs of Blind Willie Johnson

Best Country Duo/Group Performance:

Dierks Bentley Featuring Elle King — "Different for Girls" 
Brothers Osborne — "21 Summer"
"Setting The World On Fire" — Kenny Chesney & P!nk
Pentatonix Featuring Dolly Parton — "Jolene"
Chris Young With Cassadee Pope — "Think Of You"

Best Country Song:

Clint Lagerberg, Hillary Lindsey & Steven Lee Olsen, songwriters (Keith Urban) — "Blue Ain't Your Color" 
Sean Douglas, Thomas Rhett & Joe Spargur, songwriters (Thomas Rhett) — "Die A Happy Man"
Lori McKenna, songwriter (Tim McGraw) — "Humble and Kind"
busbee & Maren Morris, songwriters (Maren Morris) — "My Church"
Miranda Lambert, Shane McAnally & Josh Osborne, songwriters (Miranda Lambert) — "Vice"

Best Country Album:

Brandy Clark — Big Day In A Small Town
Loretta Lynn — Full Circle
Maren Morris — Hero
Sturgill Simpson — A Sailor's Guide To Earth
Keith Urban — Ripcord

Best American Roots Performance:

The Avett Brothers — "Ain't No Man"
Blind Boys Of Alabama — "Mother's Children Have A Hard Time"
Rhiannon Giddens — "Factory Girl"
Sarah Jarosz — "House Of Mercy"
Lori McKenna — "Wreck You"

Best American Roots Song:

Robbie Fulks, songwriter (Robbie Fulks) — "Alabama At Night"
Jack White, songwriter (Jack White) — "City Lights"
Eric Adcock & Roddie Romero, songwriters (Roddie Romero And The Hub City All-Stars) — "Gulfstream"
Vince Gill, songwriter (The Time Jumpers) — "Kid Sister"
Lori McKenna & Felix McTeigue, songwriters (Lori McKenna) — "Wreck You"

Best Americana Album:

The Avett Brothers — True Sadness
William Bell — This Is Where I Live
Kris Kristofferson — The Cedar Creek Sessions
Lori McKenna — The Bird & The Rifle
The Time Jumpers — Kid Sister

Best Bluegrass Album:

Blue Highway — Original Traditional
Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver — Burden Bearer
Laurie Lewis & The Right Hands — The Hazel Sessions
Claire Lynch — North And South
O'Connor Band With Mark O'Connor — Coming Home

Best Traditional Blues Album:

Lurrie Bell — Can't Shake The Feeling
Joe Bonamassa — Live At The Greek Theatre
Luther Dickinson — Blues & Ballads (A Folksinger's Songbook: Volumes I & II)
Vasti Jackson — The Soul of Jimmie Rodgers
Bobby Rush — Porcupine Meat

Best Contemporary Blues Album:

Fantastic Negrito — The Last Days Of Oakland
Janiva Magness — Love Wins Again
Kenny Neal — Bloodline
The Record Company — Give It Back To You
Joe Louis Walker — Everybody Wants A Piece

Best Folk Album:

Judy Collins & Ari Hest — Silver Skies Blue
Robbie Fulks — Upland Stories
Rhiannon Giddens — Factory Girl
Sierra Hull — Weighted Mind
Sarah Jarosz — Undercurrent

Best Regional Roots Music Album:

Barry Jean Ancelet & Sam Broussard — Broken Promised Land
Northern Cree — It's A Cree Thing
Kalani Pe'a —  Walea
Roddie Romero And The Hub City All-Stars — Gulfstream
(Various Artists) — I Wanna Sing Right: Rediscovering Lomax In The Evangeline Country

Best Historical Album:

Steve Berkowitz & Jeff Rosen, compilation producers; Mark Wilder, mastering engineer (Bob Dylan) — The Cutting Edge 1965-1966: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 12 (Collector's Edition)
April G. Ledbetter, Steven Lance Ledbetter, Bill Nowlin & Philip D. Schuyler, compilation producers; Rick Fisher & Michael Graves, mastering engineers (Various Artists) — Music Of Morocco From The Library Of Congress: Recorded By Paul Bowles, 1959
Rob Sevier & Ken Shipley, compilation producers; Jeff Lipton & Maria Rice, mastering engineers (Various Artists) — Ork Records: New York, New York
Bernard Horowitz, Andreas K. Meyer & Robert Russ, compilation producers; Andreas K. Meyer & Jeanne Montalvo, mastering engineers (Vladimir Horowitz) — Vladimir Horowitz: The Unreleased Live Recordings 1966-1983
Michael Devecka, Meagan Hennessey & Richard Martin, compilation producers; Michael Devecka, David Giovannoni, Michael Khanchalian & Richard Martin, mastering engineers (Various Artists) — Waxing The Gospel: Mass Evangelism & The Phonograph, 1890 - 1900

The 59th Annual Grammy Awards air Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017, on CBS.

Artist Sturgill Simpson
Other tags Grammys

Congrats to Sturgill, Rhiannon Giddens, Robbie Fulks, Vince Gill, Fantaistic Negrito, and some of the others that I love, but the Grammy's are still irrelevant to me.

I attended Sturgill's concert in Redding, CA in late November at the gorgeous Cascade Theater.  I was taken aback looking around to see several young dudes with tears running down their cheeks during "Welcome to Earth (Pollywog)."  Relatively new dads, I'm guessing.   

I know I said so before when I saw it the first time Will, but this is a spot on do have to listen to the whole thing at once, and most of the reviewers missed it...

What the Grammy's missed was not bothering to notice that Sturgill's album accounted for 35% of sales for the entire Americana genre as defined by the Soundscan chart. Yet he didn't get the Americana nomination and instead will likely lose to Adele or Drake or any of the other pop icons of the moment. Some of you might feel that his mainstream nomination is progress, but by excluding him from Americana just further diminishes a genre that represents a radio format rather than a well defined sound. The other thought I have is that the Grammy awards pretty much suck...from their long list of exclusions, major media corporation manipulation (block voting), awful mashed-up performances, tributes to those with new box sets to sell and the ghetto-ization of all music and musicians. It's pretty much an embarrassment to an art form co-opted by mucho money and giant (hello Clive Davis) egos. Beyond that, congrats Sturgill. 

Amen..the Grammy awards do suck, and "pretty much" for the reasons you articulated and probably many more...most people tune in to see Kanye and Tay's next dust up...not for me...

I'm shocked to find out that Clive Davis has a giant burst my bubble you'll be telling me the same thing about Irving Azoff...

Congrats to those mentioned here who managed to get nominated in spite of the Recording Academy...


Like (Ed).

Surprised the list actually contains a lot of worthwhile should but a lot of years it doesn't...All the folks Steve mentions plus Lori McKanna, Luther Dickenson, songs of Blind Willie Johnson, Brandy Clark, O'Conner Band, William Bell...everyone listed under best Folk album is deserving of mention if not the award itself...Robbie Fulks even being mentioned surprises me...wonder if any of the good stuff will get any air time...

Like Jim.

Thank you for the run-down, Cameron. There were some nice Robbie Fulks and Sturgill making it into the major catagory.   There was also a nom for Mikal Gilmore's liner notes on Kris Kristofferson's box set. And nice to see Kris nominated for the Cedar Creek Sessions.

N/A...repeated post. Sorry.

@Terry: I think your N/A comment was the best response to the Grammy dust up I've read. Thanks for sharing it. ee

@ee,  Thanks for the good word...I'll be sure to get impatient and double click more often...much to the Help desk's chagrin! 

 Bravo for Sturgill ! his noms show that a large chunk of music industry folks..aka acadamy members, recognize the "real country and outlaw country," are a thing and 'Glam country and Bro-country," are fading. 2nd bigger bravo for Luther Dickinson!! the man is a living breathing American music treaure. A real scion of American music BUT  A Real Outsider. He reuses to play the mainsream games. He has been snubbed by the Blues Foundation and the mainstream Blues Industry even though he is from the Memphis area. His Blues and ballads album should be in the americana genre, but i am sure he is happy to get a nod anywhere. read my chat with him here:  


Rick...the interview with Luther is really well done...very insightful and thoughtful guy...much enjoyed...and that record is very good...I liked your comment about how it sounds, that was the first thing I thought when I heard it...production is exactly right for what he's presenting...