The Recording Academy made a smart choice, countrywise, when announcing the first round of confirmed performers for the 53rd annual Grammy Awards next month. Along with the buzziest names from other genres, the Academy put forth Miranda Lambert as its initial country artist set to hit the stage.
It's a great move. In addition to being up for multiple Grammys, Lambert has quite a few things to recommend her as country's representative. She is at the peak of critics' elite lists at the moment, has true country music fans at her feet, possesses the coveted "crossover" interest from the general music public, and easily has power to hold her own with the rest of the announced performers. (Move over, Lady Gaga, Eminem, Cee Lo Green, Katy Perry, and Arcade Fire. Miranda's here.) That's a lot of bang in one package.
As Lambert herself noted to MTV last month, "I'm glad that I get to be a part of all this." She also mentioned that she believes country music is finally mainstream: "We're finally where people are paying attention to country music, and we're part of the world of music now. We're not out by ourselves anymore."
Despite her assertation that the genre is now fully assimilated, there really are arguably few country acts that truly fill the bill in the rounded manner Lambert does for this particular Grammys show. I personally was expecting Lady Antebellum--who are up for six awards that evening and another stunning crossover success--to be the country performance (and they may still be--this is just the first announcement of artists who will be gracing the Grammy stage this year). It was a bit unexpected to have Lambert be the initial country performer confirmed.
Lambert is nominated for best female vocal country performance for "The House That Built Me," best country album for Revolution, and best country collaboration with vocals for "Bad Angel" which she recorded with Dierks Bentley and Jamey Johnson for Bentley's Up On The Ridge album. Her hit "The House That Built Me" is also up for two awards (which are given to the actual songwriters; Lambert did not pen the tune), including the all-genre song of the year category.
The 53rd annual Grammy Awards will air live from Los Angeles February 13 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on CBS.
Are you excited to see Miranda perform at the Grammy Awards next month? Which awards do you think she will win?
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