"Holy Grail" is the front-runner to win both Best Rap/Sung Collaboration and Best Rap Song. The smash contains elements of Nirvana's 1991 grunge classic "Smells Like Teen Spirit," which is an unlikely song to find in a hip-hop hit. Grammy voters are attracted to that kind of genre blending.
This year's other Rap/Sung Collaboration nominees are "Power Trip" by J. Cole featuring Miguel, "Part II (On The Run)" by Jay Z featuring Beyonce, "Now Or Never" by Kendrick Lamar featuring Mary J. Blige and "Remember You" by Wiz Khalifa featuring The Weeknd.
"New Slaves" and "Started From The Bottom" also contain elements of old songs. Per Grammy rules, the writers of the old songs aren't nominated.
The other nominees in this very tight race are Drake's "Started From The Bottom," Jay Z's "Tom Ford" and Kendrick Lamar's "Swimming Pools (Drank)."
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All voters are eligible to vote in the "Big Four" categories, which gives Macklemore an edge over Lamar for Best New Artist. But only dedicated rap fans vote in the Rap Field. That may work to Lamar's advantage here. Some rap fans see Macklemore as more of a pop act.
Three past winners for Best Rap Album round out the category this year: Kanye West, a four-time category champ; Jay Z, who won the award for 1998; and Drake, who won last year. They are nominated this year for "Yeezus," "Magna Carta…Holy Grail" and "Nothing Was The Same," respectively.
If "Yeezus" pulls an upset and wins for Best Rap Album, West will tie Eminem for the most wins in the history of the category (five). West's album placed second on Rolling Stone's list of the 50 best albums of 2013.
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- Arts & Entertainment
- Kanye West
- Kendrick Lamar
- Jay Z
- Ryan Lewis
- Justin Timberlake