Arts and Entertainment

A&E’s 2022 Grammy Predictions

Our predictions for the 2022 Grammy Awards.

Reading Time: 5 minutes

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By Sophia Li

The 2022 Grammy Awards is officially set to air on January 31, and the competition, as usual, is fierce this year, especially in the top four categories. In addition to internal changes in response to criticism of underrepresentation and “rigged” awards, the Grammys this year are headed by a new CEO, Harvey Mason Jr. Here are A&E’s predictions in hopes that the Grammys will award the artists who truly deserve it.

Record of the Year

I Still Have Faith In You by ABBA

Freedom by Jon Batiste

I Get A Kick Out Of You by Tony Bennet & Lady Gaga

Peaches by Justin Bieber ft. Daniel Caesar & Giveon

Right On Time by Brandi Carlile

Kiss Me More by Doja Cat ft. Sza

Happier Than Ever by Billie Eilish

Montero (Call Me By Your Name) by Lil Nas X (predicted winner)

drivers license by Olivia Rodrigo

Leave The Door Open by Silk Sonic

Lil Nas X continues to top charts with “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” which was the cause of major controversy this year, especially with its accompanying music video. Lil Nas X’s depiction of himself as Satan in response to his identity as a gay man being scrutinized, as well as his lyrics embracing his sexuality, were at the forefront of the discussion. The unwarranted criticism of this song took the spotlight away from the song’s quality, which includes impressive production and lyrics that commemorate the LGBTQ+ community. Alongside the addictive chorus and opening verses, the lyrics are unapologetic and courageous coming from a Black, queer artist, making it one of the most notable records of this year.

Album of the Year

We Are by Jon Batiste

Love For Sale by Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga

Justice (Triple Chucks Deluxe) by Justin Bieber

Planet Her (Deluxe) by Doja Cat

Happier Than Ever by Billie Eilish

Back Of My Mind by H.E.R.

Montero by Lil Nas X

SOUR by Olivia Rodrigo (predicted winner)

Evermore by Taylor Swift

Donda by Kanye West

It’s hard to have lived through this year without having heard about Olivia Rodrigo’s debut album “SOUR.” Though it was her first, the album was No. 1 on official charts and became the most-streamed album of the week after it was released. Her hit song “drivers license” even broke Spotify streaming records, enhancing the anticipation for her album. Once released, “SOUR’s” tracks about insecurity and anxiety resonated with millions globally, taking over sounds on TikTok and other social media platforms. Though “Planet Her” and “Evermore” are stronger lyrically and production-wise, “SOUR’s” popularity was almost impossible to avoid this year, making it a front runner for Album of the Year.

Song of the Year

Bad Habits by Ed Sheeran

A Beautiful Noise by Alicia Keys & Brandi Carlile

drivers license by Olivia Rodrigo (predicted winner)

Fight For You by H.E.R.

Happier Than Ever by Billie Eilish

Kiss Me More by Doja Cat ft. Sza

Leave The Door Open by Silk Sonic

Montero (Call Me By Your) by Lil Nas X

Peaches by Justin Bieber ft. Daniel Caesar & Giveon

Right On Time by Brandi Carlile

Since its debut at number one on the Billboard Top 100, “drivers license” has been praised for its songwriting. Rodrigo’s skill within this song garnered comparisons to her long-time inspiration and veteran songwriter Taylor Swift. Rodrigo’s vulnerability and storytelling are captivating, proven by the thousands of girls across social media who related to Rodrigo’s emotional breakup lyrics. This category in particular has historically been awarded to passionate pop ballads, making it all the more likely that Rodrigo takes the award.

Best New Artist

Arooj Aftab
Jimmie Allen
Baby Keem
Glass Animals
Japanese Breakfast
Arlo Parks
Olivia Rodrigo (predicted winner)

With the release of “Sour,” Olivia Rodrigo’s popularity skyrocketed as hits like “drivers license,” “good 4 u,” and “deja vu,” topped Billboard charts and took over social media. The star’s popularity is all the more impressive as her debut album was one of the longest-reigning number-one albums by a female artist this year. As Hollywood’s newest “It Girl,” it won’t be a surprise to see Rodrigo take this Grammy home.

Best Pop Vocal Album

Justice (Triple Chucks Deluxe) by Justin Bieber

Planet Her (Deluxe) by Doja Cat
Happier Than Ever by Billie Eilish
Positions by Ariana Grande
Sour by Olivia Rodrigo (predicted winner)

While this Grammy deserves to be given to either Ariana’s “Positions” or Doja Cat’s “Planet Her”, the Grammy’s aren’t known for awarding critically successful albums, but rather commercially lucrative ones. It’s no secret that Ariana has one of the best voices in our generation, making “Positions'' an obvious front runner for this award. Doja Cat has the most variety of any nominated artist we’ve seen, performing a multitude of genres with amazing vocals each time, also making “Planet Her” a solid choice for this Grammy. However, given the Grammy Awards’ track record, it’s most likely that they’ll pick “Sour'' since it gained the most popularity and was the sixth-biggest selling album in 2021. Though vocally, there are better options, “Sour”’s stardom this year can’t be underestimated when predicting the Grammy’s winners.

Best Rap Performance

Family Ties by Baby Keem Featuring Kendrick Lamar
Up - Cardi B
M Y . L I F E by J. Cole Featuring 21 Savage & Morray

Thot S*** by Megan Thee Stallion (predicted winner)

As the artist who swept the rap categories in 2021, it would come as no surprise if Megan Three Stallion won once again. Though J. Cole and Baby Keem would be the front runners if this category was awarded solely on lyrical talent, the Grammys tends to favor popularity over lyricism and “Thot S***” was the biggest song in this category, especially through its virality on TikTok. Though Kendrick Lamar has taken home this award numerous times in previous years, it was during the peak of his career, and Megan is just getting started.

Best Rap Album

The Off-Season by J. Cole
King's Disease II by Nas
Call Me If You Get Lost by Tyler, The Creator
Donda by Kanye West (predicted winner)

With Drake’s withdrawal of his nomination in this category, Kanye West’s “Donda” will most likely be the winner of this Grammy. The album broke the record for the most streams in one week this year and saw major sales immediately after its release. While J. Cole stands as the better lyricist, Kanye West’s name alone is practically enough to sway the Recording Academy’s voting members. Compared with other nominees, “King’s Disease” didn’t reach the same level of popularity the other nominees did. Despite that, it wouldn’t be surprising to see “Call me If You Get Lost” take this award home. Though unlikely, Tyler, The Creator’s success has increased with each album. However, the artist has spoken out multiple times about being placed in “rap” categories for award shows as he feels that he is lumped in because of his race rather than his music. It’s most likely though that this year, Kanye West will take his 22nd Grammy home.