By Kyle McCann
Who dropped the hottest album of 2017? We’re about to find out as music’s biggest night is right around the corner.
The list of nominees for Best Urban Contemporary Album at the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards features some of music’s brightest young stars.
Childish Gambino, Khalid, SZA, and 6LACK are each looking for their first GRAMMY, while The Weeknd looks to pick up his second in this category. Check out more from each of the nominees below.
Free 6LACK – 6LACK
The Maryland-born, Atlanta-raised rapper/singer is likely a new name for some, but for anyone who made it out to fellow nominee The Weeknd’s Legend of the Fall tour, you’ve probably been introduced to him already. 6LACK’s debut album, Free 6LACK, is an 11-track collection of jams that weave through R&B hooks while sticking to 6LACK’s trap roots.
“Awaken, My Love!” – Childish Gambino
The third studio album from rapper/singer Childish Gambino (a.k.a. actor Donald Glover) is a pretty significant change from his first two albums, including the GRAMMY nominated Because the Internet. Nonetheless, it was a calculated risk that appears to have paid off as this album’s second single “Redbone” has catapulted Glover’s alter-ego into music superstardom.
American Teen – Khalid
Having your debut album go Platinum and be nominated for five GRAMMY awards before your 20th birthday is no easy task. Yet, teenage-Texas-singer Khalid has nailed it with the apt-named American Teen. The album’s lead single, “Location,” skyrocketed this young man into the upper echelon of stardom. “Location” is also up for the Best R&B Song Award.
Ctrl – SZA
Khalid wasn’t the only one to drop a debut album that took the world by storm. SZA’s debut, Ctrl, was one of the hottest albums of 2017 thanks to a pair of Platinum singles in “The Weekend” and “Love Galore” featuring Travis Scott. The new face of neo-soul is up for four other GRAMMY Awards, including Best New Artist.
Starboy – The Weeknd
One of the brightest stars in music today, The Weeknd could pick up his second Best Urban Contemporary Album GRAMMY with Starboy. 2015’s Beauty Behind the Madness won the award 58th Annual GRAMMY Awards. Starboy’s title track, featuring Daft Punk, gave The Weeknd his third #1 single on the Billboard Hot 100.
The 2018 GRAMMY Awards will broadcast live from New York City’s Madison Square Garden at 7:30 PM ET on CBS Sunday, January 28.