Justin Bieber is among the artists deservedly receiving multiple award nominations at the upcoming 59th Annual Grammy Awards. The pop prince landed four nods, setting a record for the most 2017 Grammy nominations for any male artist in the pop category
In what is one of the most hotly contested and highly anticipated Grammys, Justin Bieber is nominated for his hits-packed Purpose album for Album of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop Solo Performance for “Love Yourself,” and Best Pop Vocal Album.
Songstress Meghan Trainor announced the “Big Four” noms — Album Of The Year, Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year, and Best New Artist — on CBS This Morning early Tuesday via live stream, before all the nominees were unveiled in full at The Grammys official website.
Before breaking down Bieber’s nominations, this is the right time to note the Canadian’s latest Grammy nods are a milestone moment of music industry recognition and acceptance for a frequently misunderstood artist.
After youthful indiscretions — many of which appear to have deeper, mitigating reasons — turned Bieber into a tabloid target, the 7-time Grammy nominee’s latest nominations shows the music industry realizes the quality of his music output last year cannot be overlooked.
Bieber’s noms won’t be a surprise to those who watched his rise from a 13-year-old charismatic YouTube star with an angelic voice to 2009’s breakout teen idol who went on to release the enduringly fantastic hyper-pop juggernaut My World 2.0 in 2010.
Fast forward to six albums debuting at No. 1 on Billboard, a more mature Bieber (notwithstanding the recent incident in Spain which looked like self-defense to many reasonable observers), Purpose made a global impact with irresistible dance hits, inspiring ballads, and heartfelt spoken interludes.
Some critics simplistically reduced Purpose to a cynical redemption ploy. In truth, the reflective songs on the record are better understood as an autobiographical testament to the power of spiritual faith.
The album has since pulled in 5.17 million in sales and over 11 billion combined streams. It yielded three No. 1 U.S. singles — “Sorry,” “Love Yourself,” and “What Do You Mean” — broke multiple records, launched Bieber’s super successful, ongoing “Purpose World Tour,” and shifted the sound of pop forward with notable magic from Jack Ü’s Skrillex and Diplo on the game-changing “Where Are Ü Now.”
In short, Purpose is a corker of an album.
— billboard (@billboard) December 6, 2016
To the categories. In the Album of the Year field, Bieber’s pop and EDM fused Purpose album faces off against Beyonce’s Lemonade, a visual socially conscious love letter to her marriage, women, and the African-American experience.
Adele’s power ballad drenched, multi-million selling 25, Drake’s Views, and Sturgill Simpson’s A Sailor’s Guide To Earth are also in the field.
Moving on to Song of the Year. Bieber’s “Love Yourself” is a wry acoustic kiss-off co-written by the Biebs, Ed Sheeran, and Benjamin Levin.
It contends against Beyonce’s political opus “Formation,” Adele’s emotion-drenched comeback single “Hello,” Lukas Graham’s “7 Years,” and Mike Posner’s “I Took A Pill In Ibiza.”
For Best Pop Solo Performance? The Biebs’ “Love Yourself” is battling with Adele’s “Hello,” Beyonce’s woman wronged “Hold Up,” Kelly Clarkson’s “Piece By Piece” as seen on American Idol, and Ariana Grande’s dramatic “Dangerous Woman.”
Lastly, Bieber’s Purpose competes for Best Pop Vocal Album against Adele’s 25, Grande’s Dangerous Woman, Sia’s This Is Acting, and Demi Lovato’s Confident.
— LAT Entertainment (@latimesent) December 6, 2016
— Variety (@Variety) December 7, 2016
In overview, Beyoncé leads the 2017 Grammys with nine nominations and becomes the first artist to punch in nominations in the rock, pop, R&B, and rap categories in the same year. She also becomes the most nominated woman in the Grammys’ history with over 62 nominations.
Hot on Queen Bey’s heels, Rihanna, Drake, and Kanye West picked up eight nominations each. Adele has three nominations for Album, Record, and Song of the Year. Beyoncé’s “Formation” and Adele’s “Hello” goes head to head with Twenty One Pilots’ “Stressed Out,” Graham’s “7 Years,” and Rihanna and Drake’s “Work” for Record of the Year.
The Grammys are notoriously hard to predict and previous years have seen both upsets and expected wins. While it’s safe to say the Biebs won’t win every category he’s nominated in, he could come away with one award or more.
I saw where he was. I heard all the people say it was over. Now today we stand with 4 Grammy noms including Album Of The Year for #Purpose. We have just announced a stadium tour. Am I proud? Of these achievements I'm happy. I'm happy others are recognizing Justin for his great work. But what makes me proud is who he is. Congrats @justinbieber…with or without the nominations. ????
A photo posted by Scooter Braun (@scooterbraun) on
Either way, Justin Bieber’s nominations send a powerful message to his detractors, peers, and the industry that has re-embraced him. Namely, that a young, talented artist who many wrote off when he lost his way earned his place back at the top table, making history in the process. And, he did it with purpose — pun intended.
For the complete list of 2017 Grammy nominees click here. To hear the Biebs share his long-term hopes watch the video below. The James Corden-hosted 59th Annual Grammy Awards are set to air live on Sunday, February 12, 2017, on CBS.
[Featured Image by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]