Why Beyoncé Deserves Album Of The Year

Photo: Larry Busacca/PW/Getty.
Update: It seems we were right to prepare for the worst. Beyoncé lost the award for Album of the Year, yet again. This time it was to Adele, who had the presence of mind to dedicate her entire speech to praising Lemonade.

This post was originally published on February 3, 2017.

The 59th Annual Grammy Awards are almost upon us, and I’m already preparing myself for the worst. Even though Beyoncé has nine nominations this year for Lemonade, more than any other performer up for honors, there is much to worry about. Baddie Bey is now the most nominated female artist in Grammy history, but she has never received the coveted Album of the Year award.

I Am... Sasha Fierce was defeated by Taylor Swift’s Fearless in 2010. And in a particularly painful sting, Beyoncé’s self-titled fifth studio was disrespected when Beck won Album of the Year for Morning Phase. I’m still not over that snub. Despite the fact that she already has 20 wins under her belt — second only to Alison Krauss — I think the Grammys have been shading the queen, and 2017 is the year it needs to stop.

Prior slights aside, there is still a strong case for Beyoncé to take home the award that has been dangled in front of her three times, but never placed in her hand. This year, her most obvious competitor is Adele for 25. I think 25 is a great album. Adele is extremely talented and deserves all of the accolades for her music. But not this year.

As a body of work, Lemonade is one of Beyoncé’s strongest to date. The lyrics and production are just superior to any other album represented in the category. Beyoncé managed to conquer no fewer than four musical genres in one project. Obviously, her R & B chops are on point. “Hold Up,” which is nominated for Best Pop Solo Performance, was the feel-good pop song for all summertime activities. “Don’t Hurt Yourself” is nominated for Best Rock Performance. To date, “Daddy Lessons” is only the second country song I’ve ever known all of the words to. Not to mention, Bey singlehandedly revived the Dixie Chicks after their collaborative CMAs performance. She should have been nominated for Best Country Solo Performance, too — but I’ll relax.

She released all of these hits with an accompanying film on HBO that is worthy of its own Emmy. Seriously. Case closed. Give the woman her Grammy.

But you just never know how the members of the Recording Academy are going to quantify "artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry.” Apparently, Kanye West won’t be in attendance at this year’s awards — and it’s probably for the best. But right now we need a hero, and I can’t think of anyone better suited for the job than Beyoncé. At the very least, I’ll be ready to release a swarm of bee emoji in @RecordingAcad’s mentions, however the night turns out.

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