BRIT Awards 2017

This is one of those all-too-common posts where you probably know more about the subject than I do, but I still feel as though we should pay some lip service to the fortieth anniversary BRIT Awards!

This year’s ceremony was the 37th altogether, and celebrated many late geniuses, with statuette designed by Zaha Hadid, a tribute to George Michael, and several wins for David Bowie. It took place at The O2 in London on 22nd February, and was hosted by Dermot O’Leary and Emma Willis, who stepped in for Michael Bublé at the last minute.

Performances at the show came from Little MixBruno MarsEmeli SandéThe 1975Chris MartinKaty Perry and Skip MarleyThe Chainsmokers and Coldplay, Ed Sheeran feat. Stormzy, and Robbie Williams.

British Artist Video

Presented by Simon Cowell and Nicole Scherzinger. The nominees:

  • Adele – Send My Love (To Your New Lover)
  • James Arthur – Say You Won’t Let Go
  • Clean Bandit feat. Sean Paul & Anne-Marie – Rockabye
  • Coldplay – Hymn For The Weekend
  • Calvin Harris feat. Rihanna – This Is What You Came For
  • Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car
  • Little Mix feat. Sean Paul – Hair
  • One Direction – History
  • Tinie Tempah feat. Zara Larsson – Girls Like
  • Zayn – Pillowtalk

Winner: One Direction

British Breakthrough Act

Presented by Nick Grimshaw and Rita Ora. The nominees:

  • Anne-Marie
  • Blossoms
  • Rag ‘n’ Bone Man
  • Skepta
  • Stormzy

The winner: Rag ‘n’ Bone Man

Critics’ Choice Award

Presented by Emeli Sandé. The nominees:

  • Anne-Marie
  • Dua Lipa
  • Rag ‘n’ Bone Man

The winner: Rag ‘n’ Bone Man, which surely must be cheating?

MasterCard British Album of the Year

Presented by Noel Gallagher. The nominees:

  • Davie Bowie – Blackstar
  • Kano – Made in the Manor
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Love & Hate
  • The 1975 – i like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it
  • Skepta – Konnichiwa

The winner: David Bowie

British Female Solo Artist

Presented by David Tennant. The nominees:

  • Anohni
  • Ellie Goulding
  • Lianne La Havas
  • Nao
  • Emeli Sandé

The winner: Emeli Sandé

British Male Solo Artist

Presented by Zane Lowe. The nominees:

  • David Bowie
  • Craig David
  • Kano
  • Michael Kiwanuka
  • Skepta

The winner: David Bowie

British Group

Presented by Maisie Williams and Romesh Ranganathan. The nominees:

  • Bastille
  • Biffy Clyro
  • Little Mix
  • The 1975
  • Radiohead

The winner: The 1975

British Single

Presented by Fearne Cotton and Holly Willoughby. The nominees:

  • James Arthur – Say You Won’t Let Go
  • Calum Scott – Dancing On My Own
  • Clean Bandit feat. Sean Paul & Anne-Marie – Rockabye
  • Coldplay – Hymn For The Weekend
  • Calvin Harris feat. Rihanna – This Is What You Came For
  • Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car
  • Little Mix – Shout Out To My Ex
  • Tinie Tempah feat. Zara Larsson – Girls Like
  • Alan Walker – Faded
  • Zayn – Pillowtalk

Winner: Little Mix

International Female Solo Artist

Presented by Alice Levine, Clara Amfo, and Laura Jackson. The nominees:

  • Beyoncé
  • Christine and the Queens
  • Rihanna
  • Sia
  • Solange

The winner: Beyoncé

International Male Solo Artist

Also, presented by Alice Levine, Clara Amfo, and Laura Jackson. The nominees:

  • Bon Iver
  • Leonard Cohen
  • Drake
  • Bruno Mars
  • The Weeknd

The winner: Drake

International Group

Since they were still around, this was also presented by Alice Levine, Clara Amfo, and Laura Jackson. The nominees:

  • Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds
  • Drake & Future
  • Kings of Leon
  • A Tribe Called Quest
  • Twenty One Pilots

The winner: A Tribe Called Quest

BRITs Global Success

Presented by Naomi Campbell and Jonathan Ross

The winner: Adele

BRITs Icon Award

Because this is getting like the Q Awards with its multitude of identically-named awards. Presented by Take That.

Winner: Robbie Williams. Which I can’t help but feel reflects his success at the BRITs more than it does his performance generally, but well done to him anyway!

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BRIT Awards 2017 – Nominations

The nominations for the BRIT Awards occasionally exhibit some interesting characteristics (only occasionally, though). Let’s take a quick skim through this year’s, to see if there’s anything worth talking about.

British Artist Video

  • Adele – Send My Love (To Your New Lover)
  • James Arthur – Say You Won’t Let Go
  • Clean Bandit feat. Sean Paul & Anne-Marie – Rockabye
  • Coldplay – Hymn For The Weekend
  • Calvin Harris feat. Rihanna – This Is What You Came For
  • Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car
  • Little Mix feat. Sean Paul – Hair
  • One Direction – History
  • Tinie Tempah feat. Zara Larsson – Girls Like
  • Zayn – Pillowtalk

British Breakthrough Act

  • Anne-Marie
  • Blossoms
  • Rag ‘n’ Bone Man
  • Skepta
  • Stormzy

MasterCard British Album of the Year

  • Davie Bowie – Blackstar
  • Kano – Made in the Manor
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Love & Hate
  • The 1975 – i like it when you sleep, for you are so beautiful yet so unaware of it
  • Skepta – Konnichiwa

British Female Solo Artist

  • Anohni
  • Ellie Goulding
  • Lianne La Havas
  • Nao
  • Emeli Sandé

British Male Solo Artist

  • David Bowie
  • Craig David
  • Kano
  • Michael Kiwanuka
  • Skepta

British Group

  • Bastille
  • Biffy Clyro
  • Little Mix
  • The 1975
  • Radiohead

British Single

  • James Arthur – Say You Won’t Let Go
  • Calum Scott – Dancing On My Own
  • Clean Bandit feat. Sean Paul & Anne-Marie – Rockabye
  • Coldplay – Hymn For The Weekend
  • Calvin Harris feat. Rihanna – This Is What You Came For
  • Jonas Blue feat. Dakota – Fast Car
  • Little Mix – Shout Out To My Ex
  • Tinie Tempah feat. Zara Larsson – Girls Like
  • Alan Walker – Faded
  • Zayn – Pillowtalk

International Female Solo Artist

  • Beyoncé
  • Christine and the Queens
  • Rihanna
  • Sia
  • Solange

International Male Solo Artist

  • Bon Iver
  • Leonard Cohen
  • Drake
  • Bruno Mars
  • The Weeknd

International Group

  • Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds
  • Drake & Future
  • Kings of Leon
  • A Tribe Called Quest
  • Twenty One Pilots

It looks as though the main headlines this year are that we all miss David Bowie, Drake is so good that he’s both a male and a group, and somehow Craig David still has a career. The awards will be, err… awarded at The O2 in London on 22nd February, and you can read more and vote for some of the categories here.

Q Awards 2016

It may be a little late for this round-up, but I’m afraid that’s the way things go round here these days. The StubHub StubHub Q Awards took place in London on 2nd November, and these were the results. As always, the award names are ridiculously long and corporate and almost all of them were identical, but let’s go with it…

Q Best Act In The World Today, presented by The Cavern Club

  • Biffy Clyro
  • Coldplay
  • Muse
  • The 1975
  • U2

Winner: Muse

Q Best Solo Artist presented by Help Musicians UK

  • James Bay
  • Noel Gallagher
  • PJ Harvey
  • Michael Kiwanuka
  • Skepta

Winner: James Bay

Q Best Breakthrough Act, presented by Red Stripe

  • The Amazons
  • Blossoms
  • Christine and the Queens
  • Gallant
  • Jack Garratt
  • Lady Leshurr
  • Let’s Eat Grandma
  • Nothing But Thieves
  • Rat Boy
  • Spring King

Winner: Jack Garratt

Q Best Track, presented by Jack Daniel’s

  • Bastille – Good Grief
  • Catfish and the Bottlemen – Twice
  • Biffy Clyro – Howl
  • The 1975 – Somebody Else
  • Skepta – Man

Winner: Bastille

Q Best Album, presented by Absolute Radio

  • Bastille – Wild World
  • David Bowie – Blackstar
  • Christine and the Queens – Chaleur Humaine
  • Coldplay – A Head Full of Dreams
  • The 1975 – I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It

Winner: The 1975

Q Best Video, presented by Boxplus

  • Beyoncé – Formation
  • Coldplay – Up & Up
  • PJ Harvey – The Community of Hope
  • The 1975 – A Change of Heart
  • Wolf Alice – Lisbon

Winner: PJ Harvey

Q Best Live Act presented by StubHub

  • Coldplay
  • Muse
  • Savages
  • U2
  • Wolf Alice

Winner: U2

Q Hero, presented by Conker Spirit

Winner: Meat Loaf

Q Classic Songwriter, presented by Pretty Green

Winner: Ray Davies

Q Classic Album

Winner: The Charlatans, for Tellin’ Stories

Q Innovation In Sound

Winner: M.I.A.

Q Gibson Les Paul Award

Winner: The Edge

Q Outstanding Contribution To Music, presented by Buster & Punch

Winner: Blondie

Q Hall Of Fame, presented by StubHub

Winner: Madness

Which just about ends our awards coverage for another couple of months. You can read Q Magazine’s own coverage here.

Q Awards 2016 – Nominations

Every Autumn, the Q Awards turn up with a whole pile of prizes for people in almost identically-named categories. Last year’s winners were documented here, and the nominees for this year’s event are now in!

This year, they have renamed it the Corporate Sponsorship StubHub Q Awards Sponsored by StubHub, but that’s a stupid name, so that’s the only time we’ll mention StubHub on this blog. Here are the nominations:

Q Best Breakthrough Act presented by Red Stripe

  • The Amazons
  • Blossoms
  • Christine and the Queens
  • Gallant
  • Jack Garratt
  • Lady Leshurr
  • Let’s Eat Grandma
  • Nothing But Thieves
  • Rat Boy
  • Spring King

Q Best Track

  • Bastille – Good Grief
  • Catfish and the Bottlemen – Twice
  • Biffy Clyro – Howl
  • The 1975 – Somebody Else
  • Skepta – Man

Q Best Video presented by Boxplus

  • Beyoncé – Formation
  • Coldplay – Up & Up
  • PJ Harvey – The Community of Hope
  • The 1975 – A Change of Heart
  • Wolf Alice – Lisbon

Q Best Album presented by Absolute Radio

  • Bastille – Wild World
  • David Bowie – Blackstar
  • Christine and the Queens – Chaleur Humaine
  • Coldplay – A Head Full of Dreams
  • The 1975 – I Like It When You Sleep, For You Are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It

Q Best Live Act presented by StubHub

  • Coldplay
  • Muse
  • Savages
  • U2
  • Wolf Alice

The winner will probably be StubHub…

Q Best Solo Artist presented by Help Musicians UK

  • James Bay
  • Noel Gallagher
  • PJ Harvey
  • Michael Kiwanuka
  • Skepta

Q Best Act In The World Today presented by The Cavern Club

  • Biffy Clyro
  • Coldplay
  • Muse
  • The 1975
  • U2

If you care who wins in any of those categories, you can vote for the StubHub winners in all the categories listed above here.

Mercury Prize 2016

Like me, you might have missed this year’s Mercury Prize, which took place on 15th September at London’s Hammersmith Apollo. Last year’s was much later in the year, and so I hadn’t quite expected it to happen yet, but it has, and here we are.

The Nominees

For those who aren’t familiar with the Mercury Prize, it’s just one award, and there is a shortlist of twelve nominees each year. This year:

  • Anohni – Hopelessness
  • Bat for Lashes – The Bride
  • David Bowie – Blackstar
  • The Comet is Coming – Channel the Spirits
  • Kano – Made in the Manor
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Love and Hate
  • Laura Mvula – The Dreaming Room
  • The 1975 – I Like It When You Sleep, for You are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It
  • Radiohead – A Moon Shaped Pool
  • Savages – Adore Life
  • Skepta – Konnichiwa
  • Jamie Woon – Making Time

According to the BBC’s analysis, David Bowie received the highest critical rating, and was also one of several of the acts whose album topped the UK charts, as well as Michael Kiwanuka, Radiohead, and The 1975. Kano‘s album received the lowest critical rating, and The Comet is Coming, whose album was self-released, were the only act who didn’t make the charts.

As always, this was a real mixture of styles and approaches. Anohni, also known as Antony of Antony and the Johnsons, and now working on her own solo material, switches chamber pop for electronics, while other releases include “a baroque concept album about a woman whose fiancé is killed on the way to their wedding”, R&B, grime, pop-rock, and cosmic jazz.

The Shortlist

Just to add a bit more excitement, there was a public vote, which chose The 1975, and carried it through to the shortlist on the night, along with the five chosen by the judging panel, giving a shortlist of six. That list looked like this:

  • David Bowie – Blackstar
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Love and Hate
  • Laura Mvula – The Dreaming Room
  • The 1975 – I Like It When You Sleep, for You are So Beautiful Yet So Unaware of It
  • Radiohead – A Moon Shaped Pool
  • Skepta – Konnichiwa

This process made The Comet is Coming rather upset, but never mind

The Winner

Ultimately, in Jarvis Cocker‘s words, David Bowie would have chosen Skepta as the winner, and so he wins the Mercury Prize for 2016. Congratulations to him, and remember to look up his mum dancing at the podium.

The Coverage

You can read the BBC’s coverage of the nominations here, and some additional detail here. NME looked at the winner here, and the fallout here. This is the official Mercury Prize website.

The BRIT Awards 2012

Tuesday 21st February 2012 saw James Corden hosting the BRIT Awards, for the second time at The O2 Arena in London.

This post is part of a series about the history of the BRIT Awards. You can read about the 2011 ceremony here, and the 2013 ceremony here.

British Male Solo Artist

Presented by Plan B. Nominees:

  • James Blake
  • Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds
  • James Morrison
  • Professor Green
  • Ed Sheeran

Winner: Ed Sheeran

British Female Solo Artist

Presented by Kylie Minogue. Nominees:

  • Adele
  • Kate Bush
  • Florence and the Machine
  • Jessie J
  • Laura Marling

Winner: Adele

British Breakthrough Act

Presented by Cesc Fàbregas and Nicole Scherzinger. Nominees:

  • Anna Calvi
  • Jessie J
  • Emeli Sandé
  • Ed Sheeran
  • The Vaccines

Winner: Ed Sheeran

British Group

Presented by Jo Whiley and Huey Morgan. Nominees:

  • Arctic Monkeys
  • Chase & Status
  • Coldplay
  • Elbow
  • Kasabian

Winner: Coldplay

British Single

Presented by Tinie Tempah. Nominees:

  • Adele – Someone Like You
  • Ed Sheeran – The A Team
  • Example – Changed the Way You Kiss Me
  • Jessie J feat. B.o.B – Price Tag
  • JLS featuring Dev – She Makes Me Wanna
  • Pixie Lott – All About Tonight
  • Military Wives / Gareth Malone – Wherever You Are
  • Olly Murs feat. Rizzle Kicks – Heart Skips a Beat
  • One Direction – What Makes You Beautiful
  • The Wanted – Glad You Came

Winner: One Direction

MasterCard British Album of the Year

Presented by George Michael. Nominees:

  • Adele – 21
  • Coldplay – Mylo Xyloto
  • Florence + The Machine – Ceremonials
  • PJ Harvey – Let England Shake
  • Ed Sheeran – +

Winner: Adele. Famously she banged on for a bit too long without really saying anything and got cut off without warning.

International Male Solo Artist

Presented by Jessie J and Jack Whitehall. Nominees:

  • Ryan Adams
  • Aloe Blacc
  • David Guetta
  • Bon Iver
  • Bruno Mars

Winner: Bruno Mars

International Female Solo Artist

Presented by Jenson Button. Nominees:

  • Beyoncé
  • Björk
  • Feist
  • Lady Gaga
  • Rihanna

Winner: Rihanna

International Group

Presented by Brian May and Roger Taylor from Queen. Nominees:

  • Fleet Foxes
  • Foo Fighters
  • Jay Z and Kanye West
  • Lady Antebellum
  • Maroon 5

Winner: Foo Fighters

International Breakthrough Act

Presented by will.i.am and Rob Brydon. Nominees:

  • Aloe Blacc
  • Bon Iver
  • Lana del Rey
  • Foster The People
  • Nicki Minaj

Winner: Lana del Rey

Critics’ Choice

Presented by James Corden and Jessie J. Nominees:

  • Michael Kiwanuka
  • Maverick Sabre
  • Emeli Sandé

Maverick Sabre came in second place. Winner: Emeli Sandé

British Producer

Presented by Laura Marling. Nominees:

  • Paul Epworth
  • Flood
  • Ethan Johns

Winner: Ethan Johns

Outstanding Contribution to Music

Presented by Ray Winstone.

Winner: Blur

You should be able to watch the entire show here.

Performances

Further Reading / Viewing

Mercury Music Prize 2010-2012

With the Barclaycard Mercury Prize winner being announced this evening it’s high time that we caught up to the modern day and looked at the last three prize winners. This was a period in which many fans started to suggest the committee might have lost it, and PJ Harvey became the first artist ever to win the coveted award twice.

Barclaycard Mercury Prize 2010

The 2010 award took place on 7th September 2010, at the Grosvenor House hotel, in central London.

Nominees:

  • Biffy Clyro – Only Revolutions
  • Corinne Bailey Rae – The Sea
  • Dizzee Rascal – Tongue ‘n’ Cheek
  • Foals – Total Life Forever
  • I Am Kloot – Sky at Night
  • Kit Downes Trio – Golden
  • Laura Marling – I Speak Because I Can
  • Mumford and Sons – Sigh No More
  • Villagers – Becoming a Jackal
  • Paul Weller – Wake Up the Nation
  • Wild Beasts – Two Dancers
  • The XX – XX

Winner: The XX

Barclaycard Mercury Prize 2011

Presented by Jools Holland on the 6th September 2011, at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London.

Nominees:

  • Adele – 21
  • Katy B – On a Mission
  • James Blake – James Blake
  • Anna Calvi – Anna Calvi
  • Elbow – Build a Rocket Boys!
  • Everything Everything – Man Alive
  • Ghostpoet – Peanut Butter Blues and Melancholy Jam
  • PJ Harvey – Let England Shake
  • King Creosote and Jon Hopkins – Diamond Mine
  • Metronomy – The English Riviera
  • Gwilym Simcock – Good Days at Schloss Elmau
  • Tinie Tempah – Disc-Overy

Winner: PJ Harvey

Barclaycard Mercury Prize 2012

As part of the new format, the award shifted back a couple of months and took place on 1st November 2012, at The Roundhouse, Camden.

Nominees:

  • Alt-J – An Awesome Wave
  • Django Django – Django Django
  • Field Music – Plumb
  • Richard Hawley – Standing at the Sky’s Edge
  • Ben Howard – Every Kingdom
  • Michael Kiwanuka – Home Again
  • Lianne La Havas – Is Your Love Big Enough?
  • Sam Lee – Ground of Its Own
  • The Maccabees – Given to the Wild
  • Plan B – Ill Manors
  • Roller Trio – Roller Trio
  • Jessie Ware – Devotion

Winner: Alt-J

Further information