We may not know who will be nominated, but there’s already controversy over who won’t be.

Both Cardi B and Post Malone have had breakout years in music, but neither is eligible to be nominated in the best new artist category at the Grammys.

Nominations will be announced Friday, but it was reported months ago that the pair had been knocked out of new-artist contention — Cardi, because her nominations last year disqualified her, and Post Malone, because Recording Academy voters reportedly decided he didn’t fit the requirements for new artists.

Jason Lipshutz, editorial director at Billboard, told CNN he believes the 2019 Grammy nominations will hold surprises.
“There’s a lack of consensus in a way that’s really exciting to me,” Lipshutz said. “I think part of that is because the big-four general categories have expanded to eight nominees. I also think that there are fewer ‘shoe-ins’ than in years past.”

A broader, more unpredictable Grammy competition is likely good news for contenders and music lovers.
“One of the byproducts of expanding the categories is that listeners might be introduced to songs and artists and albums that they might not have previously checked out,” Lipshutz said. “We’ve seen that in the past with the Grammys, where you have a kind of out of nowhere album of the year nomination.”

There’s been discussion about a lack of inclusion among Grammy nominees (and eventual winners) in recent years, but Lipshutz is cautiously optimistic there’s at least one genre that won’t be overlooked.

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