Saturday, January 16, 2016

The Brit Awards Shortlist is out

You can understand Adele getting a bunch of shortlist slots. But, really, British music industry? James Bay gets nominated in four categories?

Although, technically, Adele shouldn't have been in the lists at all - her album came out in December, and traditionally the Brits have covered a year running November to November. But a swift rewrite of the rules has ensured she'll turn up.

Here's the full list that people call moribund:

British male solo artist
Aphex Twin
Calvin Harris
James Bay
Jamie xx
Mark Ronson

British female solo artist
Amy Winehouse
Florence + the Machine
Jess Glynne
Laura Marling

British group
One Direction
Years & Years

British breakthrough act
Catfish and the Bottlemen
James Bay
Jess Glynne
Wolf Alice
Years & Years

Critics' choice
Winner: Jack Garratt
Izzy Bizu

Brits global success award
To be announced

British single
Adele - Hello
Calvin Harris & Disciples - How Deep Is Your Love
Ed Sheeran & Rudimental- Bloodstream
Ellie Goulding - Love Me Like You Do
James Bay - Hold Back The River
Jess Glynne - Hold My Hand
Little Mix - Black Magic
Olly Murs ft Demi Lovato - Up
Philip George - Wish You Were Mine
Years & Years - King

British album of the year
Adele - 25
Coldplay - A Head Full of Dreams
Florence + the Machine - How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful
James Bay - Chaos and the Calm
Jamie xx - In Colour

British producer of the year
Charlie Andrew
Mark Ronson
Mike Crossey
Tom Dalgety

British artist video of the year
Adele - Hello
Calvin Harris & Disciples - How Deep Is Your Love
Ed Sheeran - Photograph
Ellie Goulding - Love Me Like You Do
Jessie J - Flashlight
Little Mix - Black Magic
Naughty Boy ft Beyonce & Arrow Benjamin - Runnin' (Lose It All)
One Direction - Drag Me Down
Sam Smith - Writing's On The Wall
Years & Years - King

International male solo artist
Father John Misty
Justin Bieber
Kendrick Lamar
The Weeknd

International female solo artist
Ariana Grande
Courtney Barnett
Lana Del Rey
Meghan Trainor

International group
Alabama Shakes
Eagles of Death Metal
Major Lazer
Tame Impala
There are odd moments of joy in the list - I think the thirty seconds of Courtney Barnett we get when they run through the international female shortlist is going to be the highlight of the ceremony.

But, ultimately, it's the presence of Amy Winehouse which makes this so frustrating. No offence to Amy, but... she's not exactly had the most creative 2015, has she? Yes, there was a movie about her, but the message "to be an exciting female star in British music in 2015, it helped if you'd been dead half a decade" isn't exactly making much of a claim for the scene, is it?

Although if the message to women artists is "you're better off dead", that's probably more encouraging than telling the men that they should be aspiring to be James Bay.