The 62nd Annual Grammy Awards will take place at the Staples Center in Los Angeles over this weekend, and Song Of The Year is one of the most coveted prizes. Win this, and you join a hallowed hall featuring songs from only the most respected songwriters of the modern era: The Beatles, Frank Sinatra, Elton John and, er, The Doobie Brothers (well, it was the end of the Seventies).
The Grammys recognition of the greatest song of the year is a little more complicated than most awards. Song Of The Year rewards the songwriters who wrote and composed the song, but the awards also have Record Of The Year, a prize that goes to the singer and production team.
Last year, This Is America by Childish Gambino won the Song Of The Year award, this year the nominations are:
Always Remember Us This Way (Lady Gaga)
Bad Guy (Billie Eilish)
Bring My Flowers Now (Tanya Tucker)
Hard Place (H.E.R.)
Lover (Taylor Swift)
Norman F***ing Rockwell (Lana Del Rey)
Someone You Loved (Lewis Capaldi)
Truth Hurts (Lizzo)
For 60 years the Song Of The Year category has rewarded songs that have become part of our aural history. It’s also thrown up some mystifying decisions too. Ahead of the ceremony this year, here’s BBC Music’s potted history of the the Song Of The Year award in 14 facts. [Note: the years cited are those in which the songs were released and were awarded for, not the year the ceremony took place, which is the following year.]
The first Song Of The Year was in Italian
The US music industry is big and broad enough to have overwhelmingly swelled the ranks of Song Of The year winners. But when the category kicked off in 1959, the Grammy Awards judges gave the prize to Domenico Modugno’s Volare. The song had already been Italy’s entry into the Eurovision Song Contest in 1958 and spent five weeks at the top of the Billboard charts, turning Modugno into a household name. Modugno, incidentally, later became a member of parliament in Italy and an outspoken critic of Chilean dictator August Pinochet – so much so that he was denied entry to Chile to play a concert.
Jimmy Webb’s surprising win