The Recording Academy’s nominees for the 2021 Grammy Awards include jazz heavyweights honoured in a number of categories across the board.
Gerald Clayton, Chick Corea, Joshua Redman, Christian McBride, Robert Glasper, Maria Schneider, Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Remy Le Boeuf, Arturo O’Farrill and John Beasley are all nominated for multiple Grammys.
In the main jazz categories, you’ll also find Ambrose Akinmusire, Terri Lyne Carrington, Regina Carter, Kurt Elling, Carmen Lundy, Kenny Washington and Poncho Sanchez among the nominees.
This year’s Grammys also feature a big nod to Toronto-based violinist Drew Jurecka, who’s nominated for record of the year thanks to his role in the engineering and mixing of Dua Lipa’s song Don’t Start Now.
Jazz also dominates the races for best contemporary instrumental album and best instrumental composition, with nods to Christian Scott aTunde Adjuah, Jon Batiste, Maria Schneider, Snarky Puppy, Christian Sands, Arturo O’Farrill, Remy Le Boeuf and the trio of Grégoire Maret, Romain Collin and Bill Frisell.
A number of artists known for their work in jazz have crossed over into the R&B realm of the Grammys this year. Gregory Porter’s All Rise is nominated for best R&B album. Robert Glasper’s F*** Yo Feelings is up for best progressive R&B album, and his tune Better Than I Imagine, featuring H.E.R. and Meshell Ndegeocello, is nominated for best R&B song.
Jacob Collier earned a nod in the big-ticket category of this year’s album of the year for his fourth record, Djesse Vol.3. He’s also nominated for best arrangement for his song He Won’t Hold You, featuring Rapsody, and for best R&B performance for his tune All I Need, featuring Mahalia and Ty Dolla $ign.
Norah Jones and Mavis Staples are nominated for best American roots performance for their duet ballad I’ll Be Gone.
On top of nominations for Beasley and Collier, two other jazz acts are nominated for best arrangement, instruments and vocals: Säje, the vocal supergroup of Sara Gazarek, Erin Bentlage, Johnaye Kendrick and Amanda Taylor, for their tune Desert Song; and Alan Broadbent and Pat Metheny, for Metheny’s song From This Place.
Harry Connick Jr.’s record True Love: A Celebration of Cole Porter, is up for best traditional pop vocal album.
Bebel Gilberto’s Agora, an album highly influenced by the relationship with her father João Gilberto, is nominated for best global music album.
Kamasi Washington’s soundtrack for the Michelle Obama documentary Becoming is included in the category of best score soundtrack for visual media.
The blues categories include nominations for Bettye LaVette, Don Bryant, Bobby Rush and the Ruthie Foster Big Band.
Check out the list of nominees in the jazz-related categories below.