When the nominees for the 58th Grammy Awards were announced this week, a trio of country artists helped boost the format’s profile with some major-category nominations. Chris Stapleton, Little Big Town and Sam Hunt all made showings in the all-genre categories.
Little Big Town, still riding high on the critical and commercial success of their album Pain Killer, received a nomination in the Song of the Year category for the gender-bending ballad “Girl Crush.” Written by Hillary Lindsey, Lori McKenna and Liz Rose, the hit single competes against songs by Taylor Swift, Kendrick Lamar, Wiz Khalifa and Ed Sheeran.
Sam Hunt, meanwhile, lands right in the middle of a competitive Best New Artist race, opposite Courtney Barnett, James Bay, Tori Kelly and Meghan Trainor. Last month, Hunt was named New Artist of the Year at the American Music Awards.
And Stapleton, seemingly unstoppable since his breakout CMA Awards duet with Justin Timberlake and subsequent sweep of his CMA categories, is nominated for the Grammys’ most coveted award: Album of the Year. Stapleton’s Traveller faces off against projects by Alabama Shakes, Kendrick Lamar, Taylor Swift and the Weeknd.
The 58th Grammy Awards will be handed out February 15th, live on CBS.