Kelsea Ballerini and Maren Morris to Compete for Best New Artist at the Grammys

Courtesy The Recording Academy

Country music made an impressive showing across the board, as the nominees for the 59th Grammys were announced on Tuesday. Both Kelsea Ballerini and Maren Morris will vie for the all-genre Best New Artist trophy, with critical favorite Sturgill Simpson also competing against the likes of Beyonce and Adele for the prestigious Album of the Year honor.

Artists who are traditionally confined to the country categories made quite a few appearances outside their expected genre. Hillary Scott & the Scott Family picked up Contemporary Christian nods for both the single “Thy Will” and their album Love Remains, while the Red-Headed Stranger found himself in the Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album category for Summertime:  Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin.

The Opry itself will compete against Beyonce’s Lemonade for Best Music Film, with a nomination for American Saturday Night:  Live from the Grand Ole OpryVince Gill garnered acclaim for Best Americana Roots Song for writing “Kid Sister,” the title track of his contender for Best Americana Album with his band The Time Jumpers.

The country categories themselves held some surprises as well. Dolly Parton’s new version of “Jolene” with Pentatonix is up for Best Country Duo/Group Performance, while Loretta Lynn comes Full Circle with a nomination for Best Country Album. Females dominated Best Country Solo Performances, with only Keith Urban making a showing with “Blue Ain’t Your Color.”

Here are the country nominees for the 59th Grammys, which will be handed out Sunday, February 12 on CBS:   

Best Country Solo Performance:
“Love Can Go To Hell” — Brandy Clark
“Vice” — Miranda Lambert
“My Church” — Maren Morris
“Church Bells” — Carrie Underwood
“Blue Ain’t Your Color” — Keith Urban

Best Country Duo/Group Performance:
“Different For Girls” — Dierks Bentley Featuring Elle King
“21 Summer” — Brothers Osborne
“Setting The World On Fire” — Kenny Chesney & P!nk
“Jolene” — Pentatonix Featuring Dolly Parton
“Think Of You” — Chris Young With Cassadee Pope

Best Country Song:
“Blue Ain’t Your Color” —  Clint Lagerberg, Hillary Lindsey & Steven Lee Olsen, songwriters (Keith Urban)
“Die A Happy Man” — Sean Douglas, Thomas Rhett & Joe Spargur, songwriters (Thomas Rhett)
“Humble And Kind” — Lori McKenna, songwriter (Tim McGraw)
“My Church” — busbee & Maren Morris, songwriters (Maren Morris)
“Vice” — Miranda Lambert, Shane McAnally & Josh Osborne, songwriters (Miranda Lambert)

Best Country Album:
Big Day In A Small Town — Brandy Clark
Full Circle — Loretta Lynn
Hero — Maren Morris
A Sailor’s Guide To Earth — Sturgill Simpson
Ripcord — Keith Urban

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