And the 2016 Grammy nominees are

The nominees for the 58th Grammy Awards have been announced, and it’s a big year for Kendrick Lamar. The rapper scored 11 nominations, followed by Taylor Swift and The Weeknd with 7 each. Our very own Ladysmith Black Mambazo also cracked a nomination, which is fantastic news.

Are you surprised, shocked by the nominations? I’m a little surprised that Ed Sheeran’s album is featured in the Best Album category. That was one of the strongest albums and I thought it would’ve been featured more prominently in this list of nominees. I’m happy The Weeknd scored so many. That album is boss!!! Taylor, yeah Taylor… and Kendrick, great news for him. I expect a big of Bad Blood on stage come the 15th of Feb, and I mean in the song sense πŸ˜‰

Album Of The Year:
Sound & Color β€” Alabama Shakes
To Pimp A Butterfly β€” Kendrick Lamar
Traveller β€” Chris Stapleton
1989 β€” Taylor Swift
Beauty Behind The Madness β€” The Weeknd
Watch and share the Album Of The Year category roundup video

Record Of The Year:
“Really Love” β€” D’Angelo And The Vanguard
“Uptown Funk” β€” Mark Ronson Featuring Bruno Mars
“Thinking Out Loud” β€” Ed Sheeran
“Blank Space” β€” Taylor Swift
“Can’t Feel My Face” β€” The Weeknd

Song Of The Year:
“Alright” β€” Kendrick Duckworth, Mark Anthony Spears & Pharrell Williams, songwriters (Kendrick Lamar)
“Blank Space” β€” Max Martin, Shellback & Taylor Swift, songwriters (Taylor Swift)
“Girl Crush” β€” Hillary Lindsey, Lori McKenna & Liz Rose, songwriters (Little Big Town)
“See You Again” β€” Andrew Cedar, Justin Franks, Charles Puth & Cameron Thomaz, songwriters (Wiz Khalifa Featuring Charlie Puth)
“Thinking Out Loud” β€” Ed Sheeran & Amy Wadge, songwriters (Ed Sheeran)

Best New Artist:
Courtney Barnett
James Bay
Sam Hunt
Tori Kelly
Meghan Trainor

Best Pop Duo/Group Performance:
“Ship To Wreck” β€” Florence + The Machine
“Sugar” β€” Maroon 5
“Uptown Funk” β€” Mark Ronson Featuring Bruno Mars
“Bad Blood” β€” Taylor Swift Featuring Kendrick Lamar
“See You Again” β€” Wiz Khalifa Featuring Charlie Puth

View all the nominees here.

Best Dance Recording:
“We’re All We Need” β€” Above & Beyond Featuring ZoΓ« Johnston
“Go” β€” The Chemical Brothers
“Never Catch Me” β€” Flying Lotus Featuring Kendrick Lamar
“Runaway (U & I)” β€” Galantis
“Where Are Ü Now” β€” Skrillex And Diplo With Justin Bieber

Best Rock Performance:
“Don’t Wanna Fight” β€” Alabama Shakes
“What Kind Of Man” β€” Florence + The Machine
“Something From Nothing” β€” Foo Fighters
“Ex’s & Oh’s” β€” Elle King
“Moaning Lisa Smile” β€” Wolf Alice

Best Alternative Music Album:
Sound & Color β€” Alabama Shakes
Vulnicura β€” BjΓΆrk
The Waterfall β€” My Morning Jacket
Currents β€” Tame Impala
Star Wars β€” Wilco

Best Urban Contemporary Album:
Ego Death β€” The Internet
You Should Be Here β€” Kehlani
Blood β€” Lianne La Havas
Wildheart Β β€” Miguel
Beauty Behind The Madness β€” The Weeknd

Best Rap Album:
2014 Forest Hills Drive β€” J. Cole
Compton β€” Dr. Dre
If Youre Reading This Its Too Late β€” Drake
To Pimp A Butterfly β€” Kendrick Lamar
The Pinkprint β€” Nicki Minaj

Best Country Album:
Montevallo β€” Sam Hunt
Pain Killer β€” Little Big Town
The Blade β€” Ashley Monroe
Pageant Material β€” Kacey Musgraves
Traveller β€” Chris Stapleton

Best Jazz Instrumental Album:
My Favorite Things β€” Joey Alexander
Breathless β€” Terence Blanchard Featuring The E-Collective
Covered: Recorded Live At Capitol Studios β€” Robert Glasper & The Robert Glasper Trio
Beautiful Life β€” Jimmy Greene
Past Present β€” John Scofield

Best Gospel Album:
Destined To Win (Live) β€” Karen Clark Sheard
Living It β€” Dorinda Clark-Cole
One Place Live β€” Tasha Cobbs
Covered: Alive Is Asia [Live] (Deluxe) β€” Israel & Newbreed
Life Music: Stage Two β€” Jonathan McReynolds

Best Contemporary Christian Music Album:
Whatever The Road β€” Jason Crabb
How Can It Be β€” Lauren Daigle
Saints And Sinners β€” Matt Maher
This Is Not A Test β€” Tobymac
Love Ran Red β€” Chris Tomlin

Best Latin Pop Album:
Terral β€” Pablo AlborΓ‘n
Healer β€” Alex Cuba
A Quien Quiera Escuchar (Deluxe Edition) β€” Ricky Martin
Sirope β€” Alejandro Sanz
Algo Sucede β€” Julieta Venegas

Best Americana Album:
The Firewatcher’s Daughter β€” Brandi Carlile
The Traveling Kind β€” Emmylou Harris & Rodney Crowell
Something More Than Free β€” Jason Isbell
Mono β€” The Mavericks
The Phosphorescent Blues β€” Punch Brothers

Best Spoken Word Album (Includes Poetry, Audio Books & Storytelling):
Blood On Snow (Jo NesbΓΈ) β€” Patti Smith
Brief Encounters: Conversations, Magic Moments, And Assorted Hijinks β€” Dick Cavett
A Full Life: Reflections At Ninety β€” Jimmy Carter
Patience And Sarah (Isabel Miller) β€” Janis Ian & Jean Smart
Yes Please β€” Amy Poehler (& Various Artists)

Producer Of The Year, Non-Classical:
Jeff Bhasker
Dave Cobb
Larry Klein
Blake Mills

Best Music Film:
Mr. Dynamite: The Rise Of James Brown β€” James Brown
Sonic Highways β€” Foo Fighters
What Happened, Miss Simone? β€” Nina Simone
The Wall β€” Roger Waters
Amy β€” Amy Winehouse
HELLO #AwardsSeason… The Grammys take place onΒ Monday, Feb. 15, 2016 live from LA. Dear Universe….

Khuli Chana shot at, injured by police

Just got an email from SA star, Khuli Chana’s PR company saying he was shot at and injured by police in an incident earlier this morning. Here’s what the brief statement said:

Breaking News: Multiple Award Winning Artist, Khuli Chana, WRONGFULLY shot at and injured by police!

– Police open fire on Khuli Chana’s vehicle with intent to kill – apparently mistaking him for a kidnapper in the early hours of this morning (Monday), at the Caltex garage on New Road in Midrand, Johannesburg.

– Khuli Chana is lucky to be alive after the excessive lethal force used. He was alone at the time of the shooting, on his way to a gig in Pretoria.

More details to follow in official press statement this afternoon.

I hope Khuli is doing okay, given the circumstances. He’s easily one of the most talent and yet one of the nicest guys in the game. As for the cops, I hope a full investigation into their behaviour and motives is underway.

Ne-Yo in South Africa with Malibu Red

This week has been good. I got to chat to the guys from Mi Casa ahead of their big performance for President Obama on Monday. I also got to chat to Ne-Yo, who happens to one of my favourite artists. He’s super talented and let me tell you, in person, he’s so awesome. Friendly, forthcoming, intelligent and just the sort of dude you’d like to hang out with.

He was here in his capacity as Creative Director for the new range of Malibu called Malibu Red. Last night I hit up the red carpet event at The Venue in Johannesburg. Some of SA’s finest were in attendance walking the carpet as was Ne-Yo. Check out the highlights above – and stay tuned for more on my one-on-one interview coming soon (when I can finally convert the format to something workable).

Listen: Justin Timberlake – Suit and Tie ft Jay-Z

YES! YES! YES! This is how you start a Monday morning… Justin Timberlake has released his new single called “Suit and Tie”. Getting a little bit of help on the track from Jay-Z. Winning!

Read his open letter below:

An Open Letter to you (the fans):

I hope this gets to you the right way. It’s the only way I know to do it. Some people may criticize me for the last 3 days. But it was fun, right?? Right?!?! Besides, I’d rather speak directly to all of you. And, who can knock me for having a little bit of fun with it?

Well… No more teasing. Although, it was A LOT of fun. (Did I mention that I’m having fun with this?? Ha!)

*Makes a serious face*

So, here goes:

This year is an exciting one for me. As you probably have heard through the “grapevine,” I’m gearing up for a big 2013.

Back in June of last year, I quietly started working on what is now, my next journey with that thing I love called MUSIC.

The inspiration for this really came out of the blue and to be honest, I didn’t expect anything out of it. I just went into the studio and started playing around with some sounds and songs. It was probably the best time I’ve had in my career… Just creating with no rules and/or end goal in mind and really enjoying the process.

What I came up with is something I couldn’t be more excited about! It is full of inspiration that I grew up listening to and some newfound muses that I’ve discovered along the way.

I’m calling it “The 20/20 Experience,” and it’s coming out this year.

I hope you enjoy listening to it as much as I enjoyed making it.

That’s all I’m giving you for now… I know, I know! Again, with the teasing!!!

Get ready. This is going to be fun (well, at least it is for me).

SAMA 18 Yellow Carpet pics

The annual South African Music Awards took place at the Sun City Super Bowl on Monday evening. As to be expected the lovely Zahara stole the show, scooping at least eight trophies at the coveted music awards. Big up to her and big up to Randall Abrahams and his team for an incredible event. What a huge success. The yellow carpet is something that us working media need to work on. There is such a thing as etiquette and we still haven’t figured that out, but all in due course I guess. Alas, here are a few pictures from the yellow carpet. Above is the beautiful and incredible Bonang Matheba, wearing Gert-Johan Coetzee.

Vuzu‘s Lalla wearing David Tlale.

Top Billing’s Lorna Maseko in Thula Sindi.

Dancer and singer Somizi Mhlongo in David Tlale and shoes by Alexander McQueen.

Thembi Seete and her fiance looking good.

One of my absolute best, it’s the lovely Lira.

5FM’s Poppy Ntshongwana in Loin Cloth & Ashes.

The beautiful Boity.

Headline Mzansi presenter, Kuli Roberts.

Miss South Africa Melinda Bam looking gorgeous in yellow. She told me yellow is her colour… true story, she won the title of Miss SA in a yellow dress. Lovely Melinda.

SAMA stars Mi Casa and Unathi Msengana grab a picture together in the midst of all the yellow carpet madness.

Five-time nominee Zakwe chats to 5FM’s Poppy.