Not a lot of fans knew who Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and Lorde were when we gathered a year ago to celebrate music with the Grammy Awards nominations.
Yet thanks to a series of inescapable and smart hits, these upstarts could very well muscle Justin Timberlake, Taylor Swift and other Grammy favorites out of the way when nominees are announced Friday night in a televised special airing live from Los Angeles on CBS.
Lorde's hit "Royals" and Macklemore's run of "Thrift Shop" and "Same Love" dominated all but a few songs for attention this year, and each carried a progressive message in a pop music world obsessed with swag and navel gazing — something The Recording Academy's voters tend to award.
The Grammy Awards will be presented Jan. 26.
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