It may seem hard to believe that anyone could top the record number of award nominations given to the late King of Pop, but now is the time to believe. Canadian rapper Drake earned 13 nominations for the American Music Awards this week, which earns him the top spot. He beats the record set by Michael Jackson more than 30 years ago. Jackson had previously received 11 nominations in 1984 as “Thriller” topped the charts. The nominations were announced on Monday by singers Joe Jonas and Rachel Platten, both of whom have also been nominated for awards.
Drake’s hits include “Hotline Bling” and “One Dance”, the latter of which was chosen as Billboard’s song of the summer for 2016. His latest album, titled “Views”, has spent 13 weeks at the top of music charts across the country. His current American Music Award nominations include Artist of the Year, Favorite Album, Favorite Male Artist, Favorite Rap Artist, and Favorite R&B song. Next in line for the AMAs is superstar Rhianna, who grabbed seven nominations, followed by Britain’s Adele and pop star Justin Bieber, who have five nominations each, and Beyonce, going in with four nominations.
As the music stars get ready to see who wins, the fans are preparing to watch. The American Music Awards nominees are based on both digital song sales and album sales, radio airplay, touring, and activity on social media. The Awards are entirely fan-voted while fan interactions through the Billboard.com website and Billboard magazine also influence the nominee selection. As these artists have watched their songs and albums climb to the top of the charts, the AMA nominations should come as no surprise.
As he branches out into solo work, Zayn Malik is up against The Chainsmokers, Shawn Mendes, Alessia Cara, and DNCE in the category of New Artist of the Year UN-Leashed by T-Mobile. Fellow music stars competing for artist of the year include Selena Gomez, Ariana Grande, The Weeknd, Twenty One Pilots, and country singer Carried Underwood. A mid-November vote will narrow those 10 nominees down to just five. Voting for Artist of the Year ends on Thursday, November 17th. Voting for New Artist of the Year takes place via T-Mobile, the AMAvote.com website, and by using social media via Twitter.
Other categories include Favorite Album Pop/Rock, Favorite Duo or Group Country, Top Soundtrack, Tour of the Year, and Video of the Year, to name a few. If Drake wins any of the categories for which he’s been nominated, it will be his first American Music Awards win. He leads all of the 2016 AMA nominees, making it quite a year of success for the artist.
New categories added to the AMA this year include Video of the Year and Tour of the Year. Song of the Year, previously a bit crowded in its category, was split among the categories of rap and hip-hop, R&B and soul, country, and pop and rock. It has also been renamed “Favorite Song.” The American Music Awards are scheduled to be presented live on Sunday, November 20th in Los Angeles at the Microsoft Theater. It will be televised on ABC.