State Press editors’ Grammy picks

Album of the year:

Should win: “El Camino” — The Black Keys’ seventh studio album “El Camino” should win this year’s Grammy award for album of the year. The drummer-guitar duo have saved rock n’ roll or at least brought it back to a respectable genre much like when Zeppelin, The Doors and Jimi Hendrix rocked the stages and ears of millions of Americans. “El Camino” is catchy with its guitar riffs and drum beats. Their lyrics are relatable and appeal to the average person’s feelings of love, money and heartbreak. — Shawn Raymundo, news editor

Shouldn’t win: “El Camino” — “El Camino” should not be album of the year. Don’t get me wrong it was a good album. But that was it. It is just a decent Black Keys album, it didn’t really wow me. It was like an OK date. You take a chance listening to it, it was an OK time listening to it and you won’t listen to it again. — Edmund Hubbard, sports editor

Record of the year:

Shouldn’t win: “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” — “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” should never ever ever win the record of the year award. Like, EVER. When this song came out as T-Swizzle’s first single from “Red,” long-time fans (or at least this one) worried that the pseudo-country goddess was losing her touch. What was up with the random spoken interlude where T-Sweezy complained about her latest awful ex? And when did the lyricist who melded “Romeo and Juliet” and “The Scarlet Letter” so adeptly in “Love Story” lose the ability to write a phrase deeper than “We-e are never ever ever getting back together”? The actual album helped Taylor redeem herself, but this first song was enough to make dedicated fans see red. — Julia Shumway, assistant news editor

Best new artist:

Should win: Alabama Shakes — Best new artist should be the Alabama Shakes. Why I love this band is because they are old school. They have an awesome funk and rock ‘n roll sound. Their lead singer, Brittany Howard has a voice that I have not heard since Janis Joplin. Just try and not bob your head during the song, “Hold On.” — Edmund Hubbard, sports editor

Song of the year:

Should win: “Call Me Maybe” — Without a doubt, the song of the year is “Call Me Maybe.” This catchy pop anthem brightened all of our summers. Even though the lyrics were a little nonsensical at times, they rhymed and were sang in such a peppy way that it was impossible not to fall in love with the song. Want to know the power of this song? I worked at a fast food joint that played “Call Me Maybe” at least three times an hour all summer long, and all summer long, we would screw up ticket times even more than usual whenever the song came on because we all needed to sing and dance along. Additionally, this song gave us awesome covers, from high school sports teams singing them on the bus to Matty B Raps, an adorable wannabe Beiber. It may not be the song with the most depth of lyrics or tunes, but it did define the year. — Julia Shumway, assistant news editor

Shouldn’t win: “Call Me Maybe” — “Call Me Maybe” is the worst song ever recorded. OK that may be an over exaggeration but regardless … it’s still horrible. How low has the Grammys bar gone? How does a song with no creativity or intellectuality get chosen for the Grammys? I completely get why it’s popular among the masses. It’s catchy, it can be played at clubs to dance to and people can relate with the idea of giving out your number. But it does nothing to push the envelope of what art is. “Call Me Maybe” is just a rip off of early Madonna, which I’m not saying is good because let’s face it, early Madonna is played out but at least she was artistic and creative at that time. In all honesty all pop music sucks, regardless of the artist. — Shawn Raymundo, news editor

Best rock album:

Should win: “El Camino” — Springsteen’s album, “Wrecking Ball,” is one of his angriest yet and full of songs lamenting the hard times America has experienced in recent years. After watching him perform it live in England and listening to thousands of Brits sing the title track “Wrecking Ball,” I realized it was an album that doesn’t just resonate in the states, but around the world. I grew up listening to The Boss as my dad owned all of his records. Believe me when I say I really wanted to pick him. But then I gave “El Camino” one last listen. The songs like “Lonely Boy” and “Gold on the Ceiling” could get stuck in my head for days. If we were talking about live performances, the boys of The Black Keys have a long way to go before they are on Springsteen’s level. But the bluesy rock sound of “El Camino” has made it one of the most replayed albums on my iPod, and at that I have to make it my final pick. — Molly Smith, photo editor

Best dance/electronica album:

Should win: “Bangarang” — Skrillex’s “Bangarang.” Though I’m not an avid house music fan, from the standpoint of a college student I can say that Skrillex has certainly infiltrated the party atmosphere. It’s been charted in more than 10 countries around the world. Besides, he’s got pretty cool hair. — Newlin Tillotson, A&E; editor

Shouldn’t win:
“>album title goes here<” — “>album title goes here<” What the heck? Why would a band that can’t even remember to go back and fill in its title after recording tracks ever be nominated for anything? It’s just lazy. Would an untitled book ever win a Nobel Prize for literature or a news article be nominated for a Pulitzer if an editor was too lazy to write a headline? I think not. Also, judging from listening to a few seconds of each song on this album, they all sound really similar and barely have lyrics. Lyrics tell the story, guys. — Julia Shumway, assistant news editor

Best country album:

Should win: “Chief” — The winner of country album of the year was not even nominated. “Chief” by Eric Church was a game changer. He combined a love song and tribute to one of America’s greatest songwriters in the song, “Springsteen.” He broke the mold and created a new kind of country sound in the song, “Creepin’.” Best album of the year, I do not know how it was not even nominated. — Edmund Hubbard, sports editor

Shouldn’t win: “Hunter Hayes” — Album that should not win is “Hunter Hayes” with Hunter Hayes. This kid looks like he’s barely old enough to have a license. How can he write a true country song? He needs to grow up and so does country. This kind of poppy, yuppie and over produced sound is everything that is wrong with country. Waylon is probably rolling over in his grave. — Edmund Hubbard, sports editor