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Taylor Swift announced her new album, “The Tortured Poets Department,” when she won Best Pop Vocal Album at the Grammys. But Beyonce was like, “Hold my beer,” and revealed during the Super Bowl that she would be dropping new music. Beyonce’s “Act II,” her follow-up to “Renaissance,” is slated for March 29, after which “Tortured Poets” comes on April 19. Perhaps surprisingly, that makes this the first time in 15 years that the two superstars will have competing eras at the Grammys. Will Swift win Album of the Year for the fifth time, or will Beyonce finally win for the first time? Or might they both be overtaken by another artist?
Of course, I must preface this by saying that neither album is out yet, so whether they’ll even be any good has yet to be determined. But considering their creative and commercial consistency over the years, let’s for the sake of argument assume both albums are critically acclaimed hits. Given their high profiles, that immediately sets them up as top Grammy contenders for 2025. Swift has won four Album of the Year titles, more than any other performer in history, while Beyonce has won 32 Grammys overall, more than any other individual in history. But Beyonce has never won Album of the Year, much to the consternation of many music fans, including Bey’s husband Jay-Z, who accepted an honorary award this year and put the Grammys on blast for their inconsistent treatment of his wife.
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The previous time Swift and Beyonce faced off was in 2010 when Beyonce was nominated for the top prize for “I Am … Sasha Fierce,” while Swift won for “Fearless.” Since then they’ve had eras all to themselves: Swift’s “Red” was nominated in 2014, followed by Beyonce’s self-titled in 2015, Swift’s “1989” in 2016, Beyonce’s “Lemonade” in 2017, Swift’s “Folklore” in 2021, Swift’s “Evermore” in 2022, Beyonce’s “Renaissance” in 2023 and Swift’s “Midnights” in 2024, with Swift also prevailing for “1989,” “Folklore” and “Midnights.” With the two artists on a rare collision course again this time around, the Grammys could face even more backlash than usual if Beyonce is denied yet again, especially if the prize goes to Swift for a second consecutive year.
That said, there’s still about half of this eligibility period left to go before the August 31 deadline. Swift and Beyonce have both lost to other artists before, and they’ve both had multiple albums that weren’t even nominated. So nothing is guaranteed yet.
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