If Miley Cyrus’ ‘Flowers’ Lands a Grammy Nod for Record of the Year, She and Her Dad Will Be in Very Exclusive Company

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If Miley Cyrus’ “Flowers” receives a Grammy nomination for record of the year, she and her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, will be in very exclusive company. They will be only the third parent and child to each be nominated in that marquee category – following Frank Sinatra and his daughter, Nancy, and Nat King Cole and his daughter, Natalie.

Billy Ray Cyrus was nominated for record of the year for his novelty-edged breakthrough hit “Achy Breaky Heart” (1992), and again as a featured artist on Lil Nas X’s record-breaking smash “Old Town Road” (2019).

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Frank Sinatra amassed seven nods for record of the year, winning once for the sumptuous ballad “Strangers in the Night” (1966). Nancy Sinatra was nominated for “Somethin’ Stupid,” her 1967 duet with her dad. Both of those singles topped the Billboard Hot 100.

Nat “King” Cole was nominated for his country-shaded ballad “Ramblin’ Rose” (1962). Natalie Cole won for “Unforgettable,” her 1991 from-the-grave collab with her dad.

(That silky recording also won for best traditional pop performance, but Nat wasn’t a nominee or winner in either of those categories for that record. He recorded his part of the recording in 1961. Grammy rules require that recordings be made no more than five years before the release date for that artist to be nominated. Official Grammy records show “Ramblin’ Rose” as Nat’s final nomination.)

Two other parent-and-child pairs deserves honorable mention. The Mamas and the Papas, featuring John and Michelle Phillips, were nominated for record of the year for “Monday, Monday” (1966), a No. 1 hit on the Hot 100. Twenty-five years later, the members of Wilson Phillips, including their daughter Chynna Phillips, were nominated for song of the year, but not for record of the year, for “Hold On,” also a No. 1 hit on the Hot 100.

Debby Boone received a record of the year nod for her 1977 megahit “You Light Up My Life” – the first song in Hot 100 history to log 10 weeks at No. 1.  Her dad, Pat Boone, was never nominated in that category, though it should be noted that his biggest hit, “Love Letters in the Sand,” was a smash in 1957, the year before the Grammys got underway.

So how likely is Cyrus to receive a record of the year nod for “Flowers”? Very likely, considering its commercial success and broad appeal. The smash topped the Billboard Hot 100 for six weeks and held the top spot for 10 weeks on the Official U.K. Singles Chart. The only potential sign of trouble is Cyrus’ spotty Grammy track record – just two nods – best pop vocal album for Bangerz (2013) and album of the year as a featured artist and songwriter on LNX’s Montero (2021). But with everything it has going for it, “Flowers” is likely to put Cyrus in a Big Four category as a lead artist at last.

Kid Harpoon and Tyler Johnson co-produced “Flowers.” This would be their second record of the year nomination in a row. They co-produced Harry Styles’ “As It Was,” which was nominated in that category late last year for the 65th Annual Grammy Awards.

“Flowers,” which Cyrus co-wrote with Gregory Aldae Hein and Michael Pollack, could also be nominated for song of the year. It is, in some ways, an update on the concept behind “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers,” which received a 1978 nod for song of the year (for songwriters Neil Diamond and Alan and Marilyn Bergman) and a 1979 nod for record of the year (for the Hot 100-topping version by Barbra Streisand and Diamond).

Times have changed in the last 45 years – and hit records reflect those changes. Now, instead of lamenting that your significant other doesn’t bring you flowers anymore, you go out and buy your own.

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