Taylor Swift has won practically every award there is to win in both pop and country, but one has eluded her — the American Music Award for Favorite Album-Pop/Rock. Fearless, the top-selling album of 2009, was nominated for the award but lost to Michael Jackson's Number Ones, which had a resurgence following his death that June. Swift has another shot at the award this year. Her latest album, Red, is nominated, alongside Justin Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience and One Direction's Take Me Home.
It's not a sure thing: Timberlake won in the category in 2003 with his solo debut album, Justified. And One Direction has the kind of young, devoted fans who helped deliver the award to Justin Bieber in two of the last three years.
Swift is also nominated for Favorite Female Artist in both Pop/Rock and Country. She has won the female country award the last five years in a row. She's starting to close in on Reba McEntire's record for the longest continuous winning streak in the category's history (eight years, from 1988 through 1995).
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis are this year's leading contenders, with six nominations. Swift and Timberlake are next in line, with five each. Florida Georgia Line, Rihanna, and Robin Thicke each garnered four.
Miley Cyrus has no nominations — her album was just released this week — but she's set to perform on the show when it airs on ABC on November 24. Will she twerk and/or flash her tongue? You'll have to tune in to find out. Imagine Dragons, who received three nominations, are also set to perform on the show, though it's hard to compete with Miley for attention these days.
The biggest surprise in the nominations was the omission of Jenni Rivera from the list of nominees for Favorite Artist-Latin. There has been a run on Rivera's recordings since she died in a plane crash in Mexico last December. (The nominees in the category are Marc Anthony, who won in 2004, Prince Royce, and Romeo Santos.)
Another surprise: Newcomer Kendrick Lamar is nominated for Favorite Album in Rap/Hip-Hop for his hit debut, good kid, m.A.A.d city. He faces Jay Z's Magna Carta…Holy Grail and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis's The Heist. Among the albums that were passed over for a nomination: Kanye West's Yeezus.
It may not count as a surprise, but it's noteworthy that white artists (what used to be called "blue-eyed soul singers") account for two of the three nominations for both Favorite Album-Soul/R&B and Favorite Male Artist-Soul/R&B. Robin Thicke and Justin Timberlake are competing with Rihanna for the Album award and with Miguel for the Male Artist award.
A little trivia: Timberlake is vying to become the first white artist to win the Soul/R&B Album prize twice. He won it in 2007 for his sophomore album, FutureSex/LoveSounds. The Bee Gees and George Michael each won it once (for the Saturday Night Fever soundtrack and Faith, respectively).
Rihanna has won in the Soul/R&B Album category the last two years. She's nominated again this year with Unapologetic. If she wins, she'll become the first artist ever to win it three years running. Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson each won it two years in a row.
Lady Antebellum is vying to win its fourth straight award for Favorite Band, Duo or Group-Country, though the red-hot Florida Georgia Line may have other ideas. The Band Perry rounds out the category.
The Great Gatsby: Music From Baz Luhrmann's Film, Les Miserables, and Pitch Perfect are nominated for Top Soundtrack. The category is being reactivated this year. The AMAs presented a soundtrack award each year from 1996 through 2003, but dispensed with the award in 2004.
The nominations in five key categories were announced this morning on "Good Morning America." The nominations in the 17 remaining categories were announced a short time later at a press conference in New York.
The 41st annual American Music Awards will air live from the Nokia Theatre at L.A. Live in Los Angeles on November 24 on ABC. For the seventh year, fans will determine the winners by online voting at www.AMAvote.com. In addition, for the first time, fans can vote for their favorite artists via Twitter.
Here are the nominees in the various genre categories:
Favorite Male Artist: Bruno Mars, Robin Thicke, Justin Timberlake
Favorite Female Artist: P!nk, Rihanna, Taylor Swift
Favorite Band, Duo or Group: Imagine Dragons, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, One Direction
Favorite Album: One Direction's Take Me Home, Swift's Red, Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience
Favorite Male Artist: Luke Bryan, Hunter Hayes, Blake Shelton
Favorite Female Artist: Miranda Lambert, Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood
Favorite Band, Duo or Group: The Band Perry, Florida Georgia Line, Lady Antebellum
Favorite Album: Bryan's Crash My Party, Florida Georgia Line's Here's To The Good Times, Swift's Red
Favorite Male Artist: Miguel, Robin Thicke, Justin Timberlake
Favorite Female Artist: Ciara, Alicia Keys, Rihanna
Favorite Album: Rihanna's Unapologetic, Thicke's Blurred Lines, Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience
Favorite Artist: Jay Z, Lil Wayne, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
Favorite Album: Jay Z's Magna Carta…Holy Grail, Kendrick Lamar's good kid, m.A.A.d city, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis's The Heist
Favorite Artist: Alternative Rock: Imagine Dragons, The Lumineers, Mumford & Sons.
Favorite Artist: Adult Contemporary: Maroon 5, Bruno Mars, P!nk
Favorite Artist: Latin: Marc Anthony, Prince Royce, Romeo Santos
Favorite Artist: Contemporary Inspirational: tobyMac, Chris Tomlin, Matthew West
Favorite Artist: Electronic Dance Music (EDM): Avicii, Daft Punk, Calvin Harris, Zedd
Favorite Soundtrack: The Great Gatsby: Music From Baz Luhrmann's Film, Les Miserables, Pitch Perfect