Jay Z, who has already won 17 Grammys, is likely to win two more in the rap field this year for "Holy Grail," his smash collaboration with Justin Timberlake. That would edge him closer to Kanye West, who has won 21 Grammys, the most by any rap artist.
"Holy Grail" is the front-runner to win both Best Rap/Sung Collaboration and Best Rap Song. The smash contains elements of Nirvana's 1991 grunge classic "Smells Like Teen Spirit," which is an unlikely song to find in a hip-hop hit. Grammy voters are attracted to that kind of genre blending.
This year's other Rap/Sung Collaboration nominees are "Power Trip" by J. Cole featuring Miguel, "Part II (On The Run)" by Jay Z featuring Beyonce, "Now Or Never" by Kendrick Lamar featuring Mary J. Blige and "Remember You" by Wiz Khalifa featuring The Weeknd.
Jay Z and Timberlake co-wrote "Holy Grail" with Terius Nash, J. Harmon, Timothy Mosley & Ernest Wilson. The other Rap Song nominees are Macklemore & Ryan Lewis's
"Thrift Shop," A$AP Rocky's
"F***in' Problems" (which he co-wrote with Drake, 2 Chainz, Kendrick Lamar & Noah Shebib), Drake's
"Started From The Bottom" (which he co-wrote with W. Coleman and Shebib) and Kanye West's
"New Slaves" (which he co-wrote with 12 collaborators, which may well constitute a Grammy record).
"New Slaves" and "Started From The Bottom" also contain elements of old songs. Per Grammy rules, the writers of the old songs aren't nominated.
Eminem's "The Marshall Mathers LP 2" and "The Monster," his smash collabo with Rihanna, were released too late for this year's eligibility, but Eminem is nominated for Best Rap Performance for "Berzerk." The hit has a slight edge over "Thrift Shop" by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz. This would be Eminem's 14th Grammy. He's third among rappers with the most Grammys, behind West and Jay Z.
The other nominees in this very tight race are Drake's "Started From The Bottom," Jay Z's "Tom Ford" and Kendrick Lamar's "Swimming Pools (Drank)."