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How the Grammys Work

Hear an interview with Ron Roeker from the Recording Academy on how the Grammy selection process works, plus music from the Best New Artist category.

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Copyright 2024 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

How the Grammys Work

She Will Be Loved

Winner: Maroon 5 have been together since the late '90s and made their debut in 2002 with Songs About Jane; but last year's 1.22.03.Acoustic was their first album to reach a significant audience.


Nominee: Los Lonely Boys are brothers Henry, JoJo and Ringo Garza from San Angelo, Texas. Their self-titled debut is a collection of "Tex-Mex" songs -- a fusion of rock, blues and country with Latin rhythms. We originally featured this tune on our 2004 Summer Music show.

Killing Time

Nominee: British singer Joss Stone's debut album The Soul Sessions was released in 2003 and featured on All Songs Considered episode 41. Stone was just 16 years old at the time, but proved to have a strong voice and instinct for American soul music. Her follow-up, last year's Mind Body & Soul, earned her an official nomination for best new artist.

School Spirit

Nominee: Kanye West spent time producing hits for Jay-Z and other rappers before starting his own career as an MC with his debut release last year, The College Dropout. Fans have called West the 'everyman rapper' for his easy, sing-song style and sense of humor. He was originally featured on All Songs Considered's collection of the best songs of 2004.

Redneck Woman

Nominee: Gretchen Wilson is a contemporary country singer/songwriter from Illinois. Her debut album Here for the Party entered the country charts at number one and sold more than a quarter of a million copies, the largest opening week for a new country artist on record.

Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)

Listener pick: Arcade Fire formed in Montreal in 2003 and released their remarkable debut just a year later. Called Funeral to remember several family members who died the year it was recorded, the album is a mesmerizing collection of intimate, experimental rock.

We're Both So Sorry

Listener pick: Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn is the daughter of artistic parents from Olympia, Washington and sings with what some have called the "sexiest" voice in rock.


All Songs pick: This Brooklyn-based trio is one of the most unique acts of the new decade, creating a strange sonic experience while exploring sensitive political and cultural issues.

Take Me Out

Franz Ferdinand is a Glasgow quartet of former art students with a sound that swings and swaggers its way from the Byrds to Television.

Miracle Drug

All Songs pick: A.C. Newman (Carl Newman) is the frontman for the New Pornographers from Vancouver. His first-ever solo release takes cues from classic art rock artists like Queen and Jeff Lynne.

On Your Wings

All Songs pick: Iron and Wine became huge favorites in the new-folk movement with this album, a collection of hushed, Southern-flavored story songs.


All Songs pick: This is the debut release from Ray LaMontagne, a singer/songwriter who sounds like a cross between Otis Redding and Van Morrison. His music is sparse, maudlin with heartfelt, cinematic stories.


Listener pick: Joanna Newsom is a classically trained musician who reinvents folk music with quirky solo harp arrangements.