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Who scored 2022 Grammy nominations (Spoiler: ABBA was nominated for the 1st time)

AILSA CHANG, HOST:

The nominations for the 2022 Grammy Awards have been announced. In the top categories are some familiar names like Taylor Swift, Kanye West and Billie Eilish, and some relative newcomers like Olivia Rodrigo and the super duo Silk Sonic. But it's musician Jon Batiste who came out ahead of the pack today with 11 nominations. NPR's Andrew Limbong has more.

ANDREW LIMBONG, BYLINE: Jon Batiste's album "We Are" got a lot of critical acclaim, and its New Orleans inspirations means it's got a little jazz and R&B and roots in it - not that these classifications mean anything, as Batiste told NPR earlier this year.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED NPR BROADCAST)

JON BATISTE: And I think this album is a representation of what that lineage is all about, me just kind of showing people in the world that genres don't exist. There's no such thing. It's only music.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "FREEDOM")

BATISTE: (Singing) When I move my body just like this, I don't know why, but I feel like freedom.

LIMBONG: Of course, classifying music is kind of a big part of the Grammys. But they are taking some steps to loosen up a bit.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

HARVEY MASON, JR: This past April, we took the important step of eliminating nomination review committees.

LIMBONG: That's Harvey Mason, Jr., CEO of The Recording Academy, ahead of the nominations, explaining that this is the first time in 30 years that the Grammy nominees were chosen solely by the voting membership and not using committees to decide who's in and who's out. But then he also announced that the big categories - that is song, album and record of the year, along with best new artist - will be expanded from eight nominees to 10.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

MASON, JR: Adding new nominees to these fields is a way to cast a wider net, to make room for more music, more artists and more genres and to embrace the spirit of inclusion

LIMBONG: Of those big four categories, pop singer Olivia Rodrigo makes an appearance on each list.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "DRIVERS LICENSE")

OLIVIA RODRIGO: (Singing) Red lights, stop signs, I still see your face...

LIMBONG: Including best new artist, where she joins a pretty eclectic class. We've got names familiar to pop radio listeners - Saweetie, Finneas, Glass Animals, The Kid Laroi.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "STAY")

THE KID LAROI: (Singing) I do the same thing I told you that I never would. I told you...

LIMBONG: There's also rapper Baby Keem and country star Jimmie Allen.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "FREEDOM WAS A HIGHWAY")

JIMMIE ALLEN: (Singing) And Freedom was a highway.

LIMBONG: And indie acts like Japanese Breakfast and Arlo Parks and the Pakistani-born, New York-based singer Arooj Aftab.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "MOHABBAT")

AROOJ AFTAB: (Singing in foreign language).

LIMBONG: She told NPR earlier this year that her album "Vulture Prince" was dedicated to her brother, who died suddenly while she was writing the album.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED NPR BROADCAST)

AFTAB: When this happened in the middle of my writing process, the album title itself, "Vulture Prince," somehow got a new meaning, which was a very important saving grace.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "MOHABBAT")

AFTAB: (Singing in foreign language).

LIMBONG: As for possible disappointments, Taylor Swift only got one nomination for her album "Evermore," though she is credited as songwriter on that Olivia Rodrigo album. And BTS only has one nomination for their song "Butter."

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "BUTTER")

BTS: (Singing) Do the boogie like, side step right, left to my beat.

LIMBONG: But with all these familiar names hoping to hang on to the top spots and newcomers coming for the crown, one established artist did make waves for earning their first-ever Grammy nomination today.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "I STILL HAVE FAITH IN YOU")

ABBA: (Singing) I still have faith in you.

LIMBONG: That would be the storied Swedish pop group ABBA for Record of the Year, for their song "I Still Have Faith In You." The Grammys are scheduled for January 31.

Andrew Limbong, NPR News. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.