How many times can a musician say "it's an honor just to be nominated" before the smile withers and bitterness sets in? A handful of the new Grammy nominees have felt the rush of being recognized—and the subsequent disappoint of losing—many, many times. Here, we look at the eight unluckiest acts who are back up for Grammys this year.
2012 marks the experimental Icelandic songstress' fifth Best Alternative Album nomination and her 13th and 14th Grammy nods since 1994. In addition to Björk's persistent appearance in Best Alternative Album, she's notched lots of Best Short Form Music Video recognition. But zero wins. Ever. Can the groundbreaking Biophilia reverse the curse?
Like Björizzle, Snoop earned his 14th Grammy nomination on Wednesday night. So many Best Rap Songs and Best Rap Performance noms since 1994, with nothing to show for 'em. Now "Young, Wild & Free" is up for Best Rap Song; it'll be a shame if the Doggfather needs Wiz Khalifa and Bruno Mars to boost him to a win after losing on classics like "Nuthin' but a 'G' Thang," "Gin and Juice," "Still D.R.E." and "Drop It Like It's Hot."
Katy and Mr. D-O-Double-G actually shared a nomination in 2011 for "California Gurls." And Katy, like Snoop, is a no-show at the Grammys. She's earned nine nominations since 2009, with standouts including Best Female Pop Vocal Performance hat-tips for "I Kissed a Girl" and "Teenage Dream" and an Album of the Year nod for Teenage Dream. Let's see if "Wide Awake" can get her the Best Pop Solo Performance win "Firework" could not. ("Firework" lost for Record of the Year, too. Double-ouch.)
Mr. Jones has habitually been up for Best Rap Album and Best Rap Performance since 1997, totaling eight fruitless nominations prior to this week. The 55th annual Grammys will offer him four new chances—Best Rap Album for Life Is Good, Best Rap/Sung Collaboration for his and Amy Winehouse's "Cherry Wine," Best Rap Song for "Daughters" and Best Rap Performance for the same.
The Philly hip hop pioneers have some actual wins under their belt! While The Roots once locked up Best Rap Performance by a Duo or Group and got three R&B-centric awards in 2011, they've been nominated for Best Rap Album four times and never won, tied only with Missy Elliott in that steady lucklessness. (And they lost to Ludacris once. C'mon.) 2013 will give them strong competition against an overdue Nas and a semi-due Drake, but the excellent Undun may be their ticket to a long-evaded Best Rap Album.
Adam Levine's merry band started out strong with a Best New Artist win in 2005 and more or less tanked from there. Although Maroon 5 have captured two Best Performance By a Duo or Group With Vocals victories, they've lost six times on big songs like "Moves Like Jagger" and "Won't Go Home Without You." They're back in 2013 for Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for "Payphone" and Best Pop Vocal Album for Overexposed. We'll see.
Since "Best I Ever Had" brought him onto the Grammy scene in 2010, Drake has suffered nine hard losses, including Best New Artist and Best Rap Album in 2011. Take Care earns him a Best Rap Album nomination this time around, as well as Best Rap Performance for "HYFR (Hell Ya F---ing Right)" and Best Rap Song for "The Motto." Three more chances to see if Drizzy can put some statues where his braggadocio is.
Your boy Hov has had some noteworthy success with 14 wins, but he's racked up a massive 31 losses, including some particularly painful Best Rap Album defeats at the hands of his li'l bro Kanye West. Jay's back in the mix six times for 2013—twice for guest appearances, and four times for his Watch the Throne work alongside Yeezy.