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Here Are the Most & Least Crowded Categories for the 2022 Grammys

Here Are the Most & Least Crowded Categories for the 2022 Grammys

There are surprises galore here. Music videos are sometimes thought to be decades past their peak, but there are more entries for best music video (1,185) than for any other category — even record and song of the year.

Similarly, rock is sometimes portrayed as being on its last legs, but rock leads in two classifications: There are more entries for best rock song than for any other genre song award and more entries for best rock performance than for any other genre performance award.

Among genre album categories, best rock album is third, behind best score soundtrack for visual media (includes film, television, video games and other visual media) and best spoken word album (includes poetry, audiobooks and storytelling). The fact that those two categories include so many subcategories probably explains why they’re on top.

The Grammy Awards structure emphasizes album achievements. There are 40 genre album awards, compared to 19 genre performance awards and eight genre song awards. There are also 11 other categories that don’t fit neatly into any of the previous classifications and six craft categories.

More surprises: Few would expect best new age album (170) and best comedy album (132) to have more entries than best country album and best R&B album (which are tied with 91 entries each).

In terms of performance categories, best rock performance (523) is followed by best American roots performance (521) and best pop solo performance (454).

But combining separate genre performance categories that are in the same Grammy field, classical leads with 838 entries, followed by pop (829), rock (618), American roots (521), R&B (488), rap (456), jazz (436), gospel/contemporary Christian music (416), country (220) and global music (205).

Classical is probably higher than you might have thought, especially if you see it as a niche market. Country is probably lower than you might have expected. It may lag because there are so many country music awards shows.

The Grammys added two new categories this year. They are shown in italics in the list. Neither had a huge number of entries. Best música urbana album has 52 entries, which puts it 35th among the 40 genre album categories. Best global music performance has 205 entries, which puts it 11th among the 19 genre performance categories.

Within each classification, categories are listed in descending order in terms of most categories. Ties are shown in alphabetical order.

Note: The Grammys have two categories that honor performances and songs jointly – in gospel and contemporary Christian music. We show them under both of those classifications.

Big Four categories:
Record of the year: 1,172
Song of the year: 1,163
Album of the year: 837
Best new artist: 463

Genre album categories:
Best score soundtrack for visual media: 309
Best spoken word album: 308
Best rock album: 284
Best contemporary instrumental album: 281
Best jazz instrumental album: 276
Best alternative music album: 224
Best pop vocal album: 206
Best Americana album: 198
Best rap album: 198
Best global music album: 192
Best new age album: 170
Best folk album: 168
Best dance/electronic album: 133
Best comedy album: 132
Best regional Mexican music album, including Tejano: 127
Best reggae album: 125
Best children’s music album: 114
Best classical compendium: 102
Best contemporary Christian music album: 102
Best progressive R&B album: 94
Best country album: 91
Best R&B album: 91
Best Latin pop album: 86
Best traditional pop vocal album: 86
Best tropical Latin album: 72
Best compilation soundtrack for visual media: 71
Best jazz vocal album: 71
Best classical solo vocal album: 69
Best contemporary blues album: 69
Best opera recording: 67
Best gospel album: 60
Best Latin rock or alternative album: 59
Best roots gospel album: 56
Best bluegrass album: 54
Best música urbana album: 52
Best musical theater album: 51
Best traditional blues album: 49
Best large jazz ensemble album: 48
Best Latin jazz album: 47
Best regional roots music album: 41

Genre song categories:
Best rock song: 455
Best American roots song: 402
Best rap song: 319
Best R&B song: 328
Best gospel performance/song: 216
Best contemporary Christian music performance/song: 200
Best country song: 178
Best song written for visual media: 168

Genre performance categories:
Best rock performance: 523
Best American roots performance: 521
Best pop solo performance: 454
Best improvised jazz solo: 436
Best pop duo/group performance: 375
Best classical instrumental solo: 364
Best R&B performance: 312
Best chamber music/small ensemble performance: 299
Best rap performance: 268
Best gospel performance/song: 216
Best global music performance: 205
Best contemporary Christian music performance/song: 200
Best melodic rap performance: 188
Best traditional R&B performance: 176
Best country solo performance: 140
Best orchestral performance: 110
Best metal performance: 95
Best country duo/group performance: 80
Best choral performance: 65

Other categories:
Best music video: 1,185
Best engineered album, non-classical: 487
Best instrumental composition: 480
Best arrangement, instrumentals and vocals: 435
Best dance/electronic recording: 396
Best arrangement, instrumental or a cappella: 335
Best engineered album, classical: 249
Producer of the year, non-classical: 235
Best contemporary classical composition: 215
Producer of the year, classical: 156
Best music film: 111

Craft categories (number of entries not listed):
Best recording package
Best boxed or special or limited-edition package
Best album notes
Best historical album
Best remixed recording
Best immersive audio album

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