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Not sure who to root for at Sunday's Grammy Awards (CBS, 8 p.m. ET)? Here's a cheat sheet to prep you for the recording industry's biggest night.
There are 109 award categories, but don't panic -- the majority are handed out prior to the broadcast. The ones worth knowing are: album of the year, record of the year, song of the year and best new artist.
1. ALBUM OF THE YEAR: This is the coveted grand prize, the trophy that musicians and singers dream of -- though some complain it doesn't always land in deserving hands (this isn't MTV, so stay in your seat, Kanye West!). Last year's winning album was Robert Plant and Alison Krauss' Raising Sand. The nominees this year are:
Fearless (Taylor Swift): Early in awards-show season, Swift was just that sweet country girl who got dissed by Kanye on MTV. Over 30 awards later (Billboard Music Awards, CMT Awards, People's Choice Awards and more), plus seven other Grammy nods this year, Fearless is the one most critics favor to win.
I Am…Sasha Fierce (Beyoncé): The R&B diva is the most nominated artist, with nods in 10 categories. Clearly, she did something right this year, so don't count her out.
The E.N.D. (Black Eyed Peas): This was a huge year for the Peas. Enormous. Gigantic. Ginormous. But the quartet makes dance music, which isn't usually Best Album fare. Their wild popularity could sway voters, though.
The Fame (Lady Gaga): Her tracks are catchy, her performances riveting, and her album aptly titled. This was her year of fame (Barbara Walters even named her one of 2009's 10 Most Fascinating People). But do voters take this wild card seriously enough to bestow this big award? She's rumored to be opening the show, so you could certainly argue that she's "arrived.
2. SONG OF THE YEAR: This prize is awarded to the songwriter/composer of the best song (last year's winner was Coldplay's "Viva la Vida"). This year's nominees are:
Lady Gaga's "Poker Face," by Lady Gaga and RedOne: Fans know this ditty as the single with the famous line, "I'm bluffin' with my muffin."
Maxwell's "Pretty Wings," by Hod David & Musze: A solid song, but if voters lean towards R&B, they're more likely to pick…
Beyoncé's "Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)," by Thaddis Harrell, Beyoncé Knowles, Terius Nash and Christopher Stewart: This uptempo hit is Beyoncé's forté, a female power anthem with a booty-shaking rhythm.
Kings of Leon's "Use Somebody," by Caleb Followill, Jared Followill, Matthew Followill and Nathan Followill: It's got a great hook and is the only rock single on the ballot.
Taylor Swift's "You Belong With Me," by Liz Rose & Taylor Swift... Again, she's the artist to beat.
3. RECORD OF THE YEAR: This is the best single prize, awarded to the artist who recorded it (last year's winner was Robert Plant and Alison Krauss' "Please Read the Letter").
“Halo” (Beyoncé): This is a ballad eclipsed by the success of "Single Ladies." She'll win tonight, but possibly not in this category.
“I Gotta Feeling” (Black Eyed Peas): If "record of the year" meant "most ubiquitous song of the year," the Peas would win, hands down. (However, last year's winner was the least ubiquitous song in its category, so bear that in mind.)
“Use Somebody” (Kings of Leon): For years, this band was a cool, little indie secret for those in the know. This year, they became a big, famous rock act. They've paid their dues and just might win.
“Poker Face” (Lady Gaga): The song is infectious, and Gaga's vocals make it even more compelling. We think she has to win something -- after all, everyone wants to see what she'll wear when she accepts!
“You Belong With Me” (Taylor Swift): The singer is so burning hot right now, she may take this one, too.
4. BEST NEW ARTIST: This category speaks for itself. Some say the award should go to Lady Gaga (who won best new artist at MTV's Video Music Awards in September), but she was been ruled ineligible for this Grammy (One of her songs was nominated for best dance recording at last year's Grammys.) Last year's best new artist was Adele. This year's nominees are:
Keri Hilson: This successful songwriter (for Britney Spears, Ludacris and more) debuted her own R&B album in 2009. Her hit single with Kanye West and Ne-Yo, "Knock You Down," is also a Grammy candidate for best rap/sung collaboration.
Zac Brown Band: This Atlanta band received two other Grammy nods this year, including best country album.
MGMT: An indie-rock, synth-pop duo fromf Brooklyn, their song "Kids" is also nominated for best pop performance by a duo or group with vocals.
Silversun Pickups: This underdog nominee is an L.A. indie-rock band which has been compared to the Smashing Pumpkins.
The Ting Tings: The British indie duo's lively pop songs have been heard in TV shows, including The CW's Gossip Girl.
Who are you rooting for at this year's Grammy Awards?