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Five Things to Know About Grammy-Nominated Best New Artist Drake

Five Things to Know About Grammy-Nominated Best New Artist Drake

Originally posted 12/15/2010 03:20PM

Aubrey Drake Graham – better known as just Drake, went from being a locally-known Canadian actor on high school drama Degrassi to teaming up with the biggest names in hip-hop professionally (Kanye West, Jay-Z and Lil' Wayne – just to name a few), not to mention romantically. (Remember those Rihanna and Nicki Minaj headlines?)

But there's much more to the actor-turned-hip-hop star, 24, than a Platinum-selling album, Thank Me Later, and a Rolodex stocked with A-listers.

Here are five things you should know about Best New Artist Grammy contender Drake:

1. He was humbled watching Jay-Z perform last year

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Cyndi Lauper Using Her Voice for Acceptance

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Cyndi Lauper Using Her Voice for Acceptance

Originally posted 12/10/2010 03:35PM

There are two Cyndi Laupers: One is the wisecracking, tough-talker people know from Celebrity Apprentice. The other is a sincere and soft-spoken mom who is committed to finding ways to ensure lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youths don't end up homeless.

"The kids are our future," says Grammy-nominated Lauper, 57, whose True Colors Fund launched the Give a Damn Campaign in April in order to "call out to other straight people and show them the real things at stake."

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5 Things About Grammy-Nominated Florence + the Machine

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5 Things About Grammy-Nominated Florence + the Machine

Originally posted 12/09/2010 02:00PM

Meet Florence Welch (aka Florence & the Machine). The 24-year-old Londoner, a chart-topper in her native U.K. who is quickly becoming a familiar face (and voice) in North America, thanks to her commanding live shows, fire-red hair and prominent appearances on soundtracks from Eclipse to Eat Pray Love..

She released her debut album, Lungs, in 2009, and often performs with harps and an array of string instruments – but the singer-songwriter says she loves rap and R&B and draws on those influences in her music. Here's what you need to know about one of this year's Grammy nominees for Best New Artist:

1. She Loves Hip-Hop
"I'm a huge hip-hop fan, actually, like really massively," Welch told PEOPLE earlier this year. Among her current favorites: Drake (a fellow Best New Artist nominee), Nicki Minaj and Clipse. "The thing I like about hip-hop is that it's a genre that really utilizes a lot of things that aren't necessarily instruments," she says, citing Lil Wayne's hit "A Milli" as another inspiration. "When I heard it, it seemed so weird and progressive and strange," she says, "but so simple and sparse. I like being able to create music not using conventional sounds."

2. She's a Twi-Hard

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Who Was Grammy's Most Snubbed Artist? | Lady Gaga

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Who Was Grammy's Most Snubbed Artist?

Originally posted 12/07/2010 02:55PM

Music's biggest night is coming up, and Eminem, Bruno Mars and Lady Antebellum are leading the pack of nominees vying for Grammy gold on Feb. 13.

But among the stars gushing over their honors – "It feels amazing!" crowed Best New Artist nominee Justin Bieber – there were a few glaring omissions. Which ones do you think were the biggest snubs?

Lady Gaga isn't up for Song of the Year or Record of the Year
If the YouTube parodies of the video didn't clue you in, "Bad Romance" was arguably the biggest track of 2010. But although she has six nods, Gaga is shockingly absent in both categories (Song of the Year rewards the songwriter, Record of the Year rewards the artist, producer and mixer).

Ke$ha isn't up for anything
Love her or hate her, you can't argue that her the singer behind the quadruple platinum single "Tik Tok" – and subsequent dance tracks like "Your Love Is My Drug" was a force to be reckoned with. Yet she was passed over in every single category.

Alicia Keys isn't up for Album of the Year
Usually a Grammy favorite, Keys is nominated for "Empire State of Mind", her duet with Jay-Z. Yet Keys's fourth album, The Element of Freedom, was overlooked by the Grammys, in spite of its receiving almost universal praise from critics.

Sade isn't up for Album of the Year
Like Keys, Sade's hotly anticipated Soldier of Love – her first album in a decade – was overlooked in spite of receiving praise almost across-the-board from music critics.

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Katy Perry vs. Lady Gaga: Who Made Your Album of the Year?

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Katy Perry vs. Lady Gaga: Who Made Your Album of the Year?

Originally posted 12/06/2010 04:15PM

From a meat-dress-wearing diva to a rapper to a country trio and beyond, this year's Grammy nominations in the top Album of the Year catergory are diverse to say the least.

The trophies won't be handed out until Feb. 13, but that doesn't mean you can't weigh in on your favorite of the five nominated choices.

Arcade Fire's The Suburbs
The album by the Canadian indie rockers was released in August and was described by frontman Win Butler as "a mix of the Depeche Mode and Neil Young." It drew two other nods this year: Best Alternative Music Album and Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals.

Eminem's Recovery

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Miranda Lambert on Marriage: I'm Ready to Just Do It! | Blake Shelton, Miranda Lambert

Miranda Lambert on Marriage: I'm Ready to Just Do It!

Originally posted 12/03/2010 04:00PM

Miranda Lambert is champing at the bit to get married.

When asked what she's looking forward to most about married life, the country star, whose fiancé Blake Shelton popped the question last May, said, "Being married!"

"I'm looking forward to getting married," she told reporters at press conference after the Grammy nominations were announced. "You know, just doing it. We've been engaged six months already now and it's kind of flown by. [I'm looking forward to] just taking that next step and becoming a woman and moving on in life."

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Bruno Mars Reacts to Grammy Noms with F-Word: Fantastic

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Bruno Mars Reacts to Grammy Noms with F-Word: Fantastic

Originally posted 12/02/2010 11:25AM

With seven Grammy nominations to his name, Bruno Mars isn't hung up on numbers – or trophies.

"It's been a hell of a year for all of us, and the fact that we did record these songs not too far from here in this little shabby studio, and here we are with Grammy nominations, is a little surreal," the "Just the Way You Are" singer, 25, tells PEOPLE. "We're just thankful."

His nominations include Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, as well as nods for songwriting. But there's someone else the singer-producer, is rooting for at the Feb. 13 ceremony: Cee-Lo Green.

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Credit: Wireimage; inset: AP
Eminem, Lady Antebellum Lead Grammy Nominees

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Eminem, Lady Antebellum Lead Grammy Nominees

Originally posted 12/01/2010 11:10PM

This year, the Grammy Awards are spreading the wealth.

Fronting a diverse array of nominees, rapper Eminem led the pack with a total 10 nominations, including nods in such major categories as Album of the Year and Record of the Year, it was announced Wednesday night.

Not far behind: Bruno Mars, with seven nominations, including several as a songwriter, while Lady Gaga and country trio Lady Antebellum each earned six nominations, including one for Album of the Year for their stirring single "Need You Now."

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