Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album

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Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album
Awarded forQuality albums in the alternative genre
CountryUnited States
Presented byNational Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences
First awarded1991
Currently held byVampire WeekendFather of the Bride (2020)
Websitegrammy.com

The Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album is an award presented to recording artists for quality albums in the alternative genre at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards.[1] Honors in several categories are presented at the ceremony annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to "honor artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry, without regard to album sales or chart position".[2]

While the definition of "alternative" has been debated,[3] the award was first presented in 1991 to recognize non-mainstream rock albums "heavily played on college radio stations".[4][5] After several updates of the category description, the Grammy organisation issued the following statement for the 2019 Grammy season:

Alternative is defined as a genre of music that embraces attributes of progression and innovation in both the music and attitudes associated with it. It is often a less intense version of rock or a more intense version of pop and is typically regarded as more original, eclectic, or musically challenging. It may embrace a variety of subgenres or any hybrids thereof and may include recordings that don't fit into other genre categories.

In 1991, and from 1994 to 1999, the award was known as Best Alternative Music Performance.[3] The award goes to the artist, producer and engineer/mixer, provided they were credited with more than 50% of playing time on the album. A producer or engineer with less than 50% of playing time, as well as the mastering engineer, can apply for a Winners Certificate.[6]

As of 2019, Radiohead, The White Stripes, and Beck share the record for the most wins in this category, having won three times each. Two female solo artists have won the award, Sinéad O'Connor and St. Vincent; Two bands with female members, The White Stripes and Alabama Shakes, have also won the award. With eight nominations to date, Radiohead and Björk hold the record for the most nominations in this category; Radiohead singer Thom Yorke was nominated for the 2007 and 2020 awards for his solo albums, making him the most nominated person in this category with 10 total nominations. Björk holds the record for the most nominations for a solo artist, as well as the record for the most nominations without a win. Vampire Weekend and Coldplay have each received the award twice, and Coldplay are the only group to win two years consecutively. American artists have been presented with the award more than any other nationality, though it has been presented to musicians or groups from the United Kingdom five times, from Ireland twice, and from France and Australia once each.

Recipients[edit]

Sinéad O'Connor (pictured in 2013) was the inaugural winner in 1991
Black and white image of a man wearing a white dress shirt, a dark vest and jeans holding a guitar and standing behind a microphone stand. His eyes are closed, and the background is completely black except for a single light that shines from behind.
Thom Yorke of the three-time award-winning band Radiohead (pictured in 2006)
Michael Stipe of 1992 award winner R.E.M. (pictured in 2008)
Black and white image of three men holding microphones on a stage. In the background is a drum set, several onlookers, and stage lights shining down from above.
1999 award winner, Beastie Boys (pictured in 1992)
A man wearing a blue T-shirt and dark blue jacket holding a guitar and standing behind a microphone stand.
Chris Martin of the two-time award-winning band Coldplay (pictured in 2003)
On the left, a man in red pants and a black T-shirt with black hair down to his chin holding a red guitar. On the right, a woman wearing a white shirt with black polka dots standing behind a red microphone stand.
Jack White and Meg White of the three-time award-winning band The White Stripes (pictured in 2007)
In the forefront, a man wearing jeans and a jacket with a guitar strapped around him, holding onto a microphone on a stand. In the background, a man in a dress shirt holding a white guitar.
2005 award winner, Wilco (pictured in 2007)
In the forefront, a man in a white dress shirt and tie holding a microphone on a stand. In the background, a man wearing a jacket, tie, and sunglasses playing keyboards.
Danger Mouse and CeeLo Green of Gnarls Barkley (pictured in 2007)
Four men sitting on an orange sofa, two holding guitars and one behind keyboards that are set on the left arm of the sofa.
2010 award winner, Phoenix (pictured in 2009)
St. Vincent (pictured in 2018) was the second female recipient when she won in 2015
Brittany Howard of 2016 award winner Alabama Shakes (pictured in 2016)
2017 award winner David Bowie (pictured in 2002)
Matt Berninger of 2018 award winner The National (pictured in 2014)
Björk was nominated a record eight times between 1996 and 2019 (pictured in 2013)
Three-time award winner Beck (pictured in 2018)
Ezra Koenig of two-time award-winner Vampire Weekend (pictured in 2009)

1990s[edit]

Year Artist Work
1991
[5]
Sinéad O'Connor I Do Not Want What I Haven't Got
Laurie Anderson Strange Angels
Kate Bush The Sensual World
The Replacements All Shook Down
World Party Goodbye Jumbo
1992
[7]
R.E.M. Out of Time
Elvis Costello Mighty Like a Rose
Jesus Jones Doubt
Nirvana Nevermind
Richard Thompson Rumor and Sigh
1993
[8]
Tom Waits Bone Machine
The B-52s Good Stuff
The Cure Wish
Morrissey Your Arsenal
XTC Nonsuch
1994
[9]
U2 Zooropa
Belly Star
Nirvana In Utero
R.E.M. Automatic for the People
The Smashing Pumpkins Siamese Dream
1995
[10]
Green Day Dookie
Tori Amos Under the Pink
Crash Test Dummies God Shuffled His Feet
Sarah McLachlan Fumbling Towards Ecstasy
Nine Inch Nails The Downward Spiral
1996
[11]
Nirvana MTV Unplugged in New York
Björk Post
Foo Fighters Foo Fighters
PJ Harvey To Bring You My Love
The Presidents of the United States of America The Presidents of the United States of America
1997
[12]
Beck Odelay
Tori Amos Boys for Pele
Tracy Bonham The Burdens of Being Upright
R.E.M. New Adventures in Hi-Fi
The Smashing Pumpkins Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness
1998
[13]
Radiohead OK Computer
Björk Homogenic
David Bowie Earthling
The Chemical Brothers Dig Your Own Hole
The Prodigy The Fat of the Land
1999
[14]
Beastie Boys Hello Nasty
Tori Amos From the Choirgirl Hotel
PJ Harvey Is This Desire?
Radiohead Airbag/How Am I Driving?
The Smashing Pumpkins Adore

2000s[edit]

Year Artist Work
2000
[15]
Beck Mutations
Tori Amos To Venus and Back
Fatboy Slim You've Come a Long Way, Baby
Moby Play
Nine Inch Nails The Fragile
2001
[16]
Radiohead Kid A
Fiona Apple When the Pawn…
Beck Midnite Vultures
The Cure Bloodflowers
Paul McCartney Liverpool Sound Collage
2002
[17]
Coldplay Parachutes
Tori Amos Strange Little Girls
Björk Vespertine
Fatboy Slim Halfway Between the Gutter and the Stars
Radiohead Amnesiac
2003
[18]
Coldplay A Rush of Blood to the Head
Beck Sea Change
Clinic Walking with Thee
Elvis Costello and the Imposters Cruel Smile
The Soundtrack of Our Lives Behind the Music
2004
[19]
The White Stripes Elephant
The Flaming Lips Fight Test
Radiohead Hail to the Thief
Sigur Rós ( )
Yeah Yeah Yeahs Fever to Tell
2005
[20]
Wilco A Ghost Is Born
Björk Medúlla
Franz Ferdinand Franz Ferdinand
PJ Harvey Uh Huh Her
Modest Mouse Good News for People Who Love Bad News
2006
[21]
The White Stripes Get Behind Me Satan
Arcade Fire Funeral
Beck Guero
Death Cab for Cutie Plans
Franz Ferdinand You Could Have It So Much Better
2007
[22]
Gnarls Barkley St. Elsewhere
Arctic Monkeys Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not
The Flaming Lips At War with the Mystics
Yeah Yeah Yeahs Show Your Bones
Thom Yorke The Eraser
2008
[23]
The White Stripes Icky Thump
Lily Allen Alright, Still
Arcade Fire Neon Bible
Björk Volta
The Shins Wincing the Night Away
2009
[24]
Radiohead In Rainbows
Beck Modern Guilt
Death Cab for Cutie Narrow Stairs
Gnarls Barkley The Odd Couple
My Morning Jacket Evil Urges

2010s[edit]

Year Artist Work
2010
[25]
Phoenix Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
David Byrne and Brian Eno Everything That Happens Will Happen Today
Death Cab for Cutie The Open Door EP
Depeche Mode Sounds of the Universe
Yeah Yeah Yeahs It's Blitz!
2011
[26]
The Black Keys Brothers
Arcade Fire The Suburbs
Band of Horses Infinite Arms
Broken Bells Broken Bells
Vampire Weekend Contra
2012
[27]
Bon Iver Bon Iver
Death Cab for Cutie Codes and Keys
Foster the People Torches
My Morning Jacket Circuital
Radiohead The King of Limbs
2013
[28]
Gotye Making Mirrors
Fiona Apple The Idler Wheel...
Björk Biophilia
M83 Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
Tom Waits Bad as Me
2014
[29]
Vampire Weekend Modern Vampires of the City
Neko Case The Worse Things Get, the Harder I Fight, the Harder I Fight, the More I Love You
The National Trouble Will Find Me
Nine Inch Nails Hesitation Marks
Tame Impala Lonerism
2015
[30]
St. Vincent St. Vincent
Alt-J This Is All Yours
Arcade Fire Reflektor
Cage the Elephant Melophobia
Jack White Lazaretto
2016
[31]
Alabama Shakes Sound & Color
Björk Vulnicura
My Morning Jacket The Waterfall
Tame Impala Currents
Wilco Star Wars
2017
[32]
David Bowie Blackstar
Bon Iver 22, A Million
PJ Harvey The Hope Six Demolition Project
Iggy Pop Post Pop Depression
Radiohead A Moon Shaped Pool
2018
[33]
The National Sleep Well Beast
Arcade Fire Everything Now
Gorillaz Humanz
LCD Soundsystem American Dream
Father John Misty Pure Comedy
2019
[34]
Beck Colors
Arctic Monkeys Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino
Björk Utopia
David Byrne American Utopia
St. Vincent Masseduction

2020s[edit]

Year Artist Work
2020
[35]
Vampire Weekend Father of the Bride
Big Thief U.F.O.F.
James Blake Assume Form
Bon Iver I,I
Thom Yorke Anima
2021
[36]
Fiona Apple Fetch the Bolt Cutters
Beck Hyperspace
Phoebe Bridgers Punisher
Brittany Howard Jaime
Tame Impala The Slow Rush

^[I] Each year is linked to the article about the Grammy Awards held that year.

Artists with multiple wins[edit]

Artists with multiple nominations[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Specific[edit]

  1. ^ "Grammy Awards at a Glance". Los Angeles Times. Tribune Company. Archived from the original on June 29, 2012. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  2. ^ "Overview". National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on August 18, 2015. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  3. ^ a b Popkin, Helen A.S. (January 23, 2006). "Alternative to what?". msnbc.com. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  4. ^ "Grammys return to New York". TimesDaily. Tennessee Valley Printing. May 25, 1990. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  5. ^ a b Pareles, Jon (January 11, 1991). "Grammy Nominees Announced". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Archived from the original on March 30, 2010. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  6. ^ Grammy Blue Book (edition 2021)
  7. ^ Pareles, Jon (January 9, 1992). "Grammy Short List: Many For a Few". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Archived from the original on July 16, 2014. Retrieved April 30, 2010.
  8. ^ DeYoung, Bill (February 23, 1993). "One critic handicaps tonight's Grammys". The Gainesville Sun. The New York Times Company. Archived from the original on September 20, 2014. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  9. ^ Campbell, Mary (January 7, 1994). "Sting, Joel top Grammy nominations". Star-News. The New York Times Company. Archived from the original on March 13, 2016. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  10. ^ Browne, David (February 24, 1995). "1995 Grammy Award nominees". Entertainment Weekly. Archived from the original on February 15, 2017. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  11. ^ "List of Grammy nominees". CNN. January 4, 1996. Archived from the original on December 7, 2012. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  12. ^ "The Complete List of Nominees". Los Angeles Times. January 8, 1997. p. 2. Archived from the original on March 6, 2016. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  13. ^ "No Spice, Plenty Of Age In Grammy Announcement". MTV. January 6, 1998. Archived from the original on July 28, 2014. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  14. ^ "41st annual Grammy nominees". CNN. January 5, 1999. Archived from the original on May 1, 2017. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  15. ^ "42nd Annual Grammy Awards nominations". CNN. January 4, 2000. Archived from the original on July 22, 2012. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  16. ^ Hiatt, Brian; vanHorn, Teri (January 3, 2001). "Dr. Dre, Beyoncé Lead Grammy Nominees". MTV. Archived from the original on February 9, 2015. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  17. ^ Basham, David (January 24, 2002). "Got Charts? Creed, Eminem, No Doubt, 'NSYNC Have Something In Common". MTV. Archived from the original on December 4, 2014. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  18. ^ "Grammy nominees and winners". CNN. February 24, 2003. Archived from the original on April 18, 2016. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  19. ^ D'Angelo, Joe (January 12, 2004). "White Stripes To Perform At Grammy Awards". MTV. Archived from the original on October 21, 2014. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  20. ^ "Grammy Award nominees in top categories". USA Today. Gannett Company. February 7, 2005. Archived from the original on October 19, 2012. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  21. ^ "The Complete List of Grammy Nominations". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. December 8, 2005. p. 1. Archived from the original on May 3, 2015. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  22. ^ "Grammys 2007: A list of the nominees". Entertainment Weekly. December 7, 2006. Archived from the original on February 15, 2017. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  23. ^ Gundersen, Edna (December 7, 2007). "Kanye West and Amy Winehouse lead Grammy nominees". USA Today. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  24. ^ Stout, Gene (February 6, 2009). "Grammys Awards: Who will perform, who will win, who should win". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Hearst Corporation. Archived from the original on February 7, 2016. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  25. ^ "Grammy nominations 2010 announced – Beyonce, Lady Gaga, MGMT shortlisted". NME. IPC Media. December 3, 2009. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved April 29, 2010.
  26. ^ "Grammys 2011 Winners List". Billboard. February 13, 2011. Archived from the original on October 30, 2015. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  27. ^ "Grammy Awards 2012: Complete Winners And Nominees List". The Hollywood Reporter. February 12, 2012. Archived from the original on January 22, 2015. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  28. ^ Eggertsen, Chris; Ellwood, Gregory; Hasty, Katie (February 10, 2013). "55th Grammy Awards – winners and nominees". HitFix. Archived from the original on February 15, 2017. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  29. ^ "The Recording Academy" (PDF). National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. p. 3. Archived (PDF) from the original on February 15, 2017. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  30. ^ "Grammys 2015: Complete list of winners and nominees". Los Angeles Times. February 8, 2015. Archived from the original on November 13, 2015. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  31. ^ "2016 Grammy Awards: Complete list of winners and nominees". Los Angeles Times. February 15, 2016. Archived from the original on January 3, 2016. Retrieved February 15, 2016.
  32. ^ "Beyoncé Leads 59th Grammy Nominations". Grammy Awards. May 15, 2017. Archived from the original on July 7, 2017. Retrieved July 4, 2019.
  33. ^ "60th Grammy Nominees". Grammy.com. Archived from the original on 28 November 2017. Retrieved 28 November 2017.
  34. ^ Minsker, Evan (7 December 2018). "Grammy Nominations 2019: See The Full List Here". Pitchfork. Condé Nast. Archived from the original on 8 December 2018. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  35. ^ 62nd Annual GRAMMY Awards (2019), Grammy.com, 7 December 2018
  36. ^ 63rd Annual GRAMMY Awards (2020), Grammy.com, 24 November 2020

General[edit]

External links[edit]