Finding a distinctly new nominations rhythm, the Grammys announced this year's nominees in an all-star concert countdown Wednesday, hosted by LL Cool J and Taylor Swift. The unlikely emcee matchup set the tone for many of the categories' diverse nominees, starting with Lil Wayne and Coldplay topping this year's nominations count with eight and seven nods, respectively.
Going head-to-head for top album of the year are Lil Wayne's Tha Carter III, Coldplay's Viva La Vida (both of which were top selling LPs in 2008) and Radiohead's In Rainbows. Joining them are Ne-Yo's Year of the Gentleman and Robert Plant's Raising Sand, on which he collaborated with bluegrass crooner Alison Krauss.
Krauss and Plant also overlap with the nominations for best record of the year, along with Adele, Coldplay, Leona "Bleeding Love" Lewis and M.I.A.
Previous Grammy winner Mariah Carey kicked off the concert countdown — which was orchestrated at L.A.'s Nokia Center and aired on CBS — sporting a sexy, holiday-themed minidress and performing (what else?) a song from her Christmas album. Other artists to take the stage included the Foo Fighters and Celine Dion.
Jonas Brothers fans, meanwhile, can warm up their lungs for some cheering: The teen phenoms are among this year's nominees for best new artist. While the boys have already released two albums, their latest, A Little Bit Longer, has also been their most successful.
The trio joins a handful of ladies on the list, which includes rising U.K. soul-inspired singers, Adele and Duffy, singer-songwriter Jazmine Sullivan (whose remixed "Bust your Windows" has us tapping our feet at our desks) and breakout country group Lady Antebellum.
Nominees for best pop performance with vocals have also gotten feet tapping this year: "Viva La Vida" by Coldplay, "Waiting In The Weeds" by the Eagles, "Going On" by Gnarls Barkley, "Won't Go Home Without You" by Maroon 5 and "Apologize" by OneRepublic.
Among the artists who received multiple nominations are Kanye West, Jay-Z, Lupe Fiasco and T.I. For a complete list of this year's nominees, check out Grammy. com.
Was this year's concert-announcement format more alluring than the typical press-conference format? Who else do you think should make the nomination list?