Music’s Super Bowl happens this Sunday, and two key Christian hip-hop figures are participating.
Lecrae is back. After he became the first rapper to win the Grammy Award for Best Gospel Album in 2013, he received three nominations this year. Mali Music, who featured on Lecrae’s Grammy-winning album Gravity, also earned a pair of nominations.
This year marks the 57th annual Grammy Awards, which LL Cool J will host. Here is a viewer’s guide for the event, as well as the Premiere Ceremony, where approximately 70 of the 83 awards will be announced and Lecrae was interviewed in 2013.
How to Watch the 2015 Grammy Awards
Premiere Ceremony: Sunday, Feb. 8 at 3:30 p.m. ET on Grammy Live
Grammy Awards: Sunday, Feb. 8 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS
Lecrae & Mali Music Nominations
Best Rap Performance
“3005,″ Childish Gambino
“O to 100/The Catch Up,” Drake
“Rap God,” Eminem
“i,” Kendrick Lamar
“All I Need Is You,” Lecrae
Best Gospel Performance/Song
“Help,” Erica Campbell Featuring Lecrae
“Sunday A.M. [Live],” Karen Clark Sheard
“I Believe,” Mali Music
“No Greater Love,” Smokie Norful
“Love On The Radio,” The Walls Group
Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song
“Write Your Story,” Francesca Battistelli
“Come As You Are,” Crowder
“Messengers,” Lecrae Featuring For King & Country
Best Urban Contemporary Album
Sail Out, Jhene Aiko
X, Chris Brown
Mali Is…, Mali Music
Girl, Pharrell Williams
Lecrae’s first Grammy nomination came in 2011. The Recording Academy nominated his fourth studio album, Rehab, for Best Rock or Rap Gospel Album, but Switchfoot won. The award, known prior to 2007 as Best Rock Gospel Album, was discontinued in 2012.
All Grammy nominations for Christian hip-hop artists had come in this category prior to 2013. Da’ T.R.U.T.H., John Wells the Tonic, Flame, The Cross Movement, Fresh I.E., T-Bone, Grits and Gospel Gangstaz received nominations, but they never won. DC Talk was also nominated in 1992, when it still performed as hip-hop act, but by the time the group won a Grammy in 1994, it had begun to transition to rock.
Prior to this year, no Christian rapper had received a nomination for a song. Lecrae not only received two this year, but he’s also the first Christian rapper to be nominated in a non-Gospel or Christian category. Bun B told Rapzilla that he expects Lecrae to be the first to win in that category, too.
Stay tuned to Rapzilla for further Grammy coverage.