The Recording Academy announced Lamar was the top contender with eight nominations, including seven for his musical companion to the Marvel Studios juggernaut starring Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan. But Swift was snubbed this year, earning just one nomination for Best Pop Vocal Album for her 2017 album "Reputation" - narrowing her chances for another win.
The Toronto rapper pulled in seven nominations, including in the album, record and song of the year categories for work from his 2018 double-album "Scorpion". Cardi will also compete for Best Rap Album, Best Rap Performance ("Be Careful"), and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance for her Maroon 5 collaboration "Girls Like You".
Drake is right behind Kendrick with 7 nominations.
Quebec City chamber orchestra Les Violons du Roy backed the American counter-tenor Anthony Roth Costanzo on ARC, nominated as one of the year's best classical solo vocal albums.
He'll face competition at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, from fellow rappers Drake, Cardi B and Childish Gambino - as well as Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper, who snared nominations in both of those top categories for their hit "Shallow" from the film "A Star is Born".
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At least Kanye West and Taylor Swift won't be dueling at this year's Grammy Awards.
The nominees for the 2019 Grammys mark a departure from this year's show, where women were under-represented in the top four categories.
Grande, who on Thursday won Billboard's Woman of the Year accolade, and Cuban-born Cabello were relegated to two apiece in the pop album and pop single categories.
No Canadians were nominated for best comedy album. The Carters earned two nods in the R&B category along with best music video, while Grande picked up two nods in pop.
Cardi B, Lady Gaga, HER, Maren Morris, Childish Gambino, producer Sounwave and engineer Mike Bozzi all have five nominations each. We have come along way from not being considered a genre, to most likely dominating the whole show in 2019. Their direct competitors are Gregory Porter, for Nat "King" Cole & Me, as well as Seal, Barbra Streisand and Willie Nelson, for albums largely featuring songbook standards.
Her husband has won 21 Grammy awards and has been nominated for a whooping 77 accolades. The winners will be revealed during the CBS broadcast of the ceremony on February 10, 2019.