Alicia Keys says Grammys 2019 will be "sickest" yet

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Getty Image

Lady Gaga arrives for the 60th Grammy Awards on 28 January 2018, in NY.

The Grammys and hip-hop continue to have a strained relationship.

But skepticism lingers that nods will actually translate into wins, after rap mogul Jay-Z left empty-handed previous year despite eight nominations.

Rapper Kendrick Lamar - who won a Pulitzer Prize for his album "DAMN." but not a Grammy for Album of the Year - earned eight nominations, while Canadian rapper Drake snagged seven.

The group is nominated in the World Music Album category along with artists such as Bombino, Fatoumata Diawara, Seun Kuti and Egypt 80.

But controversy was threatening the gala before it even began, with a number of superstars declining to take part in the show's glitzy concert portion.

Grande's decision to pull out was prompted by a disagreement with the show's producers over what songs she would perform, the magazine reported, as the singer wanted full control over her set list, which she wanted to include recent hit "7 Rings".

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Drake, Kendrick Lamar, and Childish Gambino - nominees in all or most of the big three categories - also opted out of performing; however, representatives for the artists have not confirmed if they will attend the show.

Music's biggest night is nearly here, as the 61st Annual Grammy Awards air live on CBS this Sunday.

The brazen comment drew outrage and prompted the executive, Neil Portnow, to say he would resign when his contract expires this summer.

Women artists scored nods in all of the top categories after being largely snubbed a year ago, with rapper Cardi B, pop diva Lady Gaga, pop futurist Janelle Monae and folk rocker Brandi Carlile among the frontrunners.

Gaga, victor of six Grammys, is now nominated for Record Of The Year, Song Of The Year, Best Pop Duo/Group Performance, and Best Song Written For Visual Media for "Shallow" and Best Pop Solo Performance for "Joanne".

Here's how to watch the 2019 Grammy's, hosted by Alicia Keys, live on Sunday, Feb. 10, at 8 p.m. ET.

Tributes to Aretha Franklin and Dolly Parton are also planned, alongside a Diana Ross performance in honour of her 75th birthday and her musical achievements.

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