Times Nominated: 2 (1989, 2017)
What Went Wrong: No self-respecting Iggy Pop fan would rank “Cold Metal” among the punk legend’s best work, but the lead single of 1988’s Instinct somehow earned his only nomination prior to 2017’s Post Pop Depression.
Prognosis: We’d like Pop’s chances if this were any other year, but it’s hard to imagine him taking home the prize in a crowded field led by the late David Bowie’s Blackstar and another strong entry from 2009 winners Radiohead. –Collin Brennan
Times Nominated: 3 (2007, 2015)
What Went Wrong: The Grammys only put one foot on the hype train for Arctic Monkeys’ 2007 debut, Whatever People I Am, That’s What I’m Not, resulting in a pair of nominations but no wins. AM single “Do I Wanna Know?” was a strong contender in 2015, but it proved just a little too sexy for the voters’ palates.
Prognosis: With a new album due out sooner rather than later, Alex Turner and co. seem to be firing on all cylinders and there’s no reason to think they won’t collect one of these years. –Collin Brennan
Guns N’ Roses
Times Nominated: 3 (1990, 1992, 1993)
What Went Wrong: Never really critical darlings, Guns N’ Roses competed three times in the weirdest (now extinct) Grammy category of Best Hard Rock Performance, which pitted singles against albums. Maybe if “November Rain” had been singled out rather than the entirety of Use Your Illusion I in 1992, it could have beaten Van Hagar, err, Halen’s For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge. We’ll never know.
Prognosis: Since their last Grammy nomination, GnR has released one album of original material, and it was pretty terrible, so we’re not holding out hope of them winning any statues. –Philip Cosores
Times Nominated: 3 (2006, 2008)
What Went Wrong: LCD Soundsystem‘s Grammy losses are cases of big misses by the voters. No way The Chemical Brothers should have beat Sound of Silver for Best Dance/Electronic Album in 2008 (or even beaten Justice from that year), and there’s no way that The Chemical Brothers should have beaten the self-titled album two years earlier. As for the loss for “Daft Punk Is Playing at My House”, guess what? Yeah, it was beaten by the fuckin’ Chemical Brothers. Give us a break, Grammys.
Prognosis: If and when the new LCD album happens, maybe we’ll be lucky and The Chemical Brothers will take that year off. Christ. –Philip Cosores
My Morning Jacket
Times Nominated: 3 (2009, 2012, 2016)
What Went Wrong: My Morning Jacket’s two best albums, It Still Moves and Z, both failed to catch the eye of Grammy voters. But they did increase the band’s reputation such that their next three records all nabbed nominations for Best Alternative Music Album. It’s hard to argue against losing to Radiohead, Bon Iver, or Alabama Shakes, but MMJ can at least say that they are on the radar.
Prognosis: It’s a little surprising that the Kentucky natives have seen such favor with the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, and there doesn’t seem to be any reason why that should end. Another great album or a particularly weak field could see the band steal a trophy. –Philip Cosores