March 31, 2022

Envelope, Please… These Fun GRAMMY Facts May Surprise You!

By Reggie Shah, Senior Director, Research and Insights, Audacy

If you count down the days until you can plan out your GRAMMY menu (Saweetie Potato Pie, anyone?), and start debating your friends on who’s taking home this year’s Song of the Year, then you’re well aware that April 3, 2022, marks the 64th annual GRAMMY Awards, honoring the best in audio entertainment.

So while you’re picking out your favorite tux, fancy gown, or comfy PJs for this year’s long-awaited watch party, here are some fun facts even a superfan like you might not know about the biggest night in music.

  1. When was the first GRAMMY Award event held?           
    1959 – but it was called the Gramophone Award.
  2. Since the GRAMMY Awards began broadcasting on CBS in 1973, what year marked the highest rated show so far?
    1984 – and it was all about the King of Pop. Viewers came to see Michael Jackson, who had recently suffered burns to his scalp filming a Pepsi commercial – and stayed to see him take home a record eight GRAMMY Awards, including Album of the Year for Thriller, and Record of the Year for “Beat It.”
  3. Song of the Year and Record of the Year – what’s the difference?
    Song of the Year is awarded to the person who wrote the song. Record of the Year goes to the artist, producer, and engineer.
  4. Has the same winner ever earned Record of the Year two years in a row? 
    Yep – three times!
    • In 2020 and 2021, Billie Eilish won for “Everything I Wanted” and “Bad Guy.”
    • In 2001 and 2002, U2 got the “you too!” nods for “Beautiful Day” and “Walk On.”
    • In the inaugural year, 1973, and again in 1974, Roberta Flack won for “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” and “Killing Me Softly With His Song.” In 1996, The Fugees remade Roberta’s “Killing Me Softly With His Song,” earning this classic another award — Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group.
  5. Who’s been nominated the most times?
    JayZ owns this with 83 GRAMMY Award nominations since his first nod in 1998. That puts him just two ahead of Sir Paul McCartney, a music legend since 1963.
  6. And the Biggest Bummer Award goes to….
    Then-Beatle Paul McCartney also holds this notable record. In 1966, he was nominated nine times for his work on the album Help! and the song and record Yesterday, but left without a single gilded gramophone trophy.
  7. What’s not to sing about?
    The GRAMMY Awards are not all about music. The best poetry, audiobooks, and storytelling are recognized with the Best Spoken Word Album award. The category’s winners even include some presidents: Barack Obama, who in 2022 is up for his third GRAMMY, this time for A Promised Land; Bill Clinton, who was recognized for My Life in 2005; and Jimmy Carter, the current leader with three wins (2007, 2016, and, most recently, 2019 for Faith: A Journey for All).
  8. The best place to listen to all of this year’s nominees?
    The envelope, please… well, this night is full of surprises, but there’s no surprise here, peeps! Audacy’s Music Awards Radio exclusive station is your place for the hits from this year’s nominees.

Still looking for more GRAMMY Awardss fun? You can catch 2022 GRAMMY Awards coverage on – for all the winners, amazing moments, and more! 

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