All the single ladies ... now put your hands up! That may have been a better way to announce the 2010 Grammy nominations rather than invest an hour of prime-time to mention only a few categories, as CBS did last week.

All the single ladies ... now put your hands up! That may have been a better way to announce the 2010 Grammy nominations rather than invest an hour of prime-time to mention only a few categories, as CBS did last week.

The 52nd annual Grammy Awards show is Jan. 31, but the hype over who’ll win and who should win has already begun.

2009 was definitely the year for solo female artists.  Beyonce, Taylor Swift, Kelly Clarkson, Pink, Whitney Houston, Keri Hilson, Miley Cyrus, Jordin Sparks and Lady Gaga are just a few of the women who dominated radio airwaves and charts this year. 

I was not surprised by Beyonce’s 10 nominations, including Record of The Year for “Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)” Song of the Year for “Halo,” and Album of the Year for her alter-egoed “I Am … Sasha Fierce.”  She deserved them all.

“I Am … Sasha Fierce” is arguably the best album of the year and not because Kanye West says so, either.  Rarely does an album come along you can listen all the way through and appreciate every moment. This is one album you can, repeatedly.

As the nominations were being read, all I could think about was if Beyonce and Taylor Swift would go head-to-head in the Album of the Year category. Deep down, I knew they would, considering the success of Swift’s “Fearless” and Beyonce’s “I Am.”

The hype surrounding the MTV fiasco involving West’s interruption of Swift’s acceptance speech will put all eyes on the Grammy  for sure. Although what West did was highly inappropriate and not fair to Swift, I can’t say disagree with him. Beyonce put a lot of  effort and time into the music of “I Am” that to not recognize it seems a shame. 

With that being said, though, Swift had an amazing year.  She, too, deserves to be recognized. 

The coveted Album of the Year category is the biggest industry award and to earn that distinction means just about everything.

Joining Beyonce and Swift are the Black Eyed Peas for “The E.N.D.,” “The Fame” by Lady Gaga, and Dave Matthews Band’s “Big Whiskey And The Groogrux King.”

Like Beyonce and Swift, 2009 also belonged to the Black Eyed Peas and Lady Gaga. BEP spent an unprecedented 26 weeks atop the Billboard singles chart with “Boom Boom Pow” and “I Gotta Feelin,’” from “The E.N.D.,” but it was Gaga who managed to place four singles at No. 1 from her wildly successful debut, “The Fame.”

The inclusion of DMB was a little surprising, but they could possibly pull off the win considering the others were all massively popular and their votes could get divided up. I love DMB so to finally see their name and Grammy in the same sentence was a long time coming.

Noticeably omitted from the nominations was Houston.  “I Look To You” was to be her Grammy comeback, but voters didn’t seem to agree.

David T. Farr is a Sturgis (Mich.) Journal correspondent. E-mail him at farrboy@hotmail.com.