Of the five worthy nominees for this year’s Juno rap recording of the year honours, the backstory behind Drake is perhaps the most intriguing. As the Canadian hip-hop artist who has arguably made the biggest international splash in recent years – both commercially and critically – Drake has yet to translate this buzz into a Juno award win.
So will this year be the year for the popular Toronto MC? Here are three key reasons why that might just be the case:
Drake was highly expected to win last year
Drake actually hosted the Junos last year, which led many to believe that he’d walk away with some trophy love. In addition, Drake’s debut studio album, Thank Me Later, was a platinum seller and the overwhelming favourite going in. So while London, Ontario’s Shad was a deserving winner (for his solid third album TSOL), there are some who felt that it was a surprising upset within the rap recording category. Mainstream success and sales numbers don’t automatically translate to award wins, but many didn’t expect Drake to walk away empty-handed. A win this year would effectively remedy last year’s seeming oversight.
Drake is up for multiple Junos this year
Out of all the hip-hop artists up for the Juno – Classified, D-Sisive, Kardinal Offishall and Swollen Members – only Drake is up for multiple awards this year (four to be exact, including album of the year, artist of the year and the Fan Choice Award). With odds like that, Drake is bound to walk away with at least one trophy. Or is he? He was up for six Junos last year, and we all know how that turned out.
Drake’s been the biggest Canadian hip-hop ambassador of late
What Drake has accomplished in the past few years is nothing short of remarkable. Last year’s Take Care has been an even bigger North American seller than Thank Me Later, he has a huge global fan base and Drake has truly transformed himself into an international superstar. In addition, hip-hop is traditionally about repping where you are from, and he hasn’t been shy about repping his Canadian roots. And give him credit: if Drake in fact did feel slighted by any Juno snub, he still has yet to publicly comment on the matter. The Junos just may finally give him the win for this reason alone.
So are these three reasons compelling enough for Drake to take it in 2012? We will all find out what happens this April 1.
Visit cbcmusic.ca/Junos for complete coverage of the 2012 Juno Awards.
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Ryan B. Patrick
on Mar 29, 2012