Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album

The Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album is an award presented to recording artists for quality albums in the alternative genre at the Grammy Awards, a ceremony that was established in 1958 and originally called the Gramophone Awards. Honors in several categories are presented at the ceremony annually by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences of the United States to "honor artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry, without regard to album sales or chart position".

While the definition of "alternative" has been debated, the award was first presented in 1991 to recognize non-mainstream rock albums "heavily played on college radio stations". After several updates of the category description, the Grammy organisation issued the following statement for the 2019 Grammy season:

Alternative is defined as a genre of music that embraces attributes of progression and innovation in both the music and attitudes associated with it. It is often a less intense version of rock or a more intense version of pop and is typically regarded as more original, eclectic, or musically challenging. It may embrace a variety of subgenres or any hybrids thereof and may include recordings that don't fit into other genre categories.

In 1991, and from 1994 to 1999, the award was known as Best Alternative Music Performance. The award goes to the artist, producer and engineer/mixer, provided they were credited with more than 50% of playing time on the album. A producer or engineer with less than 50% of playing time, as well as the mastering engineer, can apply for a Winners Certificate.

As of 2019, Radiohead, The White Stripes, and Beck share the record for the most wins in this category, having won three times each. Two female solo artists have won the award, Sinéad O'Connor and St. Vincent; Two bands with female members, The White Stripes and Alabama Shakes, have also won the award. With eight nominations to date, Radiohead and Björk hold the record for the most nominations in this category; Radiohead singer Thom Yorke was nominated for the 2007 and 2020 awards for his solo albums, making him the most nominated person in this category with 10 total nominations. Björk holds the record for the most nominations for a solo artist, as well as the record for the most nominations without a win. Vampire Weekend and Coldplay have each received the award twice, and Coldplay are the only group to win two years consecutively. American artists have been presented with the award more than any other nationality, though it has been presented to musicians or groups from the United Kingdom five times, from Ireland twice, and from France and Australia once each.

Recipients

Sinéad O'Connor (pictured in 2013) was the inaugural winner in 1991
Black and white image of a man wearing a white dress shirt, a dark vest and jeans holding a guitar and standing behind a microphone stand. His eyes are closed, and the background is completely black except for a single light that shines from behind.
Thom Yorke of the three-time award-winning band Radiohead (pictured in 2006)
Michael Stipe of 1992 award winner R.E.M. (pictured in 2008)
Black and white image of three men holding microphones on a stage. In the background is a drum set, several onlookers, and stage lights shining down from above.
1999 award winner, Beastie Boys (pictured in 1992)
A man wearing a blue T-shirt and dark blue jacket holding a guitar and standing behind a microphone stand.
Chris Martin of the two-time award-winning band Coldplay (pictured in 2003)
On the left, a man in red pants and a black T-shirt with black hair down to his chin holding a red guitar. On the right, a woman wearing a white shirt with black polka dots standing behind a red microphone stand.
Jack White and Meg White of the three-time award-winning band The White Stripes (pictured in 2007)
In the forefront, a man wearing jeans and a jacket with a guitar strapped around him, holding onto a microphone on a stand. In the background, a man in a dress shirt holding a white guitar.
2005 award winner, Wilco (pictured in 2007)
In the forefront, a man in a white dress shirt and tie holding a microphone on a stand. In the background, a man wearing a jacket, tie, and sunglasses playing keyboards.
Danger Mouse and CeeLo Green of Gnarls Barkley (pictured in 2007)
Four men sitting on an orange sofa, two holding guitars and one behind keyboards that are set on the left arm of the sofa.
2010 award winner, Phoenix (pictured in 2009)
St. Vincent (pictured in 2018) was the second female recipient when she won in 2015
Brittany Howard of 2016 award winner Alabama Shakes (pictured in 2016)
2017 award winner David Bowie (pictured in 2002)
Matt Berninger of 2018 award winner The National (pictured in 2014)
Björk was nominated a record eight times between 1996 and 2019 (pictured in 2013)
Three-time award winner Beck (pictured in 2018)
Ezra Koenig of two-time award-winner Vampire Weekend (pictured in 2009)

1990s

2000s

2010s

2020s

^[I] Each year is linked to the article about the Grammy Awards held that year.

Artists with multiple wins

Artists with multiple nominations

See also

References

General

External links

Uses material from the Wikipedia article Grammy Award for Best Alternative Music Album, released under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license.