What Do You Know About the Grammys?

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Source: UnnarYmir, Flickr

The 56th annual Grammy Awards are coming up in a matter of days. At this year’s ceremony there are 88 awards. We all know the “Big Four” general field awards: Record of the Year, Album of the Year, Song of the Year and Best New Artist. And some of the genre-specific awards—Best Pop Solo Performance, Best Rap Performance, Best Bluegrass Album—sound familiar as well. But I’ll bet there are some things about the Grammys that you don’t know…

Did you know that Best Disco Recording used to be awarded? For one year, anyway. The only year this award was given was 1980, just as disco was dying. The recipient? Gloria Gaynor for "I Will Survive." OK, she definitely deserved that. Check out her "best of" album, Gloria Gaynor.

Did you know that the Gospel/Contemporary Christian Music category, which currently has five awards, has had 20 different awards in the past? This genre has the most previously awarded categories. One of my favorite winners in this genre was in 2005 for Best Gospel Performance; it was awarded to Ray Charles and Gladys Knight for "Heaven Help Us All." You can find it on Charles' Genius Loves Company.

Did you know that the only artist to win the “Big Four” in one ceremony was Christopher Cross in 1981? In all honesty, I had to go to YouTube to look up his No. 1 single “Sailing,” and I don’t think I’ve ever heard it before. We’ll just blame it on my age. Cross is still releasing albums, although of his last seven only one has charted (at No. 48 in Germany).

Did you know that the Best Rap Performance award was first presented in 1989? The winners were DJ Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince (these days I think he just goes by Will or Dad). We've got their album Homebase to satisfy your love for early '90s rap.

Did you know that Sir Georg Solti, orchestral conductor, has the distinction of being awarded the most Grammys? He has been nominated 74 times and has won 32, including a Lifetime Achievement Award. Check out Sir Georg's final recording, Sir Georg Solti, the last recording.

Did you know that Brian McKnight holds the record for most nominations without winning an award? That record is 16 nominations. Have a listen to his latest album, More than Words, and decide for yourself whether he's a winner.

Be sure to watch the 2014 ceremony at 7 p.m. Sunday, January 26 on CBS. There’s a fantastic lineup of performers (Beyoncé and Jay-Z, Lorde, Metallica, Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr, to name a few), and there might be a few more “Did you know…?” facts to put on the books!