Brit Awards 2013: My guide to the music event of the year

The biggest night in the music industry’s calendar is looming just around the corner.

The biggest night in the music industry’s calendar is looming just around the corner. On February 20th at London’s O2 Arena, the world’s finest musical stars will all gather together to celebrate the greatest releases of the past year in thirteen different categories, as announced by Radio 1 Breakfast Show host Nick Grimshaw at the Brits 2013 Launch Party at the Savoy on January 10th.

The ceremony, hosted by James Corden, will be broadcast live on ITV and will see the top British performers, as well as International artists, fighting to take their relevant accolade.

Here we give you Zoe’s prediction for the top spot in each category.

British Male Solo Artist: Ben Howard, Calvin Harris, Olly Murs, Plan B, Richard Hawley

After a non-stop year touring the UK, breaking America whilst on tour with One Direction as well as his presenting role on the Xtra Factor, Olly Murs has had an incredible past few months, which can only get better with a Brit Award under his belt and as the current bookies favourite, this could be likely. As the second favourite with the bookies, Calvin Harris would be an equally worthy winner; he is one of the most powerful men in the music industry with his album featuring some of the biggest stars in the music industry, including Rihanna, Ellie Goulding and Tinie Tempah.

British Female Solo Artist: Amy Winehouse, Bat For Lashes, Emeli Sandé, Jessie Ware, Paloma Faith

With 1/10 odds with the bookies, there’s no doubt that Emeli Sandé is tipped for success in this category. In 2012 Sandé was absolutely everywhere and anywhere – the Olympics, Sports Personality of the Year and of course last year’s BRITs where she picked up the coveted Critics’ Choice prize. Her anthem ‘Read All About It’ has been the soundtrack to any Olympics coverage and for this she stands out above the rest of her competitors. Jessie Ware, on the other hand, puts up a good fight also, having two nominations in her first ever BRITs year.

British Breakthrough Act: Alt-J, Ben Howard, Jake Bugg, Jessie Ware, Rita Ora

As mentioned previously, newcomer Jessie Ware is set to have a sparkling 2013, with her album ‘Devotion’ reaching #5 in the UK chart and being granted the third best album of 2012 in a Guardian poll. Despite this, all 4 of her competitors are in with a very good chance of taking this prize and therefore it is very difficult to predict. As the only category voted for solely by the public, it is understandable that chart-topper Rita Ora is topping bookie’s odds and may be in luck.

British Group: Alt-J, Mumford & Sons, Muse, One Direction, The XX

If this particularly category was decided via a public vote, worldwide starlets and chart-topping boyband One Direction would be the clear winners due to their expansive fan base. However, the industry experts who decide the winners may feel more obliged to vote for Mumford& Sons or The XX due to their song-writing abilities and musical prowess, both of whom were nominated in the same category in 2011, with both also nominated in the MasterCard award for Best Album.

British Single: Adele – Skyfall, Alex Clare – Too Close, Coldplay ft. Rihanna – Princess Of China, DJ Fresh ft. Rita Ora – Hot Right Now, Emeli Sandé – Next To Me,Florence + The Machine – Spectrum (Say My Name), James Arthur – Impossible, Jessie J – Domino, Labrinth ft. Emeli Sandé – Beneath Your Beautiful, Olly Murs ft. Flo Rida – Troublemaker, Rita Ora ft. Tinie Tempah – RIP, Rizzle Kicks – Mama Do The Hump, Robbie Williams – Candy, Rudimental ft. John Newman – Feel The Love, Stooshe – Black Heart

With an abundance of fantastic British singles in 2012, this shortlist selection must have been a challenging task, with the decision for the ultimate winner even more so. However, one particular track does seem to stand out. With the name of one of the UK’s most successful musical exports of all time attached to the track, as well as featuring in 2012’s biggest film, Adele’s Oscar-nominated ‘Skyfall’ from the James Bond film of the same name is tipped to the title of the year’s greatest song. James Arthur’s X Factor winning single ‘Impossible’ and Olly Murs’ ‘Troublemaker’ complete the top three bookie’s favourites to win the prize, with strong competition being held throughout the entirety of the shortlist.

British Album of the Year: Alt- J (An Awesome Wave), Emeli Sandé (Our Version of Events), Mumford & Sons (Babel), Paloma Faith (Fall to Grace), Plan B (Ill Manors)

Due to this prize’s sponsorship by MasterCard, Best British Album is seen as the evening’s most notable accolade. As Emeli Sandé’s fourth nomination, this 5 X Platinum-selling album is predicted to surpass the four other nominees to the award, with 1/5 odds with Ladbrokes bookmakers. Multiply nominated Mumford & Sons stand in second place with 5/1 odds so this Grammy-nominated album is a very strong contender.

International Male Solo Artist: Bruce Springsteen, Frank Ocean, Gotye, Jack White, Michael Buble

If you don’t know who Gotye is by 2013, you must have been living under a rock throughout 2012, with his single ‘Somebody That I Used To Know’ being the year’s biggest selling track in the UK. However, he finds sturdy competition in this category from his fellow Grammy-nominee Frank Ocean. Despite his recent public fall-out with Chris Brown, Ocean’s musical popularity is very widespread, both with the public and critics, standing him in good stead to take the prize.
International Female Solo Artist: Alicia Keys, Cat Power, Lana Del Rey, Rihanna, Taylor Swift

Having won the International Breakthrough Act award at last year’s ceremony, with an Ivor Novello since added to her list of award wins, it is just that Lana Del Rey is the bookie’s favourite to take the Best International Female crown. She does, however, face harsh opposition in Barbados-beauty Rihanna, whose #1 single ‘Diamonds’ and current single ‘Stay’ are two of the most played songs on UK radio stations. Swift and Keys continue to produce chart-topping hits year-upon-year, further adding to the rivalry of these US divas.

International Group: Alabama Shakes,The Black Keys, Fun, The Killers, The Script

2012 has been a hugely successful year for all 5 of the nominees in this category, particularly Fun whose single ‘We Are Young’ rippled through the nation via radio airwaves and was the third biggest selling single of the entire year. With 2/1 odds to take the prize, Fun are beaten only by Ohio rock band The Black Keys with 4/6 odds. Like many of the other BRITs nominees, The Black Keys are also nominated at this year’s Grammys with 5 nominations in total including for Album of the Year for platinum-selling ‘El Camino’.

British Live Act: Coldplay, Mumford & Sons, Muse, The Rolling Stones, The Vaccines

Reinstated for 2013, the British Live Act award is back and tougher than ever before, with 5 festival favourites completing the competitive list of nominees. After an expansive and successful world tour with their album ‘Mylo Xyloto’, it is no doubt that Coldplay are favourites for the prize, with veteran rockers The Rolling Stones following closely behind.

British Producer: Damon Albarn, Jake Gosling, Paul Epworth

As three of the most influential producers in the British and worldwide music industry, Albarn, Gosling and Epworth have played an enormous role in shaping the year of music that 2012 brought us.

Following on from his success with Blur and Gorillaz, with Blur winning the Outstanding Contribution to Music at last year’s BRIT Awards, Damon Albarn has continued to use his musical talent in the production world, having worked with Bobby Womack and Snoop Dogg on their latest albums.

Jake Gosling is responsible for producing both One Direction multi-platinum selling albums ‘Up All Night’ and ‘Take Me Home’, as well as working with fellow former BRITs nominee Ed Sheeran with his debut album ‘+’ and Paloma Faith’s ‘Fall To Grace’.

Paul Epworth’s production credits span a long list of former BRITs nominees and winners, known most prolifically for his work with Adele on her ’21’ album. His work on both of Florence Welch’s albums and Plan B’s ‘The Defamation of Strickland Banks’ makes him one of the most successful producers of his generation.

Critics’ Choice: Tom Odell, Aluna George, Laura Mvula

As announced at the BRITs Launch Party, Tom Odell has become the first male winner to take the Critics’ Choice prize, following in the fruitful footsteps of Adele, Florence & The Machine, Jessie J, Ellie Goulding and Emeli Sandé. 22-year-old Tom is already on his way to success with his latest single ‘Can’t Pretend’.
The evening of February 20th is set to be a wonderful night, with the public and industry experts revelling in the remarkable talent that the UK music scene has to offer. British talents and nominees Ben Howard, Emeli Sandé, Mumford & Sons, Muse, One Direction and Robbie Williams will all feature in the evening, with performances that are set to raise the roof of the O2 Arena. American sensations also included on the bill are Justin Timberlake and Beyonce, with rumours that her other half, Jay-Z, may join both of them in their performances.

Be sure to tune in to ITV1 at 8pm on February 20th so that you don’t miss one of the greatest musical shows and celebrations on the calendar.