BRITs 2021 predictions: Who will, should and could win?

·6-min read
<p>In with a shout: Dua Lipa, Taylor Swift and The Weeknd</p> (Getty Images)

In with a shout: Dua Lipa, Taylor Swift and The Weeknd

(Getty Images)

The BRITs are back. With the most diverse list of nominations ever, and an audience of 4,000 set to attend the ceremony at the O2 IRL, it’s looking like exactly the kind of starry music biz shindig we need to shake off any lingering lockdown cobwebs.

Some prizes have already been handed out — 20-year-old Griff was named Rising Star, while Taylor Swift has been given the Global Icon award — but there’s still plenty up for grabs on the night. Here’s who we think will, should and could win big.

International Female Solo Artist

Taylor SwiftKevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
Taylor SwiftKevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
  • Ariana Grande

  • Billie Eilish

  • Cardi B

  • Miley Cyrus

  • Taylor Swift

Watch: 'Next year it's gonna go OFF, tour is our life!'

Will win: Taylor Swift

It’s a straight shootout between Ariana Grande and Taylor Swift. The latter’s Global Icon scoop complicates things — should we expect Swiftian domination, or is the award just making up for her being snubbed here? Hard to say, but we’re on Team Tay-Tay.

Should win: Taylor Swift

Complete stylistic overhaul? Yep. Two excellent albums? Uh-huh. A big eff-you to the music biz by re-recording her early albums? You betcha. You can’t say it’d be undeserved.

Outside chance: Billie Eilish

Reiterating the fact that I reckon Grande is a very close second, you can never rule out Billie Eilish, who hoovers up awards like it’s nobody’s business.

Female Solo Artist

Dua LipaKevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
Dua LipaKevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
  • Arlo Parks

  • Celeste

  • Dua Lipa

  • Jessie Ware

  • Lianne La Havas

Will win: Dua Lipa

If I owned a house (big up Generation Rent) then I would bet it on Dua Lipa here. Her relentlessly fun album, Future Nostalgia, released in March last year, was nothing short of a public service.

Should win: Dua Lipa

All hail Dua.

Outside chance: Arlo Parks

There was a lot of buzz around Arlo Parks when she released her debut album earlier this year, and by most measures, it matched it. Don’t entirely count her out.

International Male Solo Artist

The WeekndMike Ehrmann/Getty Images
The WeekndMike Ehrmann/Getty Images
  • Bruce Springsteen

  • Burna Boy

  • Childish Gambino

  • Tame Impala

  • The Weeknd

Will win: The Weeknd

The Weeknd was entirely ignored by this year’s Grammys — three US number ones and playing at the Super Bowl doesn’t cut the mustard, apparently — so it’d be pretty symbolic for him to triumph here.

Should win: The Weeknd

After the success he’s had, you can’t look past him.

Outside chance: Burna Boy

Pandemic or no pandemic, this would have been a massive year for Burna Boy, but even with the worldwide disruption, the release of his latest album Twice as Tall proved his place as a global force.

Male Solo Artist

AJ TraceyChristopher Lee/Getty Images
AJ TraceyChristopher Lee/Getty Images
  • AJ Tracey

  • Headie One

  • J Hus

  • Joel Corry

  • Yungblud

Will win: AJ Tracey

British rap will almost certainly win here, but who will come out on top? J Hus proved he’s still Mr Versatile, Headie One topped the charts with Edna, but AJ Tracey just about snatches it.

Should win: Headie One

What Headie One did last year, mainstreaming drill, can’t be ignored.

Outside chance: Yungblud

He doesn’t quite have the star power to topple the others, but Yungblud has been doing his thing with great success, defying labels both personally and artistically.

Mastercard Album

Arlo ParksJustin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images
Arlo ParksJustin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images
  • Arlo Parks - Collapsed in Sunbeams

  • Celeste - Not Your Muse

  • Dua Lipa - Future Nostalgia

  • J Hus - Big Conspiracy

  • Jessie Ware - What’s Your Pleasure?

Will win: Dua Lipa - Future Nostalgia.

We could bang on about Future Nostalgia all day, but basically: it’s going to win.

Should win: Dua Lipa - Future Nostalgia

Yep, you guessed it.

Outside chance: Arlo Parks

Again, Arlo Parks could be in with the faintest of shouts for her delightful debut.

Breakthrough Artist

Joel CorryTommy Jackson/Getty Images
Joel CorryTommy Jackson/Getty Images
  • Arlo Parks

  • Bicep

  • Celeste

  • Joel Corry

  • Young T and Bugsey

Will win: Joel Corry

The BRITs usually go off commercial success, which means DJ and producer Joel Corry should be favourite here. Head and Heart featuring MNEK was top of the UK charts for six weeks, and has recently smashed the 600 million streams mark on Spotify.

Should win: Arlo Parks

Corry’s been releasing music for years, so if we’re talking about the newest artists, then Arlo Parks is the one.

Outside chance: Bicep

They were pretty much the biggest thing in UK dance music before the ‘rona hit, so they’re not out of the running just yet.

British Single

Harry StylesKevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
Harry StylesKevin Winter/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
  • 220 Kid & GRACEY - Don’t Need Love

  • Aitch & AJ Tracey feat. Tay Keith - Rain

  • Dua Lipa - Physical

  • Harry Styles - Watermelon Sugar

  • Headie One feat. AJ Tracey and Stormzy - Ain’t It Different

  • Joel Corry feat. MNEK - Head & Heart

  • Nathan Dawe feat. KSI - Lighter

  • Regard & RAYE - Secrets

  • S1MBA feat. DTG - Rover

  • Young T & Bugsey feat. Headie One - Don’t Rush

Will win: Harry Styles - Watermelon Sugar

You could make a case for a number of these scooping the prize, but this feels like a very BRITs-ish song to win.

Should win: Young T and Bugsey feat. Headie One - Don’t Rush

Every year has one of those ubiquitous tracks, but Don’t Rush did it twice — first in 2019, and then again in 2020 with the remixes.

Outside chance: Aitch & AJ Tracey feat. Tay Keith - Rain

It’s probably a lot more than an outside chance, to be fair. When two of the biggest rappers in the UK came together for this track, they did not disappoint.

British Group

The 1975Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for KROQ
The 1975Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for KROQ

Will win: The 1975

The last album from The 1975 was musical marmite, but the British album-buying public seemed impressed, placing it at number one in the charts.

Should win: Little Mix

Even though they lost a quarter of the workforce when Jesy Nelson departed, Little Mix had a solid year, with Confetti peaking at number two in the album charts.

Outside chance: Young T and Bugsey

Their Plead the 5th mixtape only got to number 25, but it did have some pretty huge tracks.

International Group

BTSEugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Dick Clark Productions
BTSEugene Gologursky/Getty Images for Dick Clark Productions
  • Bicep

  • Biffy Clyro

  • Little Mix

  • The 1975

  • Young T and Bugsey

Will win: BTS

The all-conquering South Koreans have never received much more than a lukewarm reception at the Grammys, despite being the biggest band on the planet. They’ll surely triumph here.

Should win: BTS

You can’t look past the K-Pop lads. They’re unstoppable.

Outside chance: HAIM

The Californian sisters are probably second favourites, although a wildcard Foo Fighters win is still a possibility. 

The BRIT Awards are live from 8pm tonight on ITV and ITV Hub

Watch: 'First time anyone's ever said that to me!'

Read More

What the papers say – May 11

What the papers say – May 4

Moss Bros launches menswear subscription service