When nominations for the 2024 GRAMMY Awards were announced by the Recording Academy on November 10, 2023, three stars who got their starts on “American Idol” learned they’d each received a coveted nomination — Kelly Clarkson, Jordin Sparks, and Lauren Daigle.
Clarkson has been nominated 16 times since she won the very first season of “Idol” in 2002 and has won three of the awards since. But her latest GRAMMY nod, for Best Pop Vocal Album, “hits different,” she told fans on social media.
Meanwhile, season 6 winner Sparks posted a video of herself screaming with joy upon learning she’d received the second GRAMMY nomination of her career. She and the duo For King+Country collaborated on the single “Love Me Like I Am,” which is now nominated for Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song. Daigle also received a Contemporary Christian nomination for her single, “Thank God I Do.”
Numerous former “American Idol” contestants have received GRAMMY nominations over the show’s 21-year history, but the number of alums who’ve gone on to win the golden phonograph is fairly small.
Here’s what you need to know:
Kelly Clarkson Nominated for Album She Described as ‘Hard to Make’
Clarkson received her latest GRAMMY nomination for the album “chemistry,” which she released in September after several difficult years of navigating a nasty divorce from Brandon Blackstock. During an appearance on “TODAY “ with Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush, she told them it had been a difficult record to write and record.
“It’s a hard record,” she said. “It was hard to make, but it’s also not just (about) the bad of a relationship. … I didn’t want it to be a divorce album; I wanted it to be a relationship album. And there’s good stuff on there, like ‘Favorite Kind of High.’ There’s good parts.”
“It wasn’t all bad,” she continued, “so I wanted to celebrate that as a whole. For the most part, it’s sad. But that’s how I work through what’s going on with me: through writing.”
In her Instagram post, Clark wrote, “Wow! I am so grateful for every Grammy nomination I have ever received from the @recordingacademy, but this album means so much to me and this nomination hits differently. Thank you so much! I am also so honored to share this nomination with incredible artists like @teddysphotos, @mileycyrus, @taylorswift, and @oliviarodrigo ❤️”
Jordin Sparks Nabbed a Contemporary Christian Nomination, as Did ‘Idol’ Alum Lauren Daigle
Sparks, meanwhile, wrote that she was “freaking out” in her Instagram post after learning she’d received her second GRAMMY nomination. Her first was in 2009 for her “No Air” duet with Chris Brown, nominated for
Jumping around and screaming over the news, she then yelled, “GRAMMY nomination!”
Sparks then said “oh my gosh” six times, coming to grips with the realization she’d received another nomination after 15 years. She then squealed and kept saying “thank you.”
Eventually, she said while smiling, “Oh my god, two-time GRAMMY nominee! Okay, I wish you guys could feel how fast my heart is being. I’m so excited, so excited, I’m so grateful.”
In the caption, she wrote, “I. AM. freaking out! Somebody pinch me! Thank you, thank you, thank you @recordingacademy!”
Now that they’re nominated, Clarkson and Sparks will both likely attend the GRAMMY Awards, which will be held in Los Angeles on February 4, per CBS.
They’re likely to see another “American Idol” alum there — two-time GRAMMY winner Lauren Daigle, whose “Thank God I Do” is nominated for Best Contemporary Christian Music Performance/Song.
Daigle was an “Idol” contestant three times, according to Newsweek. She advanced through Hollywood Week during season 9 in 2010, but was cut when the Top 24 was named. The next year, she auditioned but didn’t make it to Hollywood. In 2012, she auditioned one last time and was cut from the show in the Las Vegas round.
But there are no hard feelings for Daigle, who’s been back to perform and mentor contestants on the show multiple times, including singing with runner-up Megan Danielle during the latest season.
Carrie Underwood Leads ‘American Idol’ Alumni With Most GRAMMY Wins
Multiple “American Idol” alums have won GRAMMYs over the years, according to the Recording Academy.
Clarkson and season 2 winner Ruben Studdard were the first “Idol” winners to be nominated for a GRAMMY, both receiving nominations in 2004. Neither won that year, but Clarkson became the first “Idol” winner to win a GRAMMY in 2006. That year, she nabbed two awards — Best Pop Vocal Album for “Breakaway” and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for her hit single “Since U Been Gone.” Her album “Stronger” also won the GRAMMY for Best Pop Vocal Album in 2013.
Meanwhile, season 4 winner Carrie Underwood has won eight GRAMMYs and has received a total of 16 nominations. That makes her the “Idol” contestant with the most GRAMMY wins and nominations under her belt, per Newsweek.
Other “Idol” contestants who’ve won GRAMMYs include Jennifer Hudson, who took seventh place on season 3, and Tori Kelly, who didn’t make the Top 24 on season 9. Hudson has received eight nominations and won twice, according to the Recording Academy, and Kelly also has two wins and five nominations.
Bebe Rexha, who famously revealed in 2018 that she never made it past the first round of auditions for “American Idol” in 2008, has appeared as a mentor on the show since and just received her fourth GRAMMY nomination. She and David Guetta’s “One in a Million” is nominated for Best Pop Dance Recording.