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Ed Sheeran, Kacey Musgraves, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis: Which Best New Artist Grammy nominees will come to Tampa in 2014?



Every year when the Grammys roll around, we here at SoundcheckCorp. have a tradition: We like to place odds on which Best New Artist nominees will come to Tampa Bay in the following year.

We started doing this because for the longest time, it seemed like the hottest, newest acts in music tended to skip Florida on tour. That still happens, but not as much as it used to. For example, among last year’s crop of nominees, the Lumineers, Alabama Shakes and Hunter Hayes all paid us a visit. The year before, we saw Skrillex, Bon Iver and the Band Perry.

So with the Grammys airing Sunday on CBS, it’s time once again to peer into our prognosticators’ crystal ball to determine who among this year’s crop of Best New Artist Grammy nominees we might see in Tampa Bay in 2014. Here are our predictions. To quote David Letterman: Please, no wagering.

James Blake (50-1): We’d say there’s absolutely no chance the minimalist British electro crooner would come to Tampa Bay ... but then again, we never expected The xx or The Weeknd to come here, either, and they both played local shows in 2013. Still ... yeah, there’s absolutely no chance the Mercury Prize-winning Blake will come here.

Macklemore and Ryan Lewis (25-1): The chart-topping rapper and producer just played Tampa’s USF Sun Dome in November, but more importantly, after a near-constant grind of touring and promotion, they’ve hinted at taking a long hiatus following the Grammys. We do think they’ll come back; it just may not be this year.

Ed Sheeran (12-1): The British singer-songwriter has actually played Tampa Bay three times since 2012 — once opening for Snow Patrol, once opening for Taylor Swift and once at the 93.3-FLZ Jingle Ball. He does have an album coming out this year, so a long-awaited headlining show is a possibility — the man does tend to tour nonstop.

Kendrick Lamar (9-1): He’s the most critically adored rapper of the year (sorry, Yeezus), but he’s also kind of a tweener. He’s far too big to play clubs, especially if he brings a full band. But is he big enough for the USF Sun Dome, or someplace even bigger? Maybe he’ll follow the path laid by J. Cole, a past Best New Artist nominee, or even Rick Ross, and move to theaters like the Straz Center. But he was just in Tampa in late November, opening for Kanye West at the Tampa Bay Times Forum ... so we'll see.

Kacey Musgraves (5-1): The young country singer opened for Kenny Chesney and Eric Church at Raymond James Stadium last March, and she was actually booked for a Tampa show in 2014, when Lady Antebellum announced a Feb. 7 date at the Tampa Bay Times Forum. Lady A have since rescheduled that date for May 17, but Musgraves will no longer be the opener on that date. She's also touring this summer with Katy Perry, but is not on Perry’s Tampa date, either. Still, we bet she latches on with some other big summer tour. Tampa's too big and powerful a country market for young Kacey to ignore all year.

-- Jay Cridlin, tbt*

[Last modified: Friday, January 24, 2014 7:59am]


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