Justin Bieber’s pop/soul jam “Peaches” (featuring Daniel Caesar and Giveon) broke a Grammy record that was established just last year by Beyoncé’s “Black Parade” — the song of the year nominee with the most credited co-writers.
Eleven songwriters are nominated for their work on “Peaches.” That’s two more than received nominations for co-writing “Black Parade,” which was nominated for song of the year in late 2020.
In the early decades of the Grammy Awards, songs nominated for song of the year were the work of just one or two, and occasionally three, songwriters. That has changed dramatically as “songwriting by committee” has become more commonplace.
Final round voting for the 64th annual Grammy Awards is underway. Voting members of the Recording Academy have until Wednesday, Jan. 3, at 6 p.m. PT to cast their ballots. The winners will be announced on the Grammy telecast on Jan. 31.
Here are the songs that reflect the evolution in the prevailing songwriting method – the first songs with this many writers to receive Grammy nominations for song of the year.
Four: In 1981, Christopher Cross’ “Arthur’s Theme” became the first song of the year nominee that was written by four songwriters. Cross co-wrote the sprightly film song (which won an Oscar) with Peter Allen, Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager.
Five: In 1994, Sheryl Crow’s “All I Wanna Do” became the first song of the year nominee written by five songwriters. Crow co-wrote the jaunty tune with David Baerwald, Bill Bottrell, Wyn Cooper and Kevin Gilbert.
Seven: In 2000, Destiny’s Child’s “Say My Name” became the first song of the year nominee written by seven songwriters. The four members of what was then a quartet — Beyoncé Knowles, Le Toya Luckett, LaTavia Roberson and Kelendria (Kelly) Rowland — co-wrote the feminist-themed song with LaShawn Daniels, Rodney Jerkins and Fred Jerkins III.
Eight: In 2018, Bruno Mars’ “That’s What I Like” became the first song of the year nominee written by eight songwriters. Mars co-wrote the pop/soul jingle with Christopher Brody Brown, James Fauntleroy, Philip Lawrence, Ray Charles McCullough II, Jeremy Reeves, Ray Romulus and Jonathan Yip. (“That’s What I Like” is the only one of these songs that won the award.)
Nine: In 2020, Beyoncé’s “Black Parade” became the first song of the year nominee written by nine songwriters. Beyoncé co-wrote the celebration of Black culture and activism tune with Denisia Andrews, Stephen Bray, Shawn Carter (Jay-Z), Brittany Coney, Derek James Dixie, Akil King, Kim “Kaydence” Krysiuk and Rickie “Caso” Tice.
11: In 2021, Justin Bieber’s “Peaches” (featuring Daniel Caesar and Giveon) became the first song of the year nominee written by 11 songwriters. Bieber co-wrote the song with his featured artists, who write under the names Ashton Simmonds and Giveon Dezmann Evans, as well as Louis Bell, Bernard Harvey, Felisha “Fury” King, Matthew Sean Leon, Luis Manuel Martinez Jr., Aaron Simmonds, Andrew Wotman and Keavan Yazdani.