Annal: 2002 Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Album

Results of the Grammy Award in the year 2002.

Album:Come Away with Me

Come Away with Me

Norah Jones

It is not just the timbre of Norah Jones’s voice that is mature beyond her 22 years. Her assured phrasing and precise time are more often found in older singers as well. She is instantly recognizable, blending shades of Billie Holiday and Nina Simone without sounding like anyone but herself. Any way you slice it, she is a singer to be reckoned with. Her readings of the Hank Williams classic “Cold Cold Heart” and Hoagy Carmichael’s “The Nearness of You” alone are worth the price of the CD. Jones’s own material, while not bad, pales a bit next to such masterpieces.…

Album:Britney

Britney

Britney Spears

Where Britney Spears’s first two albums hewed to the early-’60s formula of one strong single plus a stack of filler—a fair bit of which ended up on the radio anyway—her third justifies itself as a full-length listen. Led by the single “I’m a Slave 4 U,” a Neptunes-helmed piece of electrofunk that promises she’ll do anything you want as long as it’s dancing, the album continues through superior versions of Spears’s poses. Calculated frustration with the adult world? Calculated independence? Sheer celebration? Check, check, and check: “Overprotected,” “Let Me Be,”…

Album:Let Go

Let Go

Avril Lavigne

Self-professed skate punk Avril Lavigne sings that she’d “rather be anything but ordinary” on her debut. While the fact that she had a record deal by the age of 16 separates her from the pack, too often Let Go’s lyrical shortcomings drag the teenager’s musically impressive recording entrée into the realm of the typical. The catchy choruses of Go are substantial, though, thanks to Lavigne’s riff-driven melodies and powerful vocals, which at times adopt the unorthodox intonation quirks of fellow Canadian Alanis Morrissette. The nuanced, dynamic…

Album:M!ssundaztood

M!ssundaztood

Pink

There’s a rule in commercial pop: don’t bite the hand that feeds you. Translation? If you’re getting love on TRL, it’s best leaving well enough alone and tinkering only slightly with the sound that pays your bills. So you have to give Pink a whole heap of credit. The Philly-raised songbird may have made her rep with infectious and rugged pop-R&B hits like “There You Go” and the remake of “Lady Marmalade,” but like the fuchsia coif she once sported, that sound is gone. In its place is a more driving alt-rock attack, liberally laced with some late-night blues and…

Album:Rock Steady

Rock Steady

No Doubt

As much as No Doubt have protested that they are a singular unit and not “Gwen and her guys,” Gwen Stefani’s much-touted duets with rapper Eve and techno mogul Moby did nothing to juice the boys’ spotlight, which had been steadily dimming since the release of 2000’s Return of Saturn. But all that banter is silenced with Rock Steady, on which the music is definitely the star, unfettered by Gwen’s cutesy-clouded feminism or dumped-by-the-boyfriend woes. Having mostly departed from their ska home base, No Doubt’s well-navigated exploration of hip-hop…

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