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Norah shines on Grammy list

New York, Jan. 7 (Reuters): Veteran rocker Bruce Springsteen with his September 11-influenced hit, The Rising, and a slew of young stars, including Pandit Ravi Shankar’s daughter Norah Jones and Avril Lavigne, led the nominations today for the Grammy Awards, the music industry’s top prizes.

Eight artists shared the most nominations with five each when they were announced at a news conference in New York — Springsteen, Jones, Lavigne, Sheryl Crow, rappers Eminem and Nelly, R&B’s Ashanti and Raphael Saadiq.

“It is more than I expected. I am very excited,” pop/jazz singer Jones, 22, said through a spokeswoman after hearing about the nominations for her debut album, Come Away with Me.

Country band Dixie Chicks, singer Vanessa Carlton and country singer Alan Jackson were among those who grabbed multiple nominations. Carlton was nominated in the Record of the Year category for A Thousand Miles and Song of the Year of the same name.

Jackson’s emotional single, Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning), about the September 11 attacks was nominated for both Song of the Year and Best Country Song.

The Grammys will be presented at Madison Square Garden on February 23, the first time the event has moved from Los Angeles since 1998.

“Either way I just want to win,” rapper Nelly told reporters next to the Madison Square Garden stage where he and several other nominees made the announcements.“Whichever category they want to give it to me in is cool.”

The awards by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, also known as the Recording Academy, honour artists in 104 categories, ranging from pop, rock, soul and jazz to classical, spoken word and polka.

“It’s gratifying to see established artists share nods with up-and-comers across the board, all of whom represent some of the most remarkable music makers there today,” said recording academy president Neil Portnow.

Springsteen’s poignant album, The Rising, was nominated for Album of the Year, along with chanteuse Jones’ debut album.

Also vying for Album of the Year are Eminem’s The Eminem Show, Dixie Chicks’ Home, and Nellyville by Nelly.

Jones with Don’t Know Why, Eminem’s Without Me and Nelly’s Dilemma are also competing for the Record of the Year award.

The Best New Artist nominations were Jones, Ashanti, Michelle Branch, Canadian Lavigne and singer/songwriter John Mayer.

Springsteen, 53, also nabbed nominations for Song of the Year for the title track on The Rising, Best Male Rock Vocal Performance, Best Rock Song (The Rising) and Best Rock Album.

If Springsteen wins the Album Grammy next month, he will join a number of music veterans who have won it in the past decade.

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