Michael Jackson picked up five American Music Awards on Tuesday, almost four months after his sudden death turned him into the biggest-selling artist of the year, organizers said on Tuesday.
The pop star, who died of a drug overdose in June at the age of 50, was eclipsed only by 19-year-old country star Taylor Swift, who scored six nominations.
Both will compete for artist of the year at the November 22 ceremony in Los Angeles, along with pop star Lady Gaga, rapper Eminem and rock band Kings of Leon, Reuters informs.
According to Rolling Stone, Taylor Swift, Michael Jackson and Eminem received the most nominations for the 2009 American Music Awards, which will air live from Los Angeles’ Nokia Theatre on November 22nd. Swift leads the field with six nominations, followed by Jackson with five and Eminem with four.
All three artists, plus Kings of Leon and Lady Gaga, were nominated for the coveted Artist of the Year award. So far, Alicia Keys, the Black Eyed Peas, Jennifer Lopez and Adam Lambert have been named as performers at the ceremony, with Lambert reportedly set to unveil a new song from his upcoming post-Idol debut album.
Lambert, along with former American Idol judge Paula Abdul and Snoop Dogg, were on hand this morning to announce the nominees. According to a press release, the nominees "were selected from data supplied by the Nielsen Company’s Broadcast Data Systems, which monitors radio airplay performance, and SoundScan, which tracks retail music sales."
This pretty much explains why Michael Jackson and his Number Ones are included on the nominees list: Even though the greatest-hits compilation was originally released in 2003, it’s sold almost two million copies since the King of Pop’s death on June 25th, making Jackson’s eligible for a posthumous Artist of the Year award.
Winners are determined by an online vote of fans and will be announced at a Los Angeles ceremony televised by ABC on Nov. 22. The nominees were selected through a measurement combining sales and radio airplay, The Associated Press reports.