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Cardi B, Drake lead American Music nominations, Kanye West snubbed

Boy band BTS became the first Korean group to be nominated for an American Music Award and will compete in the favourite social artist category.

Cardi B speaks onstage during the 2018 MTV Video Music Awards at Radio City Music Hall on 20 August, 2018 in New York City. Picture: AFP

LOS ANGELES – Rappers Cardi B and Drake led nominations on Wednesday for the American Music Awards with eight apiece in a line-up that included Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran but snubbed Kanye West and made Beyonce, Ariana Grande and Rihanna also-rans.

Late musician XXXTentacion, 20, who was shot dead in an apparent robbery in Florida in June, earned two nods, including best new artist and best soul/R&B album for his debut release 17.

The fan-voted American Music Award nominations also included five nods for Cuban-born singer Camila Cabello, including new artist and best female artist, four for Bruno Mars, and six for hip-hop star Post Malone.

Boy band BTS became the first Korean group to be nominated for an American Music Award and will compete in the favourite social artist category.

Beyonce and Ariana Grande earned just one each, for tour of the year with husband Jay-Z and social artist respectively. Rihanna got a single nomination, for best female soul/R&B artist.

Kanye West, who released his chart-topping album Ye in June after grabbing headlines for an erratic Twitter storm, was empty-handed.

In the artist of the year category, Drake will compete with Taylor Swift, Post Malone, rock band Imagine Dragons, and British singer-songwriter Sheeran.

New York rapper Cardi B, who has had a breakout year with hits like Bodak Yellow, and Finesse with Bruno Mars, will compete for best new artist as well as best female artist in both the pop and rap categories.

Perfect singer Sheeran and Post Malone earned six nominations apiece while Swift got four, including best tour and pop album for Reputation.

The American Music Award nominations are based on streaming, album and digital song sales, radio airplay, social activity and touring between September 2017 and August 2018.

The winners are chosen by fans online and will be announced at a ceremony in Los Angeles on 8 October.

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