Houston top of music noms

Arista recording artist Whitney Houston continues to be protected by “The Bodyguard” as the popular soundtrack album helped her cop eight nominations for the 21st annual American Music Awards. Nominations for the sales-based awards were announced Wednesday at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.

Janet Jackson scored five bids, sultry soul trio SWV earned four nominations, while Mariah Carey — last year’s top nominee — joined Toni Braxton and Alan Jackson with three nominations apiece. (Carey’s “Music Box” also has moved to the top of the album chart; see story, page 8).

The three-hour Dick Clark Prods. show will be broadcast live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles Feb. 7 on ABC.

Host assignments, as well as the naming of the Award of Merit recipient — a nod that recognizes an individual’s “outstanding contributions to the musical entertainment of the American public”– will be announced later.

Nominations were announced by rock star Joe Walsh and Dick Clark. Clark subbed for the Queen Latifah, who wasunable to attend due to a last-minute schedule change.

Nominees were compiled by the music industry trade paper Radio & Records and SoundScan Inc., which tabulates point-of-purchase sales data.

Winners will be chosen from a ballot mailed to 20,000 consumers in a national sampling taking into account age, sex, geographical location and ethnic origin.

A complete list of nominees follows:

Pop/rock

Male artist: Michael Bolton, Eric Clapton, Michael Jackson, Rod Stewart.

Female artist: Mariah Carey, Gloria Estefan, Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson.

Band, duo or group: Aerosmith, Pearl Jam, U2.

Single: “Can’t Help Falling in Love,” UB40; “I Will Always Love You,” Whitney Houston;

“Whoomp! (There It Is),” Tag Team.

Album: “The Bodyguard” soundtrack, Whitney Houston; “janet,” Janet Jackson; “Pocket Full of Kryptonite,” Spin Doctors; “Unplugged,” Eric Clapton.

New artist: Blind Melon, Stone Temple Pilots, SWV.

Soul/R&B

Male artist: Babyface, Bobby Brown, Michael Jackson, Luther Vandross.

Female artist: Toni Braxton, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson.

Band, duo or group: Arrested Development, En Vogue, SWV.

Single: “Dreamlover,” Mariah Carey; “I Will Always Love You,” Whitney Houston; “That’s the Way Love Goes,” Janet Jackson.

Album: “The Bodyguard” soundtrack; “janet.,” Janet Jackson; “It’s About Time, ” SWV; “Lose Control,” Silk.

New artist: Toni Braxton, Silk, SWV.

Country

Male artist: Garth Brooks, Vince Gill, Alan Jackson, George Strait.

Female artist: Mary-Chapin Carpenter, Reba McEntire, Dolly Parton, Wynonna.

Band, duo or group: Alabama, Brooks & Dunn, Little Texas.

Single: “A Bad Goodbye,” Clint Black & Wynonna; “Chattahoochee,” Alan Jackson; “Romeo,” Dolly Parton & Friends.

Album: “A Lot About Livin’, ” Alan Jackson; “Hard Workin’ Man,” Brooks & Dunn; “In Pieces,” Garth Brooks; “It’s Your Call,” Reba McEntire.

New artist: Tracy Byrd, John Michael Montgomery, Clay Walker.

Heavy metal/hard rock

Artist: Aerosmith, Metallica, Pearl Jam.

New artist: Blind Melon, Smashing Pumpkins, Stone Temple Pilots.

Rap/hip hop

Artist: Arrested Development, Dr. Dre, Naughty by Nature.

New artist: Dr. Dre, Onyx, 2Pac.

Adult contemporary

Artist: Michael Bolton, Kenny G, Whitney Houston.

Album: “The Bodyguard” soundtrack, Whitney Houston; “Breathless,” Kenny G; “River of Dreams,” Billy Joel; “Unplugged … and Seated,” Rod Stewart.

New artist: Toni Braxton, Lauren Christy, Lisa Keith.

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