Drake, The Weeknd, and Justin Bieber lead the 2016 Juno nominations

By Ava Baccari

It's no surprise that the leading contenders in this year's GRAMMYs raceThe Weeknd, Drake and Justin Bieber – would fare just as well here at home, earning the most nominations for the 2016 Juno Awards, the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences revealed on Tuesday (Feb. 2).

Abel Tesfaye, the Scarborough-born R&B star known to the world as the The Weeknd, came out on top with six nominations, including artist and songwriter of the year and album of the year for his critically acclaimed sophomore record Beauty Behind the Madness. Toronto-born Drake and Stratford, Ont.,-raised Justin tied for second place, each with five nominations.

With so many of the artists vying for top honours being male, the hashtag #JunosSoMale was trending on the day of the announcement – a nod to the #OscarsSoWhite campaign highlighting another awards show discrepancy.

Alessia Cara, Justin Bieber and The Weeknd are among Juno's biggest nominees. Photos: © Def Jam, Getty

But Brampton's Alessia Cara, the singer-songwriter behind the powerhouse track "Here," was one of the women representing with four nominations, including breakthrough artist of the year. This is the same tally as "Stitches" singer Shawn Mendes. His album, Handwritten, is up for album of the year and the 17-year-old from Pickering, Ont., spoke to Hello! earlier this year about his songwriting process. "I usually start off just messing around on my guitar and then I go in with some melodies and some lyrics and it kind of just flows nicely."

Other leading nominees include Carly Rae Jepsen, Hedley and Bryan Adams. The Weeknd, Shawn and Alessia have been announced as performers.

The 45th annual Juno Awards broadcast gala takes place Sunday April 3 at the Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary.


See all the nominations below:

JUNO FAN CHOICE AWARD
Alessia Cara
Carly Rae Jepsen
Cœur de pirate
Dean Brody
Drake
Justin Bieber
Shawn Hook
Shawn Mendes
The Weeknd
Walk Off The Earth

SINGLE OF THE YEAR
"Here" - Alessia Cara
"Hotline Bling" - Drake
"What Do You Mean?" - Justin Bieber
"Clothes Off" - Ria Mae
"Can’t Feel My Face" - The Weeknd

INTERNATIONAL ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Adele - 25
Hozier - Hozier
Meghan Trainor T- itle
One Direction - Four
Vance Joy - Dream Your Life Away

ALBUM OF THE YEAR
Drake - If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late
Jean Leloup - À Paradis City
Justin Bieber - Purpose
Shawn Mendes - Handwritten
The Weeknd - Beauty Behind the Madness

ARTIST OF THE YEAR
City and Colour
Drake
Justin Bieber
Shawn Mendes
The Weeknd

GROUP OF THE YEAR
Hedley
Marianas Trench
Metric
Three Days Grace
Walk Off The Earth

BREAKTHROUGH ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Alessia Cara
Coleman Hell
Francesco Yates
Scott Helman
Tobias Jesso Jr.

BREAKTHROUGH GROUP OF THE YEAR
Dear Rouge
Half Moon Run
Milk & Bone
The Elwins
Young Empires

SONGWRITER OF THE YEAR
Abel Tesfaye (The Weeknd) - "Can't Feel My Face," "In The Night," "The Hills"
Béatrice Martin (Coeur de Pirate) - "Carry On," "Crier Tout Bas," Oceans Brawl"
Buffy Sainte-Marie - “Farm In The Middle Of Nowhere,” “Ke Sakihitin Awasis (I Love You Baby),” “Love Charms (Mojo Bijoux)”
Dallas Green - “Blood,” “Lover Come Back,” “Wasted Love”
Tobias Jesso Jr. - "When We Were Young," "Alive," "Without You"

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