Grammy-nominated artist wanted Frank Ocean shortlisted for Album Of The Year instead of him

Sturgill Simpson finds himself up against Adele, Beyoncé, Drake and Justin Bieber

Country singer Sturgill Simpson has said that he would have preferred Frank Ocean to be nominated at the Grammys instead of him.

The 2017 Grammy nominations were revealed yesterday and Simpson is a surprise contender for Album Of The Year, which pits him up against Adele, Beyoncé, Drake and Justin Bieber.

Frank Ocean’s long-awaited new album ‘Blonde’, released in August, was ineligible for nomination at the Grammys after the R&B musician failed to file the necessary paperwork for a record to be considered. He later described the institution as “dated”, arguing that it “doesn’t seem to be representing very well for people who come from where I come from, and hold down what I hold down”.

Speaking to The New York Times, Simpson said: “I loved ‘Lemonade.’ I thought it was genius. I love the Adele record. I really, really wish, honestly, and no [expletive] — I would’ve liked to see Frank Ocean’s name where mine is. But that’s not my place to say. I totally understand [his protest]. I just thought that record [‘Blonde’] was really groundbreaking. I listen to just about everything except country music, so it’s strange.”

Describing the moment he found out he was nominated, Simpson said: “[My publicist] woke me up. My wife said, ‘Who the [expletive] is calling you at 7:30?’ She told me the news and we just kind of stayed in bed for a while. I was trying to wrap my head around what this even means and looking back on everything. It’s extremely humbling. I went downstairs and made pancakes and watched ‘Sesame Street’ with my son. That was pretty much it.”

Sturgill SimpsonGetty

“My mother-in-law passed last week,” he added, “so we kind of needed a ray of sunshine.”

Kentucky native Sturgill Simpson released ‘A Sailor’s Guide to Earth’, his third studio album, in April. The record included a cover of Nirvana‘s ‘In Bloom’. Explaining the cover choice, Simpson said: “I wanted to make a very beautiful and pure homage to Kurt [Cobain]”.

Read more: The 2017 Grammy nominations: the 10 things everybody’s talking about

Watch your favourite artists discuss their love for Frank Ocean below: