Soul singer Sam Smith leads Brit awards nominations
Singer-songwriter Sam Smith was nominated for a Brit award in five different categories on Thursday, going up against artists such as Ed Sheeran and George Ezra at Britain's equivalent of the Grammys.
The 22-year-old is up to win best British male solo artist, breakthrough artist, best British single, best British video and best British album for his 2014 record "In the Lonely Hour".
Sheeran and Ezra were nominated in four categories each in the British pop music awards, which will take place on February 25.
Smith made a splash with his hit ballad "Stay With Me" and has already scooped six nominations in the US Grammy Awards, which take place earlier in February.
Voting was due to get underway on Thursday for the British video and breakthrough categories, decided by public poll, unlike the other awards which are decided by a "Voting Academy" of over 1,000 music industry figures.
Red haired 23-year-old singer Sheeran was nominated in the single, album, British male solo artist and video categories.
He will go up against 21-year-old Ezra, also nominated for the album, solo artist and single categories for his song "Budapest", as well as netting a nomination for breakthrough artist.
Paolo Nutini and veteran musician of Damon Albarn, who made his name with groups Blur and Gorillaz, complete the nominees for best British solo artist.
The best British group title will be contested by Coldplay, boy band One Direction, alt-J, Clean Bandit and Royal Blood.
Meanwhile singers Ella Henderson, Lily Allen, Paloma Faith, FKA Twigs and Jessie Ware will battle for the title of best British female solo artist.
Star-studded nominations for the international female solo artist category included Taylor Swift, Beyonce, Lana Del Rey, Sia and St. Vincent.
Irish artist Hozier, propelled to fame by his single "Take Me To Church" this year will compete against Beck, Jack White, John Legend and Pharrell Williams for the international male solo artist category.
Foo Fighters, The Black Keys, First Aid Kit, The War on Drugs and 5 Seconds of Summer will go head to head to be crowned best international group at the awards.
Three lesser-known acts will compete for the critic's choice prize, judged by a panel of music critics, who will decide between British singer and guitarist James Bay, spoken word artist George the Poet, or electronica trio Years & Years.
US star Taylor Swift, whose most recent album "1989" hit number one in 97 countries and marked her transition to pop music from country, is set to perform at the February award ceremony alongside Smith and Sheeran.
At last year's event, music legend David Bowie became the oldest ever winner of a Brit award when he won British Male Solo Artist.
© 2015 AFP