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banner Monday, 31 January, 2000, 19:55 GMT
Dance sounds dominate Brits list

Chemical Brothers: Leading the field

Dance music dominates the shortlist for this year's Brit Awards - with the Chemical Brothers leading the nominations.

The duo - Tom Rowlands and Ed Simons - have four nominations for prizes in the UK music industry's annual awards ceremony: best British album for Surrender, best British dance act, best British single for Hey Boy, Hey Girl, and best British video for Let Forever Be.

Click here to read a full list of nominees.

Tom Jones: A nominee for the first time
Fellow club acts Fatboy Slim - aka Norman Cook, the husband of broadcaster Zoe Ball - and Basement Jaxx are close behind on three.

Meanwhile, Travis hold the torch for traditional guitar rock with three nominations, including best British group, album and single.

Their rivals for best British group include Blur, who celebrated a decade together last year, Stereophonics, Gomez and Texas.

Meanwhile, pop veteran Tom Jones finds himself nominated for the first time in his 36-year career, as best British male.

He said: "To start recording in the '60s, being nominated for and receiving awards alongside the likes of the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and the Who, then to think in the year 2000 I've been nominated for a Brit award for something I enjoy doing now as much as ever, is a fantastic feeling."

Fatboy Slim: Norman Cook has three nominations
The category is dominated by older acts, including David Bowie, Sting and Van Morrison. The most contemporary artist is former Stone Roses singer Ian Brown.

Mel C lines up against former Spice Girls colleague Geri Halliwell in the best British female category. Halliwell is also nominated for a new award - best pop act, designed to honour mainstream acts who may not have the credibility to make it into the main sections.

Steps, S Club 7, Martine McCutcheon, Ann Lee and Five also get nominations in this new category.

US teenager Britney Spears faces Jennifer Lopez and Macy Gray in both best international newcomer and best international female categories.

Three nominations: Travis bassist Dougie Payne and singer Fran Healy
Robbie Williams - who dominated the Brits in 1999 by winning three prizes - has two nominations this year, best single and video for the She's The One.

Notable absences include Irish boy band Westlife - who were ignored despite having four consecutive number ones in 1999.

Canadian singer Shania Twain had last year's biggest-selling album - but it was released in 1998, making her ineligble for an award.

One award has already been leaked to the media - the decision to give the Spice Girls an outstanding achievement award, even though they have only been in the public eye for three-and-a-half years.

Two nominations: Britney Spears flies the flag for the US
This ensures the headline-grabbing foursome will all be at the awards - but some will feel their appearance will help disguise a disappointing year for the UK music industry, with 1999's singles charts dominated by one-off dance tracks and international acts such as Boyzone, Westlife, Shania Twain and Britney Spears.

The history of the Brits is littered with fiascos and controversies - most memorably the shambolic 1989 ceremony hosted by Mick Fleetwood and Samantha Fox, and Pulp singer Jarvis Cocker's stage invasion to protest at Michael Jackson's performance in 1996.

But recent ceremonies have been relatively incident-free.

Organisers will be hoping for a quiet year for 2000's event, to be hosted by television presenter Davina McCall and held at Earls Court in London on 3 March.

Acts performing live will include Macy Gray and Basement Jaxx, while the three surviving members of Queen - Brian May, Roger Taylor and John Deacon - will team up with Five to perform We Will Rock You.

Click here to read a full list of nominees.
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See also:

17 Feb 99 |  Brit Awards
British pop's annual awards
29 Jan 00 |  Entertainment
Spices win lifetime award
31 Jan 00 |  Brit Awards
Brits 2000: The nominees
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