BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. – Beyonce positioned herself as the performer to beat in next month's annual Soul Train Music Awards, gathering a leading three nominations Tuesday, including one for best female album for "B'Day."
She was also up for honors for best female single, for the hit song "Irreplaceable," and for the Michael Jackson Award for best music video.
Mary J. Blige garnered two nominations, for best female R&B soul-single for "Take Me As I Am," and for best female R&B soul album for "The Breakthrough."
On the male side, John Legend, Chris Brown, Ne-Yo and Yung Joc each got two nominations.
Legend, who won Soul Train Awards last year for best male album and single, was nominated in those categories again. His "Once Again" was up for the best male album award, while "Save Room" was nominated for best male single.
Brown was also nominated for best male single, for "Yo (Excuse Me Miss)," and best male album for "Chris Brown." The teenager, who last year joked about fitting in studio time between basketball practice, was Soul Train's best new rap artist in 2006.
One of this year's newcomers, Ne-Yo, was nominated for best male single for "Sexy Love" and as best new artist.
Yung Joc was also nominated for best new artist and best dance cut for "It's Goin' Down."
The Isley Brothers featuring Ronald Isley got nominations in both group categories, getting a nod for "Just Came Here to Chill" for single and "Baby Makin' Music" for best album. So did Gnarls Barkley, nominated for "Crazy" for single and "St. Elsewhere" for album.
Winners for the 21st Anniversary Soul Train Music Awards will be announced March 10 at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, and the show will air in syndication March 17-24. The program will be co-hosted by Omarion and LeToya, who was also nominated for best female single for "Torn."
The awards, sponsored by the syndicated music show "Soul Train," celebrate artists in R&B, hip-hop and gospel music.
Winners are determined by a group of radio-station professionals, talent managers and performers.