The nominees for the 51st Annual Grammy Awards were announced on December 3, 2008 and the awards were awarded for winners in ceremonies on February 8, 2009.
Best Bluegrass Album
- Cherryholmes – Cherryholmes III: Don’t Believe
- Del McCoury Band — Live At The 2008 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival
- Earl Scruggs With Family & Friends – The Ultimate Collection / Live At The Ryman
- Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder – Honoring The Fathers Of Bluegrass: Tribute To 1946 And 1947
- Dan Tyminski – Wheels
Winner: Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder
Best Traditional Folk Album
- Kathy Mattea – Coal
- Tom Paxton – Comedians & Angels
- Peggy Seeger – Bring Me Home
- Pete Seeger – At 89
- Rosalie Sorrels – Strangers In Another Country
Winner: Pete Seeger
Best Contemporary Folk/Americana Album
- Joan Baez – Day After Tomorrow
- Ry Cooder – I, Flathead
- Rodney Crowell – Sex & Gasoline
- Emmylou Harris – All I Intended To Be
- Robert Plant & Alison Krauss – Raising Sand
Winner: Robert Plant & Alison Krauss
Best Country Instrumental Performance
- Cherryholmes – “Sumatra” (Cherryholmes III: Don’t Believe)
- Jerry Douglas & Lloyd Green – “Two Small Cars In Rome” (Glide)
- Bela Fleck & the Flecktones – “Sleigh Ride” (Jingle All the Way)
- Charlie Haden, Pat Metheny, Jerry Douglas & Bruce Hornsby – “Is This America? (Katrina 2005)” (Family & Friends — Rambling Boy)
- Brad Paisley, James Burton, Vince Gill, John Jorgenson, Albert Lee, Brent Mason, Redd Volkaert & Steve Wariner – “Cluster Pluck”
Winner: Brad Paisley, James Burton, Vince Gill, John Jorgenson, Albert Lee, Brent Mason, Redd Volkaert & Steve Wariner
Folk and Bluegrass Artists Nominated in Other Categories
- Winner: Robert Plant and Alison Krauss won Record of the year (“Please Read the Letter”), Best Country Collaboration With Vocals (“Killing the Blues”), Best Pop Collaboration With Vocals (“Rich Woman”), and Album of the Year.
- The Steeldrivers were nominated for Best Country Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocals (“Blue Side of the Mountain”).
- James Taylor was nominated for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance (“Wichita Lineman”) and Best Pop Vocal Album (Covers).
- Winner: Bela Fleck & the Flecktones won for Best Pop Instrumental Album (Jingle All the Way).
- Sheryl Crow was nominated for Best Pop Vocal Album (Detours).
- Neil Young was nominated for Best Solo Rock Performance (“No Hidden Path”).
- The Ditty Bops were nominated for Best Recording Package (Summer Rains).
- Aimee Mann was nominated for Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package (@#%&*! Smilers).
- Winner: Art Of Field Recording Volume I: Fifty Years Of Traditional American Music Documented By Art Rosenbaum won Best Album Notes and Best Historical Album.
Ricky Skaggs & Kentucky Thunder – I`m ready to go!
Pete Seeger singing “Take it from Dr. King”
Robert Plant & Alison Krauss: Raising Sand
Brad Paisley Cluster Pluck