While the Grammy show doesn't generate music sales like it used to, retailers are happy for any event that can drive traffic into stores.

"The Grammys don't have the same effect on sales that it used to, but having said that, the biggest impact could be driving sales of new artists and breakout artists," says Value Music VP of merchandising Brian Poehner.

Joe Nardone, VP at the seven-unit Gallery of Sound chain, says that the Grammy show this year has a "pretty good line-up of performers, so hopefully it will wake some people up" and get them out to stores to buy music.

In some years, a Grammy show might drive as much as 1 million or 2 million in incremental sales units. As for individual artists, Norah Jones experienced the biggest jump in the Nielsen SoundScan era after her "Come Away With Me" album picked up eight Grammy awards in 2003 and resulted in sales of 621,000 units the following week.

While merchants are always hopeful that some artists might have that kind of night, they will take any sales bump that the Grammy show can deliver. This year, merchants are betting that the artists most likely to enjoy sales bumps with the right performance could be the "Raising Sand" album from Robert Plant and Alison Krauss, even though it's already sold 1.2 million units; and Katy Perry's "One of the Boys," which is approaching 900,000 units, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

"If people don't know one of their favorite artists has an album out and then that artist rules the Grammys, you get a fair-sized jump, like what happened last year when most didn't know the Herbie Hancock album existed," says Newbury Comics head of purchasing Carl Mello.

"That could be the case for Robert Plant and Alison Krauss; they might sell a couple of hundred thousands more, even though it's already sold more than a million. There are probably plenty of old people out there who still don't know that Plant has an album out."

Gallary of Sound's Nardone agrees that the Krauss/Plant performance might be the one "that gets the adult record-buying crowd moving again, if they somehow missed that the album was out. While ["Raising Sand"] is not new at this point, it will be new for some viewers."

Nardone adds that depending on how Perry performs, the show "could push her album over the top."

Down in Nashville, at the 10-unit Music City chain, VP of retail Chuck Thatcher e-mails that his guess is that "Katy Perry, (this year's smile!) will be the breakout record."

Other artists that have the potential to drive sales thanks to the Grammy show are Jennifer Hudson, whose self-titled album has scanned nearly 600,000 units since its release in September 2008; and Adele, whose "19" is approaching 400,000 units.

Mello is betting that Hudson also will receive a sales boost, as does Andre Hunter, co-owner of Record City in Paterson, N.J., who says that her appearance singing the national anthem at the Superbowl is already also driving sales of her album this week.

Value Music's Poehner says the Grammy show could boost sales for Adele. "It's a great album, and typically artists that haven't had their albums purchased in significant quantities are the ones that benefit the most," says Poehner.

Outside shots at getting sales jumps are Radiohead and Lil Wayne, both of which are at the outer limit of retail's sales expectations.

While most merchants believe that most Radiohead fans already acquired the "In Rainbows" album, which has scanned 700,000, after undisclosed sales from a pay-any-price-you-want initial offer for a download version of the album was sold from the band's Web site.

Still, the show might expose Radiohead to customers beyond their devout fanbase, Newbury Comics' Mello says, while Gallery of Sound's Nardone adds that Radiohead's performance might appeal to "fans that thought 'Creep' was their last record."

Retailers also say Lil Wayne might already be maxed out saleswise now that his "Tha Carter III" album is approaching 3 million units. But Mello adds the caveat that even with that amount in sales, "Lil Wayne is a wild card because he might do something off script" at the show."

At least one merchant, Music City's Thatcher, believes "Carrie Underwood could sweep us all of our feet again." He also was the lone merchant that said the Grammy show might help the Jonas Bros. reach a wider audience.

Finally, Newbury Comics' Mello was the lone merchant, during the Billboard Grammy survey, that mentioned U2, which will release "No Line On the Horizon" on March 3. "U2 probably wishes the Grammy show was a month from now," Mello says. "I am surprised U2 couldn't make them move the show."