Calling all Sam Smith fans: you can now rejoice! The UK crooner has announced “Like I Can” as his new single off his critically-acclaimed debut LP, In The Lonely Hour. It is a mid-tempo that places the singer’s vocals at the forefront, with acoustic guitar licks and a stomping bass in the background production.
Smith is also gearing up for a North American arena tour, which begins on January 9 in Atlanta, GA. “Like I Can” follows major tunes like “Restart,” “I’m Not The Only One,” “Money On My Mind,” and his smash hit — “Stay With Me.” In The Lonely Hour was released in the United States in June 2014.
Listen to the new single after the jump. More »
Popping Up is our recurring look at new artists making noise on the music landscape. Because, hey — Madonna and Britney were once unknown, too.
Over the past year, various musicians from the UK quickly made a name for themselves here in the states — including Sam Smith, Clean Bandit and Gorgon City. The latest to do so is Hollie Cook. She’s the daughter of Sex Pistols‘ Paul Cook and Jeni (formerly a backup singer for Culture Club), but she doesn’t let her parents’ big names get in the way of her budding career. Instead of drawing on punk influences or new wave as people may expect, she has gone the route of romantic lover’s rock and reggae.
The singer was a part of post-punk band The Slits for four years, until she decided to break out on her own with the self-titled debut album in 2011. Cook made some waves in her home country, but it was sophomore LP Twice (released in May 2014) that caught the eyes of fans in America — including us!
Read on after the jump to find out why this London import should be on your radar! More »
This year has been very good to Nicki Minaj: her inescapable “Anaconda” single is certified Platinum, she was blessed to share the stage with Beyonce for their “***Flawless” remix and she was spotted hanging out with the Queen of Pop herself — Madonna. Now the rapper is gearing up to host and perform at the 2014 MTV Europe Music Awards.
A new promo clip for the ceremony has arrived, and it’s a glimpse into the future. Set one day after the EMAs, the video shows Minaj’s global domination. There are E-Minajs (emojis inspired by the rapper), her own late-night show, hamburgers shaped like her infamous bum and even money with her face on it!
Along with Minaj, Calvin Harris, Ariana Grande, Charli XCX, Ed Sheeran and Kiesza are all set to perform. The show will set to air on November 9, live from the SSE Hydro arena in Glasgow, Scotland. View the entire nominations list for the 2014 MTV EMAs here. More »
Taylor Swift is utterly inescapable at the moment, and her album 1989 isn’t even out yet. (Oh, it’s coming, Swifties — just hang tight.) Her latest spectacle for TV viewers came courtesy of last night’s episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live.
As Swift is on the level of Those Who Can Shut Down Hollywood Blvd. For A Live Performance, she figured, oh, why the hell not. Decked out in a slinky black ensemble on a giant stage outside the El Capitan Theatre, Taylor belted out her recent chart-topper “Shake It Off,” as well as moody synth track “Out Of The Woods,” all with a little help from her band and a group of backup vocalists.
1989 is released on Monday (October 27). Anyone think it’ll be a hit? Probably not. Catch “Shake It Off” above, and “Out Of The Woods” below. More »
The truth is out, no stopping now Harmonizers: Fifth Harmony have got a brand new song for you!
It seems like only yesterday when the girls were in our studio singing their stomping, sassy urban-pop ode to all the independent girls, “BO$$.” But now, with the release of their long-awaited debut LP Reflection just weeks away, they’re already onto the next one.
And this time around, they’ve switched up their sound (yet again) with “Sledgehammer,” a big, throbbing electro-pop production. After the girls made their single announcement via Twitter last night, the song made its official radio premiere on 104.3 FM, which you can now hear after the jump. More »
Backtracking is our recurring look back at the pop music that shaped our lives. Our friends may come and go, but we’ll be spinning our favorite albums forever.
Throughout her extensive career, Madonna (a.k.a. The Queen of Pop) has worn many, quite controversial hats. Whether it be a girly-girl for 1986′s True Blue, a political rebel for 2003′s American Life or a disco goddess for 2005′s Confession On A Dancefloor, the entertainer always knows how to switch up her persona to keep her fans interested and the world guessing what her next move will be. (Well, maybe not with MDNA. I’d like to forget that album.)
But one of the singer’s greatest musical eras was arguably her most subtle. On October 25, 1994, her sixth studio LP Bedtime Stories released worldwide. The album found Madonna easing up on her naughty persona and going for a softer vibe, and today (October 24) we celebrate its timeless sound.
Madonna’s much talked about album, Erotica (released in 1992), did not go over well with critics or some of the entertainer’s fans. The backlash she received from it stemmed from its explicitly sexual nature (which included the infamous Sex book). Two years later, Bedtime Stories acted as the tamer, more mellow sister that tried to gloss over the singer’s panned image. While it was obviously a cleaned-up and more accessible album, it still signified another era of change for Madonna. Sure, she makes incredible dance-pop classics, but Bedtime Stories displayed the evolution of a soulful singer, and it helped lead to albums like the adventurous Ray of Light (1998) and possibly even the “B-girl” edge of 2008′s Hard Candy (as crazy as that sounds). More »
If you were hoping for another sassy, radio-friendly hip-pop jam from Iggy Azalea in the exact same vein as breakout smash “Fancy” and “Black Widow” — i.e. rhymes about men forever pawing at the ballin’ blonde rapstress, a cute and poppy sing-song chorus and Azalea’s ubiquitous I-G-G-Y! — then you’ll be more than pleased with “Beg For It.” The song serves as the lead single from Iggy’s upcoming re-issue of her debut LP The New Classic, titled Reclassified, and she’ll work-work-work-work out her debut television performance of the track on Saturday Night Live this weekend.
At one point “Fancy” diva Charli XCX was attached the chorus duties on “Beg For It,” but, you know — the pop game is one that involves a fair amount of shuffle, and now Danish songbird MØ is featured.
Get on your knees and beg for it below. More »
Did You Hear?
:: Congrats are in order for Beyonce and Jay Z! According to People, the star couple renewed their wedding vows after six years of marriage. Maybe now those divorce rumors can be put to an end. [People]
:: Courtney Love will try her hand at acting again, as the Hole singer is set to appear on FOX’s Empire. She will be a recurring guest star on the upcoming drama, playing the role of rocker Elle Dallas. [The Hollywood Reporter]
:: Dr. Dre and music mogul Jimmy Iovine are planning to start their own college. The duo sold their Beats headphones company to Apple for a few billion dollars, and used the money to fund the new venture.The program’s name is called the “USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology, and the Business of Innovation.” [Pigeons & Planes]
:: Nine years after his single “You’re Beautiful” debuted, James Blunt is finally agreeing with the rest of the world that the song was (and still is) annoying. He told Hello! magazine, “I think, at the end of the day, I was marketed by a record company to appeal to women during Desperate Housewives‘ commercials and you lose 50 percent of the population in doing so.” Hey, better late than never! [Billboard]
:: Anna Todd, an up-and-coming novelist who writes One Direction fan fiction, just scored a six-figure publishing deal. After, her debut erotic book that follows a character’s sexual interactions with a guy named Harry Styles, will hit your nearest bookshelves next week. [Rolling Stone]
Find out below what music you can catch on TV today. More »
Guy Sebastian revealed the cover of his Madness LP on Instagram today (October 23). The black-and-white artwork uses a side-shot of the Aussie superstar, which nicely shows off the ink on his arm. The album drops November 21 in his homeland — an international release will follow — and features 2 Chainz-assisted trap/pop banger “Mama Ain’t Proud”.
Other songs to make the tracklist include the 32-year-old’s recent US single “Like A Drum” and infectious EDM adventure “Come Home With Me”. Guy’s last seven albums have all reached the top 10 in Australia, so there’s a lot of pressure on Madness to keep his winning streak intact. Given the success of the singles, it shouldn’t be a problem. Check out the full tracklist after the jump. More »
Rita Ora posted this TBT (Throw Back Thursday) pic on Instagram earlier this morning (October 23) without an explanation. Not that she needs one. The 23-year-old is something of a nude pioneer when it comes to social media, sharing topless pics and even a disturbing kitty snap. [Editor's note: Reminder to have the staff watch And God Created Woman and Viva Maria! and a few other Bridgitte Bardot (pictured above) classics. It's not all about Miley and Rihanna and Rita, you know!]
It’s nice to see that recording a classy ballad with Diane Warren — the wonderful “Grateful” — hasn’t damped her spirit. In other Rita news, she’s still chipping away at her sophomore album after ex-boyfriend Calvin Harris took back all the songs he wrote for it. It’s now expected to drop in early 2015. Check out the cigarette-puffing nude the diva posted after the jump. More »