She did it, Arianators: She’s finally gone and broken free.
Ariana Grande‘s highly anticipated, much-hyped second studio album My Everything is finally upon us.
After dishing out her horn-heavy summer smash “Problem” with Iggy Azalea, her EDM-tastic Zedd banger “Break Free” and “Bang Bang,” her powerhouse collaboration with Jessie J and Nicki Minaj, as well as an opening performance on last night’s 2014 MTV Video Music Awards, the pint-sized pop diva’s finally ready to give us all her love on her feature-filled follow-up to her critically acclaimed 2013 debut, Yours Truly.
Our own Kathy Iandoli concluded that Ari’s new album “diminishes any theory of a sophomore curse, as Ariana delivers a solid enough work — however, it’s done with the help of many,” giving the album a four out of five. But what did the rest of the critics have to say? 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.
1999: the year when pop music ruled the world. From the United States to the UK, the genre was inescapable on music charts, televisions shows, the radio and even our favorite magazine covers. The brink of Y2k gave way to the fresh faces of pop that quickly became music legends of our time: Backstreet Boys, Britney Spears, *NSYNC and Christina Aguilera. All but Aguilera were already dominating the international charts, with the singer being the last of the four to release her debut. She was introduced to the music scene as part of the 4 Pop Blondes, which included Spears, Jessica Simpson and Mandy Moore. The battle of becoming the the “It” girl in music at that time was a tough one, but nobody could hold the then-19-year-old down (never can, never will)!
Prior to her debut album, many knew Aguilera as a bright-eyed young girl from from 1993′s The New Mickey Mouse Club. Released just eight months after Britney Spears’ iconic …Baby One More Time, at first Christina’s debut was placed in the shadows of pop music’s first princess. But the worldwide success of the four singles that emerged from Christina Aguilera proved that she was a star all her own. While Spears was looked at as the sweet girl next door with her endearing personality, Aguilera showed early signs of her “Xtina” alter ego, as she was unafraid to be mainstream music’s sexualized and rebellious bad girl. Both stars may have had a lot on common at the time, but there was no doubt that Christina Aguilera was bound to achieve a status that placed her within the ranks of Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston.
During this musical era, record labels were focused on creating flash-in-the-pan pop phenomenons. Nonetheless, the raw talent that shone throughout Christina Aguilera saved the album from becoming too candy-coated.
Today we celebrate the 15th anniversary of Christina’s self-titled debut album, which was released on August 24, 1999, and gave rise to an international superstar — as well as the birth of Legendtina. (SAY!) More »
:: Comedian Kathy Griffin has officially nominated Nicki Minaj..not for the Ice Bucket Challenge, but a butt contest — “a boo-tay-off,” rather — after having seen Minaj’s “Anaconda” video. “It’s like the Ice Bucket Challenge, but it doesn’t even have any charity associated with it at all,” Griffin says. [AP]
:: One of Nicki Minaj‘s back-up dancers was bitten by a six-foot long, non-venomous snake during rehearsals for the MTV VMAs. (Yes, they were performing her Sir Mix-A-Lot-sampling “Anaconda.”) “It is in no way life-threatening, but scary,” a Viacom rep said. [MTV]
:: Speaking of the VMAs: Iggy Azalea fell off stage while performing at a pre-awards show benefit concert. Afterwards, The New Classic star posted a video of the incident herself. “Sorry, but it would be a crime not to share this with you all, I know I laughed,” she said. [Instagram]
:: Cat Power invited Sky Ferreira to perform at a concert benefiting Ferguson protesters. Ferreira says that while she’s scheduled to perform elsewhere, all proceeds from her own show will also go toward the same cause. [Rolling Stone]
:: Wiz Khalifa canceled a concert in Culta Vista, Calif., after finding out that a fan was fatally shot backstage at a show the night before. “This was a senseless tragedy. Violence is never the answer. My prayers go out to the victim’s family,” he said. [Billboard]
:: Shawn Mendes really digs Taylor Swift‘s new song. [Twitter]
Find out what music you can catch on TV today after the jump. More »
I can’t stop crying. We did it, kids…we made it through another year of the MTV Video Music Awards!
The show kicked off with a bang (sort of!), as pint-sized pop tart Ariana Grande crash-landed onto the stage to merrily skip around for a rendition of “Break Free.” Cute! Then came a second bang — err, butt, as our beloved “Pills N Potions” rapstress Nicki Minaj took to her jungle-themed stage (which was snake-free by the way, thanks to an incident over the weekend) to deliver some spot-on booty-ography from her a$$-clapping “Anaconda” video. And then, an ACTUAL “Bang Bang,” as Jessie J arrived to the stage. The powerhouse trio then teamed up on stage, except — eek! Nicki was just barely zipped up into her dress, resulting in an unfortunate wardrobe malfunction. But even though the dress totally flopped, she expertly covered her bits and handled it like a total champ. More »
Thirty years ago, in 1984, the very first MTV Video Music Awards was held at Radio City Music Hall in New York. Actor/Blues Brother Dan Aykroyd and actress-singer Bette Midler co-hosted, Madonna gave her infamous “writhing around in a wedding dress” performance of “Like A Virgin,” The Cars won Video Of The Year for “You Might Think” and David Bowie and Cyndi Lauper won Best Male Video (“China Girl”) and Best Female Video (“Girls Just Want To Have Fun”), respectively.
A lot has changed in that time, and he 31st annual VMAs was held at The Forum in Inglewood, California, just south of Los Angeles. Beyonce and Iggy Azalea were tied for the most nominations, with eight apiece, while Bey received the Video Vanguard Awards (an honor bestowed upon David Bowie, The Beatles and A Hard Day’s Night director Richard Lester at that very first ceremony in 1984).
Below, is the full list of winners from the 2014 MTV VMAs, where you can see who all took home a Moonman after the latest installment of MTV’s annual music blowout. More »
Has Jennifer Lopez ever looked in a mirror and not been greeted with a vision of flawless perfection? The stunning diva tore up the red carpet in a revealing (but still classy and sophisticated) metallic dress that showed off her famous curves and then some. She is basically a red carpet zen master and the other girls should all be taking notes.
The striking 45-year-old (how is this possible?) released some amazing visuals over the past 12 months but somehow failed to get any nominations. Obviously, they missed the camp brilliance of “I Luh Ya Papi” and the gorgeous black-and-white “First Love” video. Whatever. Jennifer still gets to wake up every morning looking like that. She wins. More »
The MTV Video Music Awards — always the bastion of big, glossy pop performances! The 2014 installment was no exception, as Charli XCX and Fifth Harmony got the night warmed up during the pre-show, before Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj and Jessie J kicked the official VMAs show off with a “Bang Bang.”
Head below to catch those performances, plus Taylor Swift (“Shake It Off”), Sam Smith (“Stay With me”), Iggy Azalea (“Black Widow”) and many, many more. More »
It says a lot about the direction of pop music (and the unquenchable thirst of the game’s leading ladies) when Miley Cyrus is one of the most elegantly-attired divas on the MTV Video Music Awards red carpet. Sure, she was wearing a thin strip of leather that barely covered her chest but that might as well be a nun’s habit in comparison to what her colleagues were rocking.
The twerkin’ maverick stole the show last year with her raunchy on-stage antics and giant foam finger but she seemed happy to take a back seat this time around. Instead, she clowned around on the red carpet — love the extreme tongue action — and looked like she was having a great old time. Miley for the win, wouldn’t you say? More »
5 Seconds Of Summer tore up the red carpet at the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles tonight (August 24). The Australian rockers laughed and joked their way their way past photographers and looked great in the process. Leather jackets and blazers have never looked quite so good together!
The guys are having one hell of a year. They have consistently topped the iTunes sales chart with each new single and reached number one on the Billboard 200 with their self-titled debut album. It also had one of the biggest first week sales tallies of 2014. 5 Seconds Of Summer is a massive hit or two away from being the biggest band in the world. More »