‘The Voice’: DaNica Shirey and Toia Jones Belt Out Beyonce’s “Halo”

Though Pharrell is undoubtedly the lyrical genius on the Voice panel, it is Gwen Stefani who had the quote of the night/Battles/season when speaking of bringing in her husband, Gavin Rossdale, to mentor her team. “I was kind of nervous about it, because we’ve never done anything outside of make out and have kids,” she said.

Take note, newlywed Adam Levine: making out and having kids have brought the Stefani-Rossdales through 12 years of marriage. Whatever it takes to spark the fire, as they say.

Besides making out and having kids, there was work to be done as The Battles continued. Going into the evening, Pharrell was out of steals, Adam had yet to use one successfully and Blake Shelton and Gwen still each had one steal to drop in this final week. More »

t.A.T.u.’s Lena Katina Bares All In “Who I Am” Video: Idolator Premiere

lena-who-i-am
It's Who She Is!

Lena Katina is finally ready to tell us who she really is.

Of course, we were already very familiar with the songstress when she was acting as one-half of the legendary Russian duo t.A.T.u. for the latter half of the ’00s, delivering global hits like “All The Things She Said” and “Not Gonna Get Us.”

Following the troupe’s disbandment, Lena went on to supply us with several solo offerings over the years, from 2011′s “Never Forget” to “Lift Me Up” last October. At last, the talented songstress is ready to roll out her long-awaited debut LP, This Is Who I Am.

Just ahead of the album’s release (November 18), the singer premiered her new single and album namesake, “Who I Am.” And today, we’re bringing you the premiere of the video, which you can now watch above. More »

Lorde’s ‘Hunger Games: Mockingjay, Pt. 1′ Soundtrack Features Charlie XCX, HAIM, Kanye West & More

Over the summer, it was announced that Lorde will curate the soundtrack for the upcoming blockbuster The Hunger Games: Mockingjay – Part 1. We already got a taste of what the project will sound like, thanks to the singer’s haunting “Yellow Flicker Beat.” Yesterday, her collaboration with the Chemical Brothers and Miguel (“This Is Not A Game”) premiered on radio. 

The singer pulled in some amazing talent for the project (which seem too good to be true), including Tove Lo, TinasheBat For Lashes and Grace Jones. The collaborations are also unexpected: there’s a Kanye West remix of “Flicker,” Charli XCX with Duran Duran‘s Simon Bon and a mega-track with Lorde, StromaePusha T, Q-Tip and HAIM.

Lorde’s solo tune from the soundtrack is already major, so there’s no doubt the rest of the artists will bring the heat. It will be available on November 17, while Mockingjay hits theaters on November 21. View the tracklist in its entirety after the jump. More »

Mariah Carey Makes Record-Breaking Run In China On ‘The Elusive Chanteuse Show’ Tour: Watch A “Hero” Montage

Much has been said about the legendary Mariah Carey‘s The Elusive Chanteuse Show which kicked off in Asia at the beginning of the month, from the good (hear her cover Billie Holiday‘s “Don’t Explain”!) to the bad, including those iffy opening night vocals — which have seemingly improved.

But while the Western world continues to chatter away, Mimi’s simply too busy breaking all sorts of international touring records while hitting her stops in China.

According to her official website, as of this week, Mariah Carey just became “the first ever western artist to play 5 stadiums in China and the first ever western artist to perform in Tianjin.” A major feat!

And to celebrate to achievement, she’s just uploaded a very special montage video featuring her performances of “Hero,” recorded live from all 5 stadiums in Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Tianjin and Shanghai. Check out the video after the jump. More »

Kiesza Discusses New Album ‘Sound Of A Woman’ & The Runaway Success Of “Hideaway”: Idolator Interview

Kiesza Talks About The Making Of Her 'Sound'

Kiesza’s life has become an unexpected whirlwind in 2014. Since the release of her deep house throwback “Hideaway” this past spring, the Canadian singer-songwriter has spent more time on airplanes and in different countries than she ever could have imagined.

“I’m flying to Italy on Friday, and then back to L.A. That’s going to be a fun flight,” Kiesza says over lunch in New York’s Upper West Side. It’s a sunny afternoon in mid-September, just six months after we invited her into the Idolator studio for a Popping Up feature — her first on-camera interview. In that time, “Hideaway” has gone from simply being a viral YouTube sensation to becoming a rampant chart-topping smash in countries like the UK and Italy, as well as a Top 10 hit in most other territories in the world.

Half a year later, the two of us are meeting up again to talk about the bigger picture: Kiesza’s debut album, Sound Of A Woman (out today, October 21 – pick it up here). The LP is a blend of house, classic hip hop beats and torch-song balladry that showcases both her and producer Rami Samir Afuni‘s deep appreciation for the 1990s.

Head below to find out about Kiesza’s labor of love that was several years in the making. More »

Kiesza’s ‘Sound Of A Woman’: Album Review

After the whirlwind that was last year’s Q4 pop album releases (including Katy Perry‘s Prism, Lady Gaga‘s ARTPOP, Britney SpearsBritney Jean and Beyonce‘s Beyonce), the music industry seemed to fade into a boring lull once 2014 hit. But fast forward to the current season, and it appears that pop has had a musical resurgence – thanks to artists like Canadian pop-house maven Kiesza. The flame-haired singer first made waves this past, chilly winter with her smash single, “Hideaway” and now her debut LP Sound Of A Woman arrives today ().

More »

Jessie Ware’s ‘Tough Love’: Album Review

British soul singer Jessie Ware can be modest. “I’m never going to be a pop star like Lady Gaga,” she once said, as if the idea was too far out of reach. Plus, while her voice is just as powerful as fellow UK star Jessie J (no, really), Ware’s 2012 debut Devotion was proof positive that she won’t require back-up dancers anytime soon. Devotion may have marked her transition from featured vocalist for electronica producers like SBTRKT to solo artist; however, Ware kept her voice low among the album’s dripping tempos, airy ambiance and simmering drama.

That was fine – after all, the “Wildest Moments” singer earned easy comparisons to Sade, a major influence and the epitome of smooth operator, while helping reestablish that R&B has long been more exciting and forward-thinking than Chris Brown ever made it seem. Still, while Devotion portrayed Ware as someone who keeps her composure, follow-up Tough Love (out today, ) demonstrates that, actually, she’s got some nerve – and that, too, is really exciting. More »

Taylor Swift Calls Out Her “Sexist” Haters: Morning Mix

Shake Off The Haters!

Did You Hear?

:: Taylor Swift has a message for all her haters out there! When asked about the critique of her always writing about ex-boyfriends, she stated “I think frankly that’s a very sexist angle to take. No one says that about Ed Sheeran. No one says that about Bruno Mars. They’re all writing songs about their exes, their current girlfriends, their love life and no one raises a red flag there.” [via MTV News]

:: Speaking of Taylor Swift and her love life…the singer recently gave some advice to friend Selena Gomez. During her appearance on The Talk, Gomez said this about Swift: “[Taylor] was actually at my house the other day and we were sitting by the fire and I was talking about relationships and business in my life and she just kind of looked at me, and she supports me and never judges me for anything, and she was like, ‘Selena, if you’re the smartest person in the room, I think you’re going to be in the wrong room.’” [MTV]

:: Legendary reggae singer John Holt has passed away at the age of 69. He is known for being a member of The Paragons, and for songs like “The Tide Is High” and “Stick By Me.” [The Guardian]

:: Chris Brown, T.I., Trey Songz, J. Cole, and Tinashe are all added to Power 106 FM’s “Cali Christmas” annual concert. It will take place on December 5 at The Forum in Inglewood, CA, and tickets go on sale this Thursday. [Rap-Up]

:: Ever wondered what it would be like if Jay Z, DMX and Ja Rule created a rap super-group? Well it almost happened! In the late ’90s, the three artists recorded separately under Irv Gotti‘s Murder INC. label and even had some collaborations together. But it didn’t work out, as Jay Z and DMX’s relationship became tense. [MTV News]

Find out below what music you can catch on TV today. More »

Lorde And Miguel Feature On “This Is Not A Game”: Listen To The Chemical Brothers’ Menacing ‘Mockingjay’ Soundtrack Cut

Lorde might be banned from the airwaves in San Francisco but knowing she’s the queen of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 soundtrack must be some consolation. The Kiwi teen released her first contribution to the film, “Yellow Flicker Beat”, in late September but now ups the ante by delivering a blockbuster collaboration with Miguel and The Chemical Brothers.

After the briefest of introductions by Lorde (all she says is “there it is!”), Miguel takes over the reigns — rapping about survival over menacing trap beats. The English producers then revert to their preferred electro for the furious chorus. Happily, the “Royals” diva returns intermittently throughout the song to sing/speak the hook but it’s not really about her this time. Listen to the radio premiere after the jump. More »

Nicki Minaj Brings Out The Big Guns For Her ‘GQ’ Shoot, Sheds Some Light On That Outrageous “Anaconda” Video

Nicki Minaj poses next to pastel-colored poodles in her glamorous GQ shoot but that’s not the most outrageous thing you’ll in the photos. Instead, the eye is immediately drawn to the femcee’s barely-there top, which appears to be a marvel of modern engineering. The 31-year-old spoke to the magazine about her upcoming LP The Pink Print and meme-spawning “Anaconda” video.

After making the seemingly disingenuous claim that there’s no sexual innuendo in the song or video (“it’s just cheeky, like a funny story… all it says is, ‘my anaconda don’t’”), Nicki sheds some light on the feminist statement she was trying to make with “Anaconda”. “That was important for us to show in the kitchen scene, because it’s always about the female taking back the power,” she says in reference to the clip’s banana-chopping moment. See another pic from her stunning GQ shoot after the jump. More »