Sure, it’s easy to celebrate Valentine’s Day on a pop music website. The entire pop industry is built on songs about falling in love sung by attractive, covetable
stars. Pop music gives couples “our song” and something to muffle the squeaky bed frame. But pop music is also a playground for the cold-hearted cynics scowling their way through this sappiest of holidays. And we’re here for them.
But instead of just doing another tired list of breakup songs, we’re highlighting professional breakups between artists and their producers (collaborations that, incidentally, are responsible for a fair share of breakup songs). Because an artistic relationship that results in pop music perfection is rare. When that ends, you can’t just take comfort in a pint of ice cream.
So below, we’ve eulogized 10 successful artist-producer teams that disintegrated because of diminishing returns, squabbles over creative control, alleged body-shaming or, in the case of Ke$ha and Dr. Luke, all three of those things. Happy Valentine’s Day! More »
Here’s something a little different for your Friday afternoon. Beyonce
just updated her Tumblr with a video of her jumping off a luxury yacht during her recent mediterranean vacation. Filmed on Jay Z
‘s smartphone, the cute clip begins with a bikini clad Bey standing on the ship’s roof.
Hov can be heard cheering her on (“team turn up!”) before the world-running diva jumps into the clear blue water. She quickly surfaces and waves her hands in victory while her proud husband celebrates. The Carters really are too cute. They even make semi-reckless behavior look utterly adorable. Watch adventure lady Beyonce in action up top. More »
just unveiled the tracklist to his forthcoming album Mastermind
(out March 4), and unsurprisingly, it boasts an A-list roster. We already knew Jay Z
was on the LP for “The Devil Is a Lie,”
but Kanye West
, Lil Wayne
, Big Sean
, The Weeknd
and Meek Mill
are also featured on the release. (Guess we’ll have to wait a bit longer to get that apparent Justin Bieber collab
Ye and his G.O.O.D. Music signee Big Sean join forces on “Sanctified,” while Weezy appears on a cut called “Thug Cry.” As for The Weeknd’s collab, it sounds appropriately druggy with the title “In Vein.” Mastermind clocks in at 16 tracks, plus three bonus tracks including a reprise of “FuckWithMeYouKnowIGotIt,” Rozay’s collaboration with Hov from Magna Carta Holy Grail. In addition, yesterday (February 6), Ross announced Diddy is the album’s co-executive producer.
Check out the tracklist and the video announcing it below. More »
Did You Hear?
:: Fifth Harmony recorded a new theme song for Barbie, titled “Anything Is Possible.” The lyric video is out now, while an actual music video and doll collaboration (!) are coming soon. [Twitter]
:: Tegan And Sara are among the dozen or so featured musicians in “Go Forth, Feminist Warriors,” a Rookie theme song inspired by Michael Jackson‘s “We Are The World.” (Others include Carrie Brownstein, Aimee Mann and Kate Nash.) [Rookie]
:: Jay Z performed to a small but star-studded crowd (Kate Upton, Jamie Foxx, Chris Tucker) for DirecTV’s pre-Super Bowl bash on February 1, as the biggest artist lined up that week. But when Beyonce made a surprise cameo to help perform “Drunk In Love,” she outshined everyone. [Newsday]
:: Real Time host Bill Maher nodded to a Macklemore & Ryan Lewis performance to make a controversial joke aimed at conservatives. “Now that liberals have forwarded their agenda by inserting a mass gay wedding into the Grammys, conservatives must match them tit-for-tat by having a mass shooting at the Country Music Awards,” he said. [POLITICO]
:: Late Show with David Letterman will pay tribute to the 50th anniversary of The Beatles‘ iconic debut TV performance on The Ed Sullivan Show. This week’s musical guests, including Sting and Sean Lennon, will perform covers of Beatles classics. [CBS]
After the jump, find out what music you can catch on TV today. More »
really knew what she was doing when she picked Jay Z
-assisted sex jam “Drunk In Love”
as the lead single from her chart-busting fifth album
. The infectious anthem owns R&B radio and roared into the iTunes top five post-Grammy performance
. Oh and Vin Diesel
even filmed himself doing the choreography
, so you know the track hit a nerve in pop culture.
Following in the footsteps of Angel Haze, who dropped a cover earlier in the week, Future has joined the song’s growing fan club by recording his own version of Bey and Jay’s TMI love letter. And like the femcee, he takes over both parts and does a fairly good job of personalizing it — putting a distinctly male spin on “Drunk In Love”. (Let’s just say some of his lyrics make Hov sound prudish). Listen to the rapper’s unexpected cover after the jump. More »
Did You Hear?
:: This isn’t so much newsworthy as completely awesome. Jay Z and Grimes smoked cigars together at Roc Nation’s pre-Grammy’s party. What do you think they were talking about? The weather? [NME]
:: Queen Latifah will sing “America The Beautiful” during the Super Bowl XLVIII pre-game festivities. The rapper/talk show host last performed at the sporting event four years ago. [Billboard]
:: If you thought Ciara had plans to slow down during her pregnancy, you were mistaken. The mom-to-be premiered a new song called “Anytime” at a Grammy Awards after party. It sounds good! [E Online]
:: Justin Bieber might be hiding in Panama but his video for “Confident” will still debut this week. He even shared pics from the set on Twitter and Instagram. It seems to involve dancing in a warehouse. [MTV]
After the jump, find out what music you can catch on TV today. More »
The 2014 Grammy Awards began with a self-contained advertisement for the Awards themselves, which were touted as a platform for performances that “people will be talking about for years.” So did this year live up to the high standards? Eh, maybe a couple of them? Pink
‘s trapeze act was expected, but that made it no less impressive (let’s ignore the second half with Nate Ruess
for now). Daft Punk
‘s “Get Lucky” rendition was pretty tame at first, but once Stevie got comfortable and dug in, and the Robots appeared behind the faux studio, it became perhaps the highlight of the night. They were just totally committed to that ’70s studio cheese vibe, resulting in a well-executed, hard-to-dislike performance.
Meanwhile, rap fans were bracing for the worst all night, knowing Kendrick Lamar would be paired with Imagine Dragons. But you know what? Their “Radioactive”/”m.A.A.d city” mashup was rad! K-Dot didn’t necessarily need the added rock heft, but he was never in danger of getting buried by the thunder, and instead it only made him more menacing and dialed in. And you gotta give it to ID’s singer, that is a great rock howl.
As for Beyonce, she gave us a promising start, with a Flashdance-y rendition of “Drunk In Love,” rocking wet hair (presumably from riding that surfboart) and a bootylicious body suit. Hubby Jay Z joined her near the end of the song on his suit and bow tie shit once again, and they held hands and embraced for some classy steamy Grammy goodness.
Check out all of the performances below. (There were so, so many.) More »
The 56th annual Grammy Awards kicked off at 8 p.m. on Jauary 26th at Los Angeles’ mammoth Staples Center, and before the televised event even hit the airwaves, awards were handed out to artists and personalities as varied as Michael Buble
(Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album) and Stephen Colbert
(Best Spoken Word Album), and albums like Daft Punk
‘s Random Access Memories
(Best Engineered Album, Non-Classical and Best Dance/Electronic Album).
French duo Daft Punk went on to nab the awards for Album Of The Year, Record Of The Year and Best Duo Or Group Performance, the latter two for their summer jam “Get Lucky.” New Zealand teen Lorde proved to be a big upset when she took the Song Of The Year and Best Pop Solo Performance Grammys for her radio smash “Royals.”
Elsewhere, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis not only stunned with their epic performance of “Same Love” — a spectacle that included Mary Lambert, Queen Latifah, Madonna and over 30 couples who got married on stage — the pair also walked away with Grammys for Best New Artist, Best Rap Album and Best Rap Song (“Thrift Shop”).
Catch the entire head-spinning list of winners at the Grammy Awards below. More »
In our Morning Mix roundup today, we mentioned that Beyonce
and Jay Z
have topped Billboard
‘s latest Power 100 list
. Above you’ll see the cover of the music industry publication to go with that feature, which credits the couple’s “game-changing moves” for putting them at the top of the heap when it came to the biz’s savviest movers and shakers in 2013.
“Leveraging their star power to release new albums in unprecedented ways — Jay Z through Samsung and Beyonce through iTunes — they instantly changed how the industry and fans thought about interacting with music,” Billboard writes. We totally concur. More »
Music fans barely had a chance to absorb all the Best of 2013 lists and 2014 prediction posts before having to switch into Grammy mode, thanks to the show’s earlier date this year. But maybe it’s better this way, coming before the Super Bowl, before anything has had a chance to really set the tone for the forthcoming year in pop music. One last appraisal of the year that was, while the breakouts and the memes and the capital-M Moments are still fresh in our minds. (An indirect benefit of this, of course, is that it’s easier to channel the necessary anger over any snubs and nonsensical nominations).
It’s unclear how the Grammys will send off 2013, but a few things are very clear regarding what will go down on January 26 at 8 p.m. ET on CBS: People will be drunk and in love. Lines will be blurred. Dragons will be imagined. Below, find everything you need to know about the 2014 Grammy Awards. More »