We’d like you to say “Hey” (or even “Ho Hey!”) to July and August’s You Oughta Know artists, The Lumineers. Childhood friends Wesley Schultz and Jeremiah Fraites began writing music together after the tragic loss of Jeremiah’s brother and Wesley’s friend, Josh. Eventually growing tired of the Brooklyn gruel, they turned west to Colorado. The move, it turns out, was fruitful. Once there, they picked up cellist Neyla Perkarek and released their eponymous debut album, which has since seen rise on the Billboard charts. “I don’t know where I belong,” goes “Ho Hey!”, “but I can write a song.” And that they can. Like the Avett Brothers and Mumford and Sons and many roots-revivalists before them, The Lumineers provide solace from the imposing woomp-woomp of radio these days, favoring instead the thump-thump of their feet and hearts. We think you really oughta know these guys, and here’s five reasons why:
1. That Bing Commercial
Many folks first got wind of these guys during this year’s NBA Finals, when a Bing spot with an infectiously hopeful song played during every commercial break. One internet search for “what is that song in the Bing commercial” later, and before the game was even over, many found themselves officially intrigued by The Lumineers.
Meet Rebecca Ferguson, one of our two You Oughta Know artists for July and August. Hailing from Liverpool, the 25-year-old singer made her first big splash on Britain’s The X Factor‘s seventh season, where she won-over the usually salty Simon Cowell and placed second overall. Her successful showing subsequently earned her a record deal. And although her debut album Heaven only hit shelves stateside in May, the lead single “Nothing’s Real But Love” has already found its way to both the top of the UK charts and deep into our hearts. Ferguson’s belting recalls the classic soul of Aretha Franklin as well as that of the quirkier Macy Gray, but she cites also acts like Mike Posner and rockers Kings Of Leon as influences. Here are five things that make us proud to have her as our latest You Oughta Know artist:
1. Earning It On The X Factor
As she explains in her audition tape for The X Factor, Ferguson assumed her dreams derailed when she got pregnant at the age of 17. “I thought, well, maybe I won’t be able to become a singer. Who’s going to want me, now I’ve got a kid? I lost me confidence,” she shared through tears. Not yet ready to put aside her life long dream of being a singer, she climbed the audition stage and hasn’t looked back since.
For her audition, she sang “A Change Is Gonna Come,” and, oh boy, did a change come. Not even the notoriously difficult Simon Cowell could say no to a voice like hers. “You’re voice is totally on the money,” he said. “Let me try to restore that confidence for you,” he told her, sending her forward to reclaim her spirit as well. It was a long time coming, but she knew a change was going to come.
As a promotional stunt, Pitbullplans to visit whichever Walmart store can accumulate the most “likes” on Facebook before July 15th. in order to “share the experience of using Energy Sheets with my fans.” Pitbull was probably envisioning a quick trip to some superstore in a populated place like Dallas or Southern Florida, somewhere he could “share the experience of using Energy Sheets with my fans” and then be back on his Mr. World Order way. But a writer for the Boston Pheonix and the humor website SomethingAwful.com, has a better idea: why not jam the system and send the sun-bred, Miami boy and his energy strips to a land most forbidden? Or at least most far off.
Using the hashtag #ExilePitbull to rally the troops, troublemaker David Thorpe has earned some 45,000 ‘likes’ for the store in frozen Kodiak, Alaska, some 5,000 miles and many climate zones away from Pitbull’s Miami. A chilly bon voyage it may be!
You Oughta Know artist, Unplugged veteran and history maker — remember how she performed pregnant? — and one-half of the Grammy Award winning duo Civil Wars Joy Williams has added “Mother” to her already impressive résumé. Williams and her husband, the Civil Wars’ manager Nate Yetton, brought a baby boy into the world on Saturday. Welcome, Miles Alexander! “Now I really know what love at first sight means,” she gushed on Twitter. “All happy and healthy.” A hearty congrats to all!
Experience Hendrix, LLC, the family-owned company that over see’s Hendrix’s legacy, has asked that the biopic — which is currently in production in Dublin — not include original music or copyrights created by Hendrix. Because the film is meant to cover the years ahead of Hendrix’s landmark debut, Are You Experienced?, director John Ridley has opted instead to use some of Hendrix’s most famous covers. And so in lieu of Andre Benjamin remakes of “Purple Haze” and “All Along The Watchtower,” we’ll get Andre Benjamin covers of Jimi Hendrix covers of the Beatles, Elvis, Muddy Waters, and more. Not such a bad compromise, if you ask us! Read more…
And so it begins! Some weeks after their much publicized brawl at NYC’s Club W.I.P., Chris Brown has come out swinging at Drake. Rapping over Kanye West‘s remix of Chief Keef’s “I Don’t Like,” Breezy brings the fighting words. Brown calls Drake out as a bottle thrower — a charge Drake has adamantly denied — and takes the Toronto rapper to task for his music, his crew, and most personally his looks. “Them eyebrows, man,” he raps, “them sh**’s is yikes!” That, there, is where it really hurts.
Save for a few nice words reserved for associates Lil Wayne (who he calls “nice”) and Nicki Minaj (whose assets he finds “tight”), Breezy is sure to waste no breath not on Drake. “One on one, what you scared, bruh? Matter of fact, Take Care, bruh,” he raps, making reference to Drake’s last album, Take Care, and calling him forth for battle. He strips Drake of his rapper title, saying, “I be singing, he be singing, so it’s on,” making clear that he — although counted as a crooner first, generally — is fit for the lyrical spar. And of Drake’s October’s Very Own crew and their much bantered about motto, Breezy makes clear that he thinks he’s got one up on them: “OVO, you overdosed, screamin’ YOLO — no, I live twice.”
Banks’ much-anticipated mixtape Fantasea is slated for release on July 11th, a week later than it’s originally planned July 4th date. And according to her Twitter, we can expect one more cut before then: “Next and Last mixtape leak will be more dancey – more singey … More core Azealia Banks.” Heads up!
CARLY RAE JEPSEN SAYS HER FULL-LENGTH DEBUT ALBUM IS “ALMOST FINISHED”
“I feel like the songs are mostly there, but there’s still some production and stuff to be done,” the thus-far one-and-one-half hit wonder says. “We’re in the home stretch.” [MTV]
SKRILLEX IS SCORING HARMONY KORINE’S NEW MOVIE
And, diving deeper yet into the pop-culture vortex, the movie is said to star James Franco. [Flavorwire]
MEET THE MAN WHO MAKES JUSTIN BIEBER SING
Kuk Harrell, vocal producer to the stars, is the one that makes sure artists like Bieber, Rihanna, and Jennifer Lopez bring their “superstar performance” to every song. [NYT]
TOM CRUISE GETS M83 TO SCORE HIS NEXT MOVIE
The french electronic band are set to score Oblivion, a sci-fi film that stars Tom Cruise and is directed by Tron: Legacy director Joseph Kosinski. You win some, you lose some. [RS]
According to TMZ, the Lauryn Hill has plead guilty to tax evasion, telling a judge this morning that she intentionally failed to file tax returns in between 2005 and 2007, when she earned more than $1.8 million. She was released on $150,000 bail, but will have to return to court in November for sentencing. According to her attorney, Nathan Hochman, Hill plans on paying back the taxes owed before then. But if it’s decided in November that the gesture is to little or too late, she could see up to three years of jail time.
When news broke, the former Fugees frontwoman attempted to temper the charges with a lengthy missive posted to her Tumblr. “For the past several years, I have remained what others would consider underground,” she wrote in defense, claiming to have removed herself and her family from society in order to “keep them safe, healthy, and free from danger.” She goes on to explain that she had filed regularly in the years prior and that, although she she stopped when she felt “it was necessary to withdraw from society”, her intention “has always been to get this situation rectified.”
Unfortunately, potential three years jail time (one for each year’s taxes not filed) and upwards of $75,000 in fines sounds not like the rectification she had hoped for. Hill has been edging herself back into the scene, making semi-regular appearances at big events like Hot 97′s Summer Jam and Rock the Bells the year prior. It was starting to seem like we might get her back! But, as compelling as Ms. Hill’s arguments for hiding out may be, Uncle Sam gets the last say on this one.