Without a doubt, Tegan & Sara‘s “Closer” is, in addition to being the theme song of VH1′s latest brand campaign, one of the most anthemic songs of the new year. The identical twin sisters have been icons of the LGBT community since the outset of their career, which is one of the many reasons why we were so excited about them being booked as a musical act on last night’s NewNowNext Awards.
Posts By Mark Graham
Music fans and MDMA enthusiasts alike converged in Indio, California over the last few days for the first weekend of the 2013 Coachella Festival. Sadly, we were stuck on our couches here in New York City and not in attendance, but thanks to the magic of YouTube, we spent a considerable amount of time over the weekend watching the myriad acts on the lineup delight both the sober and not-so-sober members of the audience (we’re talking to you, denizens of the Sahara Tent). Of course, one of our favorite acts of the weekend was our April You Oughta Know artist, Jessie Ware, who performed not once but TWICE over the weekend.
Jessie Ware is VH1′s You Oughta Know artist this month, and we had the great fortune of spending a few days with her in New York City earlier this month. Jessie’s debut album, Devotion, hits U.S. shores tomorrow (4/16/13), and if you didn’t happen to pick it up when it was released in the U.K. last fall, you’re in for a treat. It’s one of the lushest R&B albums we’ve heard in years, one that has evoked comparisons to Sade and Blue Lines-era Massive Attack, and racked up a number of “Best Of” awards (including many mentions in VH1′s Best 10 Albums of 2012).
Lyric obsessives like us are always parsing through lines and phrases of songs to get a better understanding of our favorite musicians. What inspires them? What causes them consternation? Who do they constantly dream of having sex with? Read more…
Jay-Z and Beyoncé spent their fifth wedding anniversary celebrating in Cuba, apparently unaware that United States citizens cannot legally travel to Cuba without very specific permission from the government. Since returning, the Carters have caught some flack for their romp down in Castro’s backyard, which inspired Hova’s latest song, “Open Letter.”
Hunter Hayes has been identified by fans and critics alike as one of the up-and-coming stars of country music. He was nominated for Best New Artist at the Grammys this year, and seems poised to be one of those rare country artists whose music is embraced by fans both inside and out of Nashville. VH1 and MTV are excited to be partnering on a livestream of one of his upcoming shows this summer, full details of which are conveniently located below!
Jay-Z‘s inaugural Made In America festival was held last fall in Philadelphia, and featured appearances from both Pearl Jam and President Obama (though, sadly, not together). The event was such a success that another edition is being planned this year, and Hova has put in a call to a familiar face to headline the event: Beyoncé!
We couldn’t be more thrilled to have Jessie Ware as our You Oughta Know artist for the month of April. We’ve been full-on stans for her debut LP, Devotion, ever since it was released in the U.K. late last summer, and we can’t wait until U.S. audiences are able to hear the album when its U.S. edition drops next Tuesday (4/16). One of our favorite tracks on the album is a bouncy number called “If You’re Never Gonna Move,” which draws its inspiration from a picture that Jessie Ware once saw of the hip-hop artist Big Pun.
When our colleague Felicia Daniels came back from her recent Live In The Vineyard weekend in Napa, she couldn’t stop singing the praises of Gin Wigmore. Since we trust her musical taste implicitly, we decided to rustle up a ticket to Wigmore’s sold-out show at New York City’s Mercury Lounge last night, which featured the 26-year-old New Zealander playing a handful of tracks off her newly released LP, Gravel & Wine.
After a turbulent couple of years, Paramore is officially putting the past firmly behind them with today’s release of Paramore, the band’s first album since the acrimonious departure of the Farro Brothers. The patron saints of the Warped Tour generation (as our own Jim Shearer dubbed them) have already knocked Justin Timberlake off the top of the iTunes charts, as their massive fanbase has been downloading their own official copy of the album in droves today. Before the band taped their segment on Big Morning Buzz Live, we were able to grab a few minutes with Hayley Williams, Jeremy Davis and Taylor York in a quiet conference room where we talked about everything from shadow puppets to Black Flag tattoos to their current “weirdly emotional” state of mind.