Posts By Mark Graham

by (@unclegrambo)

R.I.P. Ronnie James Dio (1942-2010)

Just a few short weeks ago, we brought you an exclusive clip of Ronnie James Dio talking to our own Eddie Trunk on the Black Carpet of the Revolver Golden Gods Awards (airing this Saturday, May 22). Dio spoke bravely about the chemotherapy he had been enduring, as well as his desire to get back on the road and play again for his fans. Sadly, Dio passed away yesterday at the age of 67 after a valiant fight against stomach cancer.

Last night, Eddie Trunk posted the following remembrance on his Trunk Report blog:

This is a blog post I truly wish I was not writing. My hands are shaking on the keyboard, so excuse the typos. I lost a dear friend today, someone who I loved way beyond just the brilliant music he gave the world for decades.

Sadly, it has been confirmed that Ronnie James Dio has lost his battle with cancer. In my 27 years in the business, I have never met anyone like Ronnie. I am fully aware of people that I deal with, and people that deal with me, because it’s the business and what we do, but Ronnie was way beyond that. Nobody ever gave me the public show of support and respect back like Ronnie, and our friendship went way beyond the business.

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by (@unclegrambo)

Exclusive Video: Behind The Scenes Of Train’s New Video, “If It’s Love”

When Train?s three-year hiatus ended late last year with the release of their Save Me San Francisco LP, it was uncertain whether or not the group would be able to recapture the kind of popularity they experienced in the early aughts, back when hits like ?Drops of Jupiter? and ?Meet Virginia? dominated the charts. Despite this long absence from the scene, Train proved that they’ve still got star power in spades when their lead-off single, “Hey, Soul Sister”, not only became their highest charting Billboard hit ever, but also spent the last few months firmly ensconced in our Top 20 Video Countdown.

Hot on the heels of that song’s tremendous success comes ?If It?s Love,? an up-tempo, heartwarming tune that we?re pleased to be exclusively premiering online on 5/11 and on-air during our Top 20 show on Saturday, 5/15. Directed by Fall Out Boy?s own Pete Wentz, the clip will capture more playful and silly sides of the band, so be sure to check out some behind the scenes footage above!

Lacey Seidman

by (@unclegrambo)

Exclusive Golden Gods Awards Preview: Ronnie James Dio On His Comeback From Cancer

One of the things I was most excited about while shooting the fifth season of That Metal Show was the chance to see my longtime friend, Ronnie James Dio. I had last seen Ronnie just a few months prior when the Heaven & Hell camp bought me to LA to do an interview with them for an upcoming DVD. At that time, Ronnie had just started his chemo for stomach cancer. I was very curious to see how Ronnie was doing now that a couple months had passed since our last encounter.

Needless to say, I was thrilled to see him well enough to attend the Golden Gods Awards (airing on VH1 Classic on Saturday, May 22 at 10 p.m./9c) and approach our broadcast position on the Black Carpet. He has been a great friend and supporter of mine for many years now, and not only is he one of my favorite musicians, he’s also truly one of my favorite people. As you can see, he is positive about his prognosis, thankful for his many fans and their support, and looking great. Keep him in your thoughts and prayers as he continues to battle this illness, and enjoy this clip as proof of what positive vibes and support from us all (along, of course, with the help of all the great doctors working on his case) can do. Get well, RJD!

Eddie Trunk

by (@unclegrambo)

Christina Aguilera Debuts Video For “Not Myself Tonight”

When Christina Aguilera released her video for “Dirrty” back in 2002, her assless chaps and aggressively sexual come-ons made it patently clear that she had no desire to live out the rest of her career as a cookie-cutter pop star. That overtly adult gamble paid off in spades; not only did her legions of fans stick by her as she matured as both a woman and an artist, but it went a long way towards proving that she could successfully emulate the career path that Madonna chose, trying out different personas as society’s taste in musical styles undulated.

Speaking of Madonna, there are more than a few nods to the Material Girl in Aguilera’s new boundary-pushing (and slightly NSFW) video for “Not Myself Tonight,” the first single off her highly anticipated Bionic LP. Over a club-friendly bed of pounding Polow da Don synths, Aguilera brandishes S&M fetish gear (whips, diamond-studded crotch flaps, leather masks!) in a way that recalls Madge’s “Human Nature” video. At other points, she leads a bevy of shirtless hunks in a series of vaguely militaristic series of dance moves that pay homage to “Express Yourself” (by way of the rain-soaked finale of Step Up 2: The Streets). Oh, and while we’re cataloging some of this video’s influences, we’d be remiss if we didn’t point out Christina and director Hype Williams’s visual shout-out to George Michael and his landmark “Freedom 90″ video.

So, we want to hear your thoughts. What do you think of this video? How do you feel about Christina’s new musical direction? Are you going to be blasting this from your car radio all summer long? And don’t forget, if this song (or any of her others) serves to inspire you, we encourage you to share your story over on our VH1 Storytellers site.

by (@unclegrambo)

Share Your Favorite Christina Aguilera Story With VH1 Storytellers

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Where were you when you first heard “Genie in a Bottle”? If you’re a Christina Aguilera fan, you can probably recall that very moment ? and many others throughout her career ? when her star power truly spoke to you.

Here at VH1, we have been following her career since those very early days, which is why we?re so thrilled to have her on tap for the next chapter of VH1 Storytellers: Christina Aguilera. Now, here’s the part where YOU come in. Share your own story with us about the Christina Aguilera songs you love most, and your video or written submission may become part of the Storytellers legacy and make their way into the program, which premieres on June 13!

Was an Xtina song ever your anthem? With so many amazing hits and videos to choose from, we’re guessing that there has to be at least one that holds special meaning for you. Did the self confidence-building mantra from “Beautiful” lift your spirits when you were down? Did you stay strong after a bad breakup because “Fighter? helped to pull you through? Did ?Ain?t No Other Man? make you realize how much you loved that someone special in your life? Let us know!
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by (@unclegrambo)

Christina Aguilera Debuts Bouncy New Single, “Not Myself Tonight”

It seems almost unfathomable that Christina Aguilera, for all of the impact she has had on the music world, has only released three full-length studio albums during the course of her ten-plus year career. Her self-titled debut stormed the pop charts way back in 1999, she got herself all “Dirrty” in 2002 with her Stripped LP and went Back To Basics with a big band-influenced sound in 2006. But after taking the last few years off to focus on raising her first child, Max, she’s gearing up to release her latest album, Bionic, in June. As a means of whetting the public’s appetite for the project, Aguilera debuted the first single, “Not Myself Tonight,” on her official website last night.

Judging from the electro-flavored synths and pulsating, dance floor ready rhythms of this Polow Da Don produced banger, it’s immediately apparent that Aguilera recognizes that her biggest competition these days is no longer her old Mickey Mouse Club rival Britney Spears, but rather the omnipresent Lady Gaga. To wit, Aguilera begins the song by announcing that she’s feeling “out of character” and “in rare form” as she hits the club, ready to embrace the kinds of pansexual behavior that Gaga has built her reputation on. Although she promises (Her lover? Her husband? Herself?) that “In the morning, I’ll go back to the girl I used to be,” tonight she’s unrepentantly “taking shots” and “kissin’ all the boys and the girls” who cross her path. Got a problem with that? Aguilera has two simple words for the haters: “F*** you.”

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