Sad news to pass along today. We’ve just learned that Donna Summer has passed away at the age of 63. TMZ reports the Queen of Disco was battling cancer, but chose to keep her illness under wraps. She was in Florida at the time of her death.
Summer’s career began in the mid 70s when she met producers Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte. Summer rose to fame in the 70s with disco hits like “Last Dance,” “Hot Stuff” and “Bad Girls.” She climbed the charts with 20 Top 40 hits and 4 No. 1s: “MacArthur Park,” “Hot Stuff,” “Bad Girls and “No More Tears.”
At the beginning of her career Summer signed to European label Groovy Records creating her first album Lady of the Night in 1974. Her first American hit, “Love to Love You Baby,” was what would lead to a successful international career. In the UK “Love to Love You Baby” charted in the Top 5, and by 1976 reached the No. 2 spot on the US Billboard 100. The album of the same name sold over one million copies. “I Feel Love” from her 1977 album I Remember Yesterday led to the second Top 10 single for the Queen of Disco. Nearly a year later she landed her first US No. 1 hit with “McArthur Park” featured on her first live album Live and More. It was also her first album to top the charts at No. 1 on Billboard. Live and More went platinum becoming one of the stand out records of her early career. Read more…
If scary movies tickle your fancy you’re in for a treat with sort of new rapper 2 Chainz’s new video “Murder” featuring Kreayshawn. In all its bloody gory the video has finally arrived four months after behind the scene sneak peek photos surfaced of the video. In an odd collaboration, 2 Chainz and Kreayshawn make murder look, uh, scary. Directed by Alex Nazari, “Murder” is set in an old creepy house where 2 Chainz sits while looking at double antelope heads. Even the common act of shaving (where blood spurts from his face) looks freaky. The basement is the hub of scary artillery like huge wrenches and saws, plus the unknown substance hanging that could be someone’s guts. Ewww! Read more…
Jill Scott takes the audience to church in her live performance for VH1 Storytellers’16th season premiere. Everyone rose to their feet for the live performance of “Blessed,” the fourth single from her No. 1 Billboard album Light of Sun. It wouldn’t be Jill if she didn’t give a positive, motherly spiel on living life before jumping into the catchy number. “You better live that life like it’s yours,” Jill said as the crowd clapped. “It’s the only one you got, and nobody else has control of it at this point.” She reveled in celebrating other women by shouting out two of the women in the front row for their trendy fashion and beautiful hair. “Make something magical happen every day if you have the opportunity,” she preached. “Like fashion, hello darling. Like hairstyles, hello darling,” she said enthusiastically.
Similar to a Baptist pastor in the pulpit on Sunday morning, Scott asks, “Are we blessed in the house tonight?” Scott coos softly about the blessings of her son. And just waking up in the morning. “Woke up in the morning feeling fresh to death, I’m so blessed,” she sings. Her incredibly talented band complemented her wide vocal range in what sounds like a mix between gospel, soul and jazz. All the while the audience is entranced, hanging on to every note. Clapping, swaying from side to side, and wanting more, it’s safe to say the crowd felt blessed to witness the greatness of Jill Scott.
Check out the full episode of Jill Scott’s VH1 Storytellers when it airs on Monday, May 21 at 11:00 P.M. ET/PT. Read more…
Good girls, listen up! Carrie Underwood’s“Good Girl” performance on Dancing With The Stars is a message just for you. The American Idol winner flawlessly belts out each note with sharp clarity, singing, “Hey good girl/Get out while you can/I know you think you got a good man/Why, why you gotta be so blind?/Won’t you open up your eyes?/It’s just a matter of time ’til you find/He’s no good, girl/No good for you/You better get to getting on your goodbye shoes and go, go, go.” Outside of looking amazing in a colorful curve hugging dress, the real beauty lies in Underwood’s ability to just stand there and sing, yet still blow you away.
She moves very little, but there’s something captivating about the stillness of her performance. Her voice remains the focal point even after dancers take the stage to glide across the dance floor. “Good Girl” is the sing-along caution tale to all the women in relationships with blinders on. And what better way to warn women than to encourage them to, “You better get to getting on your goodbye shoes?” Underwood’s Blown Away is the No.1 album in the country, and she will be performing at this Sunday’s Billboard Music Awards. Is it too much to ask for the good girls and good boys of Dancing With The Stars to choreograph an amazing piece to this song? We’ve got ideas, people.
Singer, songwriter, poet and actress Jill Scott is a woman of many looks. From her various hairstyles to versatile fashion styles, this dynamic soul artist always keeps it fresh. Kicking off the 16th season of VH1 Storytellers, Jill Scott shows us a few of the outfits she’ll be wearing during her highly anticipated performance (video above, complete photo gallery below!). Since Jilly from Philly is performing her music in a theatrical theme, her different characters need the appropriate look to match. For example, Banji is the eccentric, “ghetto” girl, one whose attire is “handmade” and consists of cut-up jeans and a black t-shirt with bouffant shoulders. “Most girls from the hood, we make our own stuff,” said Scott. “So we add things and change things to make it fit us.” She tops this look off with a perfect black wedge sneaker. Read more…
We’re still bummed about the untimely death of Adam “MCA” Yauch of the Beastie Boys. Luckily we found this adorable video of three kids paying tribute to MCA through a reenactment of the group’s popular 1994 video to “Sabotage.” Posted on Vimeo by James Winter, he added the with brief description, “Worked on this with the wife, kids and our nephew over the past week to pay tribute to Adam “MCA” Yauch,” we’re assuming the parents were the masterminds behind this idea as the kids aren’t quite old enough to be die hard fans of the hip-hop group. Not only are the kids cute as a button in wigs and fake mustaches, they pull off the kiddie version of “Sabotage” like pros. Read more…
Sold out shows don’t mean a hill of beans to the Indonesian police who will not grant Lady Gaga a permit for her June 3rd “Born This Way Ball” concert. We thought it was nearly impossible to dislike the world class superstar. Boy were we wrong. According to the AP, lawmakers and conservative hard-liners protested Gaga’s upcoming show because “her sexy clothes and dance moves will corrupt the youth.” Under pressure the national police spokesman, Boy Rafli Amar, denied the permit. What in the world did they do when Madonna was at her prime? Madonna’s unapologetic sex appeal makes Lady Gaga look like Taylor Swift.
The Indonesia performance would have been the biggest of Gaga’s Asian tour with 52,000 fans filling Jakarta’s Gelora Bung Karno stadium seats. Indonesia has the largest Muslim population in the world with 240 million people. Local conservatives felt the explicit nature of Gaga’s show would compromise the nation’s moral fiber, according to the AP. If her music or performance can jeopardize 52,000 people’s moral fiber, they may have a bigger problem than Lady Gaga. As if putting a stop to the singer’s concert wasn’t heartbreaking enough, those who purchased tickets may or may not be refunded. When you’ve been banned from a country, you have officially made it.
When Jay-Z rapped “MJ at Summer Jam, Obama on the text” on “On to the Next One,” he wasn’t really joking. He really does have it like that. Recently the rapper slash mogul told CNN’s Poppy Harlow he agreed with President Obama’s decision to affirm his belief that same-sex couples should be able to marry. When asked about homosexuals not being able to marry he said, “I’ve always thought [of] it as something that’s still holding the country back. What people do in their own homes is their business,” he added. “It’s no different than discriminating against blacks. It’s discrimination, plain and simple.”
In the thick of election season Obama announced his support of same-sex couples having the legal right to marry. His announcement has drawn criticism from both the right and left. As someone who heavily backed Obama in 2008, Hova made it clear he still has the president’s back. Although the criticism has been loud, Jay-Z said it’s not about gaining or losing votes, it’s the right thing to do. “It’s really not about votes, it’s about people,” he said. “Whether it cost him votes or not I think it’s the right thing to do, as a human being.” POW! Jay may have professed his support of the President and gay rights, but according to CNN.com he had nothing to say about Mitt Romney saying he didn’t want to “talk about the man.”
Yesterday Jay-Z announced the Budweiser Made In America festival he will be curating and headlining in Philadelphia. Hopefully, if all goes as planned, next week we will learn of the lineup he’s selected. Fatherhood looks mighty swell on Hov.
When other high schoolers were sneaking on the phone at the wee hours of the morning to talk to their crush, Rye Rye was touring with M.I.A. After DJ Blaqstarr discovered the young rapper at the age of 15, they collaborated on “Shake It To The Ground,” a youthful dance track that caught the attention of M.I.A. only months later. Now, 21, the Baltimore, MD rapper has released her debut album Go! Pop! Bang! that was four years in the making. To appreciate Rye Rye’s music one must understand the oftentimes disparate state of her hometown. Then one must consider the city’s definitive musical sound unique to that place and its natives. The arts was a way for the young funky teen to express herself outside of the confines of the housing projects she grew up in. As much as Rye Rye is a rapper, she’s a dancer. And the latter inspires the sound of Go! Pop! Bang! more than the expected hardened environment she grew up in.
Her first single, “Boom Boom” (video below), is a perfect indication of what to expect from the album. It’s about partying, boys and having a bloody good time. The whole point is not to take herself too seriously. Over the video game beat, Rye Rye raps in her semi-fast, edgy tone about wanting a guy in her room. Tracks like “DNA” featuring Porcelain Black, “New Thing,” “Dance” and “Hardcore Girls” are where her Baltimore club influence is most dominant — a mix of house, D.C. go-go and techno-electro. On “Crazy Bitch,” she teamed up with Akon in a more concept driven track where the beat is slightly slower than the usual uptempo beat. With the help of Akon she pokes fun at being considered the “crazy bitch” in the relationship. “Sunshine” and “Bang” both feature M.I.A. and have the bombastic drum beat M.I.A. tends to love on her own tracks. Both records offer that distinctive voice that only an M.I.A. feature can add. Her rhymes in “Bang” slow the listener down from the natural inclination to dance to actually listen to her rhymes. “Never Will Be Mine” featuring Robyn is one of the slower tracks on the record but still manages to keep the light fun mood of the rest of the album. Read more…
Just when R&B seemed to be dying an unfortunate death, leave it to R. Kelly to resuscitate the genre in a blink of an eye. Soulful and gentle, “Feelin’ Single” incites the urge to dance coolly across the floor. Like “Step In the Name of Love,” “Feelin’ Single” has an infectious softness about it that makes one forget all their worries. His voice is flawless on every note executing perfect harmonies on the hook. Light, fun and disco infused, the self-proclaimed King of R&B does the classic sultry combination like no other.
The timing for the track is perfect as cuffing season (when people find a winter beau to stay warm) ends, and summer fast approaches. Warm weather breeds the yearning for the benefits of being single. Well, for some. Feeling played by his girl the Pied Piper has a solution to deal with her late night hours– “hit the club and take somebody home with me.” This is the second single from his upcoming album Write Me Back, a follow-up to 2010′s Love Letter. A master of evoking something, anything within the listener, this track channels a bit of what makes Stevie Wonder great. It makes you feel the music. “Feelin’ Single” never felt so good.