With an impressive dossier full of production credits compiled over the years, Q-Tip is a behind-the-scenes force on his own. Just this morning, however, Def Jam released a press release announcing that, through Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Music imprint, the A Tribe Called Quest co-founding rapper/producer has been added to the label’s esteemed hip-hop family, reuniting him with chairman and CEO of Universal Republic and Island Def Jam, Barry Weiss, whom Tip knows from his days at Jive in the early 90s.
Joining the already-robust G.O.O.D. Music roster alongside Big Sean, John Legend, Pusha T, Kid Cudi, and others, Q-Tip will be able to flex his creative muscle amongst other hungry artists – veterans and up-and-comers alike – all while consulting and collaborating with head honcho, Kanyeezy. In friendship and in business, the rapping producers clearly see eye to eye; back in December, we saw Kanye and Tip palling around together backstage at Florence + The Machine’s MTV Unplugged taping with some tall ladies in tow, and overheard them discussing plans to hit the studio that night. It seems that our in-that-moment daydreaming wish for a fresh collaboration from the pair (beyond Watch The Throne’s “That’s My Bitch” and others of the past) seems to have morphed into a bigger partnership – one which further solidifies G.O.O.D. Music’s crew-cred within a hip-hop ecosystem that’s slowly becoming more and more about who’s on which team: MMG. YMCMB/OVOXO. Grand Hustle. ASAP Mob.
Late last night, the lineup for the 2012 Lollapalooza Festival was announced, featuring headlining performances from the Red Hot Chili Peppers (who we saw headline the 1992 Lollapalooza Festival!), the Black Keys, Jack White, Avicii, Justice and … wait for it … BLACK SABBATH! As you’ll recall, Sabbath was all set to headline this year’s Coachella Festival, but had to pull out when it was announced that Tony Iommi was undergoing treatment for cancer (which he recently completed). However, it appears that Iommi feels confident that he’ll be healthy enough to perform for fans in Chicago’s Grant Park —the band’s only scheduled North American tour date— somewhere between August 3 and August 5.
VH1 got some exclusive time with Lollapalooza founder Perry Farrell this weekend while he was down in Brasil, and we asked him why he decided to book the metal legends, all of whom are over 60 years old, for a festival that’s primarily attended by teens and twentysomethings (most of whom weren’t even born when Sabbath broke up in the late ’70s). In his lovably roundabout fashion, he gives us exactly the answer that we were looking for.
For those of you wondering if Bill Ward will be manning the kit for the reunited Black Sabbath, the Chicago Tribune is reporting that all four of the original members of Black Sabbath —Ozzy Osbourne, Tony Iommi, Geezer Butler AND Bill Ward— will be performing at this year’s festival. There has been no confirmation of this yet from the Black Sabbath camp, but we will keep you posted if and when we hear something!
Also! We’ve got the complete list of performers for the 2012 Lollapalooza festival for you below:
With this year’s highly anticipated Coachella Festival just three days away, rival festival Lollapalooza just stole a bit of their thunder tonight by announcing the lineup for their 2012 festival, which will be held in Chicago’s Grant Park from August 3-5. This year’s festival will be headlined by a powerful array of rock royalty (Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Black Keys, Jack White), a historic reunion (the only scheduled North American tour date for Black Sabbath) and, for the first time ever, big-draw DJ acts (Avicii, Justice).
VH1 was able to exclusively ask Lollapalooza founder Perry Farrell (Jane’s Addiction) what kind of traits he looks for in his headlining acts, and he answered in typically awesome Farrell fashion:
We’ve got the complete Lollapalooza press release, which just hit the wires, for you below!
UPDATE (7:45 p.m.): The Alabama Shakes livestream will be popping off right here at 9:00 p.m. ET/8 CT. Let us know what you think!
The word “authenticity” seems to be on everyone’s lips these days, as music critics and fans alike continue to debate over what’s really considered “music.” Well, when it comes to authenticity, you’d be hard pressed to find a band that’s got more of that particular trait than the Alabama Shakes, a group that until just a few months ago were all holding down day jobs to make ends meet.
We caught up with the Shakes a few weeks ago down at the 2012 SXSW Music Festival, where their performances earned rave reviews across the board. We asked them to describe their sound, and lead singer Brittany Howard told us, “Well, I’ll tell you a little bit about what we like. We like Lee Fields & The Expressions. We like Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings. We like Otis Redding. We like AC/DC. We like Black Sabbath. We like My Morning Jacket. We like Kings of Leon. We kind of put all that together, plus more.”
The band’s first album, Boys & Girls, is available in stores (and on Spotify) today. And to celebrate its release, MTV Hive will be livestreaming the band’s performance at New York City’s Webster Hall TONIGHT from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET. You’ll be able to watch the show right here on VH1 Tuner, but for now, you can read more about the show AND the Alabama Shakes on MTV Hive!
Madonna‘s new album, M.D.N.A., debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard charts last week, selling some 359,000 copies of her comeback LP. This sales figure was somewhat controversial, as Billboard editorial director Bill Werde reported her total included roughly 185,000 sales that were part of a bundle deal for people who bought a ticket to her upcoming world tour. Well, that bundle deal was enough to place her above Lionel Richie on last week’s charts, but is also coming back to haunt her this week (at least as far as “bad press” is concerned).
Radar is reporting that Madge’s M.D.N.A. sold only 46,000 copies during its second week of release, an 88 percent drop from her first week total. This, sadly, would set a new record for the steepest second week sales drop of any artist since the Soundscan era began in 1991. Billboard won’t be releasing their sales figures until tomorrow, so true blue Madonna fans, there’s still time to run out and buy the record tonight to save the Material Girl from some embarrassing headlines tomorrow!
Madonna’s New Album Bombs, Sets Record For Biggest Sales Drop [Radar Online]
[Photo: Getty Images]
We certainly hope so! Our favorite contestant on this season of Dancing With The Stars is, without a doubt, Mr. Twinkle Toes himself, Gavin DeGraw. He and his partner Karina Smirnoff danced an inspired version of the tango last night to the Rolling Stones‘ classic “Paint It Black”, channeling the episode’s Rock Week theme in an authentic way that few other contestants were able to pull off. (We’ve got the video for you below.)
Judging by the scores that the duo received from the judging panel, Gavin and Karina are in pretty decent shape; there are five other pairs that received lower scores last night. “I felt like I was watching Johnny Depp on stage, you were so in character,” judge Carrie Ann Inaba gushed. “Part of this is creating the magic on the ballroom floor and bringing us in … The movements were all grand and you had intention behind every move.”
Be sure to tune-in to ABC tonight to see if Gavin can make it through! And watch Gavin’s EXCLUSIVE video commentary above, too…
UPDATE (6:45 p.m., 4/12/12): Well, all good things must come to an end. We hope that you enjoyed our exclusive first listen of Jason Mraz’s forthcoming Love Is A Four Letter Word LP, and we hope that you go and pick it up when it comes out next Tuesday! You can also pre-order it RIGHT NOW from JasonMraz.com.
Jason Mraz‘s new album, Love Is A Four Letter Word, won’t be available to purchase until Tuesday, April 17. Don’t fret, though! VH1 Tuner is super psyched to present to you this Exclusive First Listen to the highly anticipated LP from Mr. A-Z himself. That’s right — one full week before you’re able to purchase it, you can stream the whole album right here!
To give you some guidance on your listening adventure, here’s the complete tracklisting of Love Is A Four Letter Word. Be sure and let us know what you think about the album in the comments below, too!
LOVE IS A FOUR LETTER WORD: Tracklist
1) The Freedom Song (04:00)
2) Living In The Moment (03:55)
3) The Woman I Love (03:10)
4) I Won’t Give Up (03:58)
5) 5/6 (05:57)
6) Everything Is Sound (04:45)
7) 93 Million Miles (03:36)
8) Frank D. Fixer (04:45)
9) Who’s Thinking About You Now? (04:47)
10) In Your Hands (04:51)
11) Be Honest (feat. Inara George) (03:25)
12) The World As I See It (04:02)
Nicki Minaj‘s highly anticipated sophomore LP, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, dropped last week and is on track to sell 200,000+ copies in its first week on the shelves. Critics are giving Nicki a hard time for the scattershot approach to the album (meaning, the mix of radio-friendly pop songs and hardcore street songs), and we all know J. Lo isn’t exactly a fan, either.
That said, we’ve had the record on repeat virtually all weekend long; we have been pretty obsessed with the “street” songs on the record like “Come On A Cone”, “I Am Your Leader”, “Roman Reloaded” and “Champion”, all of which feature typically tight rhymes from Minaj and top notch production values. Another standout track is “Beez In The Trap”, her collaboration with red hot rising rap star 2 Chainz (see also: His standout verse on Kanye West’s “Mercy”), a song for which she dropped a brand new video on Friday night. We can’t show you the video yet, as it’s currently getting reviewed by our Standards & Practices department. We can, however, talk about the song!
First things first, if you’re wondering what “Beez In The Trap” means, you’re not alone. “Trap” is street slang for a drug house (see also: T.I.‘s Trap Muzik LP), but Nicki isn’t being literal with the reference. In the song’s first verse, there’s a line that goes “I spit crack, like I’m in that trap”; basically, what she’s saying is that her rhymes are highly addictive, and people are lining up to get more of them. In other words, the way she’s flowing is the equivalent to being the kingpin at a trap/drug house; she’s got the BEST stuff, and people just can’t get enough of it.
There’s also the matter of the song’s third verse, where Nicki shouts out more cities than even James Brown in “Living In America” or Huey Lewis did in “The Heart Of Rock N’ Roll.” This got us thinking — What if Nicki took a trip to each of these cities that she references, in the order that they’re mentioned. What we landed at was an EPIC road trip, one that would make Clark W. Griswold green with envy. Won’t you follow along to see what we mean?
This week on That Metal Show, we had Alice Cooper, Jack Russell (Great White), and Brian Tichy rockin’ out on drums. We also asked Scott Ian (Anthrax) to stop by and be our first ever celebrity guest to participate in the “TMS Top 5,” and he helped us figure out the Top 5 Guitar duos of all-time. With all of the hard rock and heavy metal bands out there, it was pretty tough to come up with just five, but as you know, it’s called the “TMS Top 5,” so we’re keeping with tradition.
We’re still bummed that John Mayer was forced to put his plans to tour in support of his upcoming album Born And Raised on hold while he recovers from a pesky throat condition, but we’re glad to see that he hasn’t gone fully dormant. On his Tumblr site last night, he debuted an instrumental cover of Lana Del Rey‘s “Video Games.” As if that song weren’t already haunting enough as is, there’s an otherworldly echo that runs throughout Mayer’s dubbed, guitar-only version of the song. It’s got almost an old-timey western feel to it, like something you’d hear in a saloon while drinking a beer and listening for someone to whistle your name. It’s sort of the perfect way to start de-stressing in the last few minutes before the siren blows on this Friday afternoon, signaling the close of another work week. In other words, this is our idea of fun.
Sounds from Thursday evening [Soundcloud via f*ckyeahlanadelrey.tumblr.com]