On last night’s episode of The X Factor, 13-year-old schoolchild sensation Rachel Crow tore the house down with her performance of Etta James‘ “I’d Rather Go Blind.” It inspired an interesting contrast in the judges’s reactions; Simon Cowell looked like a giddy school boy the entire way through the epic performance—the only time you ever see him smile like this is when he knows he’s found himself a cash cow—while Nicole Scherzinger looked as if she might lose it at any moment. We’re with Simon though — Crow’s performance was breathtakingly spectacular, and we’re thinking the girl might be a serious contender for top spot. So, with that in mind, we’re officially adding Rachel Crow to our list of reasons why The X Factor is better than Idol (especially if she promises to change her shoes!).
There is a line in Bruno Mars‘s new single, “It Will Rain,” that goes like this: “There’ll be no sunlight/If I lose you baby.” A romantic line, to be sure, but one that shouldn’t be read too literally, especially considering the song’s inclusion on the Breaking Dawn soundtrack. After all, as any Twi-Hard worth their salt would tell you, Edward Cullen would probably prefer it if there were no direct sunlight ever again! That way, he and Bella could live out their days without worrying about spending money on silly things like 1000 SPF sunblock and Ray-Bans, and could instead make half-human, half-vampire babies underneath the moonlight for all eternity.
But what we REALLY wanna know is this: How did Bruno and his ladyfriend get their hands on a film canister containing a print of Breaking Dawn a full nine days before the movie hits theaters? We know some peeps down in Chinatown that would pay top dollars to get themselves a bootleg of that reel. Regardless, enjoy this video on your computer monitor for now, but be sure to tune into VH1′s Top 20 Video Countdown this weekend to be able to see it in glorious HD on your flatscreen at home!
Actually, scratch that. Rihanna‘s new record, Talk That Talk, is the dirtiest “pop” record we have ever heard. We listened to the entirety of the 11-song album, which will hit stores on Monday, November 21, earlier this afternoon here at our Times Square headquarters and can confirm that everyone in attendance left the room with flushed cheeks after experiencing extensive periods of blushing.
Now, this is not to say that Rihanna has gone out and recorded the female As Nasty As They Wanna Be; it’s not simply a sexually-explicit affair (although, at one point during The-Dream produced track “Birthday Cake,” she does proclaim “I wanna f*** you right now”). Rather, Talk That Talk continues the conversation that Rihanna began with her single “S&M” (off Loud) and, if you’ll pardon the Spinal Tap reference, turns it up to 11. Rihanna and her chief partner-in-crime, songwriter Ester Dean (who either wrote or co-wrote at least six songs on the LP), have put together a record that not only oozes sex, but also revolves almost exclusively around it.
Yesterday, two tiny snippets of Madonna’s next single, “Give Me All Of Your Love,” leaked online. It goes without saying that people IMMEDIATELY began critiquing the song’s merits in forums, blog posts and on social networks, despite the fact that this wasn’t a full, finished song, but rather, a DEMO.
Then, later last night, the full “demo” of “Give Me All Of Your Love” made its way online, and was picked up by outlets like Billboard, New York Magazine and Perez Hilton. Madonna and her manager, Guy Oseary, were none too pleased about the leak. Guy tweeted, “madonna told me this morning ‘my true fans wouldn’t do this’… whoever is responsible for this leak, we ask that you please stop!..”
Heavy D‘s passing shook the hip hop community to its core yesterday as fans and friends tweeted their condolences and reactions to the 44-year-old’s untimely death. Today on VH1′s Big Morning Buzz Live, mogul Russell Simmons discussed Heavy D’s influence on music. Some of hip-hop’s most respected MCs took to Twitter last night offering 140 characters of their sorrows, reactions and memories of the self-proclaimed “overweight lover.”
Here’s what the hip-hop community had to say about Heavy D’s death:
Katy Perry, Beyoncé, and Lady Gaga are the cream of the crop in the music industry these days, at least according to the nominations for the 2012 People’s Choice Awards, which were released this morning. Perry, the 2011 People’s Choice Award winner for Favorite Female Artist, scored an impressive five nominations from the proletariat in categories like Favorite Female Artist, Favorite Pop Artist and Favorite Tour Headliner.
Perhaps more impressive, though, are Beyoncé’s five nominations, especially her nod from the monoculture for 4 in the Favorite Album Of The Year category. 4 has been one of the more maligned records of the year, thanks to the fact that it has yet to produce a hit single on par with “Crazy In Love” (off Dangerously In Love), “Irreplaceable” (B’Day) or “Single Ladies” (I Am Sasha Fierce), not to mention the torrent of juicy scuttlebutt regarding Sony’s alleged disappointment in the album before consumers even had a chance to hear the full thing. Still, this morning’s nominations signal that the public-at-large appears to be unfazed by the industry chatter People’s Choice Awards nominations may not be as prestigious as those bestowed by the Grammys, but we’re guessing that Beyoncé’s camp is celebrating a minor victory this morning.
The People’s Choice Awards will air on CBS on January 12, 2012, and we’ve got the complete list of all of the music-related nominations for you below:
Rihanna Announces That She Will Collaborate With Jay-Z On Her New Album
We smell a hit. A big one. Rihanna has annouced that she will once again collaborate with Jay-Z on her forthcoming album, Talk That Talk. We’re already dancing. [Just Jared]
SNL Meme Sketch “Band Reunion At The Wedding” Releases Official Single For Crisis Of Conformity Song “Fist Fight”
After the SNL sketch “Band Reunion At The Wedding” tickled the funny bone of audiences in early 2010, Crisis Of Conformity released a 7-inch single of “Fist Fight”. PAPERMAG chats with the band’s creator, Fred Armisen for a chat. [PAPERMAG]
“The Overweight Lover Heavy D” rose to prominence as the frontman of Heavy D & The Boyz in the late 80s after being signed to Uptown Records, which was perhaps the preeminent practitioner of the New Jack Swing sound that dominated that era. The group released Livin Large to some fanfare in 1987, but the group really saw their exposure grow when they were tapped to write the theme song to the hit show In Living Color in 1990. Shortly thereafter, Heavy D experienced his greatest commercial success with his 1991 cover of “Now That We Found Love,” which ended up spending 15 weeks in the Billboard Top 40 in the summer of 1991, peaking at #11.
The cause of Heavy D’s death has yet to be revealed. We’d like to extend our condolences to Heavy D’s family and friends during this extremely difficult time.
We already know Rihanna isn’t camera shy, and when it comes to hamming it up in front of the lens, the superstar is a super playful babe. Recently on vacation with her gal pals, RiRi posted this gallery of pics that show her being extra irreverent, cheeky and downright sexy on film. Fishing, drinking champagne, flipping more than one bird and generally getting up to mischief, Rihanna once again proves why she’s our very favorite…
[Photos: Rihanna's Facebook page]
How much Beyoncé is too much Beyoncé? If you want our honest answer, too much is never enough! We could gorge ourselves on Lady Bey all day long, that’s why we’re so excited by the annoucement that the yummy-mummy-to-be is releasing one more video from her epic album, 4. While it hasn’t been revealed what the song the video will accompany, Billboard has indicated that it will not be “End Of Time,” although we’d be very keen to see what that video would look like.
The video will be released before Bey’s “Live At Roseland” DVD drops, and we’ve got our money on the Frank Ocean Penned “I Miss You,” as the seventh installment in what has so far been a gripping visual onslaught from 4. The DVD itself is set to only add to the mesmerizing Beyoncé persona, including intimate, behind the scenes footage of the diva and even Destiny’s Child, with special footage shot by hubby Jay-Z. We’d sure like Santa to drop a copy of that in our stockings this holiday season!
[Photo: Getty Images]