The road that American Idol winners have to travel is not always paved with gold. Sure, there are but a handful of artists who would turn down the opportunity to have national television exposure every week for five months straight, but as we have seen since the show first debuted in 2002, the same fans who call in to vote for artists week after week don’t always follow their faves to the record store by the time their albums actually come out. And, unless you’re Kelly Clarkson or Carrie Underwood, chances are that even fewer fans are still riding your bandwagon by the time your second post-Idol album comes out.
David Cook is looking to be an exception to that rule. After his eponymous post-Idol album went platinum back after its release in 2008, he’s releasing his brand new LP, This Loud Morning, tomorrow. Judging on what we heard when he came through our offices a few weeks back, he’s got a really good chance to become the most successful male Idol winner of all-time. Rather than simply coasting on his fame, he worked extra hard in the studio and stretched himself musically, collaborating with esteemed songwriters like Marti Frederiksen, John Rzenik of the Goo Goo Dolls, hitmaker du jour Ryan Tedder, and many more.
For the first time since we started counting down this year’s Song Of The Summer, someone other than Adele is sitting in the proverbial cat bird’s seat. Weirdly enough, though, “Rolling In The Deep” has been usurped by another song that audiences first heard back in 2010.
While we’re plenty excited that Katy Perry‘s “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)” knocked Adele out of the top spot, we can’t help but lament the fact that Katy Perry is still ruling the airwaves with songs from her Teenage Dream album. If you’ll recall, that record came out way back on August 24, 2010, but last year’s Song Of The Summer, “California Gurls,” was released even further back (May 11, 2010, to be exact). And if you flip the calendar back to the summer of 2008, Perry’s first smash single, “I Kissed A Girl,” was that summer’s biggest party jam.
So, folks, you tell us: What exactly is it about the summertime that makes you want to listen to Katy Perry? Why does her particular blend of breezy pop music make you want to roll your windows down and turn the singles from Teenage Dream up? Let us know in the comments, and check back here next week to see if Katy can fend off the likes of Britney Spears, Pitbull and Lady Gaga to keep the top spot in VH1′s Song Of The Summer countdown!
We couldn’t make it to Glastonbury this year, but luckily BBC was there with tons of cameras to record some killer performances. Sadly, there’s no official footage from the Park Stage (Radiohead! Big Audio Dynamite! Pulp! Lykke Li!) and YouTube clips, though they exist, are coming down as quickly as they go up, but otherwise, the BBC has got UK viewers covered with complete set streams?and selections for the rest of us. So here are the five highlights from the clips made available to the world:
5. Atlanta Represent: Janelle Mon?e
There was a strong contingent of Dungeon Family affiliates: Big Boi pumping the crowd up with “Shutterbug” and Cee Lo Green borrowing a costume from GWAR for “Crazy”. Big Boi prot?g? Janelle Mon?e outshone both with her razor-sharp rendition of “Tightrope.” Her remarkable dance moves and James Brown showpersonship are among the “intangibles” that make this clip unmissable.
The 2011 BET Awards remembered the past while honoring the present last night in Los Angeles, with a full fifteen musical performances?mostly multiple-song medleys?that spanned decades and genres. We highly recommend you check out all of the performances, especially Mary J. Blige‘s mega-medley of “Mary Jane,” “Real Love,” “You Bring Me Joy,” “Rapture” (with Anita Baker) and “It Ain’t Over Till It’s Over (with DJ Khaled and Jadakiss), and the Patti LaBelle tribute featuring Cee Lo (dressed as LaBelle!), Marsha Ambrosius, and Shirley Caesar.
The highlight of the night, though, was Alicia Keys‘s own four-song medley. She stood on her piano as she opened with new-old song “Typewriter,” a Songs in A Minor outtake that will be included on tomorrow’s 10th Anniversary reissue of the album. She took to the keys for single “A Woman’s Worth,” from the same album, for which she was joined by Bruno Mars on guitar and vocals. This wasn’t merely a throwback performance, though. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that?see Alexander O?Neal & Cherrelle‘s “Saturday Love”, which sounded as good as ever.) Rick Ross took the stage for a triumphant rendition of “Maybach Music 2,” with Keys providing T-Pain’s hook and Bruno Mars providing the guitar riff.
After she shouted out Rozay and Bruno Mars, Keys closed out her medley alone, with “Fallin’,” which retains its power and charm millions of radio plays and a decade later. We’re still processing the fact that these songs (except 2009′s “Maybach Music 2″) are all ten years old, and they sounded so good and fresh last night that we’re even more confused.
Exciting news to share with you guys. We just got word that the talented singer/songwriter Gavin DeGraw will be making an appearance at our offices here in Times Square this coming Monday, June 27. He’ll be stopping by the set of Big Morning Buzz Live, which airs every weekday starting at 9:30 a.m., to present the world premiere debut of the music video for his new song, “Not Over You.” And to mark this occasion, Gavin himself sent us this exclusive clip earlier this morning as a way to help get the word out to his fans.
If you can’t catch the Monday morning debut on Big Morning Buzz Live, don’t fret: We’ll have it here for you on the VH1 Blog as soon as it airs, and it will also appear on next week’s Top 20 Video Countdown show as well.
Each Friday here on the VH1 Blog, ourVH1 Top 20 Video Countdown host Jim Shearer (@jimshearer on Twitter) will be sharing his Shearer?s Spotlight with us. This feature will include three things ?sometimes related, sometimes not!? that Jim is obsessing over this week. Be sure to tune into the Top 20 countdown when it airs on VH1 at 9 a.m. ET/PT tomorrow morning. Oh, and don’t forget, our brand new Top 20 site makes voting for your favorite videos easier than ever!
If you really think about it, the mark he left on popular music is somewhat unbelievable; Clemons was best known for his work in Bruce Springsteen?s E Street Band, where he wasn?t a frontman, didn?t play lead guitar, pluck a bass, or even sit on a throne behind a drum kit. He was a saxophonist.
Let me say that again: He was a saxophonist!
Unless you?re hanging out with fans of smooth jazz or ska music, saxophone players usually aren?t revered as music royalty?especially in mainstream rock n? roll?but Clarence Clemons was, and always will be.
Here are three reasons why I think the (appropriately nicknamed) ?Big Man? was the man:
Missy Elliott Shares Graves Disease Diagnosis Billboard reports that in an interview with the upcoming issue of People, Missy Elliott reveals that she was diagnosed with the thyroid disorder Graves disease in 2008, the aggressive treatment plan for which left little time for music. Elliott speaks about her battle with the autoimmune disorder in the season premiere of Behind the Music, airing Wednesday, June 29, at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.
Justin Bieber And His Security Team Attack A Plainclothes New York City Cop
Ninety minutes ago, at an appearance at Macy’s in Herald Square in Manhattan, Justin Bieber went outside, reportedly to apologize to the massive crowd that could not come inside due to fire code. As the throng of screaming Beliebers pressed against the barriers, an undercover cop ran towards Bieber to protect him?only, neither Bieber nor his security knew the guy was a cop. Onlookers across the street caught the incident on film and, naturally, uploaded it to YouTube, so one and all can see Bieber coming to blows with a cop. [Sound of the City and TMZ]
From L to R: Javier Colon, Dia Frampton, Vicci Martinez and Beverly McClellan.
Thanks to a combination of high wattage star power and a weakened roster of American Idol candidates, NBC’s The Voice was able to capture the fancy of American television audiences this springtime and delivered huge viewership numbers to its network. Last night, the judges and audience voted to select the show’s four finalists. If you haven’t been watching (or even if you have!), we put together a quick primer for you on who the remaining candidates are and why you should root for them, which you can use to prepare for next week’s finale, airing on Tuesday and Wednesday of next week.
WHO:Javier Colon (Top Left) COACH:Adam Levine SOUNDS LIKE:Brian McKnight WHY YOU SHOULD ROOT FOR HIM: Funny, the reason you should root for him is the same as why some are rooting against him. You see, Javier Colon released two albums —he was simply called Javier at that time— on Capitol Records in the mid-aughts. Some would argue that he never really got a fair shake from his label during those tumultuous years for the industry, while others would say that he’s already got his shot and doesn’t deserve another one.
WHO:Dia Frampton (Top Right) COACH:Blake Shelton SOUNDS LIKE:Vanessa Carlton WHY YOU SHOULD ROOT FOR HER: Much like her competitor Javier Colon, Frampton has a major label background; along with her sister Meg, the two released the album Here, Here, and Here on Sire Records in 2009. They were later dropped by Warner Bros., Sire’s parent company, in July of 2010. Will America give her another chance to make it big?
We loved the madcap silliness of “I Wanna Go,” the Britney Spears video that premiered yesterday, so we jumped at the chance to talk to the clip’s director, Chris Marrs Piliero. The up-and-coming director is also responsible for Ke$ha‘s completely off-the-wall “Blow” video and a number of others, and we’re excited to see what he does next. This afternoon he spoke to us on the phone from Los Angeles about Half Baked, the Britney smirk, and the importance of fun.
VH1 Blog: How much of the video’s concept did you bring to the table when you first met with Britney?
Chris Marrs Piliero: Pretty much the whole thing. We made some changes to certain aspects, but as far as the concept as a whole, it was all laid out before we met up.
Where did the Half Baked reference, and the decision to cast Guillermo D?az in general, stem from?
I’m a huge fan of the movie, and that scene resonates with everyone as the epitome of the greatest way to quit your job, and just blow people off. Going through the lyrics of the song, the line about being inappropriate really resonated in my head, and I felt like that would just be such a perfect way for her to tell the reporters to eff off. So I put it in, like, “This would be a rad moment.” Obviously I never know what’s going to be embraced and what’s not going to be, but I thought [Britney] seemed like a cool chick, and hopefully she’d be down with it. And she loved it. She was totally into it.
And when I initially wrote it out, it was one of those things, like, “We gotta try to get Guillermo.” That would be the icing on the cake. That would make it come full circle, to have him be a part of the video. And he loved the idea too, and it all just kinda fell into place.
Good news, VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown fans! Earlier this afternoon, we launched a brand new site which makes both watching and voting for your favorite videos easier than ever. Just head over to top20.vh1.com and check it out our new digs.
Not only can you now cast up to 20 votes for your favorite videos per week, you can also share your votes with your followers on Twitter and your Facebook friends. This makes it easier than ever to rally support for your fave videos and, hopefully, propel them up our weekly chart.
Don’t forget to tune in to VH1 each and every Saturday morning at 9 a.m. ET/PT to catch host Jim Shearer count down what’s topping the chart that week.