Lana Del Rey is almost nothing like you’d expect her to be. Let us explain.
In just under six months, Del Rey has gone from being a virtual unknown to landing a highly coveted gig as the musical guest on this weekend’s episode of Saturday Night Live, an opportunity that some artists work their entire careers for and never achieve. The booking of this artist, best known for her uniquely sexy voice and a cinematic style of music she describes as “Summertime sadness,” totally makes sense, though. While it’s true that she hasn’t even released her album yet —Born To Die streets on January 31— Lana has already experienced a career’s worth of buzz (and, subsequently, backlash) in indie blogosphere circles, mostly stemming from questions regarding her quote-unquote “authenticity.” This, in combination with the mysterious persona she projects in her videos and her somewhat defiant performance at the Bowery Ballroom back in December, led us to believe that she might come off as being cryptic and guarded during her interview here at VH1 HQ in New York City yesterday. The Lana Del Rey we met, though, was anything but: During the 45 minutes or so we spent with her, she was happy, effusive, relatable and totally forthcoming about the rocket ride that she’s been on for the last half of the year.
“You wanna hear a little story?” We’ve been talking to Del Rey for a few minutes about her self-made, self-edited, collage-style music videos for “Video Games” and “Blue Jeans”, the treatments of which propelled the indie chanteuse from obscurity into the spotlight, but that were also initially met with puzzlement by clueless suits at record labels (“For a long time, nobody thought that anything fit together. I brought things into different labels and to different people and they all thought it was really f***ing weird. They thought that the videos didn’t have a strong narrative and that they were creepy.”). We raise the issue of Paz De La Huerta, an actress who, depending on your vantage point in life, is either a hot mess or your spirit animal. Footage of a clearly overserved Paz made its way into Del Rey’s cut of “Video Games,” an intriguing creative decision that lends a zeitgeist-y and almost Lynchian-circa-Mulholland Drive feel to the video, underscoring the overlap in the Venn diagram of Hollywood where glamour, darkness and tragedy meet. So, we posed, did Lana ever hear from Paz herself?
Last night at the People’s Choice Awards Demi Lovato bought the house down with a power performance of “Give your Heart A Break.” Appearing on a checkerboard stage atop a huge digital cube, Watch The Throne style, Lovato belted out her song to an adoring audience. Looking glamorous in a red gown, she owned the stage and ripped through the melody with her soulful voice. Not only did Lovato kill it on stage, she won the Favorite Pop Artist award over super stars Beyoncé, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga and Rihanna. All we have to say to that is “Go, Demi, GO!”
Woman Tattoos Kanye West On Her Butt
How would you prove your undying love to Kayne West? One fan not only legally changed her name to Kanyeresa West, but she has two tattoos: “Kanye” on her arm, and “Kanye West” where the sun don’t shine. You have to watch this video of her talking. [Complex]
Wally De Backer, better known by his stage name, Gotye, is already set up to be one of 2012′s biggest names. His 2011 album Making Mirrors found critical success in his home country of Australia, and the artist is preparing to spread his wings to hit America like Adele. With his intoxicatingly soothing voice, sudden hooks and high notes that shove you out of the comfortable reverie his verses induce, Goyte’s music is both thrilling and challenging, speaking to shared experiences with its honest lyricism.
1. “Somebody That I Used To Know”
“Somebody That I Used To Know” was a runway hit in Australia and its ripples have reached American shores with noticeable force. Dueting with another Australian up-and-coming superstar, Kimbra, Gotye taps into the messiness a breaking up — and the unexpectedly painful mundanities, like the simple act of returning each others belongings, that go with it. The sentiment of the song and Gotye’s cutting hook, coupled with the beautiful video and trickling graphics that match the melody, will have you stuck to your screen hitting repeat.
2. Creative Covers Of “Somebody That I Used To Know” Walk Off The Earth covered “Somebody That I Used To Know” using five people and one guitar and if possible, it’s just as compelling as the original. We love that Gotye’s music inspires such creative responses from such talented musicians, as opposed to the stock standard same-same style cover. The Roots affiliated STS also got creative with the song, using the melody and chorus to tell his own story (which at times is very humorous) of a break up (after the jump).
What do Bon Iver, Zooey Deschanel and Karmin all have in common (aside from being amazing musical artists)? They’re all appearing on Saturday Night Live in February! Grammy nominated Bon Iver will be performing with a full nine-piece band, on a Channing Tatum hosted SNL on the 4th of February. While it’s unclear exactly what Bon Iver will be playing, the band will stick to tracks off their critically acclaimed 2011 album, Bon Iver (sorry to For Emma fans!). We wonder if Bon Iver will mix it up and snub their hit track “Holocene” in favor of something more left-of-center; but given the popularity of the song and its Grammy nomination nod for Song Of The Year, we’re guessing it’s a safe bet for the live performance.
The first thing we thought of when we heard the title of Madonna‘s forthcoming album, M.D.N.A, was the party drug MDMA, so if it’s edgy and “down with the kids” Mads is going for with the title, then we guess she succeeded. More likely it’s just a play on “Madonna” (sound out the letters and it sort of sounds like you’re saying “Madonna” with a mouthful of food), but Pop Dust have laid out some pretty good speculation as to the inspiration behind the moniker. It feels like the hype around Madonna’s triumphant return is gaining momentum with every passing day, and we’re thinking when the album drops next month it will go off with a massive bang. Here’s to leaked tracks, Nicki Minaj collaborations and Super Bowl half time shows — the year of M.D.N.A!
We’re not really sure celebrities these days are aware that Twitter is public. This year we’ve already seen Kanye West go on an epic Twitter rant, and it seems like 50 Cent has picked up a case of the Twitter crazies too, after he morbidly Tweeted about his own death following a not-no-subtle tirade against his record label. Now 50 seems to be lashing out against long time partner-in-beef, Jay-Z, by posting some truly bizarre Photoshopped images of faux baby Blue Ivy. The creepy images feature Jay-Z’s face on a baby’s body, accompanied by what we can only assume to be a sarcastic comment calling the baby “gorgeous”.
In the past 50 Cent has been credited with saying that no one knew who Jay-Z was before he was romantically tied to Beyoncé, and that he was going to steal Beyoncé away. As far as we’re concerned, all’s fair in love and beef, but using a new born baby as the butt of a joke is just… cheap. Come on, 50! You can do better than this — pick on someone your own size! After his initial pot stirring, it seems like 50 back tracked somewhat, making it clear that he didn’t make the images himself, and that he was sure Jay-Z was very happy. However, we think the effort might have been mere tokenism, considering the strange pictures are still up on 50′s Twitter.
There’s Speculation That The Spice Girls Will Reunite For The 2012 Olympics
Rumors are flying that the Spice Girls might reunite (again) for the 2012 Olympics. This is what we want, what we really, really want! [Idolator]
Famous Fashion Photographer Cancels On Lady Gaga
Famous fashion photographer David Bailey cancelled a recent shoot with Lady Gaga saying, “There were too many rumors about her storming out and being silly. And I can’t be bothered. If she can sing, why wear funny clothes? Ella Fitzgerald never wore funny clothes.” SNAP! [The Cut]
It’s Coachella madness! Latest on the rumor mill comes from reports that the recently reunitedBlack Sabbath were planned to headline the festival, but that they cancelled last minute because of Tony Iommi’s sudden illness. Following the announcement of Iommi’s lymphoma, it seemed like the band would continue with their promised 2012 reunion tour and album — but if it is true that they cancelled Coachella it might throw all of Black Sabbath’s plans for 2012 into question. Iommi’s recovery is the clear priority, and our best wishes are with him and the band no matter what they decide for their 2012 tour.
Meanwhile, the rumor also casts speculation as to who filled the headlining spot in the wake of the last minute cancellation. Our money is on The Black Keys, who seemed like a less obvious choice for the top billing spot before we heard the rumor. We figure The Black Keys filled the hole reportedly left by Black Sabbath because the other headliners — Dr. Dre, Snopp Dogg and Radiohead — are such huge acts it’s incredibly unlikely any of them would have started off any lower on the bill.