In case you missed the Tony Awards last night on CBS, Neil Patrick Harris closed out the show with a recap rap as the credits rolled, providing a brief summary of the night and concluding by acknowledging the unnamed chorus performers and entreating viewers to go see Broadway shows. But if that’s not enough for you, here are the top three musical highlights:
“You know,” Chris Rock quipped before awarding the Tony for Best Musical to The Book of Mormon, “If you would have told me two years ago that I would miss the best basketball game ever to hang out with Nathan Lane I would have said, ‘You’re crazy.’” At first glance, The Book of Mormon‘s nine Tonys (out of fourteen total nominations) might seem just as implausible, but the show’s creators certainly had the pedigrees. South Park co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone had shown their love of, and aptitude for, the musical form with their films Cannibal: The Musical and South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut, and Robert Lopez had already co-created Avenue Q. (When that show won the 2004 Tony for Best Musical, it was a surprise.) Any remaining doubt was quashed when Andrew Rannells performed the satirical “I Believe,” a song about doubt and (Mormon) faith that contains the line “I believe that in 1978 God changed his mind about black people.” Read more…
It’s Monday, but Katy Perry is hoping people will be thinking?and talking?about her new video “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.).” She teased the video over a month ago by quoting, on Twitter, a friend who said the clip would “break the internet.” The clip certainly appeals to that demographic, which is no surprise: director Marc Klasfeld was also responsible for the clip “Scarface School Play,” so he knows a little something about viral videos.
In the first place, Perry’s costar in the video is Rebecca Black, whose “Friday” video, as of today, has 165 million views and remains in the YouTube Music Weekly Top 10 despite its 88% thumbs-down rating. Black is, of course, internet catnip, especially since she is apparently magical in this clip:
Clarence Clemons suffered a stroke at his home last night at his home in Florida, an AP source confirmed after an initial Showbiz411 report surfaced last night. The Showbiz411 story suggests that the stroke was extremely serious, but there has not yet been confirmation nor denial of this report.
Clemons, the legendary saxophone player from Bruce Springsteen?s E Street Band, has also had a long history of guest appearances?most recently on several tracks of Lady Gaga‘s Born This Way. He also wrote a partially fictional memoir last fall. We wish him the best in his recovery, as does Lady Gaga, who sent this Tweet out earlier this morning:
It’s hard to look good while camping for four days in heat that exceeds 100 degrees. It’s also hard to look good when the only real opportunity to bath is to wait for brown water to spurt out of a giant mushroom sprouting in plain sight of Bonnaroo‘s stages. Yet we were able to spot some girls who we are guessing would look good even after a nuclear holocaust. As you may know, bikinis are the outfit of choice at the festival. But since this is about style, we selected only beautiful Bonnaroo bitties who were wearing somewhat more than that. Notice this year’s trends: Head wraps, belly dancing skirts with bling, and body painting.
At Bonnaroo‘s tenth anniversary, three things stood out: triple digit heat, a permeating dust, and an eclectic mix of music topped by hip-hop. If you wondered the 700-acre campground, you were bound to run into all kinds of music — even Mongolian folk. We saw, for instance, a pretty-as-expected set by Americana star Justin Townes Earles, hip-hop by Big Boi that unfortunately came off like it had Attention Deficit Disorder (why not play some full songs instead of 30-second samples of Outkast and Sir Luscious?),? a promising set by indie/country newcomers Futureheads, the metal of The Sword, and the reggae of Black Uhuru. See Bonnaroo photos and video, then continue reading after the jump.
Bonnaroo 2011 kicked off its tenth anniversary Thursday afternoon, and reached its first climax with three massive headliners Friday night, including My Morning Jacket (8pm) followed by Arcade Fire (11pm) on the stadium-sized main stage (known as the “What Stage”) and then Lil Wayne at 2am on a large side stage (the “Which Stage”). Sure, there were dozens of solid shows (and some comedians) leading up to this amazing musical trifecta. But with more than 80,000 people — mostly kids braving extreme heat and humidity without being able to shower — camping out on festival grounds that stretch out over a 700-acre expanse under a vast sky, Bonnaroo was made for big moments. Plus, the smaller tents, if you can squeeze in, don’t always provide enough room for the hippie–ish contingent to properly dance and twirl glow sticks.
My Morning Jacket opened its two-hour set with with an extended, trumpet and voice only intro of “Victory Dance,” the first song off their new album Circuital. Much has been made about MMJ’s so-called return to their roots by recording the new album direct to analog tape in a gym in their hometown of Louisville, Kentucky as opposed to the NYC studio that served as headquarters for their last album (Evil Urges). By opening with the first track from Circuital, MMJ may have been announcing a homecoming of sorts to the mostly Southern audience. Regardless, “Victory Dance” was an apt choice to celebrate with the friendly Bonnaroo crowd how far the band has come. Having played the fest four times in the past, but never on the main stage, frontman Jim James noted, “it’s such an honor.”
Each Friday here on the VH1 Blog, our VH1 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; this week’s special guests are none other than Death Cab For Cutie and Nick Jonas!
Even though I?m out of school?sadly, for many years now?every year at this time I like to put myself in the mindset and sneakers of jubilant kids who are celebrating the end of another year of education.
If today was indeed my last day of school?after doing a few donuts in the high school parking lot?here are the first three songs I?d play at maximum volume in my powder-blue station wagon:
?School?s Out? by Alice Cooper
There is no better song to celebrate the end of a school year. This song was specifically written for mid-June, which Cooper claims?along with Christmas?is the best time of the year. Just think, before this song was released kids had to gather in a kumbaya-circle and sing along to the ?No More Pencils, No More Books? nursery rhyme, which is also conveniently referenced in this rock classic. (Ed. Note – This performance of “School’s Out” from the Muppet Show is my personal fave of this song.)
Have you ever thought of a question for a celebrity that you would love to ask if you ever got the chance? Well, here’s the perfect opportunity. VH1′s morning show, Big Morning Buzz Live, hosts a ton of amazing celebrities each week, and now we’re giving viewers the chance to submit a question online to them.
We’ve partnered with a new company called VYou to give viewers a chance to ask our guests anything you want. Just submit a question for either our lovely host Carrie Keagan or any of our upcoming guests through the widget above or by visiting our Big Morning Buzz Live page on VYou.com and wait for them to respond to you via our in-studio webcam.
In part two of our interview with international chart-topper Natasha Bedingfield (see part one here), we spoke to her about how her collaboration with Nicki Minaj, “Last Chance,” came about. Unbeknownst to us, it turns out that if it weren’t for her relationship with Eminem, the track might never have happened! Check out her video interview above –one in which she also charmingly chides Simon Cowell for not picking her to be a judge on X-Factor– for all this and more.
And below, we’ve got Natasha’s humdinger of a performance of her new potential summer jam, “Weightless,” live on the set of Big Morning Buzz Live!
Imagine you’re a successful musician, returning home after being on tour for months. Groggy and wiped, you walk in your bedroom to find your most prized possession destroyed, and the blade of a 12-inch carving knife stuck, standing up, in the middle of your bed. Creepytown, right? For Ray LaMontagne, this was actually a reality, and on Wednesday morning, our friends at Rolling Stone?debuted a sneak from tonight’s episode of VH1 Storytellers wherein the talented singer explains how and why it all happened. After the deeply personal account that was a favorite of ours from the show’s taping, LaMontagne then performs new single “Repo Man,” giving us a taste of what’s to come on tonight’s incredible episode.
In case that’s not enough Ray for you to chew on before this evening’s show, we can now proudly present you with an online-only exclusive from the show, brought to you by the good folks at Bing. A bit less intense, “For The Summer” is the perfect, tender compliment to Wednesday’s “Repo Man”?sneak, whose lyrics perhaps offer a healing solution to the dramatic knife story he discussed. If you’re already a fan, you’ll get it, and if you’re not, it’s compelling enough to turn you into one.
To get the full scoop on Ray’s bedroom fiasco, watch both clips now, and don’t forget to set your DVRs for Storytellers: Ray LaMontagne, premiering tonight at 11 p.m. ET/PT on VH1.