At last the second of our July and August YOK artists, Rebecca Ferguson‘s, You Oughta Know Live has, well, gone live! Poised and glowing brighter than her neon orange dress at center stage, she performed for us a stripped down version of her hit single “Nothing’s Real But Love.” She really let the voice that landed her in second place on Britain’s The X Factor soar, growing only stronger and more triumphant where the song gets vulnerability. You can hear both the struggles she’s overcome and the winnings she’s earned, and you can’t help but believe when she preaches that “no money, no house, no car is like love.” She also performed “Shoulder To Shoulder” and a souled-up cover of “Knocked Up” by the Kings of Leon, one of her more surprising but often cited influences.
And! The news gets better: You can download an MP3 of Ferguson’s stunning “Nothing’s Real But Love” performance here on Tuner for free! But be quick — the link expires at midnight on Sunday, July 23rd and you’ll want not to miss it.
Looks like we’re not the only ones hooked on July and August’s VH1 You Oughta Know artists The Lumineers! Our sister station, the Country Music Channel, tapped the roots-revivalist trio for the kick-off episode of their gritty new online performance and interview series called Concrete Country. The band played their debut hit “Ho Hey,” along with “Classy Girls” and “Stubborn Love,” live from the streets of Nashville while traffic and pedestrians passed behind them. “We used to play that song at an open mic at the Metal Arc in Denver, and sometimes people would talk very loudly so I would scream ‘Ho!’ and ‘Hey!’” Jeremiah Fraites joked of the bustle. “It was a good song to get people’s attention.”
Two Door Cinema Club have the internet buzzing this afternoon. The Irish trio debuted “Sleep Alone,” the first single from their forthcoming sophomore album Beacon, and now both “Sleep Alone” and “Two Door Cinema Club” are trending on Twitter as evidence of a world as excited about these You Oughta Know alums as we are! Back again are the jangly guitars and danceable beats that remind us almost of New Wave, if only Ian Curtis could have had access to a MacBook, and we are so glad. Have a listen below, or download it for free off of their website.
VH1 News caught up with the guys last month in L.A., where they were still hard at work on their new album — and on a new diet. “We spend the first hour or so just drinking coffee and watching YouTube or something, and then we’ll just take it as it comes and work until 11 in the evening and then go home and do it all over again,” they said of their process. And in the off hours that they weren’t in the studio? They were out enjoying Southern California’s hills, sunshine and preferred roughage. “The most L.A. thing we’ve been doing is just eating really healthily,” guitarist Sam Halliday admitted. “I’d never heard of kale before.”
Maybe you’ve seen this commercial, the one where the Hawaiian vacation of dreams is planned with the help of his friends and social networks and Bing. And maybe it even inspired you to give Microsoft’s search engine go. Most likely of all, though, it left you with that song stuck in your head and anticipation of the next commercial break when you might hear it again. That oh-so-catchy song is “Ho Hey!” by July and Augusts You Oughta Know artists The Lumineers, and it sounded even better yet when they performed it at VH1 headquarters for their You Oughta Know Live session.
“Ho Hey” swells around the band’s three members, a simple guitar melody, a little kick-drum and a shake of tambourine. It’s the battery of ho’s and hey’s, though, that get into your bones, making the song impossible to shake. Not that you’ll want to.
It’s no secret that we love July and August You Oughta Know artists The Lumineers‘ “Ho Hey!” So joyous and ever infectious, they stomped their way straight to our hearts. We would be remiss, though, if we didn’t share also The Lumineers’ more plaintive side. At VH1 headquarters for their You Oughta Know Live performance, they slowed things down for “Stubborn Love,” a beautiful and yearning song about love that won’t give up. “She’ll tear a hole in you, the one you can’t repair,” it so goes, “but I still love her, I don’t really care.” Refusing to give in and raised by a crescendo of drums and cello, they insist that you “Keep your head up, keep your love” because “It’s better to feel pain than nothing at all.” And when Wesley Schultz wails that, “The opposite of love is indifference,” you can’t help but feel moved.
The Lumineershad us at first “Ho Hey,” but their visit to VH1 headquarters a few weeks back really got our hearts and feet thumping. Looking the part in soft chambray shirts and suspenders, and with big smiles on their faces, they played a few songs before sitting down to talk about their move west from Brooklyn to Colorado and about hearing their music on television for the first time. All the while our photographer, Lauren Weissler, was tagging along to catch them setting up, hanging out, plugging in, and playing. We’ve named The Lumineers our You Oughta Know artists for July and August because we just can’t get enough of their warm, roots-revival rock; the rest of you, though, who have helped to propel their album to the #3 spot on Billboard’s Folk chart and #4 on the Indie chart, might have your own reasons for loving them. But check out the photos below and tell us: aren’t you so charmed, too?
Last month, we announced that 21-year-old British troubadour Ed Sheeran was embarking on not just his very first U.S. headlining tour, but also on the very first VH1 You Oughta Know tour! The first batch of tour dates that our May You Oughta Know artist released sold out lickety-split, so we’re adding more. Sheeran’s debut album, +, made an impressive debut at #5 on the Billboard charts last month, and his lead single “The A-Team” (see our YOK Live video below!) has been steadily making a huge impact at radio stations nationwide. And don’t even get us started on his awesome live covers of songs like Ginuwine’s “Pony” and Lil Kim’s “Lighters Up”! Take a gander at the complete press release, which includes the new tour dates, below…
ED SHEERAN LIGHTING IT UP IN THE U.S.
NEW DATES AND LARGER VENUES ADDED TO BRITISH STAR’S FIRST-EVER HEADLINING NORTH AMERICAN TOUR
THANKS TO ENORMOUS POPULAR DEMAND
“VH1 YOU OUGHTA KNOW TOUR WITH ED SHEERAN” GETS UNDERWAY SEPTEMBER 8TH IN ORLANDO
INTIMATE NYC DATE SET FOR JULY 24TH AT IRVING PLAZA COMPLETELY SOLD OUT
“THE A TEAM” SCORES AT MULTI FORMAT RADIO NATIONWIDE AFTER“+” ENTERS SOUNDSCAN/BILLBOARD 200 AT #5
Elektra recording artist Ed Sheeran is proving to be as much a phenomenon here in the U.S. as he is in his native England. In response to his rapidly increasing popularity, the British troubadour has just added a number of new dates to his upcoming North American headline tour, much of which had already sold out within minutes of going on sale.
We’d like you to say “Hey” (or even “Ho Hey!”) to July and August’s You Oughta Know artists, The Lumineers. Childhood friends Wesley Schultz and Jeremiah Fraites began writing music together after the tragic loss of Jeremiah’s brother and Wesley’s friend, Josh. Eventually growing tired of the Brooklyn gruel, they turned west to Colorado. The move, it turns out, was fruitful. Once there, they picked up cellist Neyla Perkarek and released their eponymous debut album, which has since seen rise on the Billboard charts. “I don’t know where I belong,” goes “Ho Hey!”, “but I can write a song.” And that they can. Like the Avett Brothers and Mumford and Sons and many roots-revivalists before them, The Lumineers provide solace from the imposing woomp-woomp of radio these days, favoring instead the thump-thump of their feet and hearts. We think you really oughta know these guys, and here’s five reasons why:
1. That Bing Commercial
Many folks first got wind of these guys during this year’s NBA Finals, when a Bing spot with an infectiously hopeful song played during every commercial break. One internet search for “what is that song in the Bing commercial” later, and before the game was even over, many found themselves officially intrigued by The Lumineers.
Meet Rebecca Ferguson, one of our two You Oughta Know artists for July and August. Hailing from Liverpool, the 25-year-old singer made her first big splash on Britain’s The X Factor‘s seventh season, where she won-over the usually salty Simon Cowell and placed second overall. Her successful showing subsequently earned her a record deal. And although her debut album Heaven only hit shelves stateside in May, the lead single “Nothing’s Real But Love” has already found its way to both the top of the UK charts and deep into our hearts. Ferguson’s belting recalls the classic soul of Aretha Franklin as well as that of the quirkier Macy Gray, but she cites also acts like Mike Posner and rockers Kings Of Leon as influences. Here are five things that make us proud to have her as our latest You Oughta Know artist:
1. Earning It On The X Factor
As she explains in her audition tape for The X Factor, Ferguson assumed her dreams derailed when she got pregnant at the age of 17. “I thought, well, maybe I won’t be able to become a singer. Who’s going to want me, now I’ve got a kid? I lost me confidence,” she shared through tears. Not yet ready to put aside her life long dream of being a singer, she climbed the audition stage and hasn’t looked back since.
For her audition, she sang “A Change Is Gonna Come,” and, oh boy, did a change come. Not even the notoriously difficult Simon Cowell could say no to a voice like hers. “You’re voice is totally on the money,” he said. “Let me try to restore that confidence for you,” he told her, sending her forward to reclaim her spirit as well. It was a long time coming, but she knew a change was going to come.
Emeli Sandé’s Our Version of Events has been a constant fixture in the iPod for weeks now. The beauty of her voice matches her incredible songwriting that has the power to make random strangers cry for no other reason than her magical sound. As our June YOK artist we’re happy to share some of our favorite cuts from the album like “Next to Me” or style photos that show her boisterous personality. Today we gift you with her cover of Blur’s “Country House.” Read more…