Katy Perry is between singles but busy on the benefit circuit these days. In the past few weeks alone we’ve seen the star perform a competitive “Let’s Stay Together” cover and a very, very good “I Can’t Make You Love Me.” This latest performance tops all, though, as it is guarantee to pull and tug each and every one of your heartstrings. And afterwards, you will never want to hear “Firework” any other way.
Over the weekend, Comedy Central held a benefit called Night of Too Many Stars, in support of autism programs, schools, and services all over the country. Hosted by Jon Stewart, the evening included a charming Carly Rae Jepsen and Harvey Keitel“Call Me Maybe”-off and plenty of laughs. Then came this most heart swelling performance of Perry’s “Firework” by a prodigal young piano player named Jodi DiPiazza. Read more…
Nicki Minaj has made more than her share of bright and sexy videos, but this is by far the brightest and the sexiest of the bunch. The Colin Tilley-directed video for “The Boys,” a new cut from Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded — The Re-Up, just hit the web, and it’s splashed with predictably eye-popping colors and generous with the ever ogle-able Nicki and her “real pretty” pal Cassie. While Cassie looks great in a high-cut one piece, this video centered around Nicki going crazy on a barber shop. What happened, Nicki? Did they give you a bad haircut?
Ellie Goulding had a particularly busy day yesterday, performing on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in the morning and then again on Conan late last night, and she seemed to enjoy every bit of it. Goulding’s excellent Haylcon has officially entered the Top 10 on the Billboard charts and her back-to-back performances felt like a celebration of it. Haylcon is dance-y and dazzling, like the scene Goulding and her boyfriend, Skrillex, run in; and it’s also a meant to be a breakup album, and so it’s often dark and dramatic (think: Florence + The Machine‘s Ceremonials). “Anything Could Happen” is an exception to this — “But you know, then I wrote ‘Anything Could Happen’ because suddenly my life changed again, and I met someone new,” she says — and it’s fun to see how she gets swept up and away again each time she performs it. Read more…
Kells promised that “Trapped in the Closet” would go on forever, and he’s no liar. 20 new chapters, all featuring the same melodic hook we’ve grown to love, will be appearing on IFC the day after Thanksgiving. That’s right, Black Friday will finally live up to the hype. Put away your credit card(s) and grab yourself some pie, and cozy up to the ever-surprising, ever-amusing twists and turns of the insides of R. Kelly’s mind.
Drake has achieved many accomplishments in his 25-years, but getting his high school degree — unless you count the one he earned at Degrassi High –was not among them. Drake left Toronto’s Forest Hill Collegiate Institute when he was just 15-years-old to take a role on Degrassi, and he never looked back from there. Back in August he announced that he was ready to hit the books and grind out his last credit, and so it seems he’s finally done it! Boy, it must feel good to have this crossed off the “To Do” list.
Drake shared on Twitter last night that he got a 97 percent on his final exam, which was enough to bring his class average up to 88 percent or a B+. “One of the greatest feelings in my entire life, ” he wrote. And so he may never know what Harvard gets him, but for now this will do. Mazel tov!
It’s hard not to lump Sky Ferreira in with the rest of the models often recognized on his Tumblr blog. She is indeed the perfect encapsulation of what a “scene girl” should look like: grunge-y bleached blond hair with peeking dark roots, bright red lipstick, wrapped up in a jean jacket. But Sky Ferreira’s (pronounced as such) latest EP hit the digital shelves yesterday and it’s pretty awesome. It’s got five full tracks featuring a plethora of sounds from a plethora of special friends–everyone from Jon Brion to Sherley Manson–not to mention Dev Hynes (aka Blood Orange) who helped Solange with her latest, “Losing You“.
The EP is a diverse collection of songs–Ferreira goes easily from teary-eyed acoustics (on “Sad Dream”) to rock reminiscent of Courtney Love and Garbage (on “Red Lips”, which Manson co-wrote, so it makes sense.) “Everything is Embarrassing”, produced by Dev Hynes, thumps away in the style of Whitney Houston’s “How Will I Know”, infusing Ferreira’s far-away vocals that continue to layer as the song progresses.
Taylor Swift hugged me, and somehow I have lived to tell about it. And yes, being embraced by the woman with the most digital record sales of all-timeIS like driving a new Maserati down a dead end street: exhilarating and emotional, a split second of life on the edge. The most magical moment of my life went down Monday afternoon, right before the singer took the stage in front of a room full of college students for her VH1 Storytellers performance. That too was awe-inspiring and uplifting, complete with lots of “I love yous!” from Taylor to the crowd as she strummed a sparkly guitar.
If it sounds like I’m gushing, I am. The woman completely won me over.
It’s never to early to begin planning next summer’s beach reading.
As was reported earlier this year, Lil Wayne is working with Grand Central Publishing to turn the diary he kept during his eight month Rikers stint into a memoir called Gone Till November. We being avid WeezyThxYou readers, we were very excited by the news. But then Lil Wayne got busy with his skateboarding and his t-shirt shilling, dropping mixtapes and sitting for bonkers depositions — just so many projects that we had forgotten about his writerly ambitions. And so it was a pleasant surprise to see that the project has finally come to fruition. Gone Till November won’t actually be out in November — rather, we’ll have to wait until May 14th, 2013 — but it does have a cover now, and it also appears to be available for pre-order on Amazon. Hooray! Read more…
Wyclef Jean is 43 years old today, but he certainly doesn’t feel that way. “I look + feel 26!” he tweeted, along with this stunning photo of him atop his most patriotic Ducati. “U cant keep à good Man down! Keep à smile when they want you to frown!” he wrote, and yet this photo depicts a very oiled, very stern-looking Wyclef.
Either way, he looks good and who knows what’s lurking in that fancy two-car garage behind him. More bikes? More body oil?
Eccentric South African rap-ravers Die Antwoord have set alight with their provocative new video for “Fatty Boom Boom.” The video is as complicated an act as they are — it at one point finds the duo donning what appears to be blackface, and there is a worthwhile exploration of that element here — and worth unpacking a bit, particularly the part where they totally clown on Lady Gaga and her taste for “freaky things.”
The video begins with a tour guide welcoming a Lady Gaga doppelgänger to Africa with a tour of South Africa’s “Concrete Jungle,” where stoplights are called “robots” and shop owners keep black panthers as guard cats. When they come across Ninja and Yo-Landi Vi$$er performing on the sidewalk, Gaga pauses to admire their “freaky fashion” and has just begun to wonder if she might “get them to open for me” — a gig they’ve actually turned down — when the van gets highjacked. Gaga sets off running and somehow winds up at a dentist/gynecologist’s office, where she births a gross and goo-covered bug because she is indeed the Mother Monster. And in the end, they let the Lion King of the Concrete Jungle eat her. Read more…