President Obama Calls For Peace At The American Idol Judges’ Table, Gets An Endorsement From Jay-Z

by (@zaragolden)

Should a pop culture question be thrown into the pit during tonight’s town-hall style debate, Barack Obama will be well prepared. In a week spent on the trail and with all his presidential duties, the President found time to mediate the ongoing Idol feud and to woo Jay-Z. And here we are, still trying to find time to catch up on Homeland!

On air with Miami radio host Michael Yo this week, the president broke from his usual refrains — “the economy, we’ll fix that,” and so on — to take a question about the current state of American Idol affairs. “I think that they are going to be able to sort it out, I am confident,” he said when asked if he might repair Nicki Minaj and Mariah Carey‘s tempestuous relationship in his second term. “I’m all about bringing people together, working for the same cause. I think both outstanding artists are going to be able to make sure that they’re moving forward and not backwards.” Read more…

ACL 2012 Final Day: Rock Is Never Going Out Of Style As Long As Red Hot Chili Peppers And Iggy & The Stooges Are Around


At ACL Red Hot Chili Peppers and Iggy & The Stooges Prove Rock Will Never Die

Ultimately how a music festival closes on the last day for its 70,000 connoisseurs of music is how its success will be judged. Friday is perhaps a bit blurry, the rain possibly overshadowed Saturday’s performances, and then there’s Sunday—the final day of Austin City Limits, potentially the most memorable for fans. Ending the three day music extravaganza with the Red Hot Chili Peppers is how one properly concludes a festival.

Trekking across the park to Gary Clark Jr.’s show was much easier without the muddy grass Saturday’s rain created. After he blew us away with an incredible performance it’s easy to understand why he’s a rising star in the making. For “When My Train Pulls In” he worked the guitar like he was playing for his life. It didn’t matter that he didn’t start singing until nearly four minutes as long as he didn’t stop stringing that guitar. He’s so skilled he barely looked at the instrument during “Ain’t Messin ‘Round,” which impressed pretty much everyone. His sound was a mix between rock, country and blues with a dose of GCJ flavor. With the help of his awesome band, “Don’t Owe You A Thang” inspired the crowd to clap along to the rhythm, shouting whenever they saw fit. Read more…

Leona Lewis Thinks Her Version Of “We Found Love” Is Better Than Rihanna’s, But Won’t Share It!

by (@zaragolden)

Pop songs don’t always end up being what they began. Written with one star in mind, a song may then be passed from artist to artist until the right fit is found. This process gets a spotlight in this month’s Vogue profile of Rihanna, which finds the star in the studio in the very early days of working on her album, shuffling through demos sung by someone else and imagining what she might make of them. “They sound like decent pop songs to me, but there’s no way to judge until Rihanna herself is on the cut, adding that secret ingredient,” writes Vogue‘s Jason Gay of the process. And so eventually “Diamonds” becomes Rihanna’s “Diamonds” and so on, but what about the demos that get left behind?

In an interview with the U.K.’s Daily Star, X-Factor champ Leona Lewis let slip that Calvin Harris‘ Rihanna vehicle “We Found Love” was originally meant for her. “I worked with Calvin and we recorded ‘We Found Love.’ But he went touring with Rihanna and she ended up releasing it,” she says. And though the song ended up being a smash for Rihanna, Lewis is certain that she could have done one better: “It was the same version and production but mine’s better,” she says. Read more…

4 Fun Ways To Celebrate Taylor Swift’s Album Release

by (@zaragolden)

10 fingers, 9 vintage shoe forms, 8 seashells … the countdown to Red release Tuesday is on, and Taylor Swift is not the only one who excited. Here at VH1, we have already learned all the words to “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” “Red,” “Begin Again” and “I Knew You Were Trouble,” dumped our boyfriends, and have gathered all our furry woodland creatures friends in anticipation of the ensuing dance party; but the celebrating won’t end there. Taylor has worked hard to make sure that Red‘s release is an event on-par with, say, a Kardashian Wedding, and we plan on partaking in every last part of it. Here’s our plan.

Four fun ways to celebrate Red‘s release: Read more…

Getting Chris Brown For The “Birthday Cake (Remix)” Was Rihanna’s Idea, And 5 Other Revelations From The Vogue Cover Story

by (@zaragolden)

Rihanna has a new album slated for release this November, and so Vogue has gone long on the Bajan star in anticipation. Vogue’s Jason Gay tagged along with Rihanna at MTV Video Music Awards — a night she pretty much owned, between her awards won and her jaw-dropping performance with A$AP Rocky — and got her to talk dating, drugs and drama, of course. Unapologetic like she wont be, she let it all spill.

It’s impossible to skirt the Chris Brown issue and so Gay asked straightly about her decision to still keep him so close, specifically her decision to work with him again. Rihanna admits without any sign of hesitation that the controversial “Birthday Cake (Remix),” which includes an illicit verse from Brown, was her idea. “I didn’t think it could be anything detrimental to my career,” she says. “I thought, We haven’t made a song in so long together . . . it could be a little shocking.” Read more…

Snoop Dogg Drops It like It’s Hot For Hot Pockets

by (@zaragolden)

Yo munchies got an attitude? Why not try a Hot Pocket like it’s hot, suggests Hot Pockets’ unlikely new spokesman Snoop Lion (nee Dogg). It would seem that Snoop has never met a product he won’t endorse, but this latest effort smacks of genius: Snoop has reworked his 2004 hit “Drop It Like It’s Hot” as [drumroll, please!] “Pocket Like It’s Hot.” You can call him the Big Sauce Boss now.

Snoop and his collaborators, YouTube star DeStorm and comedian and one-third of the rap group Three Loco Andy Milonakis, use the remix to spit high praise for the freezer section delight. They swap lines like “I got the Rolly on my arm and I’m pouring Chandon” for freezer pastry big-ups like “I’ve got the pockets in my arms, settin’ off smoke alarms” while they dance with a life-sized Hot Pocket, laying it all out like this was just one hit of the bong away all along. Which it may well have been, given Snoop’s dedication to the high life. Snoop has certainly indulged in a Hot Pocket or two in his life, and so when he says “when da cheese hits your tongue it’ll scream ‘fo sizzle,'” you know he means it. Lean Cuisine, what’s your move?

Snoop’s Hot Pockets come complete with a leopard print fur casing: Read more…

Katy Perry’s Bonnie Raitt Cover Actually Can Make Us Love Her

by (@zaragolden)

A good Bonnie Raitt cover certainly can make us love you. Performing at the American Foundation for AIDS Research Inspiration Gala last Thursday night, Katy Perry covered a song that “needs no introduction.” That song being Raitt’s 1991 classic “I Can’t Make You Love Me,” one of the most gut wrenching songs ever put to record. Gut wrenching isn’t so much a part of her usual palette, but fresh from covering Al Green last week and perhaps stirred by her recent split with John Mayer, Perry did Raitt better than good by hitting all the high notes and leaning into all the song’s emotions.

President Obama has not, to our knowledge, covered “I Can’t Make You Love Me” (yet!), but plenty of other talented musicians have. The song has served as a right of passage for American Idol contestants aplenty, and as hallmark for emotionally savvy artists like Adele, Bon Iver and Tank. We hadn’t yet considered the California Gurl and the inventor of the whipped cream bra as the later, but she has proved us wrong with a cover that ranks up with our mom’s cover of the song (forever our #1).

How do you think she did? Do you have a favorite “I Can’t Make You Love Me” cover?

Katy Perry Covers Bonnie Raitt’s “I Can’t Make You Love Me”: Watch [Idolator] Read more…

The Weeknd Cancels ACL Show Hours Before His Scheduled Performance


The Weeknd Cancels ACL Performance Hours Before Scheduled To Perform

For new artists like The Weeknd, Austin City Limits music festival is the perfect venue to play for thousands of adorning fans while also gaining the attention of potential new ones. Unfortunately, those looking forward to watching the “Wicked Games” singer perform today may be disappointed. Hours before his 5:15 p.m. set, The Weeknd cancelled his show due to doctor’s orders. His vocals need to rest, which means we won’t get to sing along to his sounds of seduction.

A statement was released apologizing for the no-show. “Regrettably The Weeknd will not be performing at ACL Festival today. Early this morning, under Doctors instructions, Abel has been put on a rest period to help with recurring vocal, aural and respiratory issues. We apologise for any inconvenience caused to fans. We hope he will recover quickly. There will be a personal statement later today.” DJ Mel was called in to perform in The Weeknd’s slot. New artists can’t afford to cancel shows, especially not one as large as the ACL Festival. Oftentimes bailing on performances doesn’t sit well with fans or the hosts of the festival. But since it was for medical purposes, hopefully the strength of his eargasm baby-making music will help folks get over his absence quickly.

[Photo: Getty Images]

ACL 2012 Day Two: It Doesn’t Get More Eclectic Than The Roots, Gotye, Metric, Big K.R.I.T. And Jack White


ACL 2012 Day Two: The Roots, Gotye, Metric And Big Krit

A music festival attendee’s worst nightmare is overcast in the sky that threatens to unleash a torrential downpour upon thousands of concertgoers. Unfortunately, we weren’t spared from the rain that descended upon Zilker Park on Saturday off and on for the entire day leading well into the night. But resilient music fans aren’t scared off easily, especially not by water falling from the clouds. The show must go on. And it did. Read more…

ACL 2012: Florence + The Machine Steal The Show Opening Night, Plus Esperanza Spalding, Tegan And Sara, The Black Keys


Tens of thousand of people set-up blankets or folding chairs on the grass throughout Zilker Park in Austin, Texas for the first day of Austin City Limits Music Festival. For the music lovers without either, they stood surrounding one of the eight stages for that one of a kind feeling of a live performance by their favorite artist. The sweltering heat was an obvious topic of conversation among attendees and performers. Sara from Tegan and Sara worried she may pass out. However, a beaming sun didn’t deter the determined legion of fans from bouncing cheerfully from one end of the park to the other, stage to stage, with water in hand. Read more…