Nicki Minaj Blows Rihanna’s Mind. Does She Blow Yours?

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Since we’re keeping tabs on our VH1 Divas Salute the Troops performers (tune in Dec. 5), we can’t ignore all of the fuss surrounding Nicki Minaj‘s debut Pink Friday, released today to mixed reviews. Some critics are praising Nicki for taking listeners of her alter ego-packed album on a fantastical journey that fuses hip-hop and pop. And while Nicki has been the equivalent to a pinch hitter as a guest rapper, hip-hop purists say Nicki’s bringing too much sugary pop to Lil Wayne‘s Young Money record label.

Judging from a recent VH1 News interview, we’re guessing Rihanna will not be among those in the hip-hop community that have a gripe. “Nicki is a rapper … and has all of these quirky melodies and lyrics,” said Rihanna, who first worked with Nicki while making Rated R. “Then she started sending me these crazy ballads. It just made me say, ‘What the heck, you wrote that s*** too?’”

Have thoughts on Nicki Minaj or Pink Friday? Leave them in the comments section. And don’t miss VH1 Divas on Sunday, Dec. 5 at 9/8c.

Live In LA: My Chemical Romance Coming To VH1.com On November 22

by (@unclegrambo)

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It’s been a big week for My Chemical Romance fans, but next week promises to be even more exciting. The band’s highly anticipated new album, Danger Days: The True Lives of the Fabulous Killjoys, hits stores on Monday and, as a means of celebrating, VH1.com and MTV.com will host an exclusive global live stream of the Live Nation event, Live in LA: My Chemical Romance. The band will be debuting tracks from Danger Days, as well as dipping into their back catalog to play some fan faves. Be sure to swing by VH1.com on Monday night beginning at 10 p.m. EST/7 p.m. PST to catch all of the action.

Oh, and in case you missed it, Gerard and the fellas stopped by Jimmy Kimmel Live last night. We’ve got their performances of both “SING” and “Na Na Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)” for you below.
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VH1 Divas Performer Sugarland Sets Right A Fashion Wrong

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If you pay attention to country music, you already know Sugarland, the platinum duo that’s part of the lineup of VH1 Divas Salute The Troops, which airs Dec. 5 at 9/8c. Or maybe you’ve just heard about them for the first time when singer Jennifer Nettles made her way onto worst-dressed lists for performing in a tutu at the CMA Awards.

To be fair, Jennifer also made best-dressed lists for her red carpet outfit to the same event — not to mention Sugarland took home the award for Vocal Duo of the Year. Still, Jennifer and her partner Kristian Bush have fully redeemed their fashion cred by stopping by our offices and running through their outfits, head to toe. This country act has style. Just watch.

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[All Photos: Jen Marigliano]

Video Premiere: Bruno Mars Pulls The Pin On His Own Personal “Grenade”

by (@unclegrambo)

After getting a taste of chart success penning hits for the likes of B.o.B., Cee-Lo Green and Travie McCoy, VH1 You Oughta Know artist Bruno Mars figured it finally was high time to step out of the shadows and soak up the spotlight himself. His first solo single, the sentimental ballad “Just The Way You Are,” quickly became one of this year’s most ubiquitous hits. Thanks to its subject matter, it stands a pretty good shot at being one of next spring’s most popular choices for Prom theme.

The same cannot be said for “Grenade,” Bruno’s latest single off Doo-Wops & Hooligans. But, mind you, this is not a bad thing! As sunshine-y and sweet as “Just The Way You Are” was, “Grenade” — which, thankfully, has nothing to do with The Situation’s description of girls who won’t sleep with him — is equally dark and depressing. That doesn’t mean that it’s not catchy, though: this song’s got one of those propulsive piano loops that will stay in your head for hours and hours. And, of course, Bruno’s voice is as silky smooth as its ever been. What do you think? Be sure and let us know.

One last thing! Do you notice any similarities between this video and the one we debuted last night, My Chemical Romance’s “SING”? First person to note the similarity correctly in the comments below wins NOT a prize, but rather, our undying admiration. It’s not as good as a cash prize or swag, we know, but it’s gotta count for something, right?
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My Chemical Romance Embrace Dystopia In Their Video For “SING”

by (@unclegrambo)

After we gave you My Chemical Romance fans a tantalizing tease of what their new video, “SING,” would look like on Monday, it’s finally time to let you see the whole shebang. Here’s the quickie synopsis: In a dystopian future that’s kind of reminiscent of the worlds of Watchmen and A Clockwork Orange, Gerard Way and his cohorts in MCR hop in a vintage (and totally bitchin’) Trans-Am and storm the headquarters of Better Living Industries (“Blind,” get it?) in an attempt to rescue what must be the world’s most important pre-teen (who, for the olds out there reading this, looks a lot like Cool from the original Parenthood). Along the way, they encounter creepy guys in vampire masks and Sonny Crockett’s left-over sportjackets who try to thwart their rescue attempt with laser pistols. Fortunately, My Chemical Romance is also armed with laser pistols and, as you might expect, an epic battle — which comes complete with a duel between Gerard and some incubated bald baddy! — for the kid dressed like Mork from Ork ensues.

What does it all mean, people? We’ll leave the theorizing up to you in the comments below. If you want to see how this video looks on your big screen at home, be sure to tune into VH1′s Top 20 Video Countdown this weekend.

Salute Your Divas!

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We couldn’t resist sharing these brand new, WWII-inspired promo shots of the lineup for The USO Presents: VH1 Divas Salute the Troops (premiering Sunday, Dec. 5 at 9/8c). In the gallery below are pin-up sized individual shots of Sugarland‘s Jennifer Nettles, Nicki Minaj, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals‘ Grace Potter, Keri Hilson, Katy Perry and Paramore‘s Hayley Williams. Print them out, hang them up and you’re guaranteed to feel a rise in your…patriotism.

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In other Diva-related news, VH1 is partnering with Glamour Shots to bring out your inner DIVA with a pin-up or patriotic-themed photo session. This free session includes: makeover and hairstyling; photo session; free 10×13 portrait; and a special Divas gift with purchase! The offer ends Dec. 10th. Book now at www.glamourshots.com/Divas.

VH1 Posted: Keri Hilson Answers YOUR Questions

by (@unclegrambo)

Hey there! Remember when we told you that if you asked VH1′s Posted artist for the month of November, Keri Hilson (aka @MissKeriBaby), a question, we’d pass it to her and she’s answer it? Well, she did, and the results are above! Remember, if you want to keep daily tabs on one of the stars of the 2010 VH1 Divas Salute The Troops show, it’s as easy as typing posted.vh1.com into your web browser. She’ll be here all month, don’t miss any of the action!

VH1 Storytellers: T.I. To Premiere December 10

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We’re super excited about VH1 Storytellers: T.I., premiering Friday, December 10 at 11/10c. We hear the shooting time was epic (we’ll have a whole batch of online-exclusive performances from it in coming weeks) and if anyone’s got a story to tell, it’s this guy. More info on T.I.’s forthcoming rap-and-tell session is in the press release below…

Just three days following the debut of his 7th album titled No Mercy, VH1 will premiere T.I.?s very own VH1 Storytellers special.? Taped at NYC?s Hammerstein Ballroom, the event features tracks from his newest album No Mercy as well as hits from his critically acclaimed releases including, I?m Serious (?Still Ain?t Forgave Myself?), King (?Live in the Sky?), Urban Legend (?Motivation,? ?Bring Em Out?) and Trap Muzik (?Rubber Band Man,? ?I Still Luv You”).? VH1 Storytellers: T.I ., will air on Friday, December 10th at 11/10C on VH1.

Following in the VH1 Storytellers format, T.I. answered fan questions and talked about redemption, accepting responsibility for past decisions and finding his way through troubled times.? T.I. confessed, ?Even when I lose faith in myself there is something in me that speaks through and says I am not finished yet.? Viewers will gain a unique opportunity to hear T.I. share his stories and the inspirations behind each song. One example came later in the show during one of his most poignant songs, ?Live in the Sky? where he opened up about the subject of the song by saying, ?Before I could make my way to real success my cousin found himself in a situation and he took the bad end of a gun and lost his life in the same house as his 3-year-old son and his wife. That just hit me real hard and for him to have had as big of a part in the beginning of my career and not be there to see it turn into what it has turned into today opened up a lot feelings and emotions to me that I just had to put into music.?

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Christina Perri “Daydream” Music Video Premiere

by (@unclegrambo)

If you’ve been paying attention to this blog for the last few months — you HAVE been paying attention, right? — you will no doubt recognize the name Christina Perri. Not only is this new artist one of VH1′s You Oughta Know artists, but she just played a stunning, acoustic version of “Jar of Hearts” in our elevator lobby just a few weeks ago.

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Lee DeWyze “Sweet Serendipity” Music Video Premiere

by (@unclegrambo)

It’s no secret that male winners of American Idol have yet to experience the same kind of success in the marketplace as their female counterparts. Kelly Clarkson, Carrie Underwood and our own Fantasia all have multiple gold LPs under their belt, while the likes of David Cook, Taylor Hicks and Kris Allen have yet to strike the same kind of chord with the record buying public. That said, Lee DeWyze has already beaten the odds once, so what’s in the way of him having the biggest post-Idol career of not just the guys, but also the girls?

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