Annie Lennox has made some very empowering and yet very measured comments about Rihanna to The Telegraph, telling the newspaper that it would be “So f**king powerful,” if Rihanna decided to speak out publicly about domestic violence. With the resurfacing of some touchy issues lately — Rihanna teaming up with ex-boyfriend Chris Brown, who brutally assaulted her in 2009 for two new tracks, as well as Chris Brown’s divisive Grammys performances — everyone seems to have an opinion on what Rihanna should be doing.
Lennox, however, while taking a strong stand against domestic violence and encouraging Rihanna to speak out, is equally respectful of RiRi’s decision to stay quiet on the matter; “Here is a young woman who has been through domestic violence and she could become a tremendous spokesperson for that issue but the choice is hers. It’s not up to anybody else to do that… Of course if she did choose to do that it would be so f**king powerful but it’s her personal right to choose it or not. We all have our issues and we have to deal with them in our own way.” Lennox is a known social activist and regarded by many as a feminist icon, and in many respects we agree that Rihanna has a great power at her disposal, but also that it’s entirely her choice as to whether or not she exercises it.
Rihanna urged to condemn domestic violence [Music News]
[Photos: Getty Images]
It’s truth bomb time: Mylo Xyloto is a silly name. We’re not even really sure how to pronounce it. This isn’t an indictment on Coldplay or the content of the album — completely exclusive from all other elements, the name itself is simply absurd. And Chris Martin — at least for a brief moment — seemed to agree, telling Good Morning America, “It’s just something that we thought looked really good but everywhere we go around the world people pronounce it in the most crazy ways and we’re beginning to regret it now,” (if someone could please tell us how to pronounce it correctly that would be great).
Unfortunately, the Coldplay front man took back this moment of lucidity later, Tweeting from the Coldplay Twitter Feed:
Well, Chris Martin, I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree because as much as we love you and your sound, Mylo Xyloto doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue!
Coldplay’s Chris Martin denies that he regrets ‘Mylo Xyloto’ album title [NME]
[Photo: Getty Images]
Lady Gaga should be renamed Viral Monster in the wake of her record breaking Twitter following. Boasting an army for more than 20 million Little Monsters on the social networking site, Gaga is not only the first person to reach the massive number, but also the most followed person on Twitter in the world. That’s right — Lady Gaga has more followers than President Obama, who checks in with only 12.84 million followers. Gaga for president, anyone? Mother Monster has a comfortable lead in the Twitter stakes too, with the next most followed account being Justin Bieber at 18.11 million, then Katy Perry at 15.75 million, Shakira at 14.56 million and Rihanna at 14.49 million.
Impressive for Lady Gaga given that she only joined the social networking device on March 26th, 2008, which essentially makes her a viral marketing success, given her prevalence across the Internet. Gaga also boasts eight million Facebook fans and more than 800,000 Google+ “circles,” and it doesn’t look like she’s going anywhere any time soon. Since the Telegraph reported Gaga’s 20 millionth follower this morning, we’ve checked her Twitter account and it looks like she’s picked up another 173,000 subscribers already! Gaga is a prolific Tweeter, which might have something to do with her dominance, not to mention she Tweets everything herself, and offers insights and exclusives to fans via the medium — whatever she’s doing, she’s doing it right, and online marketers might have a thing to learn from the avant-pop star.
Lady Gaga breaks Twitter record [The Telegraph]
[Photo: Getty Images]
Log off your Facebook, it’s time to watch the brand new video from Brandy and Monica, “It All Belongs To Me”! We’re super psyched to debut the first video from this pair of superstar ladies since 1998′s “The Boy Is Mine.”
Lensed by A-List hip hop video director Chris Robinson, the clip shows the one-time rivals teaming up together to exact revenge on a couple of guys that did them dirty. Thematically, the song recalls Beyoncé’s “Irreplaceable”, but “It Belongs To Me” ups the ante significantly; instead of encouraging their exes to put their ish in a box “to the left, to the left”, Brandy and Monica instead instruct their men to leave all of the things they were gifted —their cars, their clothes, those rings, and, most importantly, THAT MACBOOK!— exactly right where it is. And the video takes it even one step further when the girls load up a vintage Porsche that Monica had bought her man with …wait for it… explosives (and then, of course, blow that piece sky high). Hell hath no fury, indeed!
Adele And Daft Punk Get Mashed Together For “Something About The Fire”
We cringed when we first caught wind of this. But when we finally listened to the mash up that features Adele‘s “Set Fire To The Rain” and Daft Punk‘s “Something About Us” we felt ashamed of our initial skepticism — this actually might be our new favorite song. [Prefix]
There Might Be An Album Of Unreleased Material By Aaliyah On The Way
While the late legend Aaliyah‘s brother says there’s no “official” album on the way, producer Jeffey “J. Dub” Walker Tweeted, “Just got great news today; the smash unreleased song called ‘Steady Ground’ I produced on #Aaliyah is gonna be on her upcoming album:)”. We’ve got all our fingers, toes, and other crossable parts crossed that we’ll be hearing some previously unheard Aaliyah music this year. [Idolator]
It’s always a treat when we get to see one of our favorite new tracks played live. Our March You Oughta Know artist, Graffiti6, was in the studio this week to play us a stripped back rendition of their amazing lead single, “Free”, from their album Colours. We loved the romantic video for “Free” and we just love the song even more every time we hear it. Singing live, Graffiti6 gave some raw emotion as front man Jamie Scott tugged on our heartstrings with his gentle, honey-like vocal and lovely blue eyes. We’re very much looking forward to a whole month of Graffiti6 and you should be too — keep checking back because we’ve got some great exclusives to share from the boys’ visit to VH1 headquarters!
History tells us that revenge is a dish best served… Melodically! And what better way to express bitter feelings than through song? Ask Madonna, whose new track “I Don’t Give A…” from MDNA includes what is allegedly a stab at ex-hubby Guy Richie. In the song, Madge sings, “I tried to be a good girl/I tried to be your wife/Diminished myself/And I swallowed my light/I tried to become all/That you expect of me/And if it was a failure/I don’t give a [bleep].” The song is apparently about losing her identity during that eight-year marriage, and we’re intrigued by the deeply personal nature of the song, as Madonna is known for her steely Ice Queen facade. Other tracks off the album reportedly embody the same spirit, with songs like “Bang Bang,” including lyrics like, “Bang bang, shot you dead/Shot my lover in the head/Now my lover is dead/And I have no regrets/He deserved it/And I’m going straight to hell/And I got a lot of friends there/And if I see that bitch in hell/I’m gonna shoot him in the head again/Cuz I want to see him die/Over and over.” We’d really hate to get on Madonna’s bad side!
The songs were heard at an invite-only listening party held by her press agent Liz Rosenberg on Friday night at The Agency Group in New York for MDNA. There was no hard copy of the lyrics handed out, so all reports come from how they were heard, and Rosenberg commented, “If those are the words you heard . . . I have not heard Madonna explain whether the lyrics are autobiographical or not. She doesn’t often explain lyrics to her songs, and she did have a few writing collaborators. I can only confirm that the response from the music press who heard the album was really exciting. They seemed to love it.” We’ll get to find out if the lyrics were reported accurately in a month’s time — MDNA drops on March 26th.
Madge attacks ex Guy in song [NY Post]
[Photo: Getty Images]
You know how much we love Jimmy Fallon’s musical impersonations — and our favorite is definitely his turn as Neil Young to sing Willow Smith‘s “Whip My Hair” with Bruce Springsteen. Obviously, Fallon read our thoughts and answered all our wishes by bringing the Neil Young impersonation back, again with the legendary Springsteen in tow. This time, the pair sang a folksy version of LMFAO‘s “Sexy And I Know It”, and it really gave us a case of the giggles, especially as a straight faced Bruce sang “wiggle, wiggle, wiggle” while very seriously and stiffly wiggling from side to side. We’re hoping that the faux-Neil Young pairing with the real Boss is becoming a “thing,” and that we’ll get to see the two parodying another pop song soon!
Sony Music has been hacked — and 50,000 songs have been stolen, including Michael Jackson‘s entire back catalog and a reportedly large amount of his unreleased work. Despite the attack occurring in April last year (when hackers stole the personal data of 77 million registered PlayStation Network users), the event has only now come to light. At the time of the attack, over 50,000 music files were simultaneously stolen, and while it remains unknown exactly what artists and songs were included, reports are suggest that Jackson’s entire back catalogue including previously unreleased duets with Will.i.am and Freddie Mercury were stolen.
And Sony owns a lot of Jackson material — in 2010 they paid the Jackson estate a $200 million guaranteed contract for 10 projects over seven years which included unreleased material from Off the Wall, Thriller and Bad studio sessions, and according to a source, “Everything Sony purchased from the Michael Jackson estate was compromised.” While Sony has not commented, the Jackson estate has been alerted to the breach, and two men have been charged in connection with the breach but both have pleaded innocent, released on bail to stand trail next January.
Michael Jackson’s Unreleased Tracks Among 50,000 Songs Stolen From Sony By Hackers [Billboard]
[Photos: Getty Images]
We’d like to introduce you to our March You Oughta Know artist, Graffiti6. Hailing from London, the duo (made up of Jamie Scott, pictured above, and Tommy “D” Danvers), are a breath of fresh air with their soft, guitar-led pop. With a sentimental edge to their persona, the band released their debut album, Colours, in January, and we’ve been hooked ever since. Even though the band only started making music in 2009, there’s a wealth of maturity in their dulcet, tonal sound. With a hint of nostalgia in Scott’s folksy vocal, we’re falling in love with Graffiti6, and here are five reasons you should too…
1. The video for “Free”
We just loved the video for “Free”, the first single from their debut album, Colours. You can watch the video below, and read what we thought about it here.
2.Their famous friends
Before Jamie Scott and Tommy Danvers were Graffiti6, they worked with some pretty high profile collaborators. Danvers remixed tracks by Michael Jackson and Bjork, and had worked alongside his wife arranging and orchestrating concerts and recordings for super stars like Kanye West, Jay-Z, Adele, Beyonce and Noel Gallagher. He went on to produce the number one chart single, “I’m Too Sexy,” for Right Said Fred, before writing several songs for KT Tunstall, Corinne Bailey Rae, Janet Jackson and Kylie Minogue before joining forces with Scott to make music for Graffiti6. Scott, no less accomplished, has toured with Alica Keys and Kelly Clarkson with his previous band, Jamie Scott & The Town. With such full resumes and a cast of friends worthy of pop royalty status, we’re excited to see what future collaborations Graffiti6 might have up their sleeves!