Warren G. Hawks Penile Enhancement Pills (“Regulate” Puns Ahoy!)

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Have you ever found in a situation where you want to get down, but can’t, erm, get it up? In one of the more bizarre paid endorsements we’ve ever seen, “legendary recording artist” Warren G has some advice on the topic: “You need to take your Affirm XL and regulate.”

This series of ads has been around for a minute (inauspiciously enough, they were all uploaded within 48 hours of the passing of Warren G’s primary musical collaborator, Nate Dogg). But they just came to our attention today, thanks to ego trip (with whom we partnered in 2007 to produce The (White) Rapper Show) and we had to share them with you. The rapper is featured in four spots: “Warren G in the Bathroom,” above; “Bedroom Scene,” “Shower Scene,” and “Beach.” ego trip is polling its readers on which is their favorite of the four. And yes, they all contain references to, erm, regulating.

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Cher Re-Records The Fame Outtake, And Other Gaga News Of The Day

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Cher, who counts among her pop innovations the origin, with “Believe,” of Auto-Tune-as-aesthetic, is recording a new album, and its lead track is written by none other than Lady Gaga and her writing partner RedOne:

“The Greatest Thing” was written, and recorded by Gaga, for The Fame, but ultimately not officially released. Naturally, that demo is on YouTube.

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Spotify Launches In America! Does It Live Up To The Hype?

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Cloud-based streaming music service Spotify has launched in the United States, and you can sign up for their “unlimited” or “premium” monthly subscriptions or, with an invite, listen for free, with advertising. The hype machine is in full force, but how does the service stack up against other available options? We broke down the aspects of Spotify’s appeal to cut through the hype and look at what the service offers.

Spotify is streaming-only, so it does not allow users to download from its music catalog. This allows the service to license the music at a lower rate (and is part of what makes the advertising-supported service possible). As a free option, Spotify improves on Pandora by allowing listeners to choose what songs they hear, rather than having a playlist programmed for them. Its subscription service is not dissimilar to Rhapsody‘s or Rdio‘s streaming services, but both of those allow subscribers to download songs, so they can only offer free trials rather than a full-fledged advertising-supported service, and their subscription services start at a higher price point than Spotify’s $4.99/mo. “Unlimited” subscription.

Spotify is also touted for being cloud-based, which is to say that music is provided by content owners and stored by the service, not by the user. This allows users to have access to a larger catalog than they would able to store on their computers, phones, etc. However, control of the music is ultimately out of the user’s hands, so it can become unavailable. For example, even the services that have licenses with Sony do not stream Milli Vanilli songs, because that music has been deliberately removed from circulation by the company.

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Exclusive Video: Watch Javier Colon Watch Himself Perform On A 2003 Episode Of VH1 Unplugged

by (@unclegrambo)

Ever since being crowned the winner of The Voice two weeks ago, Javier Colon‘s life has been a whirlwind of interviews, press junkets, and plane flights (nine of them, to be exact). We here at VH1 have been fans of his going all the way back to 2003, when Javier performed on VH1 Unplugged. So when he popped by our offices the other day to chat, we took the opportunity to show him video from that 2003 Unplugged session, which just so happened to be the first time he had seen the video in eight years. We captured the moment on our iPhone cam, and we’ve got it for you above.

Javier was also cool enough to answer some of our questions about his experience on The Voice, what it was like to duet with the legendary Stevie Nicks, the strategy that came into play when it came to ditching his trademark cap, and what his new album is going to sound like.

VH1: Well, first things first. Congratulations on winning The Voice! What has your life been like for the last two weeks since winning it all?

Javier: The first week I had nine flights, it was a lot of back and fourth, a lot of press and stuff. It’s been amazing, it’s been a whirlwind. I felt like I was living someone else’s life. Walking as someone else, walking through the mall or through the airport with people are yelling ‘Congratulations!’ from across the concourse, or you see people looking at you funny or doing a double take. It feels like your out of your own skin.

It seems like one of the big things that came through on the show, aside from your incredible talent and incredible voice, is that people really seemed to make a connection to your choice of headwear.

I got a lot of hats man, I got a lot of hats, I mean all types of hats. From Kangols to fedoras, all kinds of stuff. On the show, I only did baseball hats for the most part. But I’ve got a lot of different hats.

Do you consider that to be one of your trademarks?

Yeah, it is! I mean, the hat is definitely one of my things, there is a lot of people that actually took issue with the fact that I didn?t take it off, in the beginning and I was like ?You know what? I’ll take it off actually in the middle of a song,? so I took it off in the middle of a Coldplay song.

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Lenny Kravitz Won’t “Stand” For Game Show Host Malfeasance In His New Music Video

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Lenny Kravitz plays the world’s most careless game-show-host/con artist, a character named Bart Billingsworth, in his new music video, “Stand.” Thanks to a complicated piece of machinery called the Cheat-O-Rama 3000, Kravitz/Billingsworth turns a Let’s Make a Deal type of show into Two-Card Monty. His hubris is such a perfect object lesson in how not to run a con that we thought we’d offer some tips for those of you who also want to go back in time and steal prizes from the game show you host.
 

 
1. If you use a machine to orchestrate your con, cover its name, and maybe unscrew the lightbulbs of its marquee, so it doesn’t draw attention to itself.
 
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Tuned In: Joe Jonas Impresses on Fallon

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Wednesday was a surprisingly good night for music on television. Raphael Saadiq performed on the ESPYs (hopefully video will show up online soon), and Best Week Ever favorite David Cook performed “The Last Goodbye” on Leno. And the new song Gomez played on Letterman has a killer bridge. But we were most curious to see Joe Jonas perform on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, especially after the coverage of his Brooklyn performance last week.

His rendition of “See No More” did not disappoint. Comparisons to Justin Timberlake are perhaps overstated, but they’re not off the mark. Jonas has the charisma to pull off a televised vocal performance of a largely digitally programmed song like this dance-pop single, and adapt it for a backing band (as he did last night). Plus this song, cowritten by Chris Brown, allows us to appreciate that R&B singer’s musical talent without having to reconcile it with his public behavior. We do have to agree with Jonas’s critics, though: ditch the backup dancers, Joe. They’re talented folks, but they distract and detract from your performance. Overall, though, “See No More” bodes well for the rest of the forthcoming solo LP.

Elsewhere on television…

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Last Lap: Wednesday’s Odds And Ends In Music News

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Pop’s Punching Bag: Hating the Black Eyed Peas
In the wake of the Black Eyed Peas’ hiatus announcement, a number of critical outlets responded to the effect of “Good riddance!” Ann Powers at NPR’s Record explores why. (Short version: “They imagine what life would be like with no consequences.” The piece may as well be about LMFAO, whose “Party Rock Anthem” is again #1 in the country.) But stay out of the comments; though the ignorance of many of them serves to reinforce Powers’ arguments, they also include descriptions of the Black Eyed Peas that we would rather not republish. [The Record]

If He Hadn’t Quit Twitter, John Mayer Might Not Have Ever Recorded Another Album
Depending on your opinion on the controversial crooner, that’s either really good or really bad news. Either way, during a chat at the Berklee College of Music, he confessed that frequent Twitter use was beginning to cost him his ability to write songs. “I had four million Twitter followers, and I was always writing on it,” he told a group of students. “And I stopped using Twitter as an outlet and I started using Twitter as the instrument to riff on, and it started to make my mind smaller and smaller and smaller. And I couldn?t write a song.” Consequently, look for most of the songs on his new record to include significantly more than 140 characters. [Rolling Stone]

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Breaking News: Rilo Kiley Called It Quits Three Years Ago

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Rilo Kiley‘s indefinite hiatus got a lot more definite today when Spinner published an interview in which guitarist Blake Sennett apparently claimed that the band was in fact broken up, and had been since their Under the Blacklight tour wrapped in June 2008. He also took shots at some of the songs on Under the Blacklight and misquoted Annie Hall on the way to comparing Rilo Kiley to a band that wasn’t moving forward.

Sennett may simply be tired of answering the same questions about a band he hasn’t played with in years. In April, he told Consequence of Sound, “If Rilo Kiley were a human being, he?s probably laying on his back in a morgue with a tag on his toe. Now, I see movies where the dead get up and walk. And when they do that, rarely do good things happen.” Paste followed up on this line of inquiry a month ago, and Sennett seemed in better spirits about his bandmates and former band, though a reunion seemed no closer. Today’s interview, then, marks at least the third time he’s been asked about Rilo Kiley’s future while promoting the new Elected album Bury Me In Rings.

Of course, speaking publicly about hurt feelings has always been the M.O. of Rilo Kiley’s members, particularly Sennett and co-leader Jenny Lewis. We recall Sennett introducing the song “Fireflies in a Steel Mill” at an Elected show in March 2006?before Rilo Kiley even recorded Under the Blacklight?by comparing himself to a firefly and someone else, whom no one in the room doubted was Lewis, to molten steel, to the glow of which the firefly was, literally, fatally attracted. And, of course, their 2007 Spin cover story was much the same. Maybe, like Fleetwood Mac, they are broken up until the next time they get back together.

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First X Factor Promo Proudly Confirms That Simon Cowell Is Still A Giant A-Hole

by (@unclegrambo)

Early on during last night’s MLB All-Star Game on Fox, the network took advantage of the number of eyeballs watching the game to debut their very first promo spot for The X-Factor, their new singing competition debuting this fall. And if there were any doubts before last night as to how Simon Cowell’s new show would attempt to differentiate itself from the newly nice —some would say toothless— American Idol and NBC’s ultra-positive show The Voice, they were eradicated approximately one-minute and seventeen seconds into this two-and-a-half minute long promo.

The promo begins in a hazy, fog-like state, with The X Factor judges Cowell, Paula Abdul (who, btw, is Botoxed to the gills), L.A. Reid and Nicole Scherzinger presiding over a parade of terrible singers. If things don’t seem quite right, it’s because they aren’t: No, the X-Factor contestants aren’t going to be horrible, and no, Simon Cowell hasn’t traded in his trademark skintight crewneck tees for a cabled pink sweater because this is all a nightmare! By now, the spot intimates that we should know that Cowell would NEVER be seen driving a wussy, electric Chevy Volt (Side note: weirdest product placement in a long time, right?); rather, he’s the kind of guy who rolls around downtown L.A. with X-FACTOR vanity plates on his $1.5 million Bugatti Veyron EB. And while he’s working, he’s not here to make friends; instead, he’s here to roll his eyes condescendingly at Paula Abdul! In short, he’s still the same A-hole S.O.B. he’s always been (which is something that Cheryl Cole would certainly confirm).

And that, Fox is betting, will be enough to get people to tune-in when The X-Factor debuts on Wednesday, September 21. Will they be right? Well, we’ll have to see now, won’t we?

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Nicki Minaj’s Police Report Surfaces After Reported Scuffle With Her Assistant/Boyfriend

by (@Lacezilla)

It’s tricky to fairly judge a book by its cover an incident by its police report, but after repeatedly denying that an altercation occured in her Dallas hotel Monday night, it seems that Nicki Minaj may have to clear the air with fans after all. TMZ has reportedly obtained official police documents that paint a picture of something we initially thought might be a fight with a male fan and turned it into something far worse: a lovers quarrel.

According to TMZ, the fiasco that would (allegedly) leave her bleeding first started when Young Money’s first lady was arguing with her assistant and boyfriend, Safaree Samuels, by the Palomar Hotel pool. Nicki asked a hotel employee to call the authorities before she followed Safaree up to their (shared) hotel room, and fearful that he was removing items he shouldn’t be, looked in his suitcase as he pulled it away, striking her in the mouth and chin. That’s when details become a bit fuzzy. Did he mean to hit her intentionally with the suitcase, or was it an accident? Why were they fighting, and why was she was worried he’d steal her possessions?

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