As if Kina Grannis, VH1’s featured Posted artist for January, wasn’t amazing enough already, now she’s hanging out with Danny Pudi on the set of the hit show Community. While Community has controversially been put on hiatus, it looks like Kina is doing the same, getting some “vocal rest” and letting Pudi do the talking for her! Can you think of a better mouth piece? And Kina is delightful with her smiles, emphatic fake crying action, and again, smiles. Who do we talk to to get in on this hang out?
The war on piracy is far from over, despite the massive SOPA and PIPA protests that flooded the Internet yesterday — authorities are refusing to back down, and in a show of how serious they really are about piracy, today the FBI shut down Megaupload and made several arrests as well. Megaupload, one of the world’s most ubiquitous file sharing services, claims to have 50 million daily users who upload documents and movies which others are then free to download. In conjunction with the closure, seven people have been indicted on the charges of conspiracy to commit racketeering and criminal copyright infringement, with four people already in custody. According to the charges, Megaupload has caused $500 million in loses for copyrighters and earned the business more than $175 million.
More controversial still is the role of Swizz Beatz (a.k.a Mr. Alicia Keys, or formally known as Kaseem Dean) who has been outed as the secret “CEO without citation” of Megaupload. Beatz appears to be in the hot seat yet again, after already having baited the wrath of Universal Music Group for unauthorized use of several of their artists — including Sean “P. Diddy” Combs, Kanye West, and Will.i.am — in a Megaupload commercial.
So what does it all mean? While SOPA protestors are defending our right to share files online, government agencies seem bent on finding ways to end Internet “piracy.” But what is Internet piracy? Is it something that can truly exist as we become more connected? And when one of the most prolific hip hop producers is at the helm of a targeted file sharing site, does this diminish the cause of musicians who claim to be “losing out”? When musicians themselves get behind “piracy” are we ushering a new era whereby those who felt previously wronged by online sharing are taking the reins and reclaiming control? It surely is an interesting event, and we’ll be keeping a close eye on how this one plays out, and how it affects the dissemination of music going forward.
Surprising New Figure in the Piracy Wars? Swizz Beatz, Megaupload.com’s Secret CEO [Beta Beat]
FBI Charges Seven With Online Piracy [The Wall Street Journal]
Kanye West has reportedly met with the creators of Angry Birds to talk about… Angry Yeezy? Apparently the most popular video game of all time and the most famous artiste of all time (yeah, we wouldn’t argue. Just go with it), sat down in London last night to have a chin-wag about how they could possibly collaborate in the future. And now we’re wondering what in heaven’s name could be happening that could bring the two forces together. A Kanye West mini game? Will it be “Blame Game,” where the objective is to attribute guilt in a Cluedo style mystery? Or maybe “Gold Digger,” where you aim to extort as much money from your opponents as possible? Will it be a simple music making game, where you play off against others in real time, acting as a savvy way for Kanye to identify new talent? Or will it be a mash up of Angry Birds and Ye — we’re just imagining Kanye’s face soaring across an animated screen, annihilating little green pigs while “Runaway” plays as the soundtrack.
[Photos: Getty Images]
While there’s been no hint as to what the pop star and the band will perform, it seems like a no brainier that their duet from Mylo Xyloto, “Princess Of China,” should feature in their act. The song hasn’t been officially released yet — a strange move on Coldplay’s part given the chart klout that Rihanna carries, although possibly not so strange in light of the upcoming performance. With the official release date of “Princess Of China” due for the 14th of February, a mere two days after the Grammys, this could be a cleverly strategic way of of reviving interest in Mylo Xyloto and touching a much wider audience (as we assume those who are already Coldplay fans would have been all over the album when it was released last year).
Either way, the performance should be heart racing, with two of the world’s biggest pop acts teaming up for music’s biggest night. Also announced to perform are nominees the Foo Fighters, Nicki Minaj, Taylor Swift, Kelly Clarkson, Bruno Mars and Jason Aldean, while rumors circulate that Adele could take to the stage, and LL Cool J will be appearing as the first host in seven years.
The 54th Grammy Awards airs on February 12 on CBS at 8 p.m. ET/PT.
Bruce Springsteen‘s new single from his forthcoming album, Wrecking Ball, due for release on March 6th, is doing rounds of the Internet this morning. As a lead single, it’s not exactly bringing down the house — it ain’t no “Born To Run” — but by no means does that it mean that it’s terrible, either. Somewhat middling, the song doesn’t quite reach that expansive, soaring, transcendent plane that defines the Springsteen mythology. Yet there’s still something really charming about “We Take Care Of Our Own,” and it’s more than just Bruce’s impeccable husky vocal (which, at the beginning, hits us like a slap of warm nostalgia to the face, and reminds us, “oh yeah, there it is”).
There’s the spirited piano, the matter-of-fact yet obtusely dreamy lyricism, and undertones of escapism that remind us of Bruce in the 70s, and has us hankering for the rest of Wrecking Ball to hit. March can’t come soon enough for us, but what do you think? Is “We Take Care Of Our Own” what you were expecting? Or were you hoping for something more epic from Wrecking Ball‘s first release? Let us know in the poll below!
Ten years ago, a veteran British entertainment mogul named Simon Fuller had the very bright idea to adapt his smash hit UK television show Pop Idol for an American audience. The result was a program called American Idol, and its impact on the television landscape (as well as our culture-at-large) cannot be underestimated. It has spawned dozens of imitators, and withstood all challenges to remain the highest rated show on American television (not counting the NFL, natch).
At this time last year, the departure of Simon Cowell and the failed run of Ellen Degeneres had many industry observers prophesying that the show was dead in the water. However, in a semi-remarkable twist, the show actually gained new life thanks to the star power of Jennifer Lopez and Steven Tyler. Speaking of the latter, the Aerosmith lead singer brought something to the show that it had been lacking since Day One: A whiff of sex. Despite the fact that the 63-year-old Tyler is old enough to be the grandfather of most of the contestants, his naturally libidinous and undeniably charismatic persona added an exciting new element to the program.
Oh, and did we mention that Steven Tyler just might be the most lovable creep on television? His entendre-laden, heavily sexual metaphors arguably provide just as much entertainment to viewers at home as the actual performances themselves. Which is why we here at VH1 Tuner are excited to debut the Dude Is Acting Shady Meter*, which will keep track of Tyler’s come-ons and rank them on a scale of 1-5, one that ranges from Innocently Innocuous to EWWWWWWWW!. So, without further ado, let’s get into last night’s Season 11 premiere of American Idol.
WHO: Shannon Magraine
SET-UP: When this six-foot tall 15-year-old was accompanied by her twenty-nine female siblings (only a slight exaggeration), her striking mom and her ex-MLB pitcher father (!) in the judge’s lair, Tyler’s boner just about knocked over the judge’s table.
TYLER’S COMMENTS: “Hot, humid and happenin’ … just like your daughter.”
DUDE IS ACTING SHADY METER SCORE: 5/5 – EWWWWWWWWW!
It seems like the perfect pairing, really — Kramer with his frantic, shaky neurosis and Skrillex with his noisy, disjointed dubstep — and this video just proves it. Pairing footage of Seinfeld‘s Kramer listening to music while driving and Skrillex’s mind-numbing sounds, what ensues is general hilarity. Watch as Kramer’s signature tick sees his head waggling manically back and forth, and his eyes widen as Skrillex drops the beat. The frenetic pairing is indeed a match made in giggle heaven.
Obama Looks To The Music Community For Support
President Obama has a wishlist of musicians he wants to support his re-election campaign including Arcade Fire, Janelle Monae, John Legend and Alicia Keys. What can we say? The guy’s got serious style. [NME]
Lana Del Rey’s People Get Sassy
Gawker has been unable to retrieve a comment from Lana Del Rey about the backlash from the weekend’s SNL performance, and her publicist has given a coy middle finger to the request by asking if Brian Williams has commented yet. Sassy. [Gawker]
The Boss is back for 2012, and it seems as though everyone is waiting on tenterhooks for what is expected to be an earth shattering release from the legend. And tomorrow, “We Take Care of Our Own,” the first single off Bruce Springsteen’s new album, will be released on Amazon.com. We don’t know about you, but our excitement is palpable. Especially since Bruce’s manager, Jon Landau, told Rolling Stone the new record is a “big-picture piece of work. It’s a rock record that combines elements of both Bruce’s classic sound and his Seeger Sessions experience, with new textures and styles.”
He also says that the record has, “social overtones” and a “very pronounced spiritual dimension. It extends and deepens the vision that has animated all of Bruce’s work.” As Springsteen fans, we’re obviously elated to hear that The Boss is playing off the blue collar concerns that have characterized his music since the 70s. The album will also feature the E Street Band (for the first time without Clarence Clemons) and other musicians including Rage Against The Machine‘s Tom Morello, and Pearl Jam drummer Matt Chamberlain.
An undisclosed source has allegedly told The Hollywood Reporter of The Boss and his new record, “He gets into economic justice quite a bit. It’s very rock ’n’ roll. He feels it’s the angriest album he’s ever made. Bear in mind, though, that [Springsteen] wrote and recorded the majority of the album before the Occupy movements started, so he’s not just setting headlines to music.” As if that weren’t enough to set you on fire, Bruce is also touring with The E Street Band this year, and will appear as keynote speaker at the SXSW festival.
Bruce Springsteen Returns With Wild New Album [Rolling Stone]
New Bruce single due Thursday [Daily Record]
Bruce Springsteen’s New Album Is His “Angriest” Yet [The Hollywood Reporter]