VH1 Exclusive: Gavin DeGraw Speaks Out For First Time After Leaving Hospital

by (@unclegrambo)

Gavin DeGraw is currently recovering at home after being discharged from the hospital a little over a week ago, following a night which saw him get assaulted by a group of men AND subsequently hit by a taxi cab. He’s sent out a handful of tweets over the last week and some change, but we just got this exclusive update on his condition from our August Posted artist and wanted to pass it along to you guys as quickly as possible:

“Instead of checking in from the tour, I’m writing as I recover at home. I’m feeling much better, but it will take a little bit more time to be back to 100%! I’m overwhelmed with the outpouring of support from my fans, friends, and family. I can’t wait to get back out on tour and look forward to seeing you on the road sometime soon. I?ll keep you POSTED.?

Again, we’d like to extend our best wishes to Gavin as he recuperates from this senseless assault. We look forward to seeing him get back on the road as soon as he’s back to 100%. Get well soon, buddy!

[Photo: Getty Images]

Jeff Bridges Plays His Blue Note Single For Today


The almost preternaturally laid-back Jeff Bridges appeared on the Today show this morning to promote his self-titled major label debut, perhaps the highest-profile record in this, a very quiet week for new releases. He and his band, The Abiders (no, really) performed “What a Little Bit of Love Can Do,” a song written by the late Stephen Bruton for Bad Blake, the character Bridges played in the 2009 film Crazy Heart. Certainly, the film (and its soundtrack’s T-Bone Burnett bonafides) gives Bridges more musical credibility, but his 2000 album is plenty evidence that this new record isn’t merely a film-inspired spinoff. Click through for Matt Lauer‘s brief interview with Bridges before the performance.
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My 53 Favorite Madonna Songs (In Honor Of Her 53rd Birthday)

by (@unclegrambo)

We’d like to extend our fond birthday wishes to a true American icon, one Madonna Louise Ciccone, who was born 53 years ago today in the small town of Bay City, Michigan. In the space we have here, it would be impossible to adequately communicate the full extent of the impact that Madonna has had on popular culture, but suffice to say, there’s never been anyone quite like her before or since.

Just like I did for Bob Dylan on his 70th birthday, I put together the following list of my 53 favorite Madonna songs as a way for us all to celebrate the birthday of this music pioneer. These are not her “best” songs, or even her “most popular” songs, but simply, my favorites. Unlike the Song Of The Summer Countdown, this list is not pegged to any quantitative data; rather, it was generated based on conversations with my co-workers, an exhaustive deep dive into Madonna’s catalog over the past few weeks (both her songs and videos), and my own (sometimes hazy) recollection of each of these song’s influence on the culture-at-large.

We’ve got the full list for you below, but if you’re signed up for Spotify, you can also listen to the full compilation here:
My 53 Favorite Madonna Songs (On Her 53rd Birthday)

53) “Sorry” (Confessions On A Dance Floor, 2005)
52) “Everybody” (Madonna, 1983)
51) “Hanky Panky” (I’m Breathless, 1990)
50) “4 Minutes” (featuring Justin Timberlake & Timbaland)” (Hard Candy, 2008)
49) “Spotlight” (You Can Dance, 1987)

48) “Oh Father” (Like A Prayer, 1989)
47) “Amazing” ( Music, 2000)
46) “Hollywood” (American Life, 2003)
45) “Angel” (Like A Virgin, 1984)
44) “Bad Girl” (Erotica, 1992)
43) “Keep It Together” (Like A Prayer, 1989)
42) “Don’t Cry For Me Argentina” (Evita, 1996)
41) “Fever” (Erotica, 1992)

For the Top 40 Madonna songs, follow along!

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Green Day Debut An Amy Winehouse Tribute And Nearly Twenty Other New Songs


Green Day took a break from working on their new album last week to road-test what they’d written?sort of. On Tuesday the band announced a last-minute, Thursday night benefit show for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation at the 250-capacity Tiki Bar in Costa Mesa, CA, and their set that night included, by some accounts, nineteen unreleased songs. Despite the “STRICT NO CAMERA, NO CELL PHONE POLICY,” a recording of “Amy” made it onto YouTube, and judging from the lyrics, later posted on the band’s website, the song is a tribute to the late Amy Winehouse (“27, gone without a trace/ And you walked away from your drink”).

“Amy” kicked off the encore, which also included a cover of Ozzy Osbourne‘s “Goodbye to Romance” and eight Green Day fan favorites. The band has provided no information on the timeline of their upcoming studio album, nor any word on which of the new songs will even make the cut.

Green Day Debuts Amy Winehouse Tribute, “Amy,” at California Show [Billboard]

[Image: Getty Images]

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


Lady Gaga Video To Premiere Thursday On MTV
As part of the “Yoü and I” premiere (set for 7:49PM ET), Lady Gaga will sit down with Sway for an interview, before a fan Q&A at MTV.com, with questions sourced from those submitted via Twitter using the hashtag #MTVGaga. Speaking of Twitter, Gaga’s Twitter contains “Yoü and I” stills and teasers. [MTV]

Jay-Z Reportedly Spent $250K On Champagne in Miami
Jay-Z may not be King of Rap as stat-crunched by Chris Molanphy for Rolling Stone (that honor went to EminemKanye set a new record for iTunes single week sales (which is what he was celebrating). Plus he tipped an additional $50K! [Radar]
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Jay-Z and Kanye West Smash iTunes Sales Record, Steal Throne From Coldplay

by (@Lacezilla)

We won’t have the final numbers until Wednesday morning when physical album sales are also included in Soundscan’s calculations, but iTunes has released the first-week sales totals for Watch The Throne, and the figures are quite impressive. For over three years, Coldplay’s Viva La Vida or Death and All His Friends held the record for first-week copies sold in the online music store with 155,000, but swooping in with nearly double that amount is Jay-Z and Kanye West’s collaborative supergroup, The Throne, cashing in with a whopping 290,000 digital purchases. (For comparison’s sake, Lady Gaga‘s Born This Way sold 440,000 downloads in the Amazon.com MP3 store back in June, but that was also priced to move at only $0.99 for the entire album.)

Aside from the fact that Jay and ‘Ye are arguably two of the hottest rappers in the game right now, there are a few things to consider when digesting this news. First of all, Watch The Throne has been heavily promoted and buzzed about over the past few weeks and months, and the iTunes release was an exclusive one, which certainly spiked first week sales. Secondly, and perhaps even more shockingly, is the fact that the album didn’t leak beforehand. For a genre that falls victim to digital assaults via hackers on a regular basis, a feat such as this is almost unheard-of. In their forthcoming August 20th issue, Billboard takes a closer look at the Mission Impossible-like process of keeping one of the year’s most anticipated albums under digital-fingerprint-protected lock and key. Let’s just say that many precautionary strategies were agreed upon and executed, all in the name of safeguarding digital files as they were created; in-person meetings replaced email correspondence, wi-fi signals were disabled during recording sessions, and hard drives were protected 24-hours a day like homeland security secrets.

Despite this impressive sales figure, it remains to be seen whether or not this album will have the same sort of cultural impact that solo records from these two individuals tend to have. Reviews of Watch The Throne have so far been mixed, and lead single “Otis” hasn’t quite taken off in the way that many foresaw. Will this record mimic the arc of Lady Gaga’s latest release –huge first week sales, followed by sharp decline– or chart its own course? Tough to say at this point, but we’ll certainly be watching.

Jay-Z & Kanye West’s “Watch The Throne” Breaks iTunes Sales Record [HipHopDX]

Busta Rhymes’s Pizza Aside, The 12th Annual Gathering Of The Juggalos Is A Success


This weekend, music’s ultimate outsiders, the Insane Clown Posse, found themselves in the unlikeliest of situations?on the brink of mainstream acceptance?as tens of thousands of fans, plus a surprising uptick of press, flocked to Cave-In-Rock, Illinois for the 12th Annual Gathering of the Juggalos. Detroit’s second-most successful rappers have garnered more mainstream exposure of late than than have since they left Island Records ten years ago, largely thanks to the Gathering, a festival of music, comedy, wrestling, and enough drugs and nudity to make it the spiritual successor of Woodstock, and enough rage to make it the spiritual successor of Woodstock 1999 (at which Insane Clown Posse, incidentally, performed).

The group’s return to prominence began in 2009 when the YouTube advertisement for the festival’s 10th Anniversary went viral online and sparked a Saturday Night Live parody. Last year’s festival garnered a Village Voice cover story, in which Camille Dodero claimed that “For nearly two decades, MTV has ignored Violent J and his partner-in-clown, Shaggy 2 Dope,” which at the time was debatable but today is refutable, as MTVHive sent Chris Weingarten to cover the entire festival this past weekend (see his coverage of Day 1, Day 2, and Days 3 and 4).

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Isaac Hanson To Kings Of Leon: Don’t Be Oasis


When Hanson‘s eldest member Isaac Hanson spoke to WENN on Friday night, he didn’t mince words about another band of brothers?the three Followills, who with their cousin Matthew comprise Kings of Leon. As rumors about the band’s strife continue to circulate after the band’s tour cancellation, Hanson encourages the Followills to work out their difficulties as soon as possible?and behind the scenes.
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Beyoncé Plays Her Hits And Her Album At First Of Four “Intimate” New York City Shows


Last night was the first of “4 Intimate Nights With Beyonc?” at the 2500-capacity Roseland Ballroom in New York City, and for the lucky fans (not including us) who got tickets, Beyonc? didn’t just play her new album 4 front-to-back, as promised?she played a chronology of her hits (as part of Destiny’s Child and solo) first, for a ninety-minute set. Videos are getting pulled from YouTube as quickly as they go up, so we won’t even bother linking any, but apparent highlights included a crowd-sung “Irreplaceable.”

Kicking off with a greatest-hits was a canny, if retrospectively obvious, move for Beyonc?, whose new album is front-loaded with ballads. The hits set hyped up the crowd as an opener would while providing a contrasting lead-in for the energy comedown of the beginning of the album-playthrough. We have seen no mentions of professional camera equipment at the shows, but we suspect that Beyonc? might be taping these performances for a DVD release, simply because it would be such an astonishing missed opportunity if she didn’t.

Beyonce Kicks Off “4 Intimate Nights” In NYC

[Image: Getty Images]

Song Of The Summer Countdown: Foster The People Make A Late Run For The Crown

by (@unclegrambo)

With only three more weeks left in our 2011 Song Of The Summer Countdown, sadly, there’s little drama left as to who will take home the crown. For the eighth consecutive week, Katy Perry‘s saxoriffic “Last Friday Night (T.G.I.F.)” is sitting atop our charts, closely followed by LMFAO‘s “Party Rock Anthem” (which, as we wrote last week, could make its own claim for S.O.T.S.). However, don’t count out Foster The People quite yet!

The You Oughta Know artist’s single, “Pumped Up Kicks,” has been making an impressive late summer run at the top spot. It first entered our charts back on July 11, but buoyed by a standout set at this year’s Lollapalooza festival, the first single off the band’s Torches LP seems to have really captured the attention of the nation. Will they be able to unseat either Perry or LMFAO before Labor Day rolls around?

[Click here for a larger image]

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