In our 100 Greatest Women in Music series that aired on VH1 last week, we declared Madonna as the greatest female artist of the last 20 years. Now we’ve decided to let the fans have their say — yep, it’s your turn to tell us who YOU think is the Greatest Woman In Pop. The first round sees Lady Gaga pitted against Madonna, Britney Spears vs. Rihanna, Katy Perry fighting Mariah Carey, and Jennifer Lopez weighing in against Beyoncé.
So far, Madonna is ahead of Gaga, 53% to 47%, but it’s a damn tight margin! We’re biting our nails to see if Mother Monster comes out on top of the Queen Of Pop. Also going head to head are Katy Perry and Mariah, with a mere 3% separating them and Katy ahead by just a pinch! On the other side of the scale, Britney is absolutely crushing Rihanna with 67% of votes to RiRi’s 33%. And in the battle between J-Lo and Beyoncé, Mamma Bey looks like she’s going to take out the round with a huge 68% of votes compared to Jenny’s 32%. If you’re not happy with the results so far don’t worry — it’s not over yet! You still have time to get your vote in for the first round, so be sure to click on your favorite pop lady before 11:59 p.m. EST tonight!
On Friday night, we aired the last installment of our five-part, 100 Greatest Women in Music series. If you happened to miss the countdown, it’s spoiler alert time: VH1 crowned Madonna as the greatest female artist of the last 20 years.
While it’s tough to argue with the musical legacy of Madonna, we received an incredible number of comments, emails, and tweets from our VH1 audience asking about their ability to participate in this countdown. Well, we listened and worked to put together the following bracket-style tournament of The 8 Greatest Women In Pop where you, the reader, will be able to select the most accomplished female artist in the pop music game right now. (Sorry, Adele fans: We figured that since she just swept the Grammys, she has enough awards for the moment, so we left her out of this tournament).
Our tournament will run today through next Monday, February 27, and our first round matchups are pretty outrageous: Lady Gaga vs. Madonna, Britney Spears vs. Rihanna, Katy Perry vs. Mariah Carey, and Jennifer Lopez vs. Beyoncé. One tiny administrative note: Be sure and get your first-round vote in by 11:59 p.m. EST on Wednesday, 2/22.
Black Sabbath Drummer Bill Ward Contemplates Dropping Out Of Reunion Tour And New Album
Black Sabbath drummer Bill Ward has made the following statement regarding the band’s highly anticipated reunion tour and new album, “I would love nothing more than to be able to proceed with the Black Sabbath album and tour, however, I am unable to continue unless a ‘signable’ contract is drawn up; a contract that reflects some dignity and respect toward me as an original member of the band. Several days ago, after nearly a year of trying to negotiate, another ‘unsignable’ contract was handed to me. If I sign as-is, I stand to lose my rights, dignity and respectability as a rock musician.” Oh no — looks like there might be a spanner in the works! [A.V. Club]
Jessie J Says VH1 DIVAS Was A Career Defining Moment
Jessie J has sung praise for her appearance on VH1′s DIVAS, Tweeting that it was, “An honour to be on stage with so many of the singers I have grown up listening to. Was defo one for the diary.” Of all the wonderful things Jessie J does in her career, we think it’s pretty neat that she picked DIVAS as a highlight. [Capital FM]
Lana Del Rey Set For First U.S. Television Performance Since SNL
With Born To Die forecasted to enter the Billboard charts next week at #2, Lana Del Rey is making her first U.S. television appearance since her widely maligned SNL performance on The Late Show With David Letterman tonight. Whether you’re a stan or a hater, tune in so you don’t miss the conversation tomorrow! [Late Show]
VH1′s latest entry in the award-winning Rock Docs franchise, The TRL Decade, premieres tonight at 9:30 pm. The hour-long special takes a look back at the colorful history of the long-running MTV video request program and the effect that it had on the music industry, and features insightful interviews from former VJs like Carson Daly and Dave Holmes, as well as some of that era’s most popular musical acts.
In order to get you in the mood for tonight’s premiere, we built this special
Spotify playlist for The TRL Decade, which features many of the songs that you’ll hear in this documentary feature. Get your ’90s nostalgia on with boy band faves like “Larger Than Life” by the Backstreet Boys, rap-rock smashes like Korn‘s “Freak On A Leash”, hip hop hits like P. Diddy‘s “Bad Boy For Life”, sugar coated girl pop classics like Mandy Moore‘s “Candy”, and many more.
The TRL Decade [Spotify]
[Photo Credit: Getty Images]
Pazz + Jop, The Village Voice‘s annual music poll that aggregates the opinions of thousands of music critics based on their votes for single and album of the year, has just been released, and it’s very similar to all the other ‘Best Of 2011′ lists we’ve read. That is to say, there aren’t really any surprises, maybe just a slight reshuffling of the order. In that vein, Adele appears on both lists, with 21 ranking at number 6 for albums, and “Rolling In The Deep,” and “Someone Like You,” featuring at number one and nine respectively on the singles list.
Perhaps the most unexpected thing about the lists is the order itself — while Adele sits snugly where she’s always sat, several pop stars have found their way into Pazz + Jop’s top ten singles, where other end of year lists had them pulling up the ranks much further down the line. For instance, Beyoncé‘s “Countdown” makes it to number two on the singles list, with Nicki Minaj‘s “Super Bass” at number three and Britney Spears’ “Til The World Ends” at number seven. All in all, however, the top 10 singles featured the usual suspects, from Azealia Banks, Jay-Z and Kayne West, M83, Lana Del Rey, Tyler The Creator and Foster The People, there was nothing particularly shocking about the ballot-topping artists.
It was a similar story in the albums list, which, as already mentioned, saw Adele near the top, followed closely by Bon Iver‘s Bon Iver at number nine. Perhaps of a slightly “buzzier” lien than the singles, the albums list saw critically acclaimed tUnE-yArDs‘, w h o k i l l come in at number one, with PJ Harvey‘s fawned over artwork, Let England Shake at number two, and Wild Flag‘s unexpected success, Wild Flag, at number four. Jay-Z and Kayne West, Destroyer, Drake, Tom Waits and Shabazz Palaces also make the top ten albums but again, no surprises other than ranking — these are names we heard all through 2011 and that at the end of the year were plastered across the lists we saw online in both blogs and music industry and expert websites.
Pazz + Jop [The Village Voice]
Happy New Year! As we usher in 2012, it’s time for everyone to sit back and reflect on the past, and make adjustments for a brighter future. You know what we’re talking about; the unavoidable, almost-reprehensible-but-not-reprehensible-enough-that-you-won’t-do-it task of setting resolutions for one’s self. No matter how vehemently you oppose New Year’s resolutions —we’re looking at you, Simon Cowell— you can’t help but make them, even if you do it on the sly. Yep, we know how much of a chore coming up with resolutions can be, so we’ve taken it upon ourselves to create some for our favorite artists…
Lady Gaga: Instead of taking it off, try putting it on. What we’re trying to say is less peacocking, more clothes — we want to see a real human for once (not that we don’t love Mother Monster, it would just be a welcome change to see the girl underneath).
Kanye West: Do not collaborate with Lana Del Rey. No seriously, we know she’s new, but what we like about you is that you are not only adept at picking “new” artists to collaborate with, you consistently find both the subversive and undiscovered.
Beyonce: Don’t spend too much time with the baby. OK that one’s entirely selfish and unreasonable on our part, but what will we do without at least 7 new Beyonce videos in 2012? WHAT WILL WE DO?
Listen To Katy Perry’s Country Turn In A Leaked Demo For “Bullet”
If you’ve ever wondered what Katy Perry would sound like doing country, then here you go; a demo has leaked of Katy Perry singing a song called “Bullet” she co-wrote for country star Jesse James‘ debut album in 2009. We hope Katy sticks to her pop roots, but we’re sort of loving this little lick of country. [Neon Limelight]
Rihanna Is Called Out For “Ripping Off” Photographer
The latest in A Big Celebrity Copied Me, Rihanna is being accused by blogger Bryan Derballa of “ripping off” the work of photographer Sandy Kim in her video for “We Found Love.” We see some similarities, but we’d only go as far to say “inspired by” and even then it’s tenuous, with so much recent “hipster” photography tending towards the aesthetic that “We Found Love” is going for. [Bryan Derballa]
It’s almost New Year’s Eve, that one, glorious, most hopeful night of the year. It’s also that one night you’re going to party like it’s 1999, so let this week be dedicated to mani-pedis, haircuts, outfit buying, midnight kiss daydreaming, preemptive sleeping and playlist making. When it comes to partying, everyone has a distinctive song, an anthem, if you will — and we’re here to tell you what your New Year’s Eve theme song, that banger you’re going to be cranking at midnight, says about your party style, and what kind of New Year’s Eve you can expect…
Britney Spears – “Til The World Ends”
You’re either a strong believer in Mayan mythology or you just really, really love dancing. Chances are you’re going to be on the dance floor all night — forget about everything else, you just want to dance (until the world ends, heh). We’re going to take a punt and guess that you were going through puberty the first time you heard “… Baby One More Time,” and that Britney just so, like, makes you feel like a teenager again! If you’re anything like us (a Britney stalwart since the start), you’re just completely ecstatic to see Britney get her groove back.
Britney Spears and Lady Gaga both played Santa this weekend with new material for their fans. A new vocal version of Britney’s “Don’t Keep Me Waiting” (a bonus track from the deluxe edition of Femme Fatale) was leaked and we caught wind from this Tweet by Bradley Stern (you can listen to the track here). We’re absolutely loving the pared back acoustic parts and heavy beat — it feels like forever since we actually heard Britney’s voice minus auto tune and cowbells! And in Mother Monster’s corner, things were just as exciting with Gaga herself Tweeting, “Merry Christmas! Here’s a SoundCloud download of my unreleased song “Stuck On F*ckin’ You”: http://bit.ly/uCS27x For your IPODS!! I love u!” (you can listen to the track here). It’s funky and infectious, and much like Brit’s “Don’t Keep Me Waiting,” gives us a dose of something a bit more raw and organic than the club led classics Gaga has produced this year. And we’re crazy about Gaga’s freestyle towards the end of the track — the girl is not only multitalented, but has a great sense of humor to boot!
Britney Spears – “Don’t Keep Me Waiting” (Main Vocals)
Lady Gaga – “Stuck On F*ckin’ You”
[Photo: Getty Images]
2011 was the year of Watch The Throne, the universally hyped phenomenon that took on a life of its own. Yes, it was ‘just’ an album, but how could it have been any less than Biblical with Hov and the prodigal son joining forces for one of the biggest hip hop collaborations in history? The epic collab has got us thinking, as it seems like one really isn’t enough these days (unless you’re Beyoncé, of course) to keep public interest piqued for long, so the high-profile are increasingly joining forces with the high-profile, wingman-ing each other for the hits. After all, doesn’t everyone need a Goose? We’ve put together some of our favorite superstars for the mindboggling collaborations we’d like to see come to fruition in 2012 (hint, hint!).
Lana Del Rey and Nicki Minaj
We already know Nicki Minaj loves a good collaboration, and from what we’ve seen of Lana Del Rey so far, our suspicion tell us her “machine” have the buzz artist pegged for super stardom. Collaborating with LDR would give Nicki the kind of edge she got from “Monster” while for LDR the partnership would open her up to a whole new — not to mention powerful — army of fans/Barbz. We’re imagining this as super dark and sexy with a muddy bass line; lyrically, it would be largely Lana crooning about doing filthy things with her dirt bag lover and having her heart broken, while Nicki’s verse would be a no-holds barred, expletive laden, grimy scratching on Lana’s melancholy. It would probably only be a suitable formula for one song, but we’re anticipating it would be a cross-genre hit, captivating mainstream audiences and the more subversively inclined simultaneously.