Inclement weather wasn’t enough to stop the show for London’s three day Barclaycard Wireless Festival of live music from the hottest acts out today. Fans’ enthusiasm didn’t seem to wean either with the bad weather as they reveled in sets from Rihanna, Jessie J, Rita Ora, Drake, Deadmau5, Afrojack, The Roots, Labrinth and more. Deadmau5, Drake and Rihanna were the three headliners on Friday, Saturday and Sunday respectively. Despite both Drake and Rihanna’s personal matters in the states–the former being involved in a NYC nightclub brawl with Chris Brown and the latter grieving her deceased grandmother–they gave the people of London a mega show like the superstars they are. Read more…
As Jay-Z’s latest protege there are high expectations for 21-year-old Rita Ora. Ora’s success in the UK is just the beginning; and if the pattern of British singers successfully owning the UK charts and eventually taking the US airwaves by storm continues, Ora is headed for the top of the charts. In front of 80,000 fans with their hands in the air, Ora performed “R.I.P.” at the Capital FM Summertime Ball in London. In eccentric jeans and midriff top, on a scale of one to 10, Ora’s energy was at 20. And with 80,000 onlookers every bit of her energy was reciprocated. Read more…
Since Jay-Z’s press conference in Philadelphia last week we’ve been on pins and needles anticipating the announcement for the lineup of the Made in America festival he’s curating and headlining on September 1 and 2. Jigga man delivered on the goal he’d set for himself asking, “Is it going to push the culture forward?” With such a diverse selection of musical acts crossing multiple genres, we’d say the answer to Jay’s query is unequivocally, “Yes!”
For the two day festival on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philly, music lovers can enjoy the tunes of Pearl Jam, Afrojack, Odd Future, Skrillex, Miike Snow, Dirty Projectors, X, the Knocks, Calvin Harris, Jay’s artist Rita Ora, Prince Royce, Janelle Monae, Santigold, Passion Pit, Wale, Rick Ross, Meek Mill, the DJ set by Savoy and the return of D’Angelo. Let’s not forget Hov will also hit the stage as the headliner. As with everything he does, Jay-Z took his job as curator seriously, and created a highly anticipated festival.
Oh, can we talk about Jay sangging R&B singer D’Angelo (who hasn’t released an album in 12 years) for a minute? Over the weekend D’Angelo made headlines when a GQ profile hit the net with him looking rather scrumptious. The singer is working on an album, and whatever Jay did to get him to perform at Budweiser’s Made in America, we salute you, Jay. As diverse as the list of performers is, even more acts will be announced next week. Jay-Z can check off successful curator from his bucket list.
Official “Made In America” Lineup Announced [Complex.com]
[Photo: Getty Images and GQ magazine]
In the moments before Rita Ora took the stage at S.O.B.’s in the SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan last night, there was a palpable buzz in the air. The packed-to-capacity club had just patiently waited through a middling set from former OFWGKTA member Casey Veggies, and people were buzzing with anticipatory glee for a few reasons. Of course, people were excited to see the artist that is being described as “the new Rihanna” make her New York City debut, but we heard more than a few people in our immediate vicinity wonder aloud whether or not her mentor, one Mr. Sean “Jay-Z” Carter, would be making an appearance at the tiny club where artists like Kanye West, John Legend and Erykah Badu caught some of their first big breaks. Well, spoiler alert, Hova did not make an appearance, but by the end of Rita Ora’s 35 minute(ish) set, no one seemed to care.
Ora bounded onto the stage just a few minutes after 10 p.m. wearing an orange knit hat, a blue jacket, a white midriff-revealing crop top and black tights. Her outfit was colorful and playful, much like Ora’s personality, with a dash of Stefani-esque sexiness thrown in (that is to say, she’s an undeniable beauty that projects a certain wholesomeness). She led off with a song that we had not heard before, but one that contained the line “It’s the kind of beat that will make your face melt.” Normally, we associate the concept of facemelting to metal riffs, but in this particular case, her description of the roaring synths was entirely appropriate. Considering this was her first showcase in NYC, we expected to see a hint of nervousness from her when she first hit the stage, but that never came to fruition. Instead, she commanded the stage like a veteran rock star, prowling from side to side, even occasionally indulging in a bit of headbanging.
We’re not sure exactly where you live, but here in New York City, there’s a palpable feeling of excitement coursing through the streets. After dealing with (an admittedly mild) winter for the last few months, the sun has begun to creep out, resulting in people shedding their winter coats and gearing up for warm weather. With the summer months rapidly approaching, the jockeying for this year’s Song Of The Summer has already begun. British singer Rita Ora is one of the first artists out of the gate to stake a claim in the race with her infectious hit, “How We Do (Party),” a song that is built off the Notorious B.I.G.‘s high-life anthem “Party And Bullsh*t.” (We’ve got the official video for “How We Do” below.)
“To me, ‘party’ and ‘bullsh*t’ summed up a party,” Rita told us when she swung by our VH1 headquarters a few weeks ago. “So we took the quote and turned it into a summer jam.”
The song, which made a huge splash when Jay-Z and Rita showed up to debut in on Z100 back in February, is already stirring up a significant amount of heat, particularly it’s refrain of “Cause when the sun sets baby, on the avenue/I get that drunk sex feeling, yeah when I’m with you.” The hashtag #drunksexfeeling has been popping up on Twitter repeatedly, so we asked the Roc Nation artist if she was ever concerned with that phrase becoming a lightning rod for controversy.
Don’t expect Rita Ora to sing about heartbreak, because, well, she hasn’t had any. The 21 year-old superstar on the verge — who gossipmongers have currently dating Drake — swung by the VH1 offices here in Times Square last week to talk about a bunch of things; her new single, “How We Do,” the Rihanna comparisons, and her forthcoming album. “One thing I can say is I don’t have that many heartbreak tracks on this album because I haven’t been through a heartbreak,” she says in her adorable British accent.
What we can expect from her album, however, is a mixture of various genre influences including reggae, pop and jazz. Ora considers her album to be different, something everyone can listen to. “I have influences from my reggae side of like Bounty Killer, Beenie Man, Vybz Kartel and Mavado. Then I have the ‘Hollaback’ Gwen Stefani kind of thing.” The buzz around the Roc Nation signed singer continues to increase, but we’ll have to wait until after the summer (hopefully September!) for the untitled debut album. And what does she have to say about what we’re all dying to know the title, “The title definitely has a few names,” she says excitedly, throwing out titles like Let’s Run Away, Fair Is Fair or the eponymous Rita Ora. “I write songs and can’t even put my mind on one god damn title.” Check out our video above to hear Ora talk more about her upcoming album, and check back here this week for more updates from her (including her new video for “How We Do,” which should drop in the next few days)!
Today marks the 15th anniversary of The Notorious B.I.G‘s assassination, and if you don’t know, well, now you know. Biggie’s legacy has been lasting — from that iconic dance scene in 10 Things I Hate About You featuring “Hypnotize”, to Rita Ora’s recent sample of “Party & Bullsh*t” in her new track of the same name, after 15 years, Biggie continues to be both pervasive and influential. Biggie, born Christopher George Latore Wallace, is an icon of hip hop, and a pioneer of East Coast rap, drawing attention to artists from New York at a time when West Coast rap was generally favored in the mainstream. He was murdered exactly 15 years ago today on March 9, 1997, and his killer is yet to be found. His posthumously released and poignantly titled album Life After Death, was released 15 days later to critical acclaim, reaching the pinnacle of number one on the US charts, proving that the legend of an artist is all the life that is needed to sustain their vision, even after they are passed.
Rita Ora Cover’s Gotye’s “Somebody That I Used To Know”
What do you get when the hottest young act of the moment covers the other hottest young act of the moment? Pure wonderfulness, we think — have a listen to Rita Ora‘s cover of Gotye‘s “Somebody That I Used To Know” below, and tell us if you don’t agree. [YouTube]
Patrick Stump Laments The Failure Of His Solo Album
Fall Out Boy‘s Patrick Stump has a reflective moment, posting on his blog about his feelings about the failure of his solo album. He says, amongst other things, “What I wasn’t prepared for was the fervor of the hate from people who were ostensibly my own supporters (or at least supporters of something I had been part of). The barrage of “We liked you better fat,” the threatening letters to my home, the kids that paid for tickets to my solo shows to tell me how much I sucked without Fall Out Boy, that wasn’t something I suppose I was or ever will be ready for.” [Patrick Stump]
Touted as the new Rihanna, the hype around Rita Ora is building like nothing else. After we got excited about her Biggie sampling track “Party & Bulls*t” last week, we’ve now learned that the official first single from her forthcoming debut LP is actually “R.I.P.” featuring rapper Tinie Tempah (listen below). And if you had any doubt about the behemoth that is about to be Ora, let that be dashed by the all star team behind her — not only is she under Jay-Z‘s label, Roc Nation, the new track is penned by none other than hip hop wunderkind, Drake, and co-produced by Chase & Status with Swedish duo Stargate.
Of the track itself, “R.I.P.” is set to be a pop anthem. With synth led beats, the song is a powerful dance number following in 2011′s trend towards club fueled pop, but this time with a grittier edge that takes shape with Ora’s sexy vocal and Tinie Tempah’s energetic verse. With a girl power theme, the track makes happy bedfellows with other hits of the season including Katy Perry‘s angry, moving on, triumph against heart break, “Part Of Me.” At only 21-years-old the British/Alabnian Ora should be both revered and feared. As Jay-Z’s newest protegee, it seems like Ora’s destiny is written, so prepare yourself for Ora to be the number one lady in pop this year.
[Photo: Getty Images]
Move over Rihanna, there’s a new babe on the block! The super gorgeous Rita Ora is poised to topple Rihanna’s throne as the go to girl for hip hop collaborations and sexy pop. Her new single, “Party & Bullsh*t” (which you can listen to below) is the first release for her forthcoming debut under Jay-Z‘s label, Roc Nation. The chorus of the infectious party anthem directly references Biggie‘s own iconic “Party & Bullsh*t”, and we predict that the new track is going to be blasting out of speakers everywhere this summer, especially with Jay-Z’s backing, and other huge collaborators like Drake, The-Dream and Stargate for her album.
The stunning Ora was a favorite at fashion weeks this past month, and rumors are flying that Jay-Z has “dumped” Rihanna is favor of Rita. Media Take Out “reports” that Jay-Z has begun a “media blitz” for Rita, not least because he’s angry at Rihanna’s for her recent collaborations with Chris Brown. An “rock solid” insider has allegedly said that, “Rita [Ora] has the same kind of pop appeal that Rihanna does, but she’s younger, and not as crazy… [Jay Z] has scheduled to make a bunch of appearances with her, and he’s even going to integrate her into [upcoming THRONES] concert [with Kanye West].” Does Rihanna need to watch her back? Will Rita dethrone RiRi’s, until now, dominance of cameos on the songs of hip hop’s finest? Is Rita Ora about the be the sexiest thing to happen to pop since RiRi’s “Umbrella”?
Listen to Rita Ora’s “Party and Bullsh*t”:
[Photos: Getty Images]