Riding the wave of success from their latest album, Heartthrob, Canadian rockers Tegan & Sara are ready to take the party to Lollapalooza. VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown host Jim Shearer recently sat with the twins to chat about their upcoming performance in August.
Each week here on VH1 Tuner, our VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown host Jim Shearer (@jimshearer on Twitter) will be sharing his Shearer’s Spotlight with us. Be sure to tune into the VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown tomorrow morning when it airs on VH1 at 9 a.m. ET/PT.
While she was singing, other early morning/late night songs came to mind.
Taking a cue from Melanie, here is a soundtrack for the night—where monogamous relationships go to die and booty calls blossom:
“Midnight City,” M83
Apparently M83 likes to party deep into the night, because at midnight, a time when many of us are sleeping, he’s still waiting: in a car, for the right time, for a roar, and a ride in the dark.
“Need You Now,” Lady Antebellum
The alcohol buzz and drunken dialing commence as Lady Antebellum harmonize over the following chorus: “It’s a quarter after one, I’m a little drunk, and I need you now.”
Last week, when we first saw YouTube footage of Demi Lovato singing Lil Wayne‘s “How To Love” at her Hammerstein Ballroom show, we thought it was merely the latest in what’s increasingly become a trend among pop artists: the “curveball” live cover (more about that later). What we didn’t realize was that the rendition was actually a warm-up for the Top 20 Live set she recorded here at VH1 last Tuesday.
We’ll have the full set for you shortly (and it’s a doozy?including a two-song medley of one track from each of her previous albums and a killer rendition of “My Love Is Like A Star,” an Unbroken song James Morrison co-wrote for her) but we wanted to get this in your hands as quickly as possible. As with her dry run at the Hammerstein, this rendition transforms the song by largely switching the lyrics into a first-person perspective, which is a really great choice; by having the subject speak for herself rather than having Lil Wayne presume to speak for her, Lovato’s rendition sidesteps the original’s virgin/whore dichotomy. Naturally, we loved it.
Kenny Chesney‘s fourteenth album Hemingway’s Whiskey came out last September, but standout track “You and Tequila” only this morning premiered on CMT as the album’s fourth single. Chesney may have saved the song, a duet with You Oughta Know bandleader Grace Potter, for the summer, since its late-night, drunk, California love themes suit the warmer weather.
Potter’s Nocturnals have had success on the VH1 Top 20, and country has made its inroads, but can this summery love duet break into next Saturday’s charts (or possibly the race for Song of the Summer)? Your votes, starting next week, will decide.
Jason Derulo‘s new video is here! As it happens, we completely misinterpreted the sneak peek?Derulo isn’t the only one who still wants to party, but merely the first to rise. In time the rest of the napping partiers awaken and join the reinvigorated revelry.
“Don’t Want to Go Home” wisely embraces the urban dystopia chic championed of late by Lady Gaga and especially Ke$ha. We’re back to an era of club videos set outside the club (in this case, in a warehouse), which means that though the clip cycles through a number of club-video clich?s, the setting keeps them from feeling stale. Arguably, what the video gains in freshness, it loses in logic (why does the sprinkler system still work in this abandoned warehouse, and what even set it off?) but in these sorts of sequences, logic is for the birds, and for critics who didn’t give Step Up 3 great reviews.
The video will make its television debut on VH1′s Top 20 Countdown Saturday at 9 a.m. ET/PT, which seems perfect for a video (and song) about dancing all night, passing out, then waking up to dance some more.
We’ve had such success with You Oughta Know artists coming to VH1 to play great You Oughta Know Live sets?like Two Door Cinema Club‘s semi-acoustic take on four songs, including “What You Know”?that we knew we had to get more established Top 20 Countdown favorites into our offices, too. And who better to inaugurate our new series than the multitalented Raphael Saadiq?
Even short a keyboardist, a guitarist, and one of his vocalists, Saadiq proved a crack bandleader?and not just thanks to his history with Tony! Toni! Ton?! and as a member of Prince‘s touring band. Vocal sideman B.J. Kemp and the other players onstage weren’t merely hired hands but sharp musicians with whom Saadiq has a history, and whose input he sought during recording. It’s easy to forget, especially when the new jack swing epicenter was in the northeast, that Saadiq is Oakland born-and-raised, but the guitarist came up under the bay city’s twin suns: Sly and the Family Stone and Tower of Power.
That’s why his unique brand of blues doesn’t feel like a history lesson. On “Day Dreams,” guitarist Rob Bacon (whom Saadiq recruited after hearing his effortless replications of sampled riffs for DJ Quik‘s Bay Area hip hop) and bassist Calvin Turner (who’s also got plenty of production and arrangement in his long list of credits, and who also came up on Tower of Power) make the blues form pop with the lightest of touches. (Lemar Carter, drumming on a wooden box, didn’t really have the opportunity to show off his chops, but you can see him get funky on YouTube.)
Taylor Swift may have just released a music video two weeks ago on CMT, but while country radio has taken to “Mean,” it’s “The Story of Us” that’s been picking up steam on pop radio. So here we are, with “The Story of Us,” which literally just premiered on MTV. In fact, if you’re reading this in the first half hour it’s been posted, turn on MTV right now to see Sway interview Taylor Swift live on air and ask fan questions that have been submitted since Friday through MTV.com or via Twitter (using @MTVNews and the hashtag #AskTaylor).
But if you missed the special, you can still watch the new video, above. It’s more in the schooltime vein of “You Belong with Me”, though Swift has graduated (geddit?) to some sort of Gothic collegiate campus, though she’s still having boy trouble. Look how sweet she is:
Jason Derulo‘s “Don’t Wanna Go Home” premieres online on Wednesday in advance of its appearance on VH1′s Top 20 Countdown Saturday at 9 a.m. ET/PT, but we (and our MTV siblings) have an exclusive thirty-second sneak peek, which you can see above!
“Don’t Wanna Go Home,” the lead single off Derulo’s forthcoming Future History, samples the 2009 remix of Robin S.‘s early-nineties house classic “Show Me Love,” while lyrically riffing on Harry Belafonte’s “Day-O (The Banana Boat Song)”?namely “daylight comes, and we don’t wanna go home.” Written out, it sounds like an unworkable combination, but Derulo pulls it off! I mean, he is the the guy who wrote a hit single around the “Dear Sister” break, so it shouldn’t really be surprising.
Before Hanson signed off as VH1′s April Posted artist on Saturday, they not-so-subtlely encouraged their fans to keep voting for “Give a Little” on the VH1 Top 20 Countdown. But they’re going to face stiff competition in their quest for the top slot, not least from one of this weekend’s guests on the VH1 Top 20 Video Countdown?and the VH1 Posted artist for May?Christina Perri.
Perri, whom you may remember as a You Oughta Know artist back in October, stopped by the countdown with tourmate (and fellow You Oughta Know artist) James Blunt to premiere her new single “Arms” from her full-length debut lovestrong., coming May 10. We’re excited to have her on board, where she’s going to provide us with a behind-the-scenes look at all of the prep that goes into making her upcoming album release a big success.