All Articles Tagged "music"

C.R.E.A.M.! Someone Bids $5M For Upcoming Wu Tang Album

April 4th, 2014 - By Ann Brown
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 WENN

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Update: Some thought it was a crazy idea. Others called the Wu Tang’s move to make just one copy of their upcoming CD and sell it to the highest bidder a brilliant marketing move. The latter turned out to be true. According to the Wu’s The RZA the bids are up to $5 million for 31-track The Wu — Once Upon a Time in Shaolin.

“Offers came in at $2 million, somebody offered $5 million yesterday,” he told Billboard, during a break from promotion work on Brick Mansions, his upcoming film with the late Paul Walker, and Gang Related, his new Fox show. “I’ve been getting a lot of emails: some from people I know, some from people I don’t know, and they’re also emailing other members of my organization.

Some fans, however, are upset since the album will never be released publicly. How do you feel?

Published orginally on March 31, 2014

The Wu-Tang Clan have always been music innovators. Now the hip-hop group might just change the way artists market CDs. The Staten Island, NY group has come up with a unique way to sell their new album.

Wu Tang Clan has a 20th anniversary album set to be released in July called A Better Tomorrow. But another upcoming new record, Once Upon a Time in Shaolin done with Morocco-based producer Tarik “Cilvaringz” Azzougarh, isn’t going to get released at all.

“Instead of releasing Once Upon a Time in Shaolin, they’re going to make exactly one copy of the double album. It will be locked inside an engraved nickel and silver box created by British-Moroccan artist Yahya,” reports Death and Taxes magazine. The album with actually going on its own tour to museums, galleries and possibly music festivals where visitors will pay to listen to it on headphones.

The double album has been a secret over the last two years, notes The Verge. After the tour, the group is looking to sell the single copy for millions of dollars.

“We’re about to put out a piece of art like nobody else has done in the history of [modern] music,” says Wu-Tang Clan member Robert “RZA” Diggs told The Verge. “We’re making a single-sale collector’s item. This is like somebody having the scepter of an Egyptian king.”

He added, “The idea that music is art has been something we advocated for year.  And yet it doesn’t receive the same treatment as art in the sense of the value of what it is, especially nowadays when it’s been devalued and diminished to almost the point that it has to be given away for free.”

Since record sales have been dwindling over the years, this might just be a brilliant marketing move as well.

Rihanna Switches Labels, Sort Of: Label Reorganization Moves Her To Def Jam

April 4th, 2014 - By Ann Brown
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SIPA/WENN.com

SIPA/WENN.com

Rihanna will no longer be calling Island Def Jam her music home. The “Diamonds” singer has released seven albums with the imprint, but now due to a company reorganization by parent company Universal Music Group, Rihanna will be on the new Def Jam, reports EUR.

UMG has split up one of its major divisions, displacing Chairman & CEO Barry Weiss. Under the reorganization, the Island Def Jam Music Group, one of the four umbrella units for Universal’s dozens of record labels “will cease to exist,” reports The New York Times.

“By re-establishing Def Jam, Island and Motown as stand-alone labels within the UMG family, we’re positioning them to recapture the uniqueness of their brands and serve artists with the singularity of vision, focus and creativity that was at the core of their original success,” said UMG’s Chairman and CEO Lucian Grainge in a statement.

UMG’s constituent labels, including Def Jam (also home to Kanye West), Island (Bon Jovi, Justin Bieber) and Motown, will operate separately. There will be changes in leadership and operations, including Ethiopia Habtemariam being bumped up from executive vice president of Motown to president.

Republic Records, one of the top labels lately with hits by Lorde, Drake and Florida Georgia Line, will be unaffected by the changes.

UMG is closing down Island Def Jam because it never really took a foothold in the industry. “The fact is: No matter how much we might work to build ‘IDJ’ as a brand, that brand could never be as powerful as each of IDJ’s constituent parts,” Grainge wrote in a note to employees.

According to UMG, Weiss had stepped down from his position “in order to enter into discussions with U.M.G. about a new venture together.” But many music industry observers say Weiss will leave the company totally.

Our 15 Favorite Famous Singing Families

March 31st, 2014 - By Iva Anthony
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When it comes to performing, there’s nothing wrong with keeping it in the family. Since these musicians share a bloodline, a love for singing and the talent to do it, they decided to do it together professionally.

Famous Singing Families

K-Ci, JoJo, Fantasia and Dave Hollister

Brothers K-Ci and JoJo became famous in the early 90’s with the R&B group Jodeci but they’re not the only ones in the family who can blow. Cousin Fantasia went on the popular singing competition show “American Idol” back in 2004 and walked away winning it all and their other cousin Dave Hollister’s claim to fame was with Blackstreet before he struck out on his own for a solo career. Last Year K-Ci and JoJo joined Hollister and Dru Hill onstage at the 2013 UrbanAZ R&B Music Fest in Phoenix.

“You And I ‘Til the Day We Die:” The Best Hip-Hop Love Songs

March 28th, 2014 - By Meg Butler
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R&B isn’t the only soulful genre that can get you in the mood. There have actually been some pretty romantic and touching Hip-Hop love songs over the years, like these.

Jay-Z – Song Cry

“I can’t see ‘em coming down my eyes so I gotta make the song cry.”

This was the moment hip hop grew up and Hov let young heads everywhere know it was OK to catch feelings in public.

L-O-L: The Craziest Album Covers From Back In The Day

February 25th, 2014 - By Meg Butler
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Don’t laugh too hard. Music has come a long way.

Craziest Album Covers

Image Source: Tumblr.com

Murder Ink

You know he’s a real gangster because true thugs don’t let cartoon bears get away with talking ish.

Beyonce To Be Highest Paid Black Musician Of All Time At The End Of Mrs. Carter Tour

February 20th, 2014 - By Brande Victorian
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Beyonce To Be Highest Paid Black Musician Of All Time

Source: Tumblr

Beyhive, pat yourselves on the back. Thanks to your unwavering support of Queen Bey, According to MTV News, at the end of the Mrs. Carter Tour Beyonce to be highest paid Black musician of all time.

According to estimates, the Mrs. Carter tour is expected to make well over $200 million which would make it Beyonce’s most successful tour ever and lead to her being crowned the highest paid Black musician of all time. This is on top of the Mrs. Carter tour already taking the honor of the highest-grossing concert by a female artist in 2013.

As MTV news points out, this feat would be an especially big one for Bey considering she’s the director and executive producer of the tour, via her production company, Parkwood Entertainment. That same company is also responsible for creating her self-titled visual album and her 2013 documentary “Live Is But A Dream.”

The Mrs. Carter tour wraps March 27 in Portugal — unless Bey decides to extend it again — so it won’t be long before we see if she makes her mark. What do you do think?

Source: Tumblr

Source: Tumblr

Check out pics of Bey behind the scenes at the 2014 Brit Awards on the next page.

Madame Noire’s (Safe For Work) Valentine’s Day Playlist

February 14th, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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 Valentine's Day Playlist

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To start of your Valentine’s Day weekend, we decided to create a playlist that’s perfect to get you in the mood of love. Whether you’re enjoying a crush or progressing in your relationship, there’s a song to match your situation — and you don’t have to be ashamed to let your coworkers hear it through your headphones at work. Don’t worry, we’ll drop the raunchy, meeting in my bedroom type of list later on today, but for now here’s our Safe for Work Valentine’s Day playlist.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

So Into You –Tamia

For that moment you realize you have found a keeper and you cannot get enough of him.

Lee Daniels’ New Hip Hop Drama Set To Hit The Small Screen!

January 25th, 2014 - By Drenna Armstrong
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FayesVision/WENN.com

FayesVision/WENN.com

Lee Daniels is a busy man these days and now, he’s about to be focused on his new hop hop drama set to air on Fox.

Empire is described by The Hollywood Reporter as a “family drama set in the world of a hop hop empire.”  I know, that doesn’t tell us much at all but Lee Daniels is well connected and could give us an honest look into the behind-the-scenes shenanigans of the hip hop world. 

Daniels will direct Empire while Danny Strong, who worked with him on The Butler, has agreed to write the script.  The hour long pilot actually had a bidding war going on for it but Fox came out on top as the winner. This will be Daniels’ first time writing for television.

It’ll be interesting to see how the show will pan out. Every now and then, shows tend to fall flat when they try to focus on music, often becoming quite cheesy and unrealistic. Fox has a bit of a better track record sticking with its new shows so hopefully, Daniels and Strong will bring something fresh to the table.

Since we don’t have any further information about the show, it is impossible to start thinking about who will actually star on the show. But if we’re being honest, we know there will have to be a few black actors and actresses on there and that’s almost always a good thing.

No word on when Empire will premiere on Fox.

Are you a big enough fan of Lee Daniels’ work that you’ll check out Empire when it makes its way to the small screen?

“12 Years A Slave, “Fruitvale Station” & Others Rack Up Noms For NAACP Image Awards!

January 11th, 2014 - By Madame Noire
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"fruitvale station"

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From ESSENCE

Red carpet season is moving full steam ahead.

Yesterday, the 2014 NAACP Image Award nominations were announced. These nods are pretty much in line with what the rest of Hollywood has been buzzing about.

Historical drama 12 Years a Slave earned four nominations: Outstanding Motion Picture, Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture (Chiwetel Ejiofor) and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture (Alfre Woodard and Lupita Nyong’o).

Fruitvale Station also picked up several nominations: Outstanding Motion Picture, Outstanding Actor in a Motion Picture (Michael B. Jordan) and Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture (Octavia Spencer).

Head on over to ESSENCE.com to see who else was nominated. The 45th Annual NAACP Image Awards will air live on TV One on February 22nd.

Conrad Murray Stands His Ground: “I Didn’t Kill Michael Jackson. MJ Killed MJ”

November 24th, 2013 - By Drenna Armstrong
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Conrad Murray

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There is really something to be said for knowing when to humble yourself and be quiet. It is clear, however, that Conrad Murray has not learned that lesson.

In his first interview since being released from prison, Conrad Murray opens up to The Daily Mail about life with Michael Jackson. He says things got very crazy towards the end, but he was not responsible:

“He was in crisis at the end of his life, filled with panic and misery … By the end, Michael Jackson was a broken man. I tried to protect him but instead I was brought down with him.”

Murray says MJ was so paranoid that he wouldn’t allow housekeepers to clean his underwear because he thought they would sell them. Yes, well, drugs will make you think a lot of things that would rarely cross your mind if you were sober.

Murray says that he was only trying to protect Michael but was taken down with him. In fact, he says they were very close friends. How close, ask?

I held his private part every night to fit a catheter because he was incontinent at night.”

Yeah. Moving on.

In the end, Conrad Murray says he didn’t kill Michael Jackson but rather, Michael accidentally killed himself.

You know, the only real truth is that no one will ever know what really happened. It’s no secret that Michael had bouts of paranoia. But we also know that Conrad Murray isn’t the most trustworthy person.

No matter the “truth,” it is about time for everyone to stop doing interviews about this and keep whatever they know to themselves.