Or so said the chairman of Columbia Records, when asked about his 2014: “Obviously, at some point, Beyoncé will put a record out.” That is actually not very obvious, after a year of waiting for an official single. And the “at some point” is not exactly reassuring (unless they’re planning a surprise release?). But anyway, Columbia says Bey will release an album next year. Plan accordingly.
This week, Heart became the third act to cancel their show at SeaWorld after seeing Blackfish — a documentary that targets the water park for its mistreatment of killer whales. Heart's announcement follows similar cancellations from SeaWorld-scheduled acts Willie Nelson ("I don't agree with the way they treat their animals," he said to CNN's Brooke Baldwin) and Barenaked Ladies ("This is a complicated issue, and we don't claim to understand all of it, but we don't feel comfortable proceeding with the gig at this time," they wrote on their Facebook page). In response, SeaWorld spokesman Nick Gollattscheck told CNN: "While we're disappointed a small group of misinformed individuals was able to deny fans what would have been great concerts at SeaWorld ... we respect the bands' decisions."
For a somewhat racy country song ("Roll up a joint, or don't!"), the music video for Kacey Musgraves's "Follow Your Arrow" is pretty tame. For one, she takes the arrow thing quite literally: an arrowhead, an arrow sign pointing upward, a neon arrow. So follow that arrow wherever it points. (Unless it's pointing directly at a cactus. Don't follow it there.)
St. Vincent (a.k.a. Annie Clark) will release her major label debut on February 25. The self-titled album's first single, "Birth in Reverse," is out today, and you can download it for free by signing up for her mailing list — which you might wanna do anyhow, because she'll be likely releasing tickets soon for European tour dates in early February leading up to the album's release. What will the rest of the album sound like? "I wanted to make a party record you could play at a funeral," Clark said in a press release. So birth, death, etc. Sounds good.
Finally, an answer to the question we asked a month ago: What's going on with Justin Bieber's music? Turns out, the slew of R&B-heavy #MusicMonday tracks he's been releasing on Sundays at midnight as a lead-up to a Christmas Day documentary, Believe, will be compiled into a collection. Journals, to be sold for a limited time on iTunes (December 16 through January 2), will package all ten existing releases with some added videos and additional tracks featuring Future ("What's Hatnin'"), Lil Wayne ("Backpack"), and Big Sean ("Memphis"). A new full-length album is scheduled for the end of next year, after Bieber takes a much-needed vacation.
If you do not follow Carrie Underwood on Twitter, then you probably spent all weekend wondering how she dealt with the harsh criticism of her Sound of Music LIVE performance. Well, here's how: "Plain and simple: Mean people need Jesus. They will be in my prayers tonight … 1 Peter 2:1-25." You just got burned by the book of Peter.
After being told she has Asperger's and an above-average IQ by a specialist a little over a year ago, Susan Boyle says she actually feels relieved. In an interview with the U.K.'s Observer, the Britain's Got Talent winner admitted, "I have always known that I have had an unfair label put upon me. Now I have a clearer understanding of what's wrong and I feel relieved and a bit more relaxed about myself." While Boyle said that the pressures of fame have been a struggle for her — she was even treated for nervous exhaustion shortly after winning the competition in 2009 — she told the newspaper, "Asperger's doesn't define me. It's a condition that I have to live with and work through, but I feel more relaxed about myself." She added, "If people were a bit more patient, that would help." If only everyone had known this during all that 2010 SuBo backlash.
Remember Rebecca Black? Of course you do. Nearly three years ago, the then 13-year-old became an Internet sensation with the video for "Friday," an awful, weirdly hypnotic song about tween "partyin' partyin''" and "fun fun fun fun" made for $4,000 by vanity label Ark Music Factory. Over 100 million YouTube views, some death threats, and numerous covers later, Black is older and a little wiser, as she demonstrated today with the release of her new song and video, "Saturday."
Every week, Vulture faces the big, important questions in entertainment and comes to some creative conclusions. This week, we remembered Paul Walker, questioned whether Jennifer Lawrence wasn't just pulling a Katniss on us, and griped about MFA programs. You may have read some of these stories below, but you certainly didn’t read them all. We forgive you.
The nominations for the 56th annual Grammy Awards are in, and the biggest news is a snub: Justin Timberlake's The 20/20 Experience was completely overlooked in the Album of the Year category. Both of Timberlake's previous solo efforts had snagged nominations in the category, and Grammy prognosticators from USA Today to Billboard had considered JT a lock. Worse, while Timberlake snagged an impressive seven nominations overall — behind only Jay Z, who led with nine — he failed to make the cut in the song or record of the year categories. With no Timberlake in the album category, Grammy voters made room for Daft Punk, Kendrick Lamar, Taylor Swift, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis and, in a bit of a shocker, Sara Bareilles. For best new artist, Kacey Musgraves was the only female artist nominated; she's up against the aforementioned Lamar and Macklemore & Lewis, plus Brits Ed Sheeran and James Blake. Overall, in addition to Jay Z and Timberlake, other artists tallying more than five nominations include Lamar, Macklemore & Lewis and Pharrell Lewis (seven each) and Drake (five). Below, a list of nominations in major categories. The Grammys, which cover material released from October 1, 2012 through September 30, will air January 26 on CBS.
Yesterday, we asked our readers to submit their best Vampire Weekend haikus for a chance to win two tickets to see the band play live at a secret New York City location on Tuesday. We got nearly 200 submissions, many that displayed an Ivy League–level of knowledge about the band and poetry skill, but there could only be one winner.
It is more of a wax figure, actually, and — spoiler alert — it is not long for this world. But yes, Fake Julian Casablancas gets to live out all of his tragic Night at the Museum fantasies while Real Julian emotes and plays fake keyboard in a pedestal room. I was going to ask for a Julian Doll for Christmas, but I guess it doesn't exist anymore. At least it found love.
It's year-end list time, and one album that will surely be showing up a lot is Vampire Weekend's Modern Vampires of the City, so why not celebrate the closing of 2013 by seeing the band live? On December 10, they are taping a performance for PBS's Live From the Artists Den at a secret, intimate New York location, and we have one pair of tickets to give away. All you need to do is haiku: Write your best Vampire Weekend–inspired haiku in the comments section below and we'll pick the best to win the tickets. (Note: The show is 18 and over.) This poem can be about one of their songs, one of their albums, or their general vibe, but it must be in 5-7-5 structure. Here's an example:
Let’s be honest: Britney Spears may be the most boring person on the planet. She’s certainly one of the most boring; she’s in the running. She has no discernible talent, musical or otherwise. She has been in the public eye for two decades and has never evinced anything in the way of a personality. She can’t sing or dance; she can’t even sing or dance badly in a compelling way. In public, no utterance of any interest has escaped her lips. I’ve just finished watching a few interviews on YouTube, and take it from me: Next to Britney Spears, Kim Kardashian is Dorothy Parker. Spears is a blank, a void. She’s antimatter in a belly shirt.
A hazy blend of Spring Breakers and lip-liner, Lana Del Rey's ambitious 30-minute music video/short film Tropico was written by the singer and directed by Anthony Mandler (who's done a slew of Rihanna's videos, including "Diamonds" and "Unfaithful"). Snakes, roses, guns, and even a hologram of Marilyn Monroe mix the biblical origin story (Lana eats the apple!) into a story involving stripping, violence, and (eventually) outer space. It's Lana at her most Lana, paired right with the announcement that her next LP is to be called Ultraviolence. Clockwork Orange fans, you can make the connection.
And it is hard to argue with his top four, though you will probably want to register a Life+Times comment name just to yell at him about "Empire State of Mind." ("Sorry critics, it's good.") But that is the point — you are supposed to yell at Jay Z in this circumstance. It is the reason for the List Season. Anyway, here are his rankings. (The notations are Jay's. Forgive him for not following the traditional countdown-list format; he is new to this.)
Which means that the "Royals" era has finally come to an end. "Wrecking Ball" is back at No. 1 on the Hot 100 this week, thanks to the popularity of a Chatroulette-themed parody video. (Whatever it takes, we guess.) Over on the Billboard 200, One Direction lands its third No. 1 with Midnight Memories, which sold 526,000 copies in its first week. Congratulations to the half-a-million parents who already have their holiday shopping done.
This Thursday on NBC, the hills will be alive once again ... with the sound of groaning. No matter how hard she tries (and no matter how good she sounds!), Carrie Underwood will never satisfy those of us who have the 1965 Julie Andrews film so ingrained in our hearts and minds. Argue all you want that they're actually doing the original musical version (blah blah blah, the songs differ just a bit); if we're talking The Sound of Music, we're automatically comparing it to the film. Now that that's straight, let's all discuss our favorite songs before they are possibly destroyed forever.
On last night's Mindy Project, Maria Menounos may have stolen Mindy's spotlight by stealing her sexy version of "Santa Baby," but Chris Messina (as Dr. Danny) stole both of their spotlights by gifting Mindy with a Secret Santa gift made of dance moves. Specifically the ones from Aaliyah's "Try Again" video. He is a fantastic dancer.
- 1. Matt Zoller Seitz’s 10 Best TV Shows of 2013
- 2. David Edelstein’s 10 Best Movies of 2013
- 3. Where It Hurts: Steve McQueen on Why 12 Years a Slave Isn’t Just About Slavery
- 4. Jody Rosen’s 10 Best Pop Albums of 2013
- 5. Julia Louis-Dreyfus in the Present Tense: How the Actress Made Her Transformational Turn on Veep
- 6. Yes, Bryan Singer Will Direct X-Men: Apocalypse
- 7. Joe Jonas: My Life As a Jonas Brother
- 8. Watch Sesame Street Take On Lord of the Rings
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