Tag Archives: Music

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Hot Music Artists You Should Know About

With the deluge of information that bombards us every time we turn on the TV, check our Facebook newsfeeds, or even turn on the radio, it is easy to miss top current pop culture news that everyone else but you seems to know about. We weeded through the information about pop music stars to bring you the DL on hot, current artists that you need to know about now. These artists are not only remarkably talented but are also self-made artists, which makes their rise to fame even more popular.

Iggy AzaleaIggy Azalea 2_Small

Top hits: Fancy, Black Widow, Problem with Ariana Grande

Iggy Trivia: The Beatles and Iggy Azalea are the only two acts whose first two hits simultaneously held spots #1 and #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 list. Way to go, Iggy!

Born in Australia, Iggy Azalea lived with her parents in a home that her father built out of mud bricks. Knowing that she wanted to pursue a career in hip hop music at the age of 14, Iggy saved money to move to America by cleaning houses and hotels with her mother, a housecleaner by trade. Iggy Azalea made her way to Miami, Florida at the ripe young age of 16 to follow her dream of becoming a rap music artist. She obtained her GED and managed to stay in the US with a visa, which she renewed by leaving the United States every three years. After Izzy received some fame on YouTube, the rapper T.I. recognized Izzy’s talent and signed her to his record company. Not only talented and incredibly resourceful but also beautiful, Izzy became the face of Levi Jeans as her professional modeling career continued to take off. Iggy subsequently broke several records in the rap music industry, from becoming the first female rapper to be featured on the Top 10 Freshman list to taking the spot for the female with the longest standing #1 single on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.

Lorde

Can you believe that Lorde is only 17 years old?

Can you believe that Lorde is only 17 years old?

Top hits: Royals, Tennis Court, Team

Lorde trivia: Only 17 years old, Lorde has already won several awards, including the 2014 Grammy Award for Best Pop Solo Performance and the 2014 Grammy Award for Song of the Year

Born Ella Marija Lani Yelich-O’Connor, Lorde discovered her love for singing when she was only 5. Raised in Auckland, New Zealand, Lorde’s music successes came early on. After Lorde won a school vocal competition, her father, recognizing his daughter’s amazing talent, sent recordings of Lorde’s singing to influentials in the music industry. The 13-year-old eventually caught the eye of Universal Music Group, who took her under their wing and provided regular music lessons for the young future star. Lorde broke into the US Billboard Top 100 list, making her the youngest artist to make the list in the past 25 years.

Now you know what you need to know to stay in the loop. Which artist do you think will continue to be generate top hits? Do you think that one of these artists will fade out in a couple years?

Stay on top of the latest celebrity news with PEOPLE and US Weekly.  

rollingstone_decade_featured

“On the Cover of the Rolling Stone”: Magazines in Music

playlist_rollingstone_300.jpgHow are magazines playing an informative, entertaining role in the world of music? Check out our playlist of songs inspired by magazines.

Music is certainly well represented in the magazine world. But how about the reverse? How are magazines–those publications that can play such an informative, entertaining role in our lives–represented in the world of music?

Quite well, in fact. A search of lyrics on the website songmeanings.net brings up 50 pages–nearly 1,000 songs–that mention the word “magazine” in some manner. There was even a band named Magazine, an influence on the likes of Radiohead, Morrissey and U2.

If you’re looking to stock up your iPod with some magazine-related tunes, the following list–by no means comprehensive, nor intended to be–will get you off to a solid start.

“Vogue” by Madonna (1990)
The Material Girl not only name-checks (indirectly) one of fashion’s most recognized magazines in this song’s title, she also confirms just how important magazine covers are as taste-makers and definers of beauty.

Greta Garbo, and Monroe
Dietrich and DiMaggio
Marlon Brando, Jimmy Dean
On the cover of a magazine

“Cover of the Rolling Stone” by Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show (1972)
Songwriter Shel Silverstein took a lighthearted shot at the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle–the groupies, the drugs, the limos and more–in the verses of this song while simultaneously celebrating what most musicians would see as career peak in the catchy chorus:

Rolling Stone
Wanna see my picture on the cover
Rolling Stone
Wanna buy five copies for my mother
Rolling Stone
Wanna see my smilin’ face
On the cover of the Rolling Stone

Incidentally, the song’s performers, Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show, were featured on Rolling Stone magazine‘s cover on March 29, 1973, a few months after the song’s release. Country legend Buck Owens recorded a re-worked version in 1974 titled “On the Cover of the Music City News.”

“Billionaire” by Travie McCoy (2010)
This reggae-styled pop/rap track has recently been making a name for itself on Billboard magazine’s Hot 100 and Pop charts. A parental advisory warning is in order for a few F-bombs and more, but no one can deny McCoy’s logic that you’ve truly reached billionaire status when you’re “on the cover of Forbes magazine / Smiling next to Oprah and the Queen.”

“Cover of a Magazine” by Deana Carter (2003)
This country artist, who had a runaway hit with “Strawberry Wine,” tackles a variety of magazine-related subjects in this song: body image, advertising and consumerism, and what magazines are best at–escapism (“For $2.99 you get to sink your hooks / In the lives of heroes, in the lives of crooks”). Yet the ultimate goal remains being a glamorous cover model herself.

“Centerfold” by J. Geils Band (1981)
“I’ll Wait” by Van Halen (1984)
“Cover Girl” by Cheap Trick (1985)

This rock ‘n’ roll triumvirate of prurient obsession with female magazine models offers insight into what was on guys’ minds in the early ’80s–and just about every other time period before and since. J. Geils Band best sums up the stereotypical male’s powerlessness against the draw of certain come-hither covers at the newsstand: “Oh no, I can’t deny it / Oh yeah, I guess I gotta buy it!”

“The Girl on the Magazine Cover” by Richard Beavers (1948)
This oldie, written by celebrated composer Irving Berlin and sung by Richard Beavers in Berlin’s 1948 musical “Easter Parade”–starring Judy Garland and Fred Astaire–is essentially the G-rated, gentlemanly version of Cheap Trick’s “Cover Girl.” Somehow I doubt Berlin’s line “It seems they painted her just for me” packed the same punch in its heyday as Cheap Trick’s “Biting her lips, shaking her hips / You know she looked so fine” did in ’85.

“In This Skin” by Jessica Simpson (2003)
Serving as an antidote and response to the ogling, scrutinizing nature of the previous four tracks, this cathartic song showcases Simpson trying to learn to be happy with herself, ultimately ignoring the expectations and pressures imposed by others.

They see me in a magazine
I’m the one they want to be
Still don’t feel I’m good enough
Still don’t feel I’m thin enough

“Bennie and the Jets” by Elton John (1973)
Featuring what is easily the most famous four-syllable pronunciation of “magazine” (MAG-uh-zah-EEN), this enduring hit includes a discussion among friends who become hip to a new female-fronted musical act (and attitude) through word-of-mouth and magazine coverage.

Oh but they’re weird and they’re wonderful
Oh Bennie she’s really keen
She’s got electric boots, a mohair suit
You know I read it in a magazine

“The Way We Get By” by Spoon (2002)
This superb rock tale of disaffected youth confirms, like “Bennie and the Jets,” the role of magazines as a herald of new trends: “We found a new kind of dance in a magazine / Tried it out, it’s like nothing you ever seen.”

“A Magazine Called Sunset” by Wilco (2003)
In a testament to the power of magazines, like music, to become intertwined with memories and emotions, the band Wilco taps into the spirit of a publication that captures the inspiration and imagery of the Western United States: Sunset magazine.

There’s a magazine called Sunset
And a tape machine that won’t let
Me ever forget this impossible longing for you

Have a favorite magazine-related song that didn’t make this list? Let us know about it in the comment section below.

 

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Why You Should Be Reading Rolling Stone Magazine

Rolling Stone magazine September 13, 2012 issueThink Rolling Stone and you may think up-and-coming bands and album reviews, but there’s more than entertainment coverage inside. You’ll find award-winning reporting as well.

It should go without saying that Rolling Stone is for music lovers. After all, the magazine releases some sort of “all-time” list every year that may attempt to rank the 100 greatest singers, 500 greatest albums, 100 best songs, etc.

But Rolling Stone, despite what its title may suggest, is about more than music—and probably about many more genres of it than you’d think. Sure, that’s the obvious reason you should be reading the magazine, but here’s a few more.

The Sound of Music: OK, so this one bears repeating. The latest issue ranges from a Taylor Swift feature on her new pop direction to a piece on jazz funk music, which is detailed in a recently-released book, “Telegraph Avenue.” That, of course, comes in addition to the magazine’s playlist of its favorite songs and albums of the moment, album reviews and the chart listings in the back.

That’s Entertainment: What can you look forward to on the big screen (at home and in the theaters) this fall? Previews (and reviews) of upcoming flicks, dramas and sitcoms are featured in every issue. The latest includes insightful pieces on why typically outspoken filmmaker Michael Moore is keeping quiet these days or how the portrayal of the traditional family unit is changing on television.

Political Commentary: It’s no secret the magazine’s politics are liberal-leaning, and even if you don’t agree with them, its articles provide a well-written and entertaining read. Longer features delve into the issues of the moment, so expect a focus on the upcoming presidential election. In recent years, the magazine’s political coverage and its reporting on the Gulf oil spill notched it two highly coveted Polk Awards for journalism.

Celebrity Sightings: Even Rolling Stone offers the type of stargazing typically found in gossip magazines, but this collection of pics features the musicians it follows, sometimes on vacation (love Taylor Swift’s retro red polka-dotted two-piece in the latest issue) or caught performing in free or impromptu concerts.

Getting Acquainted: Candid snippets from interviews provide an interesting peak into the lives of our favorite musicians and other celebrities. For example, Art Garfunkel places his books on shelves in the order he reads them. No. 1,165? The controversially popular “Fifty Shades of Grey,” which he describes as “Hot stuff.”

For a limited time, get 12 issues of Rolling Stone magazine for just $5. Additional 12-issue subscriptions may be purchased as gifts. Hurry, the offer expires September 23.

Nashville Symphony

Nashville Symphony Hits the Lawn for Outdoor Summer Concert Series

Nashville Symphony

Associate Conductor Kelly Corcoran with the Nashville Symphony; Photo by Harry Butler

Summer is finally here, and for the Nashville Symphony that means taking the show outside for a series of free community concerts.

There’s something magical about seeing the Nashville Symphony in the breathtaking Schermerhorn Symphony Center with its grand staircases, state of the art acoustics and phenomenally detailed architecture. It’s truly a regal experience to dress up and let the symphony serenade you with Handel’s Messiah each December.

But every summer the symphony offers one experience that’s totally unlike the rest of their performances for one reason: They take the music outside of the Schermerhorn and perform a series of free concerts in parks around Middle Tennessee. It’s the perfect chance to grab a blanket, pack a picnic, load the family in the car and hear fun music like John Williams’ Star Wars Suite for Orchestra or Shakespeare at the Symphony.

“I look forward to the community concert series each season!” Associate Director Kelly Corcoran says. Corcoran will be directing each of the summer shows. “It is such fun to visit different neighborhoods, spend some time outside and share great orchestral music with audiences. I love seeing families, pets and friends gathering for free to share some company, have a picnic and hear live symphonic music! As conductor for these concerts, I aim to create programs that are diverse–including popular tunes, film music and great classical symphonic music.”

The first in the series of free concerts kicks off tonight (June 7) at 8 p.m. at East Park. The free concerts are just one piece of the Symphony’s Education and Community Engagement programs, which have served more than 200,000 people around Nashville.

“Whether you are a card-carrying classical music lover, or you have never heard a symphony perform before, these concerts offer something for everyone,” explains Blair Bodine, the symphony’s director of education and community engagement.

Bodine perhaps sums it up best when she says, “When else are you going to get to see the Grammy-award winning Nashville Symphony, fresh off the heels of playing Carnegie Hall, perform in your local park? To me, this is what the Nashville Symphony is all about: bringing communities together through the shared experience of music.  We hope you’ll join us!”

Schedule of Free Concerts around Middle Tennessee

June 7 at 8 p.m. — East Park (Program: Celebrating the Film Music of John Williams)

June 8 at 8 p.m. — Bicentennial Mall State Park (Program: Celebrating the Film Music of John Williams)

June 10 at 7 p.m. — Crockett Park, Brentwood (Program: Celebrating the Film Music of John Williams)

June 19 at 7:30 p.m. — Centennial Park (Program: Shakespeare at the Symphony)

 

The-Lumineers

The Lumineers Head to Hangout Fest with Dave Matthews, Jack White and Others

The Lumineers Head to Hangout Fest 2012

Photo of The Lumineers By Jade Ehlers

Dozens of artists and bands are descending upon Gulf Shores, Ala. this weekend for Hangout Fest, and folk rockers The Lumineers are one new crowd-pleaser joining the party.

Last year Denver, Colo.’s folk rock trio The Lumineers faced a major setback when someone broke into their tour van and stole most of their instruments and gear.

“We had been robbed of most of our musical instruments in Los Angeles, in broad daylight, right outside the La Brea Tar Pits,” the band’s percussionist Jeremiah Fraites tells Magazines.com. “We drove to the LAPD and reported the crime. We were number 3,600-something of that day since midnight. We then drove from the LAPD to a house show where we played using borrowed instruments. It was one of the best shows we ever played.”

Launching a campaign through the direct-to-fan platform PledgeMusic, The Lumineers were able to replace their stolen necessities with help from their devoted fans in less than a month. With their instruments back in hand, the two-man, one-woman outfit finished their self-titled debut, which they released with Dualtone in April of this year to wide critical acclaim.

Now, with a fresh new album to their rootsy name, The Lumineers are headed down to Gulf Shores, Ala. this weekend to take part in the third annual Hangout Music Fest, which takes place right on the beach (jealous yet?).

“We have never played or been to Hangout before,” says Fraites. “We’re all very excited and are honored to play it though. There are so many great bands going, it’s hard to choose which act I’ll try to see. We don’t have much festival experience in general, so it will be a fun event to break into summer!”

Aside from their upcoming Hangout Fest debut, The Lumineers have recently made appearances on shows like “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” where they brought their upbeat, danceable hit “Ho Hey” to an excited audience.

“Performing ‘Ho Hey’ on Conan was unreal. Words can’t express …” Fraites begins, “but I’ll try. Oblivion of pleasure. A shopping cart full of nerves. Blackout joy. Surreal. Unreal. Didn’t happen. Not real. Not to me. Never. Amazing. Would go back any day, any time, any second. Dream come true.”

Perhaps he’ll feel the same way after sharing a festival bill with the likes of Dave Matthews Band, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jack White, Randy Newman and more. Hangout Fest kicked off yesterday (Friday, May 18) and lasts through Sunday. Even if you can’t make it out to the beach show, check out The Lumineers and get a taste of their summery folk sound.