2012 MTV Video Music Awards Predictions

2012 MTV Video Music Awards Predictions

Who will take home a Moonman this year - and who should?

The winners of the MTV Video Music Awards always take a back seat to the stage antics and performances at the annual show, but there are a number of notable entries in this year’s contenders.

Drake and Rihanna lead the pack with five nominations each; Katy Perry has four, while Coldplay, M.I.A. and Watch The Throne (Jay-Z and Kanye West) have three nods each.

Though all eyes will be on Chris Brown and Drake to see if they have an on-air altercation over Rihanna, there will also be performances from Frank Ocean, Rihanna, Pink, Green Day, Alicia Keys, Taylor Swift, and One Direction.

Winners are selected by the fans, who can vote as many times as they’d like during the eligibility period, so our predictions took that into account.

This year’s VMAs, hosted by Kevin Hart, will air live Sept. 6 on MTV.

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<p>Rolling Stones members Charlie Watts, Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Mick Jagger attend a celebration of the band's 50th anniversary in London last month.</p>

Rolling Stones members Charlie Watts, Keith Richards, Ronnie Wood and Mick Jagger attend a celebration of the band's 50th anniversary in London last month.

Credit: AP Photo/Jonathan Short

Source: The Rolling Stones to play four dates in November

Two U.K. and U.S. dates to herald 50th anniversary

After first saying they had no plans to tour behind their 50th anniversary, it now looks like the Rolling Stones may play at least four shows this year to commemorate the occasion.

Billboard is reporting, according to sources, that the Stones will play two shows in November: two at London’s O2 Arena and two at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The paycheck for the four gigs: a whopping $25 million.

Richard Branson and Australian promoter Paul Dainty will promote the shows. If that is true, that means that Michael Cohl, the Rolling Stones’ longtime promoter, would not be involved. He told Billboard in late June that he had no information about 50th anniversary shows; however, that was two months ago.

The Stones have been seen going into a Paris studio and Mick Jagger tweeted how much fun the band is having. What's not clear is if they are recording new material or rehearsing for a tour.


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<p>Thom&nbsp;Yorke of Radiohead</p>

Thom Yorke of Radiohead

Credit: AP Photo

Radiohead kicks off season 38 of 'Austin City Limits'

The Shins, The Civil Wars and Bon Iver also on tap

Radiohead, the Shins and the Civil Wars are among the acts on tap for season 38 of “Austin City Limits,” the long-running live music show that runs on PBS stations.

Radiohead will kick off the season on Oct. 6 with a full-hour performance. 

Below is the broadcast schedule. Seven additional episodes/artists are still to be announced.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Taylor Swift</p>

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift's 'We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together' stays atop the Billboard Hot 100

Which two artists have two songs each in the top 10?

Taylor Swift’s “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together” spends its second week at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 as the song gains in airplay, but drops in sales.

Following a record-setting digital download week with 623,000 copies sold, sales of  “Never” drop to 307,000, according to Billboard, but that monster sum is still enough to keep the tune at No. 1 on the Digital Songs chart as well.

Interestingly, the song, which does not have a hint of country in it, drops 13-19 on Billboard Country Songs chart, while gaining on both the ADult Pop Songs (21-18) and Pop Songs (18-16) charts.  In a move clearly designed to court country fans (and her original fan base), who may be feeling  little left out on this one, Swift will debut the video for “Never” on CMT on Thursday.

The next two spots on the Billboard Hot 100 remain the same, with Flo Rida’s “Whistle” at No. 2 and Ellie Goulding’s “Lights” at No. 3.

Maroon 5 sees “One More Night,” the second single from “Overexposed,” leap 9-4, while Fun.s’ “Some Nights” rises 6-5.

Carly Rae Jepsen continues to be the girl of summer as “Call Me Maybe” remains ensconced in the Top 10 at No. 6, while her duet with Owl City, “Good Time,” bursts into the Top 10 at No. 9.

Rounding out the top 10, Katy Perry’s “Wide Awake” drops 5-7, Maroon 5’s “Payphone” featuring Wiz Khalifa slips 7-8, and Justin Bieber’s “As Long As You Love Me” featuring Big Sean slides 8-10.

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<p>Madonna in Philadelphia</p>

Madonna in Philadelphia

Madonna starts U.S. tour off with a bang, despite a few boos

Here's what the critics had to say about opening night

After raking in more than $115 million from her 34 shows overseas, Madonna brought her “MDNA” tour,  guns blazing, to the U.S. Tuesday night. The show, at Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center, did not start until 10:24 p.m., which added insult to injury to some who paid $355 top ticket, according to reports. The only explanation offered by Madge was “I want to apologize for being late. We had many changes to make from Europe to America, and I wanted the show to be perfect for you because my fans deserve it and quite frankly I deserve it.”

She also continued to voice support for Pussy Riot, as she did on stage in Russia, telling the Philly crowed, “We have freedom of expression. Never forget how lucky you are to live here.”

Watch very high quality video of the opening at the bottom of this post.

From most reports, all was forgiven once she took the stage in a spectacular that won’t soon be forgotten.
Here are some excerpts from opening night reviews:

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Matchbox Twenty</p>

Matchbox Twenty

Listen: Matchbox 20's new swoon-worthy single, 'Overjoyed'

Soon to be playing at a wedding near you

God knows, the members of Matchbox 20 have had a tough time in love in some of their songs, including most recent single, “She’s So Mean,” but with new single, “Overjoyed,” there’s nothing but sweet love going on, man, so don’t go trying to stir up trouble.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>OneRepublic's &quot;Feel Again&quot;</p>

OneRepublic's "Feel Again"

Watch: Ryan Tedder turns on his heartlight in OneRepublic video for 'Feel Again'

Download the single and help save a life

OneRepublic may have been making hits before any of us ever heard of Florence + The Machine, but the group’s new single (and video) “Feel Again,” takes a page directly out of Flo’s handbook with the hand claps and  same tribal drum pattern as any number of F+TM songs. You can even imagine Florence Welch singing the song instead of Ryan Tedder...and we’d like to.

The song sounds like a smash. But back to the video, which premiered today. Tedder is able to “feel again,” in part, because he picks up a magical orb, as one does,  that leads him to the lowest-key rave ever, where he’ joins his band mates. There are strings of neon lights and acoustic instruments that light up, and when Tedder sings, strings of light come out of his mouth.  It’s Las Vegas crossed with Bonnaroo with just the slightest hit of Ecstasy thrown in: check out the lighted badminton rackets.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Florence + The Machine</p>

Florence + The Machine

Florence + The Machine plan year-long hiatus between albums

Watch Kelly Clarkson's cover of 'Shake It Out'

As the campaign for “Ceremonials” winds down, Florence Welch of Florence & The Machine revealed that she plans to take a year off before starting work on a follow-up to the 2011 album.

Of course, that break has a ways to go before it starts since she and her band mates are among the headliners at the Austin (Texas) City Limits festival on Oct. 12. It’s been a season of festivals for F&TM: They played Lollapalooza earlier this montn and just played the Reading and Leeds festivals in England.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Alanis Morissette's &quot;Havoc and Bright Lights&quot;</p>

Alanis Morissette's "Havoc and Bright Lights"

Album Review: Alanis Morissette gets touchy feely on new album, 'Havoc And Bright Lights'

She mixes the message and affirmations with a beat you can dance to

Despite living a life in the public eye ever since “Jagged Little Pill” shot her into the limelight 17 years ago, Alanis Morissette has admirably kept her wounds open for all to see, as well as shared her joys. She seems amazingly aware of every emotion that flickers though her as fleeting as it may be and has no trepidation or judgment of them, only observation.

She has plenty of joy and pain to share on the musically diverse “Havoc And Bright Lights,” produced by Guy Sigsworth and Joe Chiccarelli, and out Aug. 28. Since her last album, 2008’s “Flavors of Entanglement,” Morissette has married and become a mom and both of those experiences deeply inform “Havoc.”

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Usher in &quot;Dive&quot;</p>

Usher in "Dive"

Watch: Usher goes deep in hot new music video for 'Dive'

You'll wish you were in the same boat

Usher knows from sexy and he takes it to a new depths in his video for “Dive,” the latest single from his excellent “Looking 4 Myself” album. The song, which features Usher singing in his upper register, is sultry and sweet at the same time, like Seal’s “Kiss From a Rose,” but with a lot more sexual imagery.

[More after the jump...]

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