<p>Justin Bieber</p>

Justin Bieber

Credit: AP Photo

Justin Bieber writes new 'Believe' song about his paternity lawsuit

No word on if song about Mariah Yeager makes the cut

If Taylor Swift can write songs about relationships  she had with famous men, why can’t Justin Bieber write a song about a relationship he did not have with a now infamous woman?

Bieber, who, heretofore, has been almost preternaturally mature, is lashing out at Mariah Yeater, whom you will recall accused him last November of fathering her child. He maintained that the two never met. She filed legal action and then withdrew the suit.

Over the weekend, Bieber opened up what seemed to be a completely closed chapter in his life by tweeting about Yeater: “Dear Mariah Yeeter (sic)...we have never met...so from my heart, I just wanted to say...” (and then the link to Sasha Baron Cohen’s Borat character taunting “You will never get this...”  (Although at the end of Borat's speech, the person does break into the animal’s cage and “get this...” hmmm).

Then, as reported by Billboard, Monday night Bieber confirmed to reporters in London that he has written a song about Yeater for “Believe,” which comes out June 19.  “There’s a song about that girl --Mariah Yeater--that said she was gonna have my baby....There are songs about things I’m going through. I wrote songs about different situations.”

However, the BBC reports that Bieber has recorded 40 songs for “Believe,” so no word on whether Yeater's tune  will make the cut and go down in recorded history.

And speaking of Swift, she is one of his collaborators on “Believe,” as well as Drake, Kanye West, and Ludacris.


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<p>&quot;The Wanted&quot;</p>
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"The Wanted"

Credit: Universal

Album Review: Will you be glad you came to hear The Wanted's album debut?

British boy band hits high notes on self-titled debut, but never totally entrances

Unlike the other boy bands currently part of a new teen idol resurgence, The Wanted’s solid brand of electro-pop transcends much of the typical boy band material to ensure its appeal beyond a teen demographic.

For example, the crunchy “Glad You Came,” which has reached into the top 4 of the Billboard Hot 100, fits in perfectly beside LMFAO or Maroon 5. It’s also the strongest track on “The Wanted,” out Tuesday, April 24. The 10-song set (in the deluxe edition; the standard is seven tracks) combines selected songs from the group’s first two albums released in their native U.K. Both  “Glad You Came,” and Maroon 5-like “All Time Low” topped the British charts.

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<p>Snoop Dogg with Tupac at Coachella weekend one</p>

Snoop Dogg with Tupac at Coachella weekend one

Credit: AP Photo

Can we let Tupac Shakur rest in peace again now?

What kind of can of worms did Coachella unleash?

Dr. Dre’s non-denial denial yesterday that the Tupac Shakur hologram (or 2D image) was created solely for Coachella and not for a tour continues to bring lingering thoughts on what technology means when it comes to raising the dead.

As you know, the legendary rapper, who died in 1996, made projected appearances at both Snoop Dogg/Dr. Dre shows at the festival--on April 15 and April 22. The April 15 appearance, which started with Tupac greeting the Coachella attendees, was the resounding water cooler moment at the fest this year.

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<p>Colton Dixon of &quot;American Idol&quot;</p>
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Colton Dixon of "American Idol"

Credit: Michael Becker/FOX

Music Power Rankings: Tupac comes back from the dead to top the list

'American Idol's' Colton Dixon and Taylor Swift make this week's survey

1) Tupac Shakur: His hologram steals the show at Coachella and makes plans to go on the road. Celebrities everywhere amend their wills to dictate post-death image usage and declare which is their best side.

2) Taylor Swift: So she didn’t end up playing Eponine in “Les Miserables,” but now comes word that she may play Joni Mitchell in the adaptation of “Girls Like Us.” I’ve looked at this from Both Sides Now and I just don’t see it.

3) Lionel Richie: He has to wait a few weeks, but justice is his as “Tuskegee” makes it to No. 1 on the Billboard 200 after Madonna’s crafty concert ticket tie in propels “MDNA” over him.

4) Dick Clark: The World’s Oldest Teenager is rating records in the sky.  New Year’s Eve will never be the same

5) Colton Dixon: Fan fave on “American Idol” is voted off.  Record label deal to come in 5...4...3...2...1 (or as soon as the season is over).

6) Ted Nugent: He hasn’t made a decent record since “Cat Scratch Fever”  and now he may have a police record if he keeps up the trash talk about the president. Or as one of my friends joked, the secret service may have cleared him, but we bet he gets audited by the IRS for the next 20 years. 

7) Bob Marley: The largest musical star in the world gets treated right in Kevin MacDonald’s documentary, “Marley.”  Interesting factoid: Marley fathered 11 children with seven different women. That’s not “One Love,” that’s “Whole Lotta Love.”

8) Record Store Day: In five short years, it has become THE day for independent retailers. More than 400 artists are participating in this year’s April 21 extravaganza. Did you go hug your local retail store on Saturday? 

9) Willie Nelson: At 4:20 p.m. on 4/20 (no kidding), an 8-foot tall bronze statue of Nelson was unveiled outside the W Hotel in Austin. That’s nice, but we think he belongs on Mt. Rushmore #sodoesjohnnycash

10) Levon Helm: The Weight is off the best drummer/singer ever. Take a load off, Levon and thank you.

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<p>Lionel Richie</p>
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Lionel Richie

Credit: CBS

Can Lionel Richie make it two weeks atop the Billboard 200?

Who is primed to steal the Commodore's crown?

Predictions can be wildly uneven, as we saw last week when it looked like Adele’s “21” was a lock to go back to No. 1 on the Billboard 200, as of the Friday before the chart’s Sunday close.

However, Lionel Richie’s CBS special, which aired Friday night after Hits Daily Double had already run its predictions, propelling “Tuskegee” to the top spot.

So this week, it’s even more of a horserace to see who will snag the No. 1 spot when the chart is released on Wednesday. Right now, “Tuskegee” and “Love is a Four-Letter Word” from Jason Mraz are in a dead heat, with both targeted to sell between 100,000 and 110,000.

Mraz will be joined in the top 10 by two other debuts, Train’s “California 37,” which will likely bow at No. 4 and hip hop artist Future’s debut studio set, “Pluto,” looks strong for No. 7.

Adele’s “21” continues to be in the Top 5, and should easily claim the No. 3 spot with up to 90,000 copies sold.  Nicki Minaj’s “Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded” rounds out the top 5 at No. 5 (although at this point, “Roman Reloaded” and One Direction’s “Up All Night” are too close to call, so she may be at No. 6 and the boy band at No. 5.

Top 10 veterans round out the rest of the top slots:  Gotye, whose “Somebody That I Used To Know” is No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 this week, will likely be at No. 8 with “Making Mirrors,” Bonnie Raitt at No. 9 with “Slipstream” and Rascal Flatts at No. 10 with “Changed.”


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<p>Snoop Dogg being Snoop Dogg</p>

Snoop Dogg being Snoop Dogg

Credit: AP Photo

Listen: Willie Nelson and Snoop Dogg pay homage to 420 Day

Asher Roth also weighs in

Happy 420! Could the international day to hail all things pot have any better spokespeople than Willie Nelson and Snoop Dogg? The answer is resoundingly no. And just in case they haven’t made their love of the herb clear enough, they return today with “Roll Me Up & Smoke Me When I Die,” from Nelson’s forthcoming album, “Heroes.” Listen to it here.

If the song is new to you— it's a standard in Nelson's live show —the surprise is that this version is a rollicking, country tune that stands on its own merits as a truly enjoyable song, as opposed to some novelty. The musicianship is great, the outlaw country attitude is essential, the picking is delicious, guests Jamey Johnson and Kris Kristofferson add just the right amount of gravel, and, believe it or not, Snoop is totally convincing on a a country track.

[More after the jump...]

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Watch: Ziggy and Robbie Marley talk about new Bob Marley doc, 'Marley'

Watch: Ziggy and Robbie Marley talk about new Bob Marley doc, 'Marley'

What part affected them the most; why Ziggy told his sister not to see it

More than 30 years after his death, Bob Marley remains one of the most loved and influential musicians in the world.

“Marley,” a new documentary by filmmaker Kevin MacDonald (“The Last King of Scotland,” chronicles the reggae superstar’s exceedingly humble roots in Jamaica through his rise to global icon and his untimely death at only 36 in 1981.

The movie opens in theaters tomorrow (4/20), but will also stream on Bob Marley's Facebook page. Proceeds from the Facebook sales will go to Save The Children.

MacDonald focuses not only on Marley’s music, but his lifestyle (he fathered 11 children with seven women), and the influence he had throughout the world, primarily the third world, as a symbol of peace, love, and equality.  The film also examines how Marley was savvy enough, at a very young age, to realize how politicians tried to exploit his popularity for their own gain, as well as the assassination attempt on his life two nights before his free concert in Jamaica.

Marley’s son, Ziggy, served as one of the film’s executive producers. After false starts by both Martin Scorsese and Jonathan Demme, Ziggy says he felt MacDonald captured the right  “emotional” beats of Marley’s life. “We met with Kevin and whenI saw the first cut, we knew this decision was a good decision... it had emotional impact. I like that...I’ve never seen anything with my father that has emotional impact before.”

Both Ziggy and Robbie share in their interview with Hitfix  that the doc footage covering the end stages of their father’s life, while he battled cancer in Germany, was, understandably, the hardest to watch (Both were very young when Marley died: Ziggy was 12, Robbie was 9). In fact, they advised their sister, Cedella, who is very outspoken in the movie about how difficult it was to share her father with the rest of the world, not to see the movie.


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Credit: Roadrunner Records

Listen: Rush takes off on new single, 'Headlong Flight'

New album, tour coming as well for venerated rock trio

Rock titans Rush return with “Clockwork Angels,” the band's first studio album in five years, on June 12.

First single, “Headlong Flight” landed at rock radio today (19). The full song, embedded below,  is more than 7 minutes long. As the title suggests, the protagonist longs to take flight. Neil Peart’s drumming sounds as amazing as always:  it anchors the shifting tempos and moods, as Alex Lifeson’s guitar work soars above it all.  Geddy Lee’s vocals are strong, but they don’t stand out as his most potent, especially since they are fairly down in the mix (until near the end). It’s an opus that floats along without a hint of a chorus, but is compelling as different elements come into play. Plus, given there’s a mechanical voiceover that comes in around 4:15, it seems as if there’s a narrative here that will become clearer as we hear more of the album.

[More after the jump...]

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<p>Carrie Underwood</p>

Carrie Underwood

Credit: AP Photo

Listen: Six things we learned from Carrie Underwood's 'Blown Away' sampler

Hear snippets of the May 1 album now

Carrie Underwood’s new album, “Blown Away,” doesn’t come out for almost two more weeks, but a 7-minute sampler of snippets from  the “American Idol” winner’s fourth studio album has surfaced on jonalisblog.com and they're very revealing. Click on the link to hear.

We’ll review the album when we get to hear the whole thing in full, but here are five things we can glean from the sampling. Mark Bright produced the set.

1) She’s dealing with a few demons from her past. In the dramatic title cut, she sings “There’s not enough rain in Oklahoma to wash the sins out of that house.”  Like Martina McBride, she does drama well.

2) Underwood only grows more and more confident in her vocal abilities. After “Idol,” she didn’t quite seem to know how to harness her talents, but she’s only gotten stronger and stronger with each album in terms of knowing when to belt, when to hold back, and feeling sure about her choices.

3) She’s wasn't done with the cheating songs after "Before He Cheats."  On “Two Black Cadillacs,”  her man has been caught fooling around and there’s going to be hell to pay.

4) Though first single, “Good Girl” is a raucous affair, it sounds like the album is a strong mix of ballads and uptempo tunes, plus she straddles the line between pop and country (listen to how many fiddles and banjos are in this sampler alone). Sounds like there’s a lot of depth on “Blown Away.”

5) Even though Underwood has said that the time isn’t right for her and hubby, hockey player Mike Fisher,  to  have kids yet, she’s ready to sing about it. “Forever Changed” includes a verse about “blooming” from within when pregnant.

6) She wants to make us cry again. We've barely dried our tears from "Temporary Home," but even the little bit of "Good In Goodbye" was enough to make us sniffle a little.

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Dick Clark in 1959
Dick Clark in 1959
Credit: AP Photo

Reflections on a childhood spent with Dick Clark and his unforgettable advice

Memories of "American Bandstand" and more

My childhood had two DJs: Casey Kasem and Dick Clark.

Long before I started to develop my own musical taste, it was dictated to me weekly by these musical titans: Clark through my weekly dose of “American Bandstand” on TV and Kasem via “American Top 40” on radio, which started at noon on Sundays (which meant I inevitably missed hearing Nos 40-36 since we wouldn’t be home from church yet when the countdown started, but that’s a story for another time).

When word came down of Clark’s passing today from a massive heart attack at 82, my memory immediately turned to Saturdays at 12:30 p.m. in my living room in our house in Raleigh, N.C.  My older sister, Jeannie,  and I would plunk down in front of the TV and watch Dick Clark and his long white microphone.  We knew all the star dancers by name (I vaguely remember a Louis and a Karen), and wondered if they were couples off-screen. We’d ooh and aah as they gyrated in a very G-rated fashion—unlike on “Soul Train”— in their polyester prints (this was the ‘70s, after all). The boys/men all had their hair parted in the middle, with their shirts unbuttoned down their chests, and the girls’ hair was straight as a stick, until “Charlie’s Angels” debuted, and then imitating Farrah Fawcett’s feathered locks became all the rage—for both the guys and girls. When The Village People craze began, there were  cowboy and construction worker wanna bes strutting their stuff on “AB.”  As much as “American Bandstand” set trends, it picked up on them just as quickly, especially during the “Saturday Night Fever” days.

[More after the jump...]

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