<p>Paul McDonald and Nikki Reed</p>

Paul McDonald and Nikki Reed

Credit: AP Photo

Listen: Paul McDonald and Nikki Reed warble 'Now That I Found You'

What happens when 'American Idol' meets 'Twilight?'

Note to Blake and Miranda: You do not need to worry about the new country couple of the moment, “American Idol” season 10 contestant Paul McDonald and “Twilight’s” Nikki Reed.

Today, the two debuted “Now That I Found You” on Ryan Seacrest’s morning show. The pleasant mid-tempo ballad, which wraps around a pedal steel and a chugging beat, tells us that the newlyweds like each other alot, including loving each other’s smile in the morning and the fact that they (or one of them) wears socks to bed. We actually think one of the lines is about doing laundry in their house.

[More after the jump...]

Read Full Post
Album review: Gym Class Heroes' 'The Papercut Chronicles ll'

Album review: Gym Class Heroes' 'The Papercut Chronicles ll'

HitFix
B
Readers
A+
Travie McCoy and friends explore life's sweet and sour sides

Gym Class Heroes have always been all over the place musically, wearing their myriad influences on their collective sleeve.

On “The Papercut Chronicles II,” out Nov. 15, the same aesthetic applies. While Travie McCoy’s spoken vocals dominate, pop, R&B, hip hop and aggressive rock all splice together, often on the same track.

The results are mixed, but one thing is clear: what works best for Gym Class Heroes is their tried-and-true method of cannily bringing in someone with singing chops that are in direct contrast to McCoy’s rapping. First single, clever “Stereo Hearts” featuring Maroon 5’s Adam Levine works perfectly and has provided the band with one of its biggest hits in its 14-year career. That yin and yang approach has proven a good call for the band on the past, especially on such tunes as the poignant “Live Forever” featuring McCoy’s hero Daryl Hall from 2008’s “The Quilt” or on 2006’s “Cupid’s Chokehold,” which blended McCoy’s gruff rap with Patrick Stump’s delicate take on Supertramp’s “Breakfast in America” (or, of course, McCoy’s solo success with Bruno Mars on last year’s “Billionaire.”)

Read Full Post
<p>The Band Perry</p>
<div id="myEventWatcherDiv" style="display:none;">&nbsp;</div>

The Band Perry

Credit: Evan Agostini/AP

Music Power Rankings: Madonna, The Band Perry and Black Sabbath vie for No. 1

Plus, lots of corporate moves

1. EMI: British company’s record side gets sold to UMG and its publishing division to Sony/ATV. The home of the Beatles will be no more. Hello, goodbye.

2. Dr. Luke: Britney, Katy, Rihanna and Ke$ha's producer scores his biggest hit yet: a huge label deal with Sony.

3. Mac Miller: Indie rapper will come in at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 next week with “Blue Slide Park,” bolstered by the track “Donald Trump,” which has drawn more then 34 million YouTube views.  Trump demands to see his birth certificate.

4. Black Sabbath: Metal vets get back together for new album produced by Rick Rubin. Tour sponsored by Depends.

Read Full Post
<p>The cover of Mac Miller's &quot;Blue Slide Park&quot;</p>
<div id="myEventWatcherDiv" style="display:none;">&nbsp;</div>

The cover of Mac Miller's "Blue Slide Park"

Mac Miller pushes Justin Bieber out of the top spot on next week's Billboard 200

Indie rapper will handily trump the other newcomers, including 'Twilight: Breaking Dawn.'

Mac Miller is getting ready to take over the world, or at least the Billboard 200, next week as the rapper’s “Blue Slide Park,” on indie Rostrum, looks like a lock for No. 1 with projected sales of 180,000 copies.

Haven’t heard of him? His video for  “Donald Trump” has already garnered more than 34 million views on YouTube and he was the subject of a Billboard cover story a few weeks back.

Read Full Post
<p>Coldplay, one of the acts impacted by the EMI sale</p>
<div id="myEventWatcherDiv" style="display:none;">&nbsp;</div>

Coldplay, one of the acts impacted by the EMI sale

Credit: Joel Ryan/AP

What EMI's sale means to artists, songwriters and you

The home of Katy Perry, Coldplay and Lady Antebellum comes off the block

Remember when there were six major record companies? I do. And it wasn’t that long ago. As of today (pending approvals), we’re down to three.

Embattled EMI Group, which has been waiting for a suitor, any suitor, to pluck it out of Citigroup’s hands following the Terra Firma fiasco, is being divvied up into two pieces:  Vivendi’s Universal Music Group will buy the recording division for $1.9 billion, while Sony/ATV has purchasing the publishing assets for $2.2 billion.

Warner Music Group, which, itself, was sold earlier this year to Access Industries, and which had danced around EMI for years, took itself out of the running for EMI’s recorded music arm the last week. EMI CEO Roger Faxon tried very hard to have the whole company sold as one piece and to remain a stand-alone business, as its recent sales have allowed. Not this time.

So what happens next? First off, these things never run smoothly so expect some hitches. While at Billboard, I witnessed both Universal’s then-parent Seagram’s purchase of Polygram in 1998 (for $10.4 billion, by the way) and the Sony/BMG merger, which started in 2004, and culminated in Sony buying out BMG in 2008. They are bloody messes even in the best of times. 

Read Full Post
<p>(Old) Katy Perry in &quot;The One That Got Away&quot;</p>
<br />

(Old) Katy Perry in "The One That Got Away"


Watch: 5 Things we learned from Katy Perry's 'One That Got Away' video

HitFix
B
Readers
n/a
Do she and Diego Luna burn too brightly to last?

Katy Perry's video for "The One That Got Away" debuted today and it's a dramatic testament to a love that ends, but never, ever dies. Perry, love interest Diego Luna, and director Floria Sigismondi throw in cliches aplenty here.At least she's not pregnant when the break-up occurs...maybe in a sequel.  Here was our take away.

1) Perry will look like “Titanic”-era Gloria Stewart when she ages. The video opens with Perry made up as an elderly woman, a very well-heeled one at that, with a halo of white hair and blazing blue eyes. The similarity to Stewart is striking as she reflects back on her lover who “got away.”

[More after the jump...]

Read Full Post
Listen: Rihanna gets sexy and sweet on 'You da One'
Credit: Def Jam

Listen: Rihanna gets sexy and sweet on 'You da One'

HitFix
A-
Readers
B+
Is the Dr. Luke-produced track headed to No. 1? Duh....

I like the sweet Rihanna. And we get her in abundance on new single, “You da One.”  With “We Found Love” featuring Calvin Harris still bouncing at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, Rihanna switches from the pulsating electro-pop of that opening salvo from  “Talk That Talk,” to dub-sweetened pop.

The mid-tempo swayer is anchored by an insistent beat and a cascading chorus with an adorable stutter step. Rihanna has it bad for a boy who supports her and doesn’t let her run away from love. And before she knows it, she’s hooked and she’s dreaming about him "all da-a-a-ay.”

[More after the jump...]

Read Full Post
<p>&nbsp;Lauren Alaina</p>

 Lauren Alaina

Credit: AP Photo

Lauren Alaina set for National Anthem for Lions/Packers Thanksgiving game

Did fans succeed in tossing Nickelback out?

Nickelback may not pass muster with Detroit fans, but they seem to have no trouble with “American Idol”  season 10 runner up Lauren Alaina.

The country singer, whose album “Wildflower” debuted at No. 2 on Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart, will warble the National Anthem at the Detroit Lions/Green Bay Packers game on Thanksgiving, Nov. 24.

Read Full Post
<p>Rihanna</p>

Rihanna

Credit: AP Photo

Rihanna stays at No. 1 on Billboard Hot 100 with 'We Found Love'

Will LMFAO take over the top spot next week?

Rihanna finds the top of the Billboard 100 for the second consecutive week as “We Found Love” featuring Calvin Harris remains at No. 1 on the singles chart.

The big question is will “Love” have the juice to hold the top spot for another week and fend off LMFAO’s”Sexy and I Know It,” which rises 3-2, swapping places with Adele’s “Someone Like You.” "Love," Rihanna's 11th No. 1, is the first single from "Talk That Talk," out Nov. 21. The singer will reveal "You da One,"  the second single from the set on Nov. 11 on her Facebook page.

Read Full Post
<p>Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood were one of the highlights of this year's CMA Awards.</p>

Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood were one of the highlights of this year's CMA Awards.

Credit: AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

The best and worst, worst, worst of the 2011 CMA Awards

HitFix
C-
Readers
B
We review the highlights and the many lowlights

Is it still 2011? The 45th annual CMA Awards just wrapped and as they showed shots from the opening musical numbers over the closing credits, they seemed so long ago that I’d forgotten they’d taken place.

Before I unleash here, let’s get it straight that I love country music. I grew up in the south, went to college in Nashville and started my career there, so these criticisms aren’t coming from some left coaster who has an elite disdain and instant dismissiveness for the genre so prevalent in people  in Los Angeles and New York. Plus, I have greatly enjoyed the CMA Awards in years past.

Read Full Post