Inside Music with Melinda Newman
Is she singing about John Mayer?
Katy Perry showed us how fierce she is on “Roar,” and now she reveals that her love can be just as fierce on new single, “Unconditionally.” The electronic power ballad (there’s a genre for you) is a testament to the strength of her love, as much as it is a strength to her vocal power.
The song starts with a beat and a synth line as she fears that she’s scared off her lover by getting too close, but she then promises that there’s nothing he can do to scare her away. Dr. Luke and Cirkut’s production is a bit cold in contrast to her warm vocals, but in some ways that gives her all the most power to shine as she belts out her fidelity. The title word doesn't scan well so there are parts that feel a bit clunky, but Perry gets around that.
Is this about John Mayer? You decide.
"Unconditionally" is on Perry's fourth studio album, "Prism," which comes out Oct. 22.
What does he really think about his first album?
When Scotty McCreery’s debut album, 2011’s “Clear As Day” bowed at No. 1 on the Billboard 200, he became the youngest solo male to achieve that milestone.
Now with “See You Tonight,” his second studio album (not including a Christmas set), the “American Idol” champ hopes to prove that he has a sustainable country career. The 20-year old sophomore at Raleigh’s North Carolina State University attends classes during the early part of the week, and then spends most weekends traveling around the country playing gigs and visiting radio stations.
What comes across in even a brief conversation with McCreery is how grounded and mature he seems for someone who just turned 20. He's clearly enjoying college life, but he not likely to be showing up at any parties dropping Molly with Miley Cyrus.
On “See You Tonight,” which came out on Tuesday (15), McCreery co-wrote five of the tracks, fulfilling his goal to play a greater role in the creation of his albums. He talked to HitFix about the making of the album, his first headlining tour, if country music has a content problem and what he really thought of his first album.
Miley Cyrus’ 'Wrecking Ball' crashes at No. 2
Lorde’s “Royals” continues its rule atop the Billboard Hot 100 for the third week.
The top 5 remains largely unchanged from last week: Miley Cyrus’ former No. 1, “Wrecking Ball,” swings 3-2, trading places with Katy Perry’s former No. 1, “Roar.
Avicii’s “Wake Me Up!” continues at No. 4, while Drake’s “Hold On, We’re Going Home,” featuring Majid Jordan, holds at No. 5.
Ylvis’s “The Fox” stays at No. 6 on the strength of streaming and digital downloads and Billboard warns that another novelty song, Allison Gold’s “Chinese Good” could bow on the Billboard chart next week. The song is by the same writer who brought the world Rebecca Black’s “Friday.”
Jay Z’s “Holy Grail,” featuring Justin Timberlake, stays at No. 7, while spending its 11th week atop Billboard’s Rap Songs chart.
Lady Gaga’s “Applause” rises one space to No. 8, pushing Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines,” featuring T.I. and Pharrell, down one spot to No. 9. Lana Del Rey & Cedric Gervais’s “Summertime Sadness” stays at No. 10.
Outside the Top 10, Justin Bieber's "Heartbreaker" soars 77-13, and Eminem's "Survival" bows at No. 17.
Theatrical film chronicles the 'Believe' tour and more
Justin Bieber has just announced the best possible holiday gift to his fans: “Believe,” his new film about all things Bieber, will open in movie theaters on Christmas Day.
Directed by Jon M. Chu, the Open Road Films focuses on Bieber’s “Believe” worldwide tour and catches the audience up on his life since his last film, 2011’s “Never Say Never,” which grossed nearly $100 million worldwide.
The film features interviews with Bieber, as well as his manager Scooter Braun, Usher, producer Rodney Jerkins, Ludacris, Mike Posner and more.
“Jon Chu and my team have done a wonderful job creating a special moment for Beliebers worldwide and I can’t wait until Christmas day when the movie will be in theaters everywhere,” Bieber said in the press release.
Bieber continues to release a new song every Monday. Following last week “HeartBreaker,” this week he put out “All That Matters."
She takes on all the single ladies: Miley, Gaga, Katy, Britney
In a season flush with releases from the biggest female pop stars, will Beyonce chime in too?
The New York Daily News reports that Beyonce will drop a new single on Dec. 3 and that she has already shot the accompanying Terry Richardson-directed video. She enters a field crowded with singles from new albums from Miley Cyrus (out now), Katy Perry (10/22), Lady Gaga (11/11) and Britney Spears (12/3).
Plus, Beyonce has dropped a number of songs and/or song snippets over the past year and none of them have gained traction, despite being catchy: “Bow Down/I Been On,” “Grown Woman,” and “Standing On The Sun.”
There’s still no word when Beyonce, who has spent much of the year on her successful “The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour,” will release her follow-up to 2011’s “4.”
Part of the NY Daily News’ reporting makes no sense-- or a total lack of understanding about how the music world works: It says that Beyonce planned to “put out a big song in early 2013, but kept pushing it back when she realized she wasn’t going to have any real competition on the charts.” Uh, no... that’s not how it works. And, again, she did keep pumping out tunes, almost seeing as if something would stick, in early 2013. Plus, if she’s now putting out a single at a time when, quite frankly, radio charts start to slow down for the holidays, to show that she can still top these other single ladies, that seems a bit of a risk.
Linda Ronstadt, Peter Gabriel, Yes and Deep Purple also get nods
Fans of Hall & Oates and Kiss can rejoice. The acts have both been nominated for induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s class of 2014. Seen as two of the Rock Hall’s biggest omissions, Kiss was previously nominated in 2010 but not elected, while this is the first time Hall & Oates has received an invite to the big show.
They join Linda Ronstadt, Peter Gabriel, Nirvana, Cat Stevens, Yes, LL Cool J, The Replacements, Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Chic, Deep Purple, N.W.A., the Meters, Link Wray and the Zombies.
Nirvana is the closest thing to a sure bet this year, while it may finally be Chic’s year after seven previous nominations. Linda Ronstadt deserves to be in on merit alone, but her Parkinson’s diagnosis may also tip the sentimental vote.
Acts are eligible 25 years after the release of their first recording. A number of the artists, including N.W.A., LL Cool J, Chic, Deep Purple and Paul Butterfield Blues Band, have been nominated before, yet didn’t make the final five.
More than 600 music industry execs, musicians, Rock Hall inductees, and journalists vote for the winners. Additionally, starting last year, fans were invited to vote. The fans’ votes are tallied and are counted as one collective vote among the 600.
The Class of 2014 will be announced in December, with induction ceremony taking place in April in New York City, after talking place in Los Angeles this year.
The Rock Hall righted a big wrong this year when Rush was inducted, but among the acts that have never been shown any Rock Hall love (and their fans are none too happy about that) include Cheap Trick, Todd Rundgren, Duran Duran, Electric Light Orchestra, The Monkees and Roxy Music.
Hear 90 seconds of each song from the Oct. 22 release
Katy Perry’s “Prism” comes out a week from today, but while you’re waiting to hear her “Roar,” you can listen to 90-snippets of each of the 13 songs above and beyond the handful we’ve already heard: “Roar,” “Dark Horse” and “Walking On Air.” We've embedded them in for you instead of making you go to ITunes, so it takes a second to load up, but then just press play and enjoy.
Luis Guzman also make an appearance, keeps his clothes on
I haven’t watched enough episodes of “Nature” to actually know how gorillas make love, but I doubt it involves stripper poles and getting sweaty in the back seat of a car, but that’s how Bruno Mars imagines it in the steamy new clip for “Gorilla.”
The slow groove song from "Unorthodox Jukebox" closes his concerts and it a tour de force. Here, the 2014 Super Bowl headliner takes the action to a strip club, named, appropriately enough, The Jungle, where he is in the backing band for the strippers. He and a hot, hot stripper, played by “Slumdog Millionaire” star Freida Pinto, in a performance that her parents would surely not approve of, have a thing going on. He watches her strip while other men throw money at her, and then they go get it on in the back seat of his car, Gorilla style (I just made that last part up).
It’s a sexy, if somewhat oddly so, song mainly because of the feel and pulse and the Mars-directed video (is there nothing he can’t do?) captures that feeling perfectly, even if the chatty opening set-up with two other strippers and a cameo by Luis Guzman lasts a little too long.
Speaking of the Super Bowl, NFL director of entertainment television and programming Sarah Moll told Billboard that Mars may bring some of his buddies along with him to perform at the half time show on Feb. 2 at MetLife Stadium in E. Rutherford, N.J. “Bruno’s been making some phone calls to some friends,” she said. “We probably will announce another act before the performance.” Given that the temperature will be around 20 degrees, chances are Pinto won’t be joining him, at least not at the character she plays in “Gorilla.”
Either someone died young or has a very good plastic surgeon
Avril Lavigne and husband Chad Kroeger have a love that spans generations, proving that true love never dies even if those involved end the relationship.
In this poignant video for “Let Me Go,” Lavigne, who may or may not be a ghost, sits in her lovely mansion, alone, playing the sad love song. She is young and beautiful. A much-older handyman, raking leaves off of concrete (?) outside the estate, enters, picks up a guitar and, somehow, transforms into the younger, current day Kroeger.
Lavigne, who usually looks like she’d rather be drawn and quartered than be in a music video, looks beautiful here and more comfortable in front of the camera than ever before. The younger Kroeger appoaches her, stands behind her as she plays with his arm on her shoulder, but the two only make fleeting contact, giving more credence to the notion that Lavigne is a ghost. Add in the broken hourglass and there you have it.
Set will be her most 'personal' one yet
Britney Spears has said that her new album is her most personal, and now she’s backing that up by calling the Dec. 3 release by her name, “Britney Jean.”
Spears revealed the title during an interview with British radio station, Capital FM. “It’s a personal album, and all my family, they always call me Britney Jean,” she said. “It’s like a term of endearment, and I just wanted to share that with my friends.” She wasn't willing to give away too much information, however; when asked if the album would include a duet with Miley Cyrus, she replied, "You'll have to wait and see." As you know, Spears duets with Cyrus on "SMS (Bangerz)" on Cyrus's charttopping album, "Bangerz."
The album’s first single, “Work Bitch,” peaked at No. 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 (so far), but Spears’ manager Larry Rudolph told MTV News that the rest of the album is not like the dance tune. “There are multiple, multiple layers, things like you’ve never heard from her before,” he said. “She’s written on every song on the album, which is a first for her, and it’s a very personal album for her, and I think people are going to love it.”
December will be a big month for Spears: in addition to the “Britney Jean’s” album release, she starts her two-year Planet Hollywood residency in Las Vegas on Dec. 27.