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1. Justin Bieber: “Believe” may have received mixed reviews, but his legions of fans will propel the new album not only to the top of the Billboard 200 next week, but give it the biggest opening week of 2012. Fun fact: Bieber has 23.7 million Twitter followers: that’s more than the population of Australia.
2. Coachella: The desert festival grosses $47 million by expanding to two weekends; $44 million of that is from water sales.
3. Lil Wayne: The rapper logs his 100th song on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs chart as the featured artist on French Montana’s “Pop That.” Up next, he will be the featured artist on my cat’s next single, “Furrrrballin’.”
4.Universal- EMI Merger: The Senate Judiciary committee anti-trust subcommittee holds often testy hearings on the proposed union, while news hits that New Zealand has approved the deal. Next up: Luxembourg!
5. David Lowery: The Camper Van Beethoven/Cracker frontman breaks down the mechanics of downloading music for free and how it hurts artists and songwriters and, ultimately, you, the fan. Not quite as catchy as CVB’s cover of “Pictures of Matchstick Men,” but equally compelling.
6. Katy Perry: The pop princess tells The Hollywood Reporter that she plans to launch her own label. She hasn’t picked a name, but we’re rooting for Kitty Purry Records.
7. Fiona Apple: She can’t come up with a short album title to save her life, but “The Idler Wheel (blah, blah, blah...), her first album in several years, sends sensitive critics rushing to their boxes of tissues as she manages to reopen every scabbed-over wound.
8. Paul McCartney and Brian Wilson: Who knew these musical titans were born two days apart! They turned 70 this week and are both still selling out shows like kids one-third their age. Rock on.
9. Tim McGraw and Faith Hill: Will the lovebirds be the next superstar act headed for Las Vegas? Robin Leach says yes, and even though a rumored announcement was scotched on Thursday, that’s good enough for me.
10. Jimmy Fallon: The late night talk show host lands at No. 25 on the Billboard 200 with “Blow Your Pants Off,” his first appearance in 10 years on the chart. The title sells 15,000, which might not sound like much until you realize it’s nearly twice as much as Hot Chip’s new set. Perspective.