Primavera Sound Festival has revealed its 2014 lineup, which boasts over 15 headliners including Arcade Fire, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Pixies, Queens of the Stone Age, and Kendrick Lamar. Taking place May 29th to 31st in Barcelona, the lineup will also include Chvrches, Haim, and Nine Inch Nails, in what is sure to be one of the city’s loudest nights. Check out the full lineup below.
I feel like I might still be watching the Grammys. Is it still on? I can no longer distinguish the Grammys from reality. It was so long that the much-hyped finale, featuring Dave Grohl, Queens of the Stone Age, Nine Inch Nails, and Fleetwood Mac‘s Lindsey Buckingham, was like a minute in when the producers lowered the curtain in the form of promo ads for Delta and Hilton before running the credits and then just cutting out entirely. That was ridiculous, especially for those of us who hung in, thinking, ‘well, at least there’s still the finale to see.’
Do you know how many awards they give out during the telecast? I think it was fewer than 10. And it took them just under four hours to do it. YOU ARE OVERBOOKING, GRAMMYS.
There were a lot of performances, but the standouts alone would have sufficed. For my money, they were:
1. Daft Punk with Pharrell Williams, Nile Rodgers, and Stevie Wonder, “Get Lucky.” In addition to the quality performance (Stevie Wonder should guest on all songs by all artists from now on), they had easily the best stage set in, I believe, Grammy history. It was a sick-looking ’70s-era recording studio, in which the robot duo appeared from behind the control room glass. Inspired.
2. Imagine Dragons with Kendrick Lamar, “MADD City/Radioactive.” It’s easy to imagine dragons while listening to this band, cause you’re usually asleep and dreaming 20 seconds in. But with Kendrick Lamar to fire things up, this was a blistering co-performance.
3. Beyonce with Jay Z, “Drunk In Love.” No surprise here, this was a solid show-opener.
4. Sara Bareilles and Carole King, “Beautiful/Brave.” With a simple dueling piano setup, these two harmonized beautifully on a mashup of their two songs. Carole King continues to prove that she’s still a musical force, after over 50 years in the business.
Other: Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr reunited on a new Macca song “Queenie Eye,” which is hardly the best song on his new album. Ringo played drums alongside Paul’s (amazing) drummer Abe Laboriel, so it was really more of a photo-op than anything else. The way it’s been hyped, you’d think these guys haven’t played live together since 1970, but they have performed together several times over the years. Ringo also performed his ’70s hit “Photograph” (a nice plug for his new photobook), befuddling teenagers everywhere.
Kacey Musgraves performed her hit “Follow Your Arrow” as though she were at the Grand Ole Opry circa 1983, complete with light-up boots and shirts and neon cacti. I thought it was actually kind of a cool throwback, considering what popular country music has become. To wit, she beat Taylor Swift, who hasn’t actually released a country album since she was like 15, for Country Album of the Year.
Gary Clark Jr. and Keith Urban – this was nothing special musically, except that they are both great guitarists and each injected some much needed, old fashioned guitar soloing into the proceedings.
See the full list of winners below.
Pepsi has launched a sneak peak into the lives of five Grammy nominees which includes spotlights on James Blake, Kendrick Lamar, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Kacey Musgraves and Ed Sheeran. The series is part of Pepsi’s sponsorship of iTunes Radio, which will include a Best New Artist station launching Jan. 15, and a Grammy Winner Station, launching Jan. 27. Check out the teaser trailer for the series below. (more…)
If you love artists like Lorde, Robin Thicke, Bruno Mars, and Taylor Swift, and would like to check out the 56th annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles in person, you might do well to pre-order the new Grammy Nominees album. Fans who pre-order before Jan. 20 not only get the solace of knowing that a portion of proceeds go towards benefiting the Grammy Foundation and MusiCares, but they’ll also be entered to win a trip to the awards ceremony on Jan. 26.
For more than 20 years we have been creating some incredible editions of the Grammy Nominees album,” Recording Academy president Neil Portnow says, “which again represents some of the great songs and talented artists that make up this year’s remarkable nominees.”
Check out the track list and decide for yourself. (more…)
Anyway, Kendrick Lamar confirmed via Twitter that he’ll be one of the featured performers on the GrAMMmy telecast on January 26th. The rapper has been nominated for Album of the Year, Best New Artist, and Best Rap Album. Lamar will apparently be joined by Imagine Dragons.
Now comes news, via Rolling Stone and confirmed by executive producer Ken Ehrlich, that Daft Punk will also be performing. I only hope this gives Stephen Colbert more opportunity to take shots at them for canceling on him in favor of the VMAs.
Now please enjoy these selected responses to Lamar’s tweet.
@kendricklamar you wont win macklemore is better
” Kelsey (@KelseyHilson) December 19, 2013
” Doudou (@martian_Mulah) December 19, 2013
Nobody care – that’s an order from your Empress!:
” Empress Yoncé. (@EmpressBeysus) December 19, 2013
Released as a single in remix form, “Give It 2 U” teams Thicke with 2 Chainz and Kendrick Lamar. The video finds all three artists coming together on a high school football field filled with gorgeous women in a variety of costumes. It’s kind of like the greatest parade that ever took place, only no one is there to see it other than the people performing (if that makes sense). You can view the clip below.
The single “Blurred Lines” completely changed the course of Robin Thicke’s career, and from the sounds of it “Give It 2 U” could very easily push him further into the public eye. His new album, which is also titled Blurred Lines, is available now. (more…)
Adding a bit of street flavor to his chill track, Miguel recruits none other than Compton native Kendrick Lamar to freshen up his quickly aging single. The original track admittedly did very little for us, but this refresher gives Miguel that extra edge his endlessly smooth approach fails to present on its own. Lamar goes in, proves for the billionth time he’s an amazing story teller, then steps back and let’s the hook win you over. Is it enough to make the song the hit it has yet to be on its own? Click through the link below and listen for yourself!
Miguel is gearing up for a big Summer 2013, so look for more updates on his activity in the coming weeks. Kendrick, however, has no plans to record and likes to keep quiet on future plans until they’re much closer to becoming a reality. We’ll have more on him whenever he feels like sharing with us. (more…)
Kendrick Lamar has been on an unstoppable rise since early 2012, and last night he took his continually moving promotional train to the stage of Jimmy Kimmel Live for a performance of his new single, “Poetic Justice.”
Appearing sans Drake, who is responsible 1/3 of the verses on the track, Lamar appeared on Kimmel’s recently redesigned outdoor stage accompanied by a full band (including a kickass saxophonist). It’s always a little hard to gauge the strength of a live performance while sipping coffee at your desk the morning after it happens, but the reaction from the crowd makes it clear no one left disappointed. You can view the performance below.
After about a year of heightened anticipation, Rakim Mayers – better known as A$AP Rocky – has unveiled his debut album, Long.Live.A$AP. Released on January 15 by A$AP Worldwide, Polo Grounds Music, and RCA Records, the album has made a rather big splash in the urban world and has earned the artist a multi-million dollar record deal, the likes of which have not been seen since 50 Cent began his successful career about a decade ago.
Quickly rising through the cracks of the underground rap world, A$AP Rocky’s debut album has earned him a seat the top at the top of the charts. Long.Live.A$AP features two promoted singles – “Goldie,“ which is the lead single off the album, and “Fuckin’ Problems,” which features guest appearances from rappers Drake, 2 Chainz, and Kendrick Lamar. The two tracks are quite different from each other in terms of style, energy, flow, and lyrical content, but are both very well produced. In fact, the entire album is well structured with heavy emphasis on production value. A$AP’s beats are unique to that of many other rappers, which is perhaps why many have flocked to his music; it’s a new sound.
Unfortunately, guest artists and featured producers aside, A$AP Rocky’s material is perhaps the weakest aspect of the album. A$AP offers next to no lyrical inventiveness, nor is there any actual substance to his lines. He spends most of his verses re-hashing well-worn hip-hop tropes “ bragging about his high-fashion tastes, his glamorous life, and supposed street cred, the latter a frequent source of controversy.
Hip-hop is no stranger to violence, whether it’s in boastful lyrics, videos, or the actual past lives of emcees who’ve escaped the streets and struggles of the inner city. Sometimes, though, it gets too real. Cut to Monday morning in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where Rick Ross barely escaped a barrage of bullets in an apparent drive-by shooting on the morning of his 37 birthday. Ross and girlfriend Shateria L. Moragne-el were reportedly on their way to a birthday breakfast when a gunman from another car opened fire on Ross’ 2011 Rolls-Royce. Ross sped away, only to quickly crash into a nearby apartment building. Though the bullets pierced the window of a nearby diner, neither Ross, nor his girlfriend, nor any of the diner patrons were injured. The night before, Ross has been celebrating his birthday with P. Diddy at the LIV nightclub in Miami. (more…)