Wednesday, July 26, 2017

SUCCESS - Luis Fonsi - Despacito ft. Daddy Yankee

BRASIL - Why a New 'Despacito' Remix Could Make the Song Even Bigger

Why a New 'Despacito' Remix Could Make the Song Even Bigger:

"Despacito" has already topped the charts for months, but one of the song's co-writers, Erika Ender, is betting that it still has plenty of room left to soar in at least one giant market: her native Brazil.

While Brazilians have already embraced the original version of "Despacito," written by Ender, Puerto Rican singer-songwriter Luis Fonsi and Puerto Rican superstar Daddy Yankee -- and the remix featuring Justin Bieber is now being streamed more by Spotify's Brazilian users than the original -- the official Portuguese version released Friday could give the song even more juice to reverberate throughout the lusophone world.

The Portuguese "Despacito" features both Brazilian star Israel Novaes and Fonsi singing in Portuguese, and the Panamanian-Brazilian Ender tells Billboard she personally translated it from the Spanish and coached Fonsi carefully to make sure his Portuguese pronunciation was spot on.

Fonsi's dedication to perfecting his Portuguese accent was that of a "true professional who is thoughtful, passionate and focused," Ender says, adding that Bieber's foray into Spanish for his remix also "showed his dedication to the craft."

Even as streaming accelerates the speed at which a song can take over the world, chart data highlights the opportunity that remains in catering local tastes and languages. While the Bieber version of "Despacito" has overtaken the original on the Spotify charts in the U.S., Brazil, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Bulgaria, Bolivia and the United Kingdom, the Spanish-language original still reigns in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Peru and Spain.

Countries that primarily speak neither English nor Spanish -- such as Brazil -- represent fertile ground for Despacito remixers. (Portuguese-speaking Portugual wasn't sold on Bieber's remix, for example: the Spanish-language original charts higher there.) Ender says she and Fonsi are fielding dozens of calls weekly seeking permission to record new versions and remixes, while new unsanctioned versions surface every week. There are versions in pop, salsa, merengue, metal, urban and even an orchestral rendition by the Croatian cellists Luka and Stjepan Hauser known as 2CELLOS, whose interpretation on YouTube -- released a little more than a week ago -- has clocked more than 5.5 million views.

"It's out of control," Ender tells Billboard. "This one just struck a chord with so many people."

While the new Portuguese edition isn't yet among the top-streamed songs in Brazil, it could gain traction thanks to Israel Novaes' one million monthly visitors on Spotify and his nearly three million followers on Instagram. The day before the release of the track last week, Novaes posted the cover art for the song, which was liked by 50,000 followers.

Pablo Flores, who has remixed songs with a Latin flavor for everyone from Madonna to Ricky Martin, tells Billboard that giving songs "that feel that can be attractive in certain countries more than others."

Carlos de Yarza, who remixed the Los Del Rio song the 'Macarena' -- the last Spanish-language song to hold the No. 1 spot on the Billboard Top 100 starting in 1996 before "Despacito," tells Billboard that remixes didn't always travel so easily. In the 80s, de Yarza recalls running to record stores with his buddies in hopes that remixes from overseas had arrived.

"The Internet has made it so that remixes are available to the world," says  de Yarza.

As for Ender, who spoke to Billboard from Madrid recently, she is celebrating 25 years in the music business, recently releasing her album Tatuajes (Tattoos) and being inducted into the Latin Songwriters Hall of Fame.

"The song is opening doors for all of us and that's a great responsibility that I do not take lightly," Ender says. "It's like winning the lottery."

'Despacito' Tops Billboard Hot 100 for 11th Week, Charlie Puth Hits Top 10

'Despacito' Tops Billboard Hot 100 for 11th Week, Charlie Puth Hits Top 10:

Luis Fonsi & Daddy Yankee's collab, featuring Justin Bieber, moves to within five weeks of the chart's longest reign. Plus, Puth's "Attention" ascends to No. 10.

Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee's "Despacito," featuring Justin Bieber, rules the Billboard Hot 100 chart (dated Aug. 5) for an 11th week. Plus, Charlie Puth collects his third top 10, "Attention."

As we do each Monday, let's run down the top 10 of the Hot 100, which blends all-genre streaming, airplay and sales data. All charts will update on tomorrow (July 25), as they do every Tuesday.

"Despacito" (released on Universal Music Latino / Raymond Braun / SchoolBoy / Def Jam / UMLE / Republic Records) becomes one of just 23 singles to have topped the Hot 100 for at least 11 weeks, dating to the chart's Aug. 4, 1958, inception. It's the longest-leading Hot 100 No. 1 since Ed Sheeran's "Shape of You," which led for 12 weeks in January through April. The record belongs to Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men's "One Sweet Day," which ruled for 16 weeks, in 1995-96.

"Despacito" dominates the Digital Song Sales chart for a 12th week, with 118,000 downloads sold (down 6 percent) in the week ending July 20, according to Nielsen Music; the remix with Bieber accounts for 77 percent of the song's sales for a second consecutive week (and in line with its breakdown in recent weeks). The song is now within a week of matching the longest command on Digital Song Sales: The Chainsmokers' "Closer," featuring Halsey (2016), Mark Ronson's "Uptown Funk!," featuring Bruno Mars (2015), and Flo Rida's "Low," featuring T-Pain (2007-08), each led for 13 weeks.

Additionally, "Despacito" has sold more than 100,000 downloads in each of the last 11 weeks, marking the longest such streak since Adele's "Hello" broke the 100,000-sold barrier for 11 weeks in a row in 2015-16 (with its first frame featuring a weekly-record 1.1 million downloads sold).

On the Streaming Songs chart, "Despacito" leads for an 11th week, with 57.6 million U.S. streams (down 4 percent) in the week ending July 20. The track again tops all three of the Hot 100's main component charts, as it also leads the all-format Radio Songs chart for a third week with 145 million in all-format airplay audience (down 1 percent) in the week ending July 23.

As for its continued pop radio crossover, "Despacito" leads the mainstream top 40-based Pop Songs airplay chart for a third week; bullets at its No. 12 high on Adult Pop Songs; and debuts at No. 30 on Adult Contemporary.

"Despacito" also dominates the Hot Latin Songs chart for a 25th week and the Songs of the Summer ranking for an eighth week, having led the latter tally each week since it made its annual return just after Memorial Day.

DJ Khaled's "Wild Thoughts," featuring Rihanna and Bryson Tiller, holds at its No. 2 Hot 100 high. It keeps at No. 2 on Streaming Songs (35.5 million, down 5 percent); pushes 8-5 on Radio Songs (107 million, up 11 percent; it's Rihanna's record-extending 24th top five hit); and rebounds 10-8 on Digital Song Sales (40,000, down 4 percent).

"Thoughts" crowns the Hot R&B Songs chart for a third week and Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs for a second frame. It also takes over atop the Rhythmic Songs airplay chart (4-1), where it's Tiller's first No. 1, Khaled's fourth and Rihanna's 15th (a sum second only to Drake's 19 in the list's nearly 25-year history).

Bruno Mars' "That's What I Like" reverses course, rising 4-3 on the Hot 100, after topping the May 13-dated chart. It swaps spots with Khaled's "I'm the One," featuring Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper and Lil Wayne (3-4); "One" debuted atop the May 20-dated Hot 100. It leads Hot Rap Songs for a 12th week.

French Montana's "Unforgettable," featuring Swae Lee, surges to the Hot 100's top five (9-5), marking French Montana's highest-charting hit; he first reached a No. 9 peak as featured on Chris Brown's "Loyal" in 2014. (Swae Lee earns his first Hot 100 top five as a soloist; as half of Rae Sremmurd, he led for seven weeks beginning in November 2016 with "Black Beatles," featuring Gucci Mane.)

"Unforgettable" climbs as parent album Jungle Rules debuts at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. The song bounds 7-3 on Streaming Songs (29.7 million, up 14 percent); 27-9 on Digital Song Sales (37,000, up 68 percent, marking the Hot 100's top digital sales gain); and 19-17 on Radio Songs (67 million, up 8 percent).

Sheeran's "Shape of You" logs its first week out of the Hot 100's top five, dropping 5-6 in its 28th week on the chart; it debuted at No. 1 on Jan. 28. The song remains tied with The Chainsmokers' "Closer" for the most weeks (27 each) spent in the top five in the Hot 100's history.

Imagine Dragons' "Believer" is steady at No. 7 on the Hot 100 (after hitting No. 6), while ruling Hot Rock Songs for a 20th week. Shawn Mendes' "There's Nothing Holdin' Me Back" is likewise stationary at its No. 8 Hot 100 high after entering the top 10 a week ago.

Sam Hunt's "Body Like a Back Road" rebounds 10-9 on the Hot 100 after reaching No. 6. On the Hot Country Songs chart, the single ties a historic mark: it reigns for a record-tying 24th week, matching the rule of Florida Georgia Line's "Cruise" in 2012-13.

Closing out the Hot 100's top 10, Charlie Puth scores his third top 10, as "Attention" ascends 13-10. Puth first reached the region as featured on Wiz Khalifa's "See You Again," which spent 12 weeks at No. 1 in 2015; as previously reported, the video for "Again" (Puth co-wrote and co-produced the song) just became the most-viewed YouTube clip of all-time. Puth added his second Hot 100 top 10 with "We Don't Talk Anymore," featuring Selena Gomez (No. 9, 2016).

"Attention" rises 3-2 on Digital Song Sales (although down 5 percent to 52,000); 16-13 on Radio Songs (78 million, up 17 percent, good for the Hot 100's top Airplay Gainer award); and 23-20 on Streaming Songs (15.4 million, up 3 percent).

Beyond the Hot 100's top 10, as projected last week, two notable tracks blast into the top 40 following their first full weeks of tracking: Demi Lovato's "Sorry Not Sorry" (52-23) and Selena Gomez's "Fetish," featuring Gucci Mane (92-27). The singles debut at Nos. 16 (15.6 million) and 17 (14.5 million) on Streaming Songs and jump 9-6 (43,000) and 23-11 (34,000) on Digital Song Sales, respectively.

Find out more Hot 100 news in the weekly "Hot 100 Chart Moves" column and by listening (and subscribing) to Billboard's Chart Beat Podcast and Pop Shop Podcast, all posting this week. And again, visit tomorrow (July 25), when all charts, including the Hot 100 in its entirety, will refresh. The Hot 100 and other charts will also appear in the next issue of Billboard magazine, on sale Friday (July 28).

Demi Lovato & Selena Gomez's New Singles Surge to Billboard Hot 100's Top 40

Demi Lovato & Selena Gomez's New Singles Surge to Billboard Hot 100's Top 40: As projected last week, two notable tracks bound into the Billboard Hot 100's top 40 following their first full weeks of tracking. Demi Lovato...

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New Birthday, Similar Dress: Jennifer Lopez Wears Another Bao Tranchi Dress for 48th Birthday

New Birthday, Similar Dress: Jennifer Lopez Wears Another Bao Tranchi Dress for 48th Birthday:

Jason Koerner/Getty Images for Billboard

Jennifer Lopez attends the Billboard Latin Music Awards at Watsco Center on April 27, 2017 in Miami, Fla.
Today may mark the iconic Jennifer Lopez’s birthday, but the singer’s beau Alex Rodriguez surprised her with an early celebration over the weekend in Miami. The special night was complete with a silver and gold multi-tiered glittery cake and one of the star’s most daring looks yet.
Aside from being the birthday girl, she captured everyone’s attention in a see-through Bao Tranchi black dress and Jimmy Choo platform heels. Two years ago for her 46th birthday, J.Lo also wore a custom Bao Tranchi LBD at 1OAK in South Hampton. It’s a step up from your standard LBD, and Lopez couldn’t have pulled it off more flawlessly.

However, that wasn’t the only thing the happy couple was celebrating: Rodriguez’s birthday is coming up this Thursday, so they ended up sharing the spotlight together. “Happy Birthday to Us,” the professional baseball player captioned his post on Instagram.

One Direction Producer Julian Bunetta Talks Working With Solo Niall, Harry & Louis

One Direction Producer Julian Bunetta Talks Working With Solo Niall, Harry & Louis:

One of the first times Julian Bunetta met Hey Violet, the superstar producer and rising band played a game called What Are The Odds? “I was hanging out with them backstage after a show,” remembers Bunetta while on a brief break in between sessions at his Calabasas, California studio. “They were asking me to play and I finally agreed. (Lead singer) Rena Lovelis said, ‘What are the odds you’d let me cut off your hair?’ And she chopped off a chunk of my hair. The fact they were actually willing to cut my hair kind of played into a deeper level of creativity and commitment and fearlessness.”

From that moment, Bunetta decided to foster the fledgling Los Angeles rock band’s evolving sound and later helped birth their Billboard Hot 100 hit “Guys My Age,” which peaked at No. 68, a coup by any means for a rock band today. “The first time I saw them play, I was blown away by what Rena was doing, playing bass and singing. There was so much energy and she was just rocking so hard.” Immediately, ideas started to churn. “I remember the first thing that came into my head was to change their tempos to give people something to dance to rather than jump to. I wanted to carve out a musical slice for them and create a Hey Violet lane amongst all the stuff that’s really big right now, whether it be Ariana Grande or Halsey or Twenty One Pilots.”

It stands to reason that the 34-year-old Bunetta and the teenage Hey Violet immediately hit it off considering that Bunetta spent the majority of his career helping foster another young band’s creative growth. “About six years ago, (current Syco music head) Tyler Brown was an A&R and he said, ‘Hey, do you want to try working with One Direction on their second album?’” (2012’s Take Me Home). “It sounded interesting to me, so he put me in touch with Jamie Scott and him, me and John Ryan wrote two songs. The label liked them, the band liked them, and we flew to London to record them.” From there, Bunetta helped bring One Direction’s bubblegum pop vibes into more refined, adult contemporary territory. Becoming their go-to producer starting with 2013’s Midnight Memories, Bunetta helped mastermind a majority of the group’s tracks, forging a strong creative relationship and a deep bond with the group of teens-turned-international superstars.

“We spent a lot of time together over the course of four years and we’re all really good friends, so I definitely knew where all their influences would later lead them,” says Bunetta of the diverging paths the members have taken with their respective solo releases. “I didn’t think for a second that Liam (Payne) was going to make a rock album or that Niall (Horan) was going to make a R&B album. It’s unprecedented what they’re doing; they continue to change the rules of what it means to be in a group. For all of them to have solo success is just so fucking awesome.”

Bunetta’s skill for mentoring is one he picked up from his father, producer Peter Bunetta, best known for his work with acts ranging from The Temptations to Donna Summer. (The two, along with Julian’s brother Damon, head the aptly named publishing company Family Affair Productions, while Damon manages Julian.) “I got my first publishing deal when I was 18 years old, so I’ve been working in music for 17 years now and in that time there’ve been so many people who have brought out the best in me, so I try to be an encouraging force for younger writers,” says Bunetta. “I was really happy that I always tried to reach deeper, never settled and always experimented. I try to pass that on.” Will Bloomfield, the former One Direction co-manager who currently reps Hey Violet, Horan and 5 Seconds of Summer, echoes those sentiments. “We thought Julian would be a great match with Hey Violet because he’s brilliant at nurturing young talent and helping them to grow and develop with confidence,” Bloomfield explains. “We saw that with One Direction too. He has an incredible connection with artists and builds an innate bond. They trust and respect him.”

Perhaps that’s why Bunetta’s name and influence has seeped into One Direction’s respective solo forays, whether it’s co-writing the stand-out Harry Styles track “Two Ghosts” (“That song is a special one. We did that a little while back and it’s really wonderful to have it come out”) or plotting an upcoming session with Louis Tomlinson. In addition, Bunetta has also worked closely with Niall Horan, including co-writing his rising hit “Slow Hands.” “We were in the studio and I had a bass on with a drum loop. We started playing these notes and it felt good. Niall was singing along, mumbling some words and it sounded like he said ‘slow hands’ at one point. We were like, ‘What’s slow hands?’ We kept on chiseling away and wound up having a good back and forth with it.”

According to Bloomfield, Bunetta immediately realized they had something special. “He called me straight after the writing session and said, ‘Dude, we wrote a killer song today -- a smash!’ So I said, ‘Great, tell me more! What’s it about?’ He said, ‘It’s sexy and cool, about slow hands and sweat on dirty laundry.’” Bloomfield was skeptical. “The truth is it took us a moment to get our heads around ‘Slow Hands’ and to fully grasp its potential, but he called it immediately," Bloomfield says. "He has this quality of being a highly creative type with an objective ear. That’s a rare pairing.”

Bunetta lends that objective ear to everything from rock to pop tracks and even cuts for country artists like Thomas Rhett (Bunetta produced his latest hit “Craving You” featuring Maren Morris). All the while he prefers to work out of his no-frills Calabasas studio, hidden amongst the hills outside of Malibu. “I’ve been recording here for about eight years,” says Bunetta, who likens his studio to the comforts of home. “Sometimes it’s fun to spend a couple days somewhere else to have a change of scenery, but I know the sound in my studio so well in terms of producing and mixing stuff. I have a much more accurate idea of how something I’m working on is going to sound in a car or on headphones when I’m there. When you’re in different environments, you can’t tell apart the sonic differences sometimes.” However, Bunetta is constantly brainstorming even when he’s not in the studio. “I write down ideas all the time, whether it’s a song title or a perspective a song could be written from, or just something to talk about in a session,” he notes, gearing up to dive into yet another session. “Really, really good ideas, however, just stick in your head and you don’t need to write them down. If they’re really that good, you’ll never forget them for the rest of your life.”

Kid Rock Tweets Poll Allegedly Showing Him Leading Senate Race in Michigan

Kid Rock Tweets Poll Allegedly Showing Him Leading Senate Race in Michigan:

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

Kid Rock presents an award onstage at the 2017 CMT Music Awards at the Music City Center on June 7, 2017 in Nashville, Tenn. 
Kid Rock, the rapper-turned-rocker-turned-country-star -- and now a possible U.S. Senate candidate -- tweeted a link Monday morning (July 24) to a website showing him leading in a poll against Democratic incumbent Debbie Stabenow.

The site, a conservative blog, alleged that a Delphi Analytica poll showed the "All Summer Long" singer leading 30 percent to 26 percent against Stabenow. The poll's veracity could not be confirmed, however, as the site is currently down.

— Kid Rock (@KidRock) July 24, 2017
Rock, whose real name is Robert James Ritchie, announced his decision to run for Senate in his home state of Michigan earlier this month by tweeting a picture of a yard sign reading "Kid Rock for U.S. Senate" with a link to his candidacy website.

I have had a ton of emails and texts asking me if this website is real… The answer is an absolute YES.
— Kid Rock (@KidRock) July 12, 2017
The five-time Grammy Award nominee has since used his account to tweet various statements and pictures advancing his campaign.

Fifth Harmony Announce New Album, Team with Gucci Mane on 'Fallon': Watch

Fifth Harmony Announce New Album, Team with Gucci Mane on 'Fallon': Watch:

Fifth Harmony briefly returned to a five-member lineup when Gucci Mane joined the girl group on The Tonight Show for a performance of their collab “Down.”

Meet the newest member of @FifthHarmony --
— Gucci Mane (@gucci1017) July 24, 2017
It was a big night for 5H, which was making its first-ever appearance on Jimmy Fallon’s late night show. The host took the opportunity to announce their self-titled, third album will arrive on Aug. 25.

“Down” is the first single lifted from Fifth Harmony, the followup to 7/27 which peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard 200 in June 2016. The forthcoming album will be the foursome’s first since Camila Cabello's departure.

Watch Fifth Harmony (the superlative-throwing Dinah Jane, Normani Kordei, Lauren Jauregui and Ally Brooke) perform with Gucci Mane on The Tonight Show.

Donald Trump Blocks Chrissy Teigen on Twitter

Donald Trump Blocks Chrissy Teigen on Twitter: Donald Trump has finally had enough of Chrissy Teigen's Twitter comments. After years of the model calling the current president out on...

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TAYLOR SWIFT - 1000 Days Since Taylor Swift's '1989': Here's Everything She's Done Musically

1000 Days Since Taylor Swift's '1989': Here's Everything She's Done Musically:

One thousand nights ago, you might have been listening to Taylor Swift’s 1989 for the first time. You might have blasting “Blank Space,” learning how to sing along to “Style” and gearing up to dance along to “Shake It Off” on the inevitable 1989 tour. October 27, 2014 seems like a long time ago now — as of Sunday (July 23), it was 1000 days ago — and since the release of Swift’s fifth album, the pop superstar has stayed extremely busy.

Could we talk about her charity work, the Kanye West-Kim Kardashian West drama, the AT&T deal, the Tom Hiddleston? Of course. But let’s focus, as Taylor often does herself, on the music. As fans await Taylor Swift’s post-1989 full-length follow-up, let’s review the songs that she’s given us (or performed, or co-signed) since her last opus.


By the end of 2016, it had become clear that Taylor Swift was not going to continue her streak of releasing a full-length album every other year, as she had done from 2006 up to 1989 in 2014. Yet three weeks before the end of last year, Swift returned with her first post-1989 song: “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever,” a duet with Zayn that was part of the Fifty Shades Darker original soundtrack. Produced by Taylor’s pal Jack Antonoff and following in the success of Fifty Shades soundtrack songs like The Weeknd’s “Earned It” and Ellie Goulding’s “Love Me Like You Do,” “Forever” became Swift’s second soundtrack hit (following “Safe and Sound” from The Hunger Games) and peaked at No. 2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The song’s video, released last January, has a whopping 361 million YouTube views.

Swift has also spent the downtime between albums to collect a few songwriting credits: “Better Man,” Little Big Town’s latest country hit, was written by Swift… although it wasn’t revealed that the pop superstar had penned it until a few weeks after its October 2016 release. “Better Man” topped the Hot Country Songs chart, and has been performed by Swift exactly once (more on that later).

Meanwhile, Swift also sneakily co-wrote “This Is What You Came For,” Calvin Harris’ hit from last year featuring Rihanna, under the pseudonym “Nils Sjöberg.” She was eventually outed as having a hand in her ex’s Top 10 smash, and the song’s official credits now include Swift’s name. She has performed it exactly twice (more on that later).

Aside from those three songs, the big music news of Swift’s post-1989 run has been where her previous output has been available. After famously locking herself in a stalemate against Spotify and agreeing to have only Apple Music serve as her streaming host, Swift unleashed her catalog upon all streaming services — Spotify, Tidal and Amazon included — on June 9, 2017, the same day that Katy Perry just so happened to release her new album, Witness. Four of Swift’s albums, including 1989, returned to the Billboard 200 albums chart following the streaming free-for-all.


The entirety of the 1989 world tour was contained in 2015, and the 85 shows became that year’s biggest tour, taking in more than $200 million worldwide, per Billboard Boxscore. The big difference between 1989 and Swift’s previous tours, of course, was that she graduated to stadiums from arenas on her latest live run, and she’ll likely continue in that format whenever she goes back on the road. The tour was also captured in The 1989 World Tour Live, a concert film shot in Sydney and released in partnership with Apple Music in December 2015.


Ten months after her 1989 tour wrapped up, Swift decided to put on a one-off show last October at the Formula 1 U.S. Grand Prix in Austin -- her only performance of 2016, and the first time she played “This Is What You Came For” herself (in a solo piano version, no less!). “As a songwriter, the most rewarding feeling in the world is writing something and then having the crowd sing it back to you because they know the words,” Swift said during the show.

Swift played the track again at a pre-Super Bowl performance in Houston earlier this year, in an event dubbed the AT&T Presents DIRECTV NOW Super Saturday Night. She also played “Better Man” and “This Is What You Came For” at the show, which has been Swift’s only performance of 2017… so far.


By now, we’ve all seen the seven music videos that came from the 1989 era. Some fun stats about them: the three biggest videos (“Shake It Off,” “Blank Space” and “Bad Blood”) have become Swift’s first to cross the 1 billion mark on YouTube, while the controversial “Wildest Dreams” clip is one of Swift’s five most-viewed videos ever at this point (“You Belong With Me,” from Fearless, rounds out that top tier). The live video for “New Romantics” was unveiled as an Apple Music exclusive, and has 66 million YouTube views to date. Joseph Kahn directed four of the videos, including “Out of the Woods,” which was filmed in New Zealand.


Essentially, Swift released 1989 in October 2014 and the accolades started pouring in almost immediately after. She was named Billboard’s Woman of the Year in 2014, and “Shake It Off” was nominated for record of the year and song of the year at the 2015 Grammys. The song didn’t take home either prize, but Swift nabbed the big one the following year, when 1989 won album of the year at the Grammys in 2016. After previously winning the award for Fearless, Swift became the first female solo performer to win multiple AOTYs at the Grammys.

The Grammy win (along with two others in 2016) was simply the crown jewel in a long list of major achievements in the past 1000 days. Swift also won Video of the Year at the MTV VMAs in 2015 for “Bad Blood,” was given the 50th Anniversary Milestone Award at the ACM Awards that year, and 1989 became only the fifth album ever to spend its entire first year in the top 10 of the Billboard 200 chart. All told, 1989 has sold 6.1 million copies one thousand days into its existence, according to Nielsen Music, and in June, the RIAA certified Swift for having moved 100 million song units, second only to Rihanna among all artists in their rankings.


It’s worth noting that, while never commercially released, the sound of Swift rapping along to Drake and Future’s “Jumpman” does exist in this fair world. In a popular Apple Music ad, Swift rhymes along with the song on a treadmill before face-planting in epic fashion; she also toasted Jimmy Eat World’s “The Middle” and The Darkness’ “I Believe In A Thing Called Love” in separate Apple ads. Consider the homages a subtle co-sign of not just the songs in question, but of Apple’s playlist curation.


The cornerstone of Swift’s post-1989 music activity may very well be the role of “hypewoman” — that is, building up her pals and supporting their music online. She’s got mad love for squad members Lorde, Haim and Selena Gomez, and former tour mate Ed Sheeran’s “Shape of You” might have very well gotten a mini-bump due to an Instagram post in its favor. The biggest revelation for casual Swifies: Taylor’s still an enormous Kings of Leon fan! "I've been waiting for this album for SO LONG and it's insane, you need it in your life,” she wrote of the rock band’s WALLS. Same with the 1989 follow-up, Taylor.

(Additional reporting by Sabrina Finkelstein)

Djakarta Warehouse Project 2017 Announces Flume, Tiesto, Marshmello in Phase 1 Lineup

Djakarta Warehouse Project 2017 Announces Flume, Tiesto, Marshmello in Phase 1 Lineup:

Two-day dance festival Djakarta Warehouse Project blew expectations away in 2016 with 90,000 attendees, which qualifies it as Asia's largest dance music event. In 2017, organizers are trying to do more, and the festival's phase 1 lineup is out to cover all bases.

Headliners include future bass pioneer Flume, the legendary Tiesto, star festival DJ Marshmello, pop-dance pros Galantis, bass behemoths DVBBS, W&W sideproject NWYR, and Dutch electro monster R3hab.

More acts are yet to be announced, but that's hardly a soft start. Djakarta Warehouse Project 2017 comes to the JiExpo Kemayoran Convention Centre Friday and Saturday, December 15 to 16. Tickets are on sale now. Check Djakarta Worldwide online for more information.

Robyn Is the Low-Key Fairy Godmother of Pop In 2017

Robyn Is the Low-Key Fairy Godmother of Pop In 2017:

Lorde’s appearance on Saturday Night Live back in March was a big moment for a young pop star proving that she’s much more than a one-hit wonder. Dressed in a gauzy, Miss Havisham-esque bridal number, she sat at a piano decorated with trinkets from the studio next to partner in crime Jack Antonoff. One such item was a framed photograph of Robyn, gazing on like a particularly supportive aunt or a fairy godmother.

In a relatively quiet year for the Swedish musician, her influence still permeates the airwaves. Her last solo full-length, Body Talk, was released in 2010, but somehow it’s still the future of pop music.

Robyn did debut one new track in 2017, “Honey,” during the final season of Girls. It served as a bookend to one of the show’s most memorable musical moments from the first season, when Hannah Horvath danced on her own. In an Instagram post, Robyn detailed how Lena Dunham (who happens to be dating Antonoff) selected the frantic, ebullient “Honey” from a few unfinished tracks from a forthcoming LP: ”It wasn't ready to be released but I finished this version for her and Girls.”

A couple months later, Lorde and Antonoff were sitting at the piano paying tribute to Robyn again at Governors Ball Music Festival for a one-two punch of “Liability” and a stripped-down “Hang With Me” cover. “I wanted to play you a song, and I feel like the DNA of the song is not so far from Melodrama,” she told the crowd. ”Because love is hard, you know? Love is real hard! And you gotta do your best. This song is about doing right in love.”

Last year at the same festival, the duo were spectators during Robyn’s set, a series of remixes that proved somewhat impenetrable to the casual listener. Audience members who just wanted to see “Call Your Girlfriend” and have it sound like the album version dropped off to check out The Strokes, who were far more accommodating to the nostalgic crowds. Those who stuck around were treated to one hell of a dance party, though.

Melodrama, the pop album to beat this year, is about embracing your messiest self while remaining vigilant in your quest for light and love. It documents heartbreak in a way that’s skeptical of the rise and revels in the fall. It also defies rules religiously followed by some of Robyn’s fellow Swedish pop royals like Max Martin (who had a hand in Robyn’s star-making 1997 song “Show Me Love”) to create something a little stranger. “I have a strong awareness of the rules -- 60 percent of the time I follow them; 40 percent, I don’t," Lorde said.

To Lorde, perfection is not an equation the way it is to some. But if she had to place her finger on it, she’d point to “Dancing on My Own,” the song she hypothetically selected to “send into space to live forever” in a Tumblr post from May 2015, just as she was getting to work on Melodrama. “It’s happy and sad, fiery and independent but vulnerable and small, joyous even when a heart is breaking,” she wrote. That’s high praise, but the impact the song had on her personal relationship with music is even more profound, “And I think it was [listening to the song] when I realized I’m going to be in love with music for the rest of my life. It’s going to be the most important friendship I’ll ever have.”

Robyn’s approach is different from Sia’s hidden-in-plain-sight brand of stardom, though they’ve both swerved away from the constant scrutiny awaiting female pop stars. Robyn doesn’t interact much with mainstream music. Instead of writing songs for artists like Katy Perry and Rihanna, she prefers to collaborate with Scandinavian techno artists like Röyksopp and Mr. Tophat, releasing an EP, Trust Me, with the latter earlier this year.

Perry could use a little bit of what Robyn’s got. Her Witness rollout superficially took a few pages from Robyn’s book. First step: going platinum and shearing her locks. Katy Perry 2.0 (or the latest Katheryn Hudson reboot) looks like plenty of famous people itching for a reinvention (Miley Cyrus in 2013, Justin Bieber, and Kristen Stewart, to name a few).

But Robyn -- who opened for Perry's Teenage Dream Tour -- seems like the most likely inspiration, right down to the silver sequined body suit she wore to conclude her Witness World Wide album drop livestream (Robyn never met a metallic pantsuit she didn’t like). Over the course of an entire weekend, Perry broadcast everything from therapy sessions and lessons on cultural appropriation to pancake flipping. It was Perry’s version of Robyn’s rallying cry -- “Fembots have feelings, too” -- asking fans and detractors alike to see the woman behind the glitter.

In recent years, Janelle Monae picked up the fembot torch with concept albums from the perspective of a sentient android. Although she hasn’t released music this year, she has a higher profile than ever after scene-stealing turns in two Oscar-nominated movies, Moonlight and Hidden Figures.

But if there’s a clear heir to Robyn’s particular cult pop star status, it's Carly Rae Jepsen, another Antonoff collaborator who happens to be sporting a cropped platinum hairdo these days. Jepsen, like her Swedish elder (and Lorde, for that matter), had one major commercial hit that was hard to follow up on top 40, but nevertheless opened the gates for a fervent fan base. What they all have in common is a devotion to pop music as less of a formula and more of a sacred space. It’s about dancing like music is oxygen -- recklessly, headlessly -- in your bedroom or on the dance floor. It’s about vulnerability as an artist’s greatest strength.

That's a lesson central to the work of Perfume Genius, an artist responsible for one of the most visionary albums of the year. Coincidentally, he recently tweeted, “We need Robyn.” And that’s true. Fortunately, her stamp is everywhere.

Disney Splits With YouTube Star Jake Paul After TV Report

Disney Splits With YouTube Star Jake Paul After TV Report:

Rich Fury/Getty Images for H&M

Jake Paul attends H&M Loves Coachella Tent during the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival at the Empire Polo Club on April 14, 2017 in Indio, Calif. 
Disney has parted ways with a YouTube star days after a local television news report that revealed some of his Los Angeles neighbors were fed up with his stunts.

Jake Paul posted a note on Twitter over the weekend announcing his departure from the Disney Channel series "Bizaardvark." He says he feels he has "outgrown the channel" and would like to focus more on his personal brand. Disney confirmed the move, calling it a mutual decision.

Love you all! Thanks for the support❤️
Can't wait to continue to grow and conquer----

Jake Paulers always rise----

— Jake Paul (@jakepaul) July 23, 2017
The split came after KTLA-TV reported that neighbors were angered with Paul's antics for his nine-million follower YouTube account, which included setting furniture on fire in a pool.

Neither Paul, nor Disney, has mentioned the report in their comments on the split. Disney didn't immediately return a request for comment Tuesday.

Kelsea Ballerini Announces New Album 'Unapologetically' & Details the Self-Discovery Journey Behind It

Kelsea Ballerini Announces New Album 'Unapologetically' & Details the Self-Discovery Journey Behind It:

While in New York this morning and making an appearance on ABC’s Good Morning America, Kelsea Ballerini announced the title and release date of her long-awaited sophomore album via Black River Entertainment: On Nov. 3, the songstress will issue Unapologetically. At a press event a few weeks ago in Nashville, the 23-year-old singer spoke of the creative process behind album number two.

“I wrote over two hundred songs for this album,” she said. “When I started listening to everything, and started to figure out ‘What is it that you want to say this time?’ The first time was an introduction -- I wanted to cover who I was, where I was from, the age that I was, first heartbreak, first crush, parents getting divorced, insecurities. The last two years of my life have been literally jam-packed, a lifetime into two years. When I put out the last record, I was going through a gnarly break-up, and it was a really weird time of highs and lows. Then, that relationship ended, and I went through this growing up period in my life, one of self-discovery, and learning a lot about who I am and who I want to be. I had to shift my focus and figure out what I wanted this [album] to be.”

The lead single from Unapologetically is the stirring ballad “Legends,” which is No. 43 on the Country Airplay chart this week (chart dated Aug. 5). The song is accompanied by an emotional video clip that will tug at the heartstrings, involving. Ballerini said she had a vision for the video once she heard the demo of the song.

“For this record, the two filters I had for picking songs were that I wanted to know that it was going to go over well live, and I wanted to be able to see a music video in my head, because those were two things that I had no idea about on my first record. I wrote this song two years ago, and the day we wrote it, Forest sent me the demo. I listened to it, and all I could see was a car wreck. God willing, I’ve never had anyone close to me in a car wreck or anything like that, but it was a really strong visual that I saw. I think to me it made the song more about general loss than heartbreak. I wanted the song to be bigger than heartbreak. I think the video captured that.”

Despite the dramatic flair of videos such as “Legends” and “Peter Pan,” don’t be looking for Ballerini to step in front of the camera for an acting project. “I love visual music, being able to pair the story that I write with a video so you can see what was in my head, but acting is not my thing. I had to act more in the 'Peter Pan' video, and it was very hard for me and really uncomfortable. What I would love to do is voice-over stuff. You’re in a sound booth, and you have your script just like you have your lyrics, and it feels like you are making a record, but you’re making a character instead.”

Since launching her career in 2015 with the infectious “Love Me Like You Mean It,” the singer said one of the coolest aspects of her career has been getting to know some of the artists that she looked up to as a child, such as Taylor Swift, Lady Antebellum’s Hillary Scott, and most recently, Shania Twain -- with whom she shared the stage at Stagecoach.

“People say you should never meet your idols,” she says, “but I disagree. In country alone, Hillary Scott, Taylor Swift, and Shania -- those were my three that I studied and learned from, I waited in line to meet, and I saved up to go see. All three of them have reached their hand out to me. Obviously, they are superstars, but because they are such beautiful people. As a new artist, it’s really inspiring to see that and know that they can be the biggest star in the whole world, and still be kind and want to help someone that they believe in.”

Ballerini is on the road this year with Scott and Lady Antebellum, and will be headed overseas to the United Kingdom and South Africa this fall. Seeing the reach of the music around the world is something that excites her. “It’s so crazy to go to another country," she said. "I felt this way about Australia when I went there two years ago -- to go so far away, and still have such big country music fans halfway across the world. We just went to Canada, and I had never been there, but they knew the songs. To see the music have that kind of reach and affect is something special.”

Watch Julia Michaels' Playful Music Video for 'Uh Huh'

Watch Julia Michaels' Playful Music Video for 'Uh Huh':

Julia Michaels made a name for herself this year with her debut solo single "Issues," and last week she announced the release of her first "mini-album" Nervous System. Now, the Iowa-raised singer is back in the spotlight with the release of a music video for her sophomore single "Uh Huh."

Michaels is no new face to the music industry, boasting writing credits for hit songs such as Justin Bieber's "Sorry" and Selena Gomez's "Bad Liar." But the young songwriter has decided to trek out from the writing room so the world can see the face behind her beautifully crafted lyrics.

The video starts with a candid shot of Michaels and an assumed boyfriend sharing an intimate moment in a cozy living room before jumping into the '90s-inspired pop song.

“'Uh Huh' is about wanting the person you want to make the move,” Michaels explains. “He hasn’t yet, so you’re like, ‘Shit, should I just do it myself?’ You don’t know how he feels though. It’s this weird tension. When that move does happen, it’s the most magical and pure feeling in the world. That’s something we can all relate to.”

Watch the "Uh Huh" music video below:

Tune in to The Late Late Show With James Corden on Thursday to catch a performance of "Uh Huh."

Justin Bieber's Manager Scooter Braun Apologizes for Purpose Tour Cancellation: 'Justin Will Be Back'

Justin Bieber's Manager Scooter Braun Apologizes for Purpose Tour Cancellation: 'Justin Will Be Back': "Is it too late now to say sorry" to all the disappointed fans? Scooter Braun doesn't think so.
In the aftermath of Justin Bieber's...

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Here's How Many Days Off Justin Bieber Has Had Since His Purpose Tour Began

Here's How Many Days Off Justin Bieber Has Had Since His Purpose Tour Began: On Monday, Justin Bieber announced that the remaining dates of his Purpose World Tour would be canceled due to “unforeseen circumstances....

Original enclosures:

Air Supply & Jamaica: Inside the Ongoing, Unexpected Love Affair

Air Supply & Jamaica: Inside the Ongoing, Unexpected Love Affair:

It’s a warm late June evening at a fundraising concert in Jamaica; the crowd surges forward, glow sticks in hand, cell phones held aloft to capture the moment as the headlining act takes the stage. The singer’s honeyed delivery of the lyrics (“close your eyes I want to see you tonight in my sweet dreams”) is nearly overwhelmed by screams from female fans and the audience singing every word of the hit song.

The rapturous outpouring wasn’t for the latest dancehall sensation or a roots rock legend: This was the return of Air Supply, the veteran soft rock group’s sixth performance on the island since their debut set in 2007 at the Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival, which provoked an equally enthusiastic response. Russell Hitchcock (lead vocals) and Graham Russell (vocals, guitars, keyboards) met in a 1977 performance of Jesus Christ Superstar in Australia and formed Air Supply shortly thereafter. They signed with Arista Records in 1979 and sold millions of records throughout the 1980s. In their Jamaican debut 10 year ago, just like their performance on the island last month, the duo were visibly moved by the audience’s fervor throughout a set that rocked much harder than their music’s easy listening categorization would suggest.

“You never know how a country is going to greet you when you go there for the first time, if the people will like your music or even know who you are so it was a surprise, initially, to realize the audience knows our music as well as they do here,” Russell Hitchcock told Billboard in an interview at Couples Resorts San Souci (located close to the Jamaica resort town of Ocho Rios) a day before their June 24 performance for the nonprofit Issa Trust Foundation. “A large percentage of the population in Jamaica likes our music, which is very unusual because we are really romantic and the island’s music is very different, very reggae, and yet in some strange way we fit right in there,” adds Graham.

Further evidence of Air Supply’s popularity on the island can be heard in the numerous cover versions of their songs by Jamaican artists including vocalist Ghost’s haunting, high-pitched reworking of “Making Love Out of Nothing At All,” Sanchez’s “Here I Am," a staple within the beloved singer’s live sets, and vocal quartet L.U.S.T.’s gorgeous rendition of “Just As I Am,” which topped various Jamaican and international reggae charts when it was released in 2008, earning accolades from the song’s co-writer Rob Hegel. These and other reggae versions of Air Supply’s music, like the originals that spawned them, still receive regular play on Jamaican radio stations.

“Jamaica has a long lasting love relationship with Air Supply and they look forward to renewing that vow with them every so often; their music is one of the reasons we have so many kids here,” jokes Singing Melody, one of the four outstanding voices in L.U.S.T., alongside Tony Curtis, Lukie D and Thrilla U. “Their music really strikes a note among Jamaicans. They’ve performed here many times and their shows are always jam-packed; I think they should just buy houses and live here because the people love them so much.”

Air Supply’s beloved status in reggae’s birthplace -- and their ability to attract large audiences there -- has led to their appointment as musical ambassadors for the Issa Trust Foundation, a nonprofit organization established in 2005 by Couples Resorts, founded by the late Abe Issa, a pivotal figure in the development of the island’s booming tourism trade and the first president of the Jamaica Tourist Board. Chaired by Abe’s son Paul Issa, the Issa Trust Foundation provides pediatric medical care, at the highest standard possible, for many children whose families could not afford it otherwise, and collaborates with hospitals, health centers and local organizations throughout Jamaica to identify the most significant health issues. The Issa Trust Foundation’s first major fundraiser, An Evening with Air Supply, also featured Jamaica’s Tessanne Chin (season 5 winner of NBC’s The Voice) and reggae artist Djani. The sold-out affair moved 1,800 tickets ($80 for general admission, $150 for VIP) and raised $160,000 (after expenses) with all proceeds going to the pediatric unit at Jamaica’s St. Ann’s Bay Hospital.

“We wanted a musical ambassador who could bring attention to the foundation, get the word out about who we are, what we do, and we wanted them to come to Jamaica and perform. So we reached out to Air Supply because they are so big here,” explained Diane Pollard, President and CEO of the Issa Trust Foundation. While on vacation in Jamaica 20 years ago, Diane approached Couples Resorts about establishing a nonprofit to assist with pediatric care because none existed on the island at that time. Based in Iowa, Diane, formerly a loan executive with United Way, sources funding for the foundation, writes the programs and visits Jamaica at least six times per year, working with the island’s doctors and nurses to ensure the programs are effective and properly implemented.

Air Supply toured the St. Ann’s Bay Hospital in 2015 and spoke with the children there, and saw first hand the lack of basic facilities, which clinched their involvement. “It was very sad because the equipment the hospital had is archaic and to see the kids suffering so badly for the want of a ventilator is horrendous in this day and age so we are trying our best to make people aware of the situation. We’ve put information about the foundation on our website and social media; children are our future and they need to be taken care of,” acknowledged Russell. “We travel the world and see some heartbreaking things, people living under freeways, homeless children living on the streets. You can’t change everything, but you can change some things. This was an opportunity to raise money and for us it is all about helping where we can,” offers Graham.

Following their acceptance of an ambassadorial role with the Issa Trust Foundation, it took over a year to schedule a date for the Air Supply fundraising concert, due primarily to the band’s hectic touring itinerary. While contemporary top 40 radio has long forgotten Air Supply, much of the world continues to embrace their melodic, lushly produced music; they performed 130 shows in 2016 and are solidly booked through most of 2018, with Asia, Mexico, Central and South America particularly strong territories for the group. “You have your day in the sunshine, critics and radio were all over us when we first started, we had an incredible string of hits, and then in 1987 radio just refused to play us in North America, tastes changed and kids wanted something new,” observes Russell. “Our music is classified as light, easy listening and when people first see us they expect a mellow, quiet performance but we have always considered ourselves a rock band and we are very proud of our live shows.”

In 1979 Clive Davis signed Air Supply to Arista Records after hearing a five-and-a-half-minute version of their ballad “Lost in Love” written by Graham, a top 20 hit in Australia and New Zealand. Davis had the song remixed and released it in the U.S. in January 1980, as the title track to the Lost in Love album. The single peaked at No. 3 on the Hot 100; the album sold three million copies, reaching No. 22 on the Billboard 200, and spawned two more top 5 singles “All Out of Love” (No. 2) and “Every Woman in the World” (No. 5). More soft rock favorites followed throughout the 1980s including “Even The Nights Are Better,” “Here I Am” and “Making Love Out of Nothing At All." "Lonely Is the Night," released in 1986, was their last Billboard Hot 100 hit.

Air Supply waived their performance fee for the Issa Trust Foundation event. For the evening’s auction segment, Graham donated his custom built Telecaster guitar which fetched $3,000, a sum matched by the group’s donation to the foundation. Graham also wrote a song called “We Are Here” for the occasion and specifically requested children from the nearby Free Hill Basic School (whom Graham and Russell heard sing on a previous visit) join Air Supply onstage and provide backing vocals in their world premiere of the song.

The money generated by An Evening with Air Supply will go toward purchasing much needed equipment for the hospital including 35 beds, over the bed tables, patient monitors, lighting, chairs for parents at each side of the bed, air conditioning and new windows. “We want the pediatric ward to be of first world standards and we are now discussing the steps to get this done,” notes Pollard. “I hope we can build relationships with companies to help; $160,000 sounds like a lot of money, but the project will cost a lot more.”

With their fundraising efforts and ongoing ambassadorial role expanding the fond relationship between Air Supply and Jamaica, can collaborations with the island’s reggae acts be far behind? “We would love to work with artists here but no one has called us,” acknowledged Graham. “It’s just that simple if you make that outreach,” adds Russell. “It is really a matter of timing, we are always on the road but we are always open to the idea.”