Wednesday, July 31, 2013

You Can Cop Ciara’s New CD On Groupon In A Bundle Package With Her Greatest Hits CD
Ciara Princess Harris – better known, thankfully, as Ciara (and not Princess) – is trying to revive her slagging album sales by offering it as a deal with Groupon. Groupon are known as the industry leader in selling-you-things-you-don’t-really-want-at-a-steep-discount. The Groupon deal offers the album (aptly titled “Ciara”) alongside “Ciara’s Greatest Hits” for a low, low price.

It’s a shame, actually, because the album isn’t terrible. It even features muppet-pop-rapper Nicki Minaj on a couple of verses that don’t suck!!! Which is sort of rare. Please, Nicki: stop trying that pop shit and start doing more shit like this.

As for Ciara, her album has been performing better than expected – 60,000+ copies sold in its first week of release. It appears, though, that this Groupon deal is just to juice the numbers and get them up higher, faster. Kind of a shame when you’ve worked so hard on such a pretty-good album to have some money-cruncher manager go in and make you look a damn fool by selling it at deep discount to Groupon…

… especially doing it so soon after Jay Z made $5,000,000 from a deal with his album “Magna Carta Holy Grail” – which was, surprisingly, a lot worse than Ciara’s “Ciara.”

Monifah Explains Her Role on "R&B Divas" on Sway in the Morning

TGT Talk "3 Kings" Tour, The State Of R&B and Crazy Fan Tattoos
Three kings are always better than one!

Back in 2007, R&B singers Tyrese, Ginuwine, and Tank formed their supergroup TGT. The trio's first song together was a remix of Tank's "Please Don't Go." And after officially signing to Atlantic Records back in 2012, the guys are ready to bring their respective fans even closer as one cohesive unit with their upcoming debut album, 3 Kings.

GlobalGrind linked up with TGT to discuss touring, the chemistry within the group, their thoughts on the direction of R&B today, and more.

Check out the exclusive interview below!

GlobalGrind: You guys are on "The 3 Kings" Tour, do you have a few more tour dates underway?
Tyrese: We have a few more shows left, and then it’s time for us to go heavy into radio promotions…the album releases August 20th with these 17 missiles, these 17 R&B missiles.

How is "The 3 Kings" Tour different? How is it touring together?
Tyrese: There’s nothing in the world that can compare to this. First of all, we’ve all been solo. We’ve all been on stage by ourselves. To now looking to your left and right, and be on stage with your family, your brothers. We’ve all been the best of friends for over 10 years. I was the best man at Ginuwine’s wedding. Tank got in the business singing background for Ginuwine in 2007…it’s just been love.

You guys seem like you have a good time and play around. Do you prank each other on tour?    
Tyrese: Yeah, it’s non-stop action. It’s crazy! We barely get anything done because we’re always laughing and having too much fun. I think if you do anything that’s significant and special without the foundation of friendship, it could definitely compromise the execution of something this big. I’ll be honest, we’ve realized at a certain point that this TGT album isn’t about us. It’s really about R&B. Right now, R&B is very insecure. A lot of singers feel like they can’t do a full album without 12 rappers on it, collaborations…I never heard of Marvin Gaye featuring Kurtis Blow. And a lot of R&B singers jump ship. They’re doing House, Techno, and EDM because nobody’s been selling albums. The R&B budgets at labels are slim, or have disappeared completely. We feel like this is the most important R&B album in the last 10 years because of the state of R&B.

What do you think some of the artists in the genre have to do to get R&B back at the forefront? One of the bigger issues with R&B is that people love the evolution of sound, and I think R&B artists haven’t figured out the evolution of sound in R&B without sort of selling out.
Tyrese: With all due respect, you have to go where the money is. At the end of the day, when you have kids and family and nobody’s selling any records, who wants to waste time doing R&B, if that’s the situation? This R&B album is R&B through-and-through. It wasn’t an opportunity. It was a responsibility to do this R&B album. We’re on tour, and we have Ginuwine, Tank, and Tyrese fans all under one roof, experiencing the greatest night of R&B ever. Close to two hours on stage doing our thing – no AutoTune – just really doing our thing live, back the way R&B used to be.

Who do you think has the craziest fans out of TGT?
Ginuwine: I think there’s no one who has the craziest fans. I think we all have some crazy fans. I get a lot of fans that give me things. I don’t know what happens to Tank or Tyrese. But if you want to call that crazy.
Tank: Yesterday, I had a fan that had a tattoo of me on them.
Ginuwine: With the tattoo thing, that has already happened to me back in the day quite a few times. So I don’t look at it as being crazy.
Tank: Well, it’s happening now.
Ginuwine: I’m pretty used to it.
Tyrese: Tank, to be honest, the tattoo didn’t really look too fresh. The tattoo was not only ugly, but it looked like it happened at least 17 years ago.

It was like a jailhouse tattoo?
Tyrese: Exactly!
What’s one thing the ladies can expect from you guys on tour?
Tank: Being the gorilla of the group, my shirt comes off nightly. There’s no telling when I’ll be shirtless.
Tyrese: When you ain’t smashing the stage every night, you gotta take your shirt off for additional screams. You gotta pull out all the antics you have left.

Melanie Fiona Talks Video For "Wrong Side of a Love Song"

Jay Sean feat. Rick Ross - "Mars"

Solange Performs "Bad Girls" @ Brooklyn's Laundromat

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Ryan Leslie Presents "Black Mozart"

Keyshia Cole's Husband Arrested for Assault and Battery
While details are scarce, TMZ has confirmed that 27-year-old Daniel "Boobie" Gibson has been arrested for an alleged assault and battery.  The arrest came after Gibson turned himself into the New Orleans Police Department earlier today, July 29th.  His accuser's identity has yet to be revealed, although TMZ believes that the alleged battery occurred at the Essence Festival earlier this month.
Gibson has already been released from custody.  More details will emerge in the near future regarding this case.
RELATED: Keyshia Cole's Husband ARRESTED for Assault and Battery [Update]

CocoaFab TV Interviews Eric Roberson

Iyanla Helps Singer Syleena Johnson Confront Abusive Mother
The mother of R&B singer Syleena Johnson said in an interview with Iyanla Vanzant that she called her three daughters names because that's what she understood growing up. 

"Where I came from, that's just how you talked," said Brenda Thompson, who in the late 1980s became the first female police commissioner of Harvey, Ill. 

Thompson also told Vanzant in the July 27 airing of the Oprah Winfrey Network's "Iyanla: Fix My Life” that climbing the ranks carried over to her parenting. 

Although Thompson recalls a closeness among her children, they saw things differently, with Johnson saying that the siblings still struggle with their mother's way of child-rearing. 

"The big thing that the three of them all have a clear recollection of is their mother calling them b-----s and h--s," Vanzant told Thompson. "One even shared with me that they were called the c-word by you."

Thompson didn’t deny the accusations. She explained however, that the name-calling stemmed from her own childhood experiences. 

“I have always — from school, when I was little — been bullied. By everybody," Thompson said. "To my defense, I cursed people out." 

Vanzant coolly responded that Thompson needed to come up with a better excuse for berating her children. "In all my fiber of my being as a mother, I cannot imagine looking my baby girls in the face and calling them b-----s," Vanzant said. "And I come up out of Brooklyn."

Marques Houston (Feat. Problem) - "Give Your Love A Try"

Toni Braxton Loses Hit Songs in Bankruptcy Filing
Can somebody un-break Toni Braxton's heart? It looks like she may not have the funds to do it on her own.

The Braxton Family Values star, who was responsible for hits like "Breathe Again" and "He Wasn't Man Enough" in the '90s and early 2000s, has lost the right to call those slow jams her own, according to TMZ.

When the R&B songstress filed for bankruptcy for the second time, in 2010, many of her personal assets were up for grabs, including the rights to her songs.

Toni had struck a deal making it possible for her to buy back her hits, including "You're Makin' Me High," and "Always," among others, for the bargain-basement price of $20,000, but with the caveat that other bidders could jack up the price — and, of course, that's just what someone did.

Music lover/newly-minted Toni Braxton nemesis Ross M. Klein offered twice what Toni was willing to pay and made off with 27 of Toni's songs. 

The one song that didn't seem to have made Ross' list was the unbelievably popular "Un-Break My Heart." It looks like Ross will leave Toni to pick up the pieces on her own.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Jazmine Sullivan Teases Music For Fans

Singer Jazmine Sullivan is back in the studio and revealed a short snippet of a song via Instagram video Tuesday (July 23), which she called “a little something.”

The songstress pulled away from the spotlight in 2011, after climbing the charts in 2008 with her debut song, ‘Need U Bad,’ and other successful releases like ‘Bust Your Windows’ and ‘Holding You Down (Going in Circles).’ Her first album, ‘Fearless,’ made its mark at No. 6 on the Billboard 200 chart.

But it seems the singer is ready to get moving again. “i wanted u guys who’ve been patiently waiting on me to know I’ve been working. That’s no official single tho. Just a song. My feelings,” she wrote on Twitter Wednesday (July 24).

In the meantime, Sullivan attended Beyonce‘s show in her hometown last night and seemed flattered by a shout Bey threw her way. ”Dear beyonce.. You r thee best!.” she shared.

We’re glad to learn Sullivan is in good spirits and inspired to create again.

Vybz Kartel Beats One of His Murder Charges, Still Faces Another

Ashanti Stalker Thrown In Jail
Same Ashanti-crazed loon, different platform.

Devar Hurd — the Chicago-area pervert convicted in 2010 of sending cellphone pics of his crotch to the R&B singer via her manager mom — has been thrown in jail for allegedly continuing his lurid campaign, this time contacting Ashanti directly via Twitter.

The 35-year-old loon, who on his Twitter profile boasts he is “Livin fun, fit, healthy & nude,” sent her more than 100 since- removed “graphic” and “sexually explicit” tweets between getting out of jail in November 2010 and now, prosecutors said.

“Your honor, the entire family fears for its safety,” prosecutor James Vinocur told Manhattan Criminal Court Judge Steven Statsinger on Wednesday in asking successfully that Hurd be held on high bail.

“Yeah, it’s me, the falsely accused stalker,” Hurd tweeted earlier this month.

Hurd on his Twitter account calls himself a songwriter and recording and mixing engineer.

He is being held in lieu of $750,000 bail and is due in Manhattan court today on charges of felony stalking and aggravated harassment.

The charges include him allegedly approaching Ashanti’s younger sister, Kenashia, at a West Side event in October 2012, according to the criminal complaint against him.

Hurd has been living in Brooklyn and working as a technician, his lawyer said at the arraignment.

“That’s sex texting, is what it is,” he had explained on the witness stand of sending Ashanti’s mom, Lisa Douglas, a picture of his erect penis to be passed along to the singer. “For the ladies!”

“We wanted to thank the authorities for doing their jobs. Ashanti and her family are moving forward and want to put this behind them,” a spokeswoman for the singer said yesterday.

Friday, July 26, 2013

R&B Divas L.A.: Episode 3

Trevor Jackson - "Drop It"

CocoaFabTV Interviews Tamar Braxton

CrazySexyCool: The TLC Story Trailer

Zo! Talks New Album ManMade, DIY R&B and Happy Accidents
Lorenzo Ferguson, or Zo!, as he's known to fans, released his new album ManMade — a rakish collection of house and ghettotech-tinged slow jams — back in May. It's another idiosyncratic and uncompromising release from Foreign Exchange Music, fueled by intense collaborations between Zo! and the Foreign Exchange's Phonte Coleman (credited as writer and producer). The second single, "Count to Five" featuring Gwen Bunn and Phonte, is propulsive soul-pop about real-life concerns like anxiety and transition. And don't miss the charming video, which pays homage to the '70s era of Sesame Street when the kid's show was almost activist in its embrace of multiculturalism and positive vibes. We spoke over the phone about the new album, being doggedly independent while the music industry crumbles, "jheri curl music," and even afforded some music nerd trivia about '80s softies Mr. Mister. Zo! is celebrating the release of ManMade at the Casbah in Durham tonight along with the exploratory jazz trio the Hot at Nights. 

INDY WEEK: Can you just explain the meaning behind the title a little bit? It's striking as a declaration that also has some modesty to it. In contrast to, say, more obnoxious declarations like "self-made."
ZO!: ManMade is actually the first album I've done as a full-time musician. I was teaching in the Washington, D.C., school system for five years. I taught music to Special Education high school kids. And when the school shut down, which was right after ... just visiting three was released, I became a full time musician tossed into the fire. I had planned on doing that already but, you know, it was a little bit earlier than I expected. So, ManMade is based around the grind of the independent musician. It's definitely not a 9-to-5. It is a 24/7 job and you're doing all your own business. It's very, very difficult. 

The cover looks like you're headed to a factory job, which also suggest this indie musician grind.
Definitely. On the album cover, it looks like I am walking to work, but work is this broken-down building that represents the music industry as we know it today. You know, the music industry now is trying to adjust to everything that's going on with the Internet and digitally, and you know it's almost seeming a little outdated and going through some struggles. The cover is me, the indie musician, going to work and walking into this dilapidated building and bringing my shine to it.

In my opinion, a crucial element to the artistic success of your music and the whole Foreign Exchange crew's music is a certain old-fashioned sense of collaboration. In sharp contrast to the way a lot of music now is less about collaboration and more about different people stitching different things together. ManMade just sounds like people in a room working closely together.
I always give the example of, say, Earth, Wind & Fire "After the Love Is Gone." In the beginning of that song, the tempo is a lot slower than what it ends up being at the end. Simply because they're playing those instruments and they're playing them like it was live. And when you start playing, certain energies and emotions increase, and when you start vamping out, the tempo has climbed from five to seven beats-per-minute. By the end of it, those guys are really going in and that's part of recording. Recording is about capturing different feelings and emotions, musically. The more feeling that you're able to capture, the more you can connect with listeners.

Lyfe Jennings - "Boomerang"

New Lyfe Jennings album coming in October.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Elijah Blake Enlists J. Cole for "Vendetta"

R&B singer Elijah Blake discovered a nice perk to signing with Roc Nation: access to the Roc's formidable roster. On "Vendetta," the songwriter behind Usher's "Climax" and Rihanna"s "No Love Allowed" teams up with J. Cole for the sultry R&B/hip hop hybrid.

Blake has already established himself as a behind-the-scenes songwriter, but now appears poised to grab the spotlight himself.

Beyoncé – "Standing On The Sun" (SOS Reggae Mix)

Beyoncé – "Standing On The Sun" (SOS Reggae Mix) Interviews Raheem DeVaughn

Timbaland Speaks On Using Aaliyah's Vocals

Kelly Price Talks R&B Divas L.A. and Whitney Houston's Death

Chris Brown's Lamborghini Aventador Gets Fresh Paint Job

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Maysa - "Love Me Good" & "When You Touch Me" (Part 1 and 2 of Blue Velvet Soul)

From her latest opus Blue Velvet Soul, Baltimore songstress Maysa tells the story of a love that’s worth walking miles for in the videos for “Love Me Good” and "When You Touch Me", a two-part visual series.

Sean Kingston "Back 2 Life" Vlog In Jamaica

Jason Derulo Talks New Album and Girlfriend Jordin Sparks

90's British R&B Divas' Hits Megamix feat. Gabrielle, Des'ree, Beverley Knight and More

This is a mix of 11 hits in the 90's, all by UK/British R&B Female Artists (except Deni Hines who is Australian, but got famous in the UK.) The tracks are: 1. Gabrielle - Out Of Reach (From "Bridget Jones's Diary") 2. Des'ree - You Gotta Be 3. Eternal - Angel Of Mine 4. Beverley Knight - Flavour Of The Old School 5. Shola Ama - I'm The One You Need 6. Eternal - Stay 7. Deni Hines - It's Alright 8. Mica Paris - Contribution 9. Michelle Gayle - Looking Up 10. Dina Carroll - Special Kind Of Love 11. M People feat. Heather Small - One Night In Heaven

Chris Brown Pleads Not Guilty To Hit-and-Run
Chris Brown just pled not guilty to the charge of hit-and-run, stemming from that minor car accident -- which led to his probation getting revoked -- TMZ has learned.

Since he wasn't arrested on the day of the accident, Chris now has to go to a police station to get booked for the crime ... which means he'll have to take another mug shot. He has until August 6th to take care of that.

Chris' next court date in the hit-and-run case is August 15.

As for his possible probation violation in the Rihanna beating case -- the singer has to appear in court for a separate probation violation hearing in August.

As we reported, the judge revoked Chris' probation in the wake of the hit-and-run charge ... but he's currently free on his own recognizance.

The remaining charges from the car accident -- driving without a valid license and proof of insurance -- were dismissed.
RELATED: Chris Brown and Drake don’t have to pay $16 million in damages from last year's SoHo club brawl after suit is tossed 

Beyonce Keeps Singing Flawlessly While Hair Gets Snatched Inside A Fan

Hey, the show must go on.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Ron Isley Says Music Is 'Just Like Magic'
R&B legend Ron Isley says that he knows "right away when it's a special song, if you feel it's going to be a hit song." For more than half a century, Isley has been writing and performing some of the most iconic R&B music with the group the Isley Brothers and as a solo artist.

R&B has grown in popularity since Isley and his brothers started their careers back in the '50s with the song "Shout." But even though the sound of R&B has changed, he and his brothers have been able to stay ahead of the curve with hit songs like "Between the Sheets" and "Contagious." For his new solo album, This Song Is for You, Isley continues his quest to deliver a progressive sound that his fans have enjoyed over the years.

Isley recently spoke with Tell Me More host Michel Martin about his music and the ups and downs he endured through his career.

Interview Highlights

On when it's a hit song
"Well, if I am doing a love song like 'Summer Breeze' or something like that ... I'll hear it one time and I'll know. Or a song like 'Hello It's Me,' and I heard that song and said I want to do that song but I wanted to say 'Hello- Hello.' 'Hello' over and over and over."

On serving time over tax issues
"It wasn't no jail or anything like that. It was like a camp, and it had about a couple hundred people there maybe. And, the Day 1 when I went there I was treated like a king. ... It was depressing somewhat to me because when you can't do what you wanna do it's kind of depressing. But it's the same as being at home with them saying you're on home arrest. ... You're at home but you can't go here, you can't go there. You can't travel to Hawaii. You know things that you love doing."

On creating music that helped create new fans
"You wouldn't believe how many people have come up and said, 'I was born because of your record.' Ya know? And I am not talking about hundreds I am talking about thousands of people."

Dawn Robinson talks R&B Divas, En Vogue and Lucy Pearl Breaks

Dawn Robinson talks new show R&B DIVAS:LOS ANGELES, En Vogue and Lucy Pearl Break-ups, cheating ex-husband, how she bounced back, her new book and upcoming projects with Lady Charmaine.

Tyrese Pissed & Tank Laughing At Ginuwine For Being On Something During Live Performance

Yeah, peep Ginuwine's facial expressions here and you can tell that something may've been popping hard in that green room before they hit the stage.