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ABC/Tyler GoldenChanel muse, Grammy winner and two-time Academy Award nominee Pharrell Williams can now add NYU commencement speaker to his spectacular resume. 

The "Happy" artist is scheduled to speak at the university's 185th ceremony on May 17. In addition, he will also receive an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree during the event. 

Pharrell is expected to induct Chic co-founder and musician Nile Rodgers into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame this year in ceremonies Friday, April 7, and scheduled to be broadcast on HBO April 29 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.  

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

Thank you, NYU. What an honor to be recognized by your world class institution. Looking forward to joining you at this year’s commencement! https://t.co/AGs3XVc6WY

— Pharrell Williams (@Pharrell) March 30, 2017

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ABC/Fred WatkinsWednesday marked what would have been the 16th birthday of Usher's late stepson, Kile Glover, who tragically died in a Jet Ski accident in 2012, when he was only 11.  

Usher took to social media to remember their special relationship.

On Wednesday, Usher posted a sincere Instagram note in which he quoted the lyrics of his song "Stronger," which was inspired by Kile's death.

"Though you're gone you still live in my mind. The only thing we ran out of is time," he wrote. "Since you left I ain't been quiet the same. I wonder if you miss me, do I make you proud. Know you're watching me, I feel your spirit. I keep you right by my side. #Stronger." 

He ended the message by adding, "Happy 16th Birthday, Kile$. We miss you."   

Kile's mother Tameka Foster,  Usher's first wife, paid tribute to Kile with several Instagram posts of her own as well. 

Usher and Tameka were married from 2007 to 2009, and have two children together: Usher Raymond V and Naviyd Ely Raymond.  

After splitting with Tameka, the entertainer married current wife and manager, Grace Miguel, in 2015. 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

Happy 16th Birthday, Kile$. We miss you. pic.twitter.com/hvHoFP8TmV

— Usher Raymond IV (@Usher) March 29, 2017

 

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Gari Askew IIJoey Bada$$' has a lot to say on his new song "Rockabye Baby," but truly goes in for the kill with one simple lyric -- "F*** Donald Trump."

Also heard is ScHoolboy Q, who flexes his own rap skills and socially conscious lyrics throughout the track, which is the second single from Joey's forthcoming sophomore album, All-Amerikkkan Bada$$.  

"Still a small percentage of blacks is eating/Same routines/The same dope fiends/The nightmare dreams/Forever murder season/Bad intentions to them picket fences," rhymes ScHoolboy.

All-Amerikkkan Bada$$ arrives April 7 and is available to pre-order now.  

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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ABC/Fred WatkinsSeveral days ago Mary J. Blige announced the release date and cover art for her 13th album, Strength of a Woman and now we've got the disc's track listing.

The "Family Affair" singer shared each track's title with a special message for fans on Instagram, writing "Thank you for sharing your strength with me. This is one of my most powerful albums, featuring some powerful collaborators. I'm excited to share it with you on 4.28." 

Powerful collaborators indeed, as Strength of a Woman includes guest appearances from the likes of Kanye WestDJ KhaledMissy ElliottMigos member Quavo, DJ-producer Kaytranada and Prince Charlez, who wrote Rihanna's Grammy-nominated hit song, "Needed Me."

Mary debuted the first single from the studio project, "Thick of It," last November. 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

My tracklisting for #STRENGTHOFAWOMAN, revealed. This is one of my most powerful albums. I'm excited to share it on 4.28 pic.twitter.com/SN4XoUl1HN

— Mary J. Blige (@maryjblige) March 30, 2017

 

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ABC/Randy HolmesFetty Wap was recently spotted by TMZ on the streets of Los Angeles several days after news broke of his involvement in a deli shootout in Paterson, New Jersey.

Although the incident left three unnamed individuals hospitalized, the rapper told the celebrity news website  he refuses live in fear and would rather focus on making money. 

"You progress with your life. Know I'm saying? Only person that can stop you is yourself," Fetty said.  

The "Trap Queen" artist also expressed his loyalty to his hometown, adding, "That's where I'm from. I come from violence. It's a blessing to be here. Never, ever gonna leave Paterson. That's where I'm from."

Since the shootout, two suspects -- 34-year-old Sylvester Huffin and 36-year-old Raheem Thomas -- have been arrested on several charges. 

Paterson Deputy Police Chief Troy Oswald confirmed that Fetty, born Willie Maxwell II, and several of his friends were involved in the incident, although they aren't suspects in the shooting or in the alleged robbery that also happened at the time. 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Image Group LA/ABCApparently it only takes a million dollars to inspire a hit track with DJ Khaled -- well, at least for Future.

That's the exact amount of cold, hard cash Future brought with him to a recent studio session with the "All I Do Is Win" producer, who was hardly expecting to see it

On Instagram, Khaled wrote, "Real talk I walk in studio to work on #GRATEFUL...@future said khaled I'm #GRATEFUL I want this #GRATEFUL session to be special. He pulled out so many bags! It was MAJOR BAG ALERT!! A MILLION DOLLAR CASH ON ME IN THE STUDIO WHEN I DID THIS VERSE."  

DJ Khaled is currently working on his 10th studio album, Grateful, and has teased other possible guest appearances on the project by sharing Instagram pictures of MigosChance the Rapper, Lil Wayne and Justin Bieber.  

The disc will be executive-produced by none other than Khaled's 5-month-old son, Asahd

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

Real talk I walk in studio to work on #GRATEFUL ... @1future said khaled I'm #GRATEFUL I want… https://t.co/J9ckz71qiE

— DJ KHALED (@djkhaled) March 30, 2017

 

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Pharrell Williams; ABC/Adam RoseHave you ever wished that super-producers Pharrell Williams and Timbaland would reunite with pop icon Justin Timberlake for some new music?  

Well, that dream may actually come true. 

Justin recently shared an Instagram photo of himself hanging out with Timberland and Pharrell.    

The picture doesn't show them working in a studio, but record producer Danja -- who has collaborated with Justin in the past -- further teased the possibility of all three megastars creating new music. 

"What u think u gon get if I'm with Tim in one room...and Pharrell and Chad [Hugo, Pharell's The Neptunes partner] in another room at the same time on the same project???" he tweeted. Justin retweeted Danja's message with an emoji response of two eyes. 

Both Pharrell and Timbaland worked on Justin's 2002 hit debut album, Justified.  

Timbaland worked on every project released by Justin since, including on each song from the "Can't Stop the Feeling!" singer's 2013 album, The 20/20 Experience

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

👀 https://t.co/00704eilvQ

— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) March 29, 2017

 

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OVO Sound/Young Money/Cash Money/RepublicIt looks like Drake might actually spend a second week in the #1 spot on Billboard's 200 albums chart with his latest project, More Life.  

Industry forecasters project that the project  could do another 230,000 to 250,000 in sales and streams by March 30. If this were to happen, Ed Sheeran's #1 hit album Divide would drop to the number two spot on the chart.   

More Life debuted at #1 on the chart with 505,000 in sales and streams, which marked the biggest week for any album since Drake's own album Views debuted with more than one million last May.  

It is also Drizzy's seventh consecutive #1 album, leaving him tied with Kanye West and Eminem for the second-most #1 albums among rappers. Only Jay Z has more, with 13.  

Yesterday, the "Hotline Bling" rapper also became the solo artist with the most Hot 100 appearances -- currently with 154 -- in the chart's nearly 60-year history, surpassing Lil Wayne, who has 135.  

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Jonathan MannionGucci Mane and newly minted Wilhelmina model Nicki Minaj decided to go all out for their first music video collaboration, for Gucci's new single, "Make Love."

The visual shows Gucci enjoying a lavish lifestyle complete with a private jet, a mansion filled with beautiful women and luxury cars.  

Meanwhile, Nicki straddles an inflatable unicorn while wearing knee-high lace-up boots, a black and gold-plated bikini and tons of gold chains. 

Gucci and Nicki have previously traded bars on many other tracks, including "Haterade," "Shopaholic," "Slumber Party" and "Coca Cola."  

 "Make Love" will be featured on Gucci's forthcoming album Drop Top Wizop.  

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

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Paras Griffin/Getty ImagesMaster P is bringing his No Limit records success to the big screen.

The music mogul, born Percy Miller, is set to share his life story in the film King of the South.  

The upcoming biopic, which will star Queen Latifah and The Wire's Wendell Pierce, will document the rapper's life -- from his tough childhood in the Calliope Projects of New Orleans to his rise to fame in the rap industry with the success of his No Limit imprint.  

The film will also highlight P's deal with Priority Records and making Forbes' Top 100 list.

"The timing is right for me to tell my story," said Miller in a statement.  

"It was tough back then especially being from the South, New Orleans was the murder capital at the time. I want others to learn from my mistakes and understand my work ethic of never giving up, no matter what it may look like... if you believe in yourself, keep your faith in God strong and stay close to your family, you can accomplish anything."

An open casting call for New Orleans natives is scheduled for April 4 from 11:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. in Gretna, Louisiana. The King of the South is set start production sometime this summer. 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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ABC/Randy HolmesA second arrest has been made in the Fetty Wap shooting incident that left three people wounded in a South Paterson, New Jersey deli this past Sunday. 

According to a police report, 34-year-old Sylvester Huffin was arrested and charged with two counts of attempted murder and various weapons crimes, including unlawful possession of a handgun in the second degree and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose in the second degree.  

If convicted of attempted murder, Huffin will face up to 20 years of imprisonment with the No Early Release Act applied to each count. He is scheduled to appear in court on a date yet to be determined. 

As previously reported, the first suspect, 36-year-old Raheem Thomas, was arrested Monday morning near his home on aggravated assault and weapons offense charges. Thomas' arrest is only in relation to the altercation that took place inside of the deli. 

The three unnamed victims are in stable condition.

Paterson Deputy Police Chief Troy Oswald confirmed that Fetty, born Willie Maxwell II, and several of his friends were involved in the incident, although they're not suspects in the shooting nor in the alleged robbery that happened during the incident.  

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved

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ABC/Eddy ChenCommuters in London's bustling St. Pancras International train station were met with a surprise performance from John Legend Wednesday, kicking off International Piano Day.

Upon arriving at the station, the "In America" singer tweeted, "Do they still have that piano there?" The Evening Standard reports that John eventually sat down at a piano to sing "Ordinary People," "All of Me" and "Surefire."  

His ten-minute set ended with an exit out of St. Pancras and into a car waiting outside.    

John recently announced his forthcoming European tour, set to begin in September. Tickets go on sale this Friday. 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

Arriving at London @StPancrasInt on @EurostarUK. Do they still have that piano there?

— John Legend (@johnlegend) March 29, 2017

 

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Ron Galella/WireImageOver 300 of Tupac Shakur's personal items will be up for auction April 7, the same day the late icon will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 

Attendees at the "Black History Auction" in Brooklyn, NY will have a chance to secure Tupac's first music contract, his prison ID card, pieces of jewelry, a track list and master recording of his fourth and last studio album, All Eyez on Me, a "bullet-struck" medallion from the scene of his 1996 shooting, and more. 

Tupac fans can make their bids in person, via phone, or on several websites

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Image Group LA/ABCShe's surpassed Aretha Franklin as the new female leader of the Billboard Hot 100 chart.  Now Nicki Minaj is aiming to takeover the fashion world as a model.

The "Regret in Your Tears" rapper has signed on to one of the biggest modeling agencies in the world -- Wilhelmina Models -- as a part of their celebrity division.  

Wilhelmina is also the home to a slew of other celebrity talent, including Chris Brown, Keri HilsonIggy Azalea and Leona Lewis

The agency recently posted an Instagram photo of Nicki, with a statement from the superstar saying, "I love the synergy between my music and how it inspires my fashion. My message is always about celebrating your own style. I'm thrilled and honored to have signed with Wilhelmina. They get me." 

Nicki is no stranger to the fashion world, or to being a style trendsetter. The recording artist has posed for dozens of magazines, including Vogue ItaliaMarie ClaireTeen VogueElle and Cosmopolitan, and was the face of Roberto Cavalli's 2015 spring/summer campaign.  

She was also seen in a boob-baring look while attending Paris Fashion Week last month.  

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

It's official! @NICKIMINAJ has officially signed with Wilhelmina! https://t.co/PMnkYuUeZw

— Wilhelmina Models (@Wilhelmina) March 28, 2017

 

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Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagicCalvin Harris has found success teaming up with Rihanna on a number of hits, and now he's joining forces with another female superstar: Ariana Grande.

On Twitter, Calvin tweeted the artwork for a new single called "Heatstroke," which, he notes in the caption, features Ariana, as well as Pharrell and rapper Young Thug.

The song was co-written by Calvin, Pharrell and Young Thug, as well as Brittany Hazzard, a singer/songwriter who's known as Starrah.  She's co-written hits for Rihanna, Kevin Gates, Jeremih and Travis Scott.

"Heatstroke" follows in the footsteps of the single Calvin released last month: "Slide," featuring Frank Ocean and Migos.  No word yet on when the single will drop.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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ABC/Randy HolmesJill Scott is headed back on the road this summer to support her latest album, WOMAN.  

The studio project was released back in 2015 and debuted at #1 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. 

The tour will begin at the Hampton Coliseum in Hampton, VA this June, with stops in other cities including Nashville, Baltimore, Atlantic City and San Diego.  

Tickets are on sale now. 

Along with a pair of Jill Scott tickets, you can also pick up a Hallmark Mahogany greeting card created by the award-winning artist.  

The new Jill Scott Greeting Card Collection offers 20 greeting cards for special occasions like Mother's Day, Father's Day and graduation celebrations, as well as cards for friendship, love and support. 

In 2018, Jill Scott fans will be able to purchase more than greeting cards: the collection will expand to include gifts such as notebooks, mugs, trinket trays and pouches.  

Here are Jill's summer tour dates:

6/23 -- Hampton, VA, The Hampton Coliseum 
6/24 -- Oxon Hill, MD, MGM National Harbor 
6/27 -- Baltimore, MD, Modell Performing Arts Center 
7/1 -- New Orleans, LA, Essence Festival 
7/6 -- Kansas City, MO, Midland Theatre 
7/8 -- St. Louis, MO, Fox Theatre 
7/9 -- Nashville, TN, Ryman Auditorium 
7/12 -- Brooklyn, NY, Kings Theatre 
7/13 -- Manshantucket, CT, Foxwood Casino 
7/15 -- Newark, NJ, Prudential Center 
7/16 -- Atlantic City, NJ, Borgota Resort & Spa Casino 
7/20 -- Bethlehem, PA, Sands Bethlehem Event Center 
8/12 -- Oakland, CA, Fox Theatre 
8/15 -- San Diego, CA, Copley Symphony Hall 
8/16 -- Los Angeles, CA, Hollywood Bowl 
8/18 -- Temecula, CA, Perchanga Theatre Resort & Casino 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

"I'm on my way to show you!!!" pic.twitter.com/qqUCV1zc8O

— ⭐Jill Scott⭐ (@missjillscott) March 28, 2017

 

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Ithaka Darin PappasAlbums by N.W.A. and Richard Pryor, the original cast recording of The Wiz, and as a song known as the "national anthem of black America," have been chosen to be preserved in the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress.

The registry chooses recordings each year based on their "cultural, artistic and historical importance to American society and the nation’s audio heritage," according to the Library of Congress.

N.W.A's seminal 1988 album Straight Outta Compton is joining the registry, as is late comic legend Richard Pryor's 1978 recording Wanted: Live in Concert. 

The original cast recording of the 1975 musical The Wiz, featuring Stephanie Mills, is also being preserved, as are several notable R&B singles: Wilson Pickett's 1965 classic "In the Midnight Hour" and Sister Sledge's 1979 smash "We Are Family."

In addition, several recordings of the hymn "Lift Every Voice and Sing," originally set to music in 1905, are being preserved.  According to the National Registry, the song has served as the "black national anthem" since it was adopted by the NAACP in 1919. 

Two different versions of it -- a 1923 recording by Manhattan Harmony Four, and a 1990 all-star charity version credited to Melba Moore and Friends -- are being included in the registry.  Moore's version included Stevie Wonder, Anita Baker, Dionne Warwick and Bobby Brown.

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Courtesy of Rock & Roll Hall of FameThe Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony takes place Friday, April 7, and the rest of the stars who'll be inducting this year's honorees have been announced, along with some special guests.

Confirming media reports, Snoop Dogg will induct Tupac Shakur, while Nile Rodgers will be inducted by Pharrell Williams.

In addition, Lenny Kravitz will perform a very special tribute to Prince, who died last April.  Alicia Keys will also perform, though it's not clear what her role will be.

In addition to Tupac and Nile Rodgers, this year's honorees also include folk-music legend Joan Baez, alternative rockers Pearl Jam, progressive rock heroes Yes, and "Don't Stop Believin'" hitmakers Journey.

The ceremony will premiere on HBO on April 29 at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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ABC/Eddy ChenEn Vogue is finally releasing a new album this summer called Electric Cafe, and hitting the road on an international tour to complement its release. 

The legendary female group, currently comprised of members Cindy Heron-BraggsTerry Ellis and Rhona Bennett, will perform in multiple European cities later this year, including Dublin, Hamburg and Paris.

Before confirming the release date of the forthcoming project, Cindy told ABC Radio that fans could expect an "evolved sound" from the disc.

"We worked with our original producers, Denzil Foster and Thomas McElroy, so they know us. They know how to capture that signature En Vogue sound," she explained.  

In a statement, Cindy says, "Our new release has been a long time coming and we can't wait to share where we are musically today! Hope our fans will enjoy." 

The tour starts Friday in Cape Town, South Africa and wraps up April 25 in Bremen, Germany. 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

 

New label alert! We've got a new home at @eOneMusicUS! New album #ElectricCafe coming Summer 2017. Read more here: https://t.co/tRgSMsm4WR pic.twitter.com/ZYKbAF3BTJ

— En Vogue (@EnVogueMusic) March 27, 2017

 

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ABC/Mitch Haaseth; ABC/Randy HolmesAnthony Anderson is well aware of the controversy surrounding tonight's black-ish episode, which guest-stars troubled R&B singer Chris Brown.  

While Anderson says it wasn't his decision to have Brown appear, he's fine with it.

"I've known Chris Brown personally since he was fourteen years old and I had no idea that he was coming onto our show," Anderson tells ABC Radio.  

He explains that it was an encounter between black-ish co-creator Kenya Barris and Brown that led to his appearance.

"Kenya was out one day having dinner and Chris was at the same restaurant and knew who Kenya was...," says Anderson. "He walked over and said, "Hey man, I love your show. I just wanted to let you know that I want to be on it. Can we make that happen?"

"And the next thing I know, this episode was written and they were like, 'Yo man...we got Chris Brown to do it!'" And I was like, 'That's great.'"

On tonight's episode, Brown plays Rich Youngsta, a popular rapper who collaborates with Anderson's character on an ad campaign that some find offensive. Anderson says Brown got the role because he fit the part.

"Our show is written as it is and whoever we feel is best to come in and be best at this character," he explains. "Chris expressed an interest in it and it was like, 'I think...we have that character for you."'

According to Anderson, black-ish remains "unique" because it does "not shy away from" controversial topics, and tonight's episode is no different.

"He did a masterful job at it," says the actor. "I think people are going to be pleasantly surprised by the work that he did." 

ABC's Black-ish airs at 9:30 p.m ET. 

Copyright © 2017, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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