Hip Hop News

Arsenio Hall's first Netflix stand-up comedy special, 'Smart & Classy,' coming next month

Courtesy of NetflixArsenio Hall is Coming 2 America...and coming to Netflix.

"It’s not coming on till October 29th, but I can’t wait any longer to tell you. 'I’m so excited, and I just can’t hide it,'" the comedian and former talk show host tweeted on Tuesday. "My first @NetflixIsAJoke standup special!"

In an accompanying video, Arsenio announces that the special is called Smart & Classy...and then pretends to pass gas.

Arsenio Hall: Smart & Classy will feature the star talking about today's political climate, what it was like to win Celebrity Apprentice, getting older, his favorite drug and the classic movie Coming to America, whose sequel he's starring in, along with Eddie Murphy.

"There's nothing more important than laughter," says Arsenio. "See ya there!"

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Lizzo offers up apology following Postmates debacle: "Imma really be more responsible"

Luke Gilford

Lizzo found herself in the hot seat earlier this week, after the breakout star blasted a Postmates delivery driver for allegedly failing to drop off her order. 

Monday night, the Texas-bred chart topper shared an accusatory post on Twitter claiming her food delivery had been stolen. 

"Hey @Postmates this girl Tiffany W. stole my food she lucky I don’t fight no more,” Lizzo wrote in a since-deleted tweet.

While the feisty comment seemed harmless at first, the Internet quickly erupted over Lizzo's handling of the situation. Many social media users criticized the multi-talent for potentially putting the delivery driver in danger by revealing her her name and photo.   Others were afraid that Lizzo's complaint might lead to the driver's firing.

Tuesday, in the aftermath of the uproar, Lizzo issued a formal apology.

“I apologize for putting that girl on blast,” she tweeted. “I understand I have a large following and that there were so many variables that could’ve put her in danger."

She added: "Imma really be more responsible with my use of social media and check my petty and my pride at the door."

As they say, "Truth Hurts."

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Watch now: First teaser for Rihanna's 'Savage X Fenty Show' on Amazon

Getty Images for Savage X Fenty Show Presented by Amazon Prime Video Rihanna's Savage X Fenty fashion show at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY last week was a massive, star-studded spectacle, and now you can get a little glimpse of what went down, thanks to a new teaser trailer for Amazon's presentation of the event.

In the teaser, we see Rihanna backstage, declaring, "I'm ready."  That's followed by a lot of frantic preparation, as scantily clad dancers run to take their places as the crowd cheers.  When the countdown to the start of the show ends, the screen fades to black -- we'll just have to tune in to see what happens next.

Savage X Fenty Show will stream exclusively on Amazon Prime Video starting this Friday. 

As previously reported, the Savage X Fenty Show featured performances by Halsey, Migos, DJ Khaled, Big Sean, A$AP Ferg, Fat Joe, Fabolous and Tierra Whack, as well as appearances by 21 Savage, Normani, Laverne Cox, Gigi and Bella Hadid, Cara Delevigne and Alex Wek, among others.

The new Savage X Fenty Fall/Winter 2019 lingerie collection hits Amazon on Friday as well.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


#Mommiana: Cardi B reveals she's ready for baby number following her sophomore album

ABC/Image Group LACardi B isn't showing any signs of slowing down, especially when it comes to growing her family. 

Monday, the Bronx-bred chart topper took to Instagram to detail her itinerary for next year, which according to her will include a new album, a supporting tour and baby number two. 

"My plan is to take a couple of months working on my album," Cardi explained during the live stream session. "And right after I finish my album, I'm going to rehearse for a tour."  

The "Money" rapper noted that she's already negotiating a hefty tour deal and currently has two songs in the chamber ready for the follow-up to her 2018 debut, Invasion of Privacy.

Once her tour wraps up, Cardi revealed she's ready to take on being a mom for a second time.

“After my tour, I want to have another kid,” she said. “And I’m really planning to do all of that in less than a year.” 

Cardi and husband Offset welcomed daughter Kulture last July.

Before all that starts, however, Cardi will appear alongside Chance the Rapper and T.I. in Netflix’s new hip-hop competition series Rhythm Flow.  The 10 hour-long episodes will roll out over the course of three weeks starting October 9. 

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Alicia Keys connects with Miguel for dialed-down ballad "Show Me Love"

RCA RecordsAlicia Keys has returned with a powerful new single and video titled “Show Me Love,” featuring Miguel

Under the direction of Cara Stricker, the dialed-down ballad is brought to life in a riveting music video, which is pieced together through a series of single shots. The visual features cameos from Michael B. Jordan and Zoe Saldana, as well as the Avengers actress' husband, Marco Perego-Saldana

"Show Me Love" marks the first release from Keys’ forthcoming seventh studio album, whose title has yet to be revealed.

The track has also inspired a "visual sonic installation" which will open to the public in New York City from September 18 to September 22.  The installation will be an "artistic meditation on the different emotional journeys and expressions of love we experience throughout life," according to a statement.

“I have been on this journey to be more vulnerable; in my life, in my music; and this new visual experience reflects this time," Keys said of her latest offering in a statement.

"'Show Me Love' displays different expressions of love, the journey of it, the push and pull, the struggle and the eventual joy and peace."

The Grammy-winning vocalist is set to perform her newest single during her headlining set at this year's Global Citizen Festival in New York's Central Park on September 28.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 


Chris Rock prepping new essay collection 'My First Black Boyfriend'

Walt Disney Television/Yolanda PerezThe New York Times reports that Emmy-winning stand-up superstar Chris Rock is getting literary, penning a new essay collection.

My First Black Boyfriend will chronicle Rock's "experiences with race and relationships," according to the Times, including "stories dating back to when he first began doing standup comedy in the Eighties."

Publishing house Celadon will be releasing the collection.

"A lot of celebrities write books, and they don’t always have something to say," said Deb Futter, co-publisher and the company's senior vice president. "I think Chris Rock has something to say." 

Futter notes that Rock has the ability to "point out things that maybe need to be pointed out in our crazy world."

Rock's first book, Rock This!, became a New York Times bestseller after its release in 1997.

Last year, the 54-year-old returned to a forum he arguably helped perfect: the stand-up special, with Tambourine for Netflix. In October, he'll be seen on Netflix opposite Eddie Murphy in the Rudy Ray Moore biopic Dolemite Is My Name.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Lee Daniels to direct 'The United States vs. Billie Holiday,' starring Andra Day in title role

ABC/Craig SjodinMany have compared Grammy-nominated singer Andra Day to the late, great Billie Holiday. Now, she'll portray the legendary jazz singer onscreen in a new movie directed and produced by Lee Daniels.

The United States vs. Billie Holiday focuses on one particular aspect of Holiday's career: the fact that she was targeted by the Federal Department of Narcotics targeted her with an undercover sting operation led by black Federal Agent Jimmy Fletcher, with whom she'd had an affair.

The movie was also inspired by the 2015 New York Times bestseller Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs.

"It is an extraordinary responsibility to tell the story of the iconic Billie Holiday," says Daniels in a statement. "Her story is very personal to me and I hope to do justice when bringing to light this profound and complicated soul -- a great artist and an unsung civil rights warrior."

In addition to Day, the cast also includes Trevante Rhodes, Garrett Hedlund, and Natasha Lyonne.  Suzan-Lori Parks, the first African-American woman to receive a Pulitzer Prize, is writing the script. Her credits include TopDog/Underdog and Native Son.

The movie will start shooting next month in Montreal. It will be the first film Daniels has directed since 2013's drama The Butler.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 11:59AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink
in 

The Highwomen arrive at the top of 'Billboard''s country album chart 

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Low Country Sound/Elektra/EMGThe Highwomen are living up to their name, debuting at the top of Billboard’s Top Country Albums chart this week.

The supergroup -- made up of Maren Morris, Americana Grammy-winners Brandi Carlile and Amanda Shires, and songwriter Natalie Hemby -- is the first all-female act to top the country album ranking since Miranda Lambert’s Pistol Annies did back in November with Interstate Gospel.

All in all, the Highwomen sold 34,000 album equivalent units, which was also enough to also debut at #1 on the Americana/Folks Albums chart, as well as at #10 on the all-genre Billboard 200.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 11:53AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Tom DeLonge files for divorce from wife Jennifer

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iStock/Gerasimov174Tom DeLonge has filed for divorce from his wife Jennifer after 18 years of marriage.

According to TMZ, the former Blink-182 frontman is citing "irreconcilable differences." He's seeking joint legal and physical custody of the couple's two children, daughter Ava and son Jonas.

Tom and Jennifer, who had been friends since high school, married in 2001. The Blink hit "All the Small Things" was written about Jennifer while she and Tom were dating.

Tom is currently on tour with his band Angels & Airwaves. The outing, AVA's first in seven years, continues Tuesday in New York City.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 11:45AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Evanescence announces co-headlining European tour with Within Temptation 

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Credit: P.R. BrownEvanescence is teaming up with Dutch symphonic metal band Within Temptation for a co-headlining European tour next spring.

The joint outing, dubbed the Worlds Collide tour, launches April 4 in Belgium, and will make stops in France, the U.K., Germany, Switzerland, Italy and The Netherlands.

"We are very excited to join forces with Within Temptation for what I know will be an epic tour in April," Evanescence says. "We've had people ask us about doing something together for a long time, and we're going to make it worth the wait!"

For the full list of dates and ticket info, visit WorldsCollideTour.net.

Evanescence's most recent release is 2017's Synthesis, which featured new versions of songs from the band's back catalog reworked with orchestral instruments and electronics. A new album of original material -- the follow-up to 2011's self-titled effort -- is in the works.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 11:30AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Green Day, System of a Down, Volbeat headlining Germany's Rock am Ring and Rock im Park festivals

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ABC/Randy HolmesGreen DaySystem of a Down and Volbeat will headline Germany's 2020 Rock am Ring and Rock im Park festivals, held June 5-7.

Other artists on the bill include KornDisturbed, DeftonesThe OffspringWeezerYungbludOf Mice & Men and Motionless in White.

Like the U.K.'s Reading and Leeds festivals, Rock am Ring and Rock im Park share one lineup and take place concurrently over one weekend. For the full lineup and ticket info, visit Rock-am-Ring.com or Rock-im-Park.com.

Green Day, of course, is headlining next summer's much-hyped Hella Mega tour, which also features Weezer and Fall Out Boy. The worldwide outing launches June 13 in Paris, and will come to the U.S. in July.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 11:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Country star trivia

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Comstock/ThinkstockWaylon Jennings achieved his fourth #1 with this 1975 song questioning whether country music had lost its way. Can you name the classic tune from his Dreaming My Dreams album? ANSWER: "Are You Sure Hank Done It This Way."

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 11:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Toto's Steve Lukather among guests performing at Spinal Tap bassist Derek Smalls' fall solo concerts

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Credit: Rob ShanahanDerek Smalls, bassist for the legendary mock-rock band Spinal Tap -- a.k.a. comic actor Harry Shearer -- has lined up four West Coast solo concerts this fall in support of his star-studded 2018 debut solo album, Smalls Change (Meditations upon Ageing).  He's being joined by an equally star-studded lineup of backing musicians for the shows.

At the concerts, scheduled for this November in Los Angeles; Seattle; Vancouver, Canada; and San Francisco, Smalls will be joined by three virtuoso guitarists will be joining Smalls: Toto's Steve LukatherDweezil Zappa and longtime Stevie Nicks guitarist Waddy Wachtel.

In addition, several celebrities will take part in the concerts -- dubbed Lukewarm Water Live! -- via satellite link-up, among them Steely Dan's Donald Fagen, guitar whiz Steve Vai and actress and comedian Jane Lynch. Also joining the musical festivities remotely will be the Snarky Puppy Horns and the Hungarian Studio Orchestra.

"Playing live with a symphony orchestra and some of the greats in rock music was never anything I could even hope to dream of," says Derek in a statement. "But I can now!"

At the concerts, Smalls will be performing tunes from the Smalls Change album, as well as selections from the Spinal Tap catalog. More guests are expected to be announced soon.

The four shows will be the precursor to a major world tour that Smalls is planning to mount in 2020.

Smalls Change featured guest appearances by such well-known musicians as Fagen, David CrosbyPeter FramptonRick Wakeman, Lukather, Wachtel, Dweezil Zappa, Paul ShafferJoe Satriani and Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith.

Derek recently debuted an official video for the Smalls Change track "Gimme Some (More) Money."

Here's the full list of concerts:

11/6 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Wiltern
11/9 -- Seattle, WA, Moore Theatre
11/11 -- Vancouver, BC, Canada, The Vogue Theatre
11/14 -- San Francisco, CA, The Warfield Theatre

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 11:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

The Prodigy honors Keith Flint on late frontman's 50th birthday

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Gus Stewart/RedfernsKeith Flint would've celebrated his 50th birthday today, and The Prodigy is marking the occasion by paying tribute to the group's late frontman.

"Happy birthday Flinty," surviving Prodigy members Liam Howlett and Maxim tweeted Tuesday. "Not a single day passes u aren’t in our thoughts, we miss you brother. Raise the roof wherever u are."

The tweet also includes the hashtags #WeLiveForever, #WeLivefortheBeats, #RaisetheRoof and #NeverStop.

Flint died by hanging in March at age 49.

In August, Howlett revealed that new Prodigy music was in the works. The group's most recent album is 2018's No Tourists.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 10:40AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Taylor Swift will be first woman to open an NFL stadium, as she announces Lover Fest East & West 

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Valheria Rocha/TAS Rights ManagementHere's the good news: Taylor Swift is going to perform live in support of her new album Lover. Now, here's the bad news: It's not exactly a tour.

Taylor has announced Lover Fest West and Lover Fest West, her only U.S. concert dates of 2020.  Each event will take place over two days at two different stadiums: Gillette Stadium in Foxborough, MA on July 31 and August 1, and L.A.'s SoFi Stadium on July 25 and 26.  In fact, Taylor will be the first woman ever to officially open an NFL stadium when she kicks off the latter venue's inaugural year of events.

Additional artists will be joining Taylor at the two festival events; they'll be announced later.

On Twitter, Taylor wrote, "The Lover album is open fields, sunsets, SUMMER. I want to perform it in a way that feels authentic. I want to go to some places I haven’t been and play festivals. Where we didn’t have festivals, we made some. Introducing, Lover Fest East West!"

If you're already a Taylor Swift Tix Verified Fan, you can RSVP today for Preferred Presale Access at VerifiedFan.Ticketmaster.com/TaylorSwiftTix. Registration for new Verified Fans starts September 19 at 4 p.m. ET and the general on-sale date is October 14.

Capital One cardholders will get priority access to tickets on October 15 and 16. More information is available at TaylorSwift.com.

As for Taylor's international fans, they'll be getting a series of concerts and festival dates, which will begin June 20 in Belgium and run through July 18 in Brazil.

Here are all of Taylor's confirmed dates:

6/20 -- Werchter Boutique, Werchter, Belgium
6/24 -– The Waldbühne Berlin, Germany
6/26 -- Oslo Sommertid, Oslo, Norway
7/1 -- Roskilde Festival, Roskilde, Denmark
7/3 -- Open'er Festival, Gdynia, Poland
7/5 -- Festival de Nîmes, Nîmes, France
7/9 -- NOS Alive, Oeiras, Portugal
7/18 -- Allianz Parque Sao Paulo, Brazil
7/25 -- SoFi Stadium, Los Angeles, California
7/26 -- SoFi Stadium, Los Angeles, California
7/31-- Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts
8/1-- Gillette Stadium, Foxborough, Massachusetts

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 10:36AM Andrea Dresdale PermalinkPermalink

Mandy Moore releases first new music in 10 years: "When I Wasn't Watching" 

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Lauren DukoffIf you were missing her music like candy, good news! Mandy Moore is finally getting back to her singing roots.

The Emmy-nominated This Is Us actress has released her first new music in 10 years: the self-reflective single “When I Wasn’t Watching.” The song is set to appear on Mandy’s forthcoming album, due out early next year.

"The idea of diving back into music after so much time and personal change was really intimidating to me for a while," Mandy says in a statement. "But then I finally realized: I'm the only person who can make this move. It all has to start with me."

As for what the song is about, Mandy says it’s about the universal experience of “feeling lost and not quite understanding how you’ve found yourself at a certain point in your life.”

“I'm a big believer in the idea that what you've journeyed through is ultimately going to factor into the person you become, and how you'll greet whatever big challenge you face next,” she adds.

Mandy began working on her new album, the follow-up to 2009’s Amanda Leigh, earlier this year, with her husband, musician Taylor Goldsmith, among the collaborators. She recorded each song live with a full band and says she aimed to make a “very California-sounding record – something that feels sunshiny and airy and natural.”

"I very much feel like I'm at the helm of the ship now, where I'm stepping back into music completely on my own terms," she says. "Everything that's happened up until this point has gotten me to where I am today, and I'm so excited to just keep moving forward.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 10:35AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink
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Whitney Houston hologram tour kicks off in January 

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BASE HologramWhitney Houston fans will have an opportunity to see her again in concert -- via hologram.

On Tuesday, BASE Hologram announced in partnership with The Estate of Whitney E. Houston the firstdates for An Evening With Whitney: The Whitney Houston Hologram Tour.

The first show takes place in Mexico in January, and will feature Houston's hits, including “I Will Always Love You,” “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me”), “The Greatest Love of All” and “Higher Love.”

Choreographer Fatima Robinson, who has worked with Rihanna, Kanye West, and Mary J. Blige, will oversee the production, which will include a live band and backup dancers.

“Whitney Houston was a talent beyond words, and her influence and artistry transcended all boundaries,” said Brian Becker, chairman and CEO of BASE Entertainment and BASE Hologram.

“What we are creating here is a new type of theatrical concert experience designed to capture that magic," Becker continued. "When she performed, there was an unmatched level of charisma and emotion to it -- that’s what we are going to bring to audiences and it’s an honor to be able to help add to her legacy with this project.”

Houston was 48 years old when she died of an accidental drowning in a Beverly Hills hotel in 2012. Throughout her decades-long career, she earned six Grammys, one Emmy, 22 American Music Awards, and 16 Billboard Music Awards.

This year, Houston returned to the Billboard charts, thanks to a remixed version of her 1990 cover of Steve Winwood's "Higher Love."

Tickets for the U.K. dates go on sale September 20.  North American dates will be announced later; that leg is set to begin in the fall of 2020.

Here are the announced tour dates:

1/23 – 2/9 -- Mexico (additional information to come soon)
2/27 -- M&S Bank Arena 2 Arena, Liverpool
2/28 -- Apollo, Manchester
2/29 -- First Direct Arena, Leeds
3/1 -- SEC Armadillo, Glasgow
3/2 -- P&J Arena, Aberdeen
3/3 -- Bord Gais Theatre, Dublin
3/4 -- Arena, Birmingham
3/5 -- Bournemouth International Centre, Bournemouth
3/6 -- Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
3/7 -- Centre, Brighton
3/9 -- Royal Concert Hall,Nottingham
3/10 -- Hammersmith Apollo, London
3/12 -- Bozar, Brussels, Belgium
3/13 -- AFAS Live, Amsterdam, Netherlands
3/14 -- Capitole, Ghent, Belgium
3/19 -- Samsung Hall, Zurich, Switzerland
3/20 -- Admirals Palast, Berlin, Germany
3/22 -- Stadhalle F, Vienna, Austria
3/23 -- Inchebo Expo Arena, Bratislava, Slovakia
3/25 -- Forum Black Box, Copenhagen, Denmark
3/26 -- Folketeatret, Olso, Norway
3/28 -- Cirkus, Stockholm, Sweden
3/30 -- BKZ Oktyabrisky, St Petersburg, Russia
3/31 -- Kremlin Concert Hall, Moscow, Russia
4/2 -- Palace Ukraine, Kiev, Ukraine
4/3 -- Palace of the Republic, Minsk, Belarus

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 9:17AM Andrea Dresdale PermalinkPermalink

Nashville notes 

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Burke/Triolo Productions/ThinkstockChris Stapleton's set to join Sheryl Crow for her appearance this Friday on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. He sings on the track "Tell Me When It's Over" from her new Threads album.

Sara Evans will kick off her ten-date Blue Christmas Tour December 5 in Huntsville, Alabama. Newcomers Temecula Road will open.

"After a Few" hitmaker Travis Denning will put out the new track, "Heartbeat of a Small Town," on Friday.

You can check out newcomer Niko Moon's new music video for "Good Time" on YouTube now.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

"I Hope You're Happy Now": Carly Pearce opens up about the breakup that inspired her new song 

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ABC/Image Group LACarly Pearce is now happily engaged to Michael Ray, and they're on the way to the altar sometime this fall.  But before their romance could blossom, she had to deal with a painful reality: breaking up with her then-boyfriend.

It's something she tackles head-on in her new album.

"I want people to know: Yes, I fell in love. And yes, there's going to be those songs," Carly explains. "But in the process of falling in love, I have hurt someone else.  I broke somebody else's heart a few years ago, and had to figure out some things in my own life that maybe weren't serving me well."

That experience inspired "I Hope You're Happy Now," the single Carly co-wrote with Luke Combs and sings with Lee Brice.  It'll be out September 27.

Carly vows the new album will be as transparent as her first, Every Little Thing, the chart-topping title track from which is about another breakup.

"In the way that my first record was very unapologetically honest, this one is, too," she tells ABC Radio. "And with that, there's still going to be those heartbreak songs. There's still going to be those vulnerable moments. There's confessions, there's all kinds of things on this record that I feel like dive a little bit deeper."

"Social media shows some things," Carly adds, "but I feel like you don't know the whole story until you really listen to this record.  And it's all about finding my way to the place that I am now."

And Carly teases, "But it's gonna have a little bit of everything on it. There might be a few duets."

Carly's sophomore album -- likely including a rumored duet with Michael Ray -- will arrive sometime in 2020.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Raphael Saadiq's "Something Keeps Calling" lands in 'Billboard' Adult R&B Songs top ten

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Columbia Records

Raphael Saadiq continues to add impressive feats to his storied career with his latest effort, "Something Keeps Calling." 

Lifted from his newly-released album Jimmy Lee, the deeply introspective single has ascended to the #4 position on Billboard's Adult R&B Songs Chart. The Rob Bacon-assisted ballad accounts for Saadiq's first top-10 hit on the tally in 10 years, following "Never Give You Up" featuring Stevie Wonder and CJ, which similarly peaked at #4 in July 2009. 

Prior to that, the former Tony! Toni! Toné! frontman scored his first top-10 Adult R&B Songs entry with "Ask of You," which rose to #3 in May 1995. The deep cut is Saadiq's only top-10 hit on the chart as a solo artist. 

Monday, the veteran R&B crooner announced he'll embark on a North American trek next year in support of Jimmy Lee. The tour's slated to kick off in January in San Diego, CA and will hit major cities including New Orleans, Dallas, Atlanta, New York and Detroit before wrapping in Los Angeles. 

Here's the full 2020 tour itinerary:

1/27 -- Dallas, TX, House of Blues
1/28 -- New Orleans, LA, Tipitina's
1/30 -- Fort Lauderdale, FL, Parker Playhouse
1/31 -- Orlando, FL, The Plaza Live
2/1 -- Atlanta, GA, The Tabernacle
2/3 -- Asheville, NC, The Orange Peel
2/4 -- Nashville, TN, Marathon Music Works
2/5 -- Charlotte, NC, The Fillmore Charlotte
2/7 -- Norfolk, VA, The NorVa
2/8 -- Washington, D.C., 9:30 Club
2/12 -- Philadelphia, PA, The Fillmore
2/13/ -- New York, NY, Terminal 5
2/14 -- Newark, NJ, Prudential Hall
2/15 -- Boston, MA, Big Night Live
2/17 -- Louisville, KY, Old Forester's Paristown Hall
2/18 -- Royal Oak MI, Royal Oak Music Theatre
2/19 -- St. Louis, MO, The Pageant
2/21 -- Chicago, IL, Vic Theatre
2/22 -- Minneapolis, MN, First Avenue
2/25 -- Seattle, WA, Neptune
2/27 -- Portland, OR, Crystal Ballroom
2/28 -- Oakland, CA, Fox Theater
2/29 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Wiltern

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Lewis Capaldi kicks off U.S. tour tonight, says fans can expect "music and toilet humor"

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Alexandra Gavillet

Talk about good timing: Lewis Capaldi's song "Someone You Loved" has just become his first U.S. top 10 hit, and tonight, he kicks off a U.S. headlining tour in Dallas, TX. 

As for what fans can expect from his live shows, the self-deprecating Scottish singer/songwriter says it's all about music, laughs -- and not grossing people out.

"It's just me up there, shouting down a microphone for an hour and a half, trying not to sweat so much that people are disgusted," Lewis jokes to ABC Radio.  "We play the songs and they're, like, quite emotional, and a lot of them are kind of mid-tempo ballady-type vibes.  But in between songs, I try to keep it as lighthearted as possible and have a laugh with people."

According to Lewis, just because his songs are emotionally heavy doesn't mean the entire night has to be a downer.  In fact, he hates it when bands get too serious onstage.

"I've been to see so many bands where they've got a song coming up and the songs are quite emotional as is, and they start talking about, you know, 'I wrote this song about the lady who broke my heart...,'" Lewis  complains.  "You're like, "Shut up! We know what it's about. Just give us the music and in between, I dunno, make a toilet humor joke!'"

He laughs, "And that's exactly what you get. You get music and toilet humor. That's what you get when you come and see a Lewis Capaldi show!" 

The U.S. leg of Lewis' tour wraps up October 12 in Washington, D.C.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:00AM Andrea Dresdale PermalinkPermalink

1975 Moody Blues side project 'Blue Jays' to be reissued on vinyl in October

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UMe

In 1975, Moody Blues guitarist Justin Hayward and bassist John Lodge teamed up to record a collaborative side project called Blue Jays. Now, the long-out-of-print album is set to be reissued as a vinyl LP on October 4.

The 10-track collection was recorded during The Moody Blues' five-year hiatus that began after the release of 1972's Seventh Sojourn, and ended with the 1978 arrival of OctaveBlue Jays featured three songs written by Hayward, three tunes penned by Lodge and two co-written by Justin and John. The record was produced by longtime Moody Blues collaborator Tony Clarke.

Blue Jays peaked at #16 on the Billboard 200, and yielded a minor hit single in the U.S., "I Dreamed Last Night," which reached #47 on the Hot 100 tally. A non-album single called "Blue Guitar" released in 1975 and credited to Hayward and Lodge, was a #8 hit in the U.K. The track actually featured Justin backed by the band 10cc.

In a recent interview with ABC Radio, Lodge said he wasn't aware of plans to reissue Blue Jays, which he called "a really special album."

Both Hayward and Lodge have been performing songs from Blue Jays at their respective recent solo concerts . John included a live version of one of the tunes, "Saved by the Music," on his recently released solo compilation B Yond: The Very Best Of.

The Blue Jays LP is available for pre-order now. Here's the full track list:

Side A
"This Morning"
"Remember Me (My Friend)"
"My Brother"
"You"
"Nights Winters Years"

Side B
"Saved by the Music"
"I Dreamed Last Night"
"Who Are You Now"
"Maybe"
"When You Wake Up"

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink

Lauren Daigle sets first-ever headlining arena tour, kicking off in 2020

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ABC/Eric McCandless

Following an amazingly successful 2019, "You Say" singer Lauren Daigle is looking ahead to a major career milestone for 2020: Her first ever headlining arena tour.

So far, Lauren's sold out every one of her concerts in support of her Grammy-winning album, Look Up Child, but her new world tour will take things to the next level.  The 44-city trek kicks off January 18 in Melbourne, Australia, and gets to North America February 20, starting in Pensacola, FL.  The tour will close in Lauren's hometown of Lafayette, LA with a show at the CAJUNDOME on July 18.

“This year has been life-changing,” Lauren says in a statement. "There’s no better feeling than to be able to look out from the stage and see how people have connected with the songs on this album.  Our shows feel like one big party of togetherness, and I can’t wait to create a whole new tour for 2020.  It’s going to be so much fun!”

Tour tickets go on sale to the general public in the U.S. and Canada on September 20 at 10 a.m. local time via LaurenDaigle.com/tour.  American Express Card Members can buy them Tuesday at noon local time. VIP packages, which include a pre-show performance and Q&A with Lauren, plus exclusive merchandise, will also be available.

The Lauren Daigle World Tour will feature an all-new stage production, design and set list -- and of course, "You Say" and her current single, "Rescue."  Folk/soul duo JOHNNYSWIM will open select U.S. dates.

Here are Lauren's North American tour dates:

2/20 -- Pensacola Bay Center, Pensacola, FL
2/21 -- VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena, Jacksonville, FL
2/22 -- Bojangles’ Coliseum, Charlotte, NC
2/27 -- Bon Secours Wellness Arena, Greenville, SC
2/28 -- Thompson-Boling Arena, Knoxville, TN
2/29 -- Greensboro Coliseum, Greensboro, NC
3/5 -- American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX
3/6 -- Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK
3/7 -- CenturyLink Center, Bossier City, LA
3/12 -- Van Andel Arena, Grand Rapids, MI
3/13 -- Ford Center, Evansville, IN
3/14 -- Grossinger Motors Arena, Bloomington, IL
3/15 -- Huntington Center, Toledo, OH
4/30 -- Rupp Arena, Lexington, KY
5/1 -- Berglund Center, Roanoke, VA
5/7 -- State Farm Arena, Atlanta, GA
5/8 -- Amway Center, Orlando, FL
5/9 -- BB&T Center, Sunrise, FL
5/14 -- CHI Health Center, Omaha, NE
5/15 -- Target Center, Minneapolis, MN
5/16 -- Denny Sanford PREMIER Center, Sioux Falls, SD
5/28 -- Sprint Center, Kansas City, MO
5/29 -- Chaifetz Arena, St. Louis, MO
5/30 -- Resch Center, Green Bay, WI
6/18 -- Allstate Arena, Rosemont, IL
6/19 -- Allen County War Memorial Coliseum, Fort Wayne, IN
6/20 -- Bridgestone Arena, Nashville, TN
6/25 -- Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
6/26 -- Agganis Arena, Boston, MA
6/27 -- XL Center, Hartford, CT
7/1 -- Mohegan Sun Arena at Casey Plaza, Wilkes-Barre, PA
7/2 -- Scotiabank Arena, Toronto, ON
7/3 -- Bell Centre, Montreal, QC
7/9 -- PPG Paints Arena, Pittsburgh, PA
7/10 -- Giant Center, Hershey, PA
7/11 -- Scope Arena, Norfolk, VA
7/16 -- Toyota Center, Houston, TX

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:00AM Andrea Dresdale PermalinkPermalink

Skillet searches for a "gateway to a better world" with 'Eden' graphic novel

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Z2 ComicsIf you're looking for something to read while listening to Skillet's new album Victorious, look no further than Eden, a new graphic novel created in collaboration with the band. For frontman John Cooper, the chance to write a graphic novel was a dream come true.

"I love comic books," Cooper tells ABC Radio. "I've got a bunch of Marvel tattoos, superheroes all over my body, on my leg. I just love comics, I've loved them ever since I was a kid, and I love science fiction, Star Wars and things like that."

As fate would have it, a publisher called Z2 Comics, which has worked with musicians included The Black KeysDan Auerbach and Black Veil BridesAndy Biersack, gave Cooper a call and asked if Skillet would be interested in the graphic novel treatment.

"He said, 'Do you have ideas?' I said, 'Of course!'" Cooper remembers. "I've got a million...bizarre science fiction ideas for novels that I just assumed I'd never do anything with."

Cooper's ideas eventually were turned into the story of Eden, which features all the Skillet band members as fictional characters in a post-apocalyptic world.

"[We're] trying to find a gateway to a better world, to a world that isn't so hateful, that isn't so violent," Cooper explains.

Thematically, Cooper wanted Eden to reflect his favorite sci-fi stories.

"I just think that all science fiction has a great philosophy to it: philosophical, theological, metaphysical sometimes," he says. "So this has got all those great elements of science fiction." 

Eden is out now. It's on track to be Z2 Comics' best-selling book.

Meanwhile, Skillet will launch a co-headlining tour with Alter Bridge September 22 in Baltimore.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019 at 6:00AM Music News Group PermalinkPermalink
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Whitney Houston hologram tour kicks off in January

BASE HologramWhitney Houston fans will have an opportunity to see her again in concert -- via hologram.

On Tuesday, BASE Hologram announced in partnership with The Estate of Whitney E. Houston the firstdates for An Evening With Whitney: The Whitney Houston Hologram Tour.

The first show takes place in Mexico in January, and will feature Houston's hits, including “I Will Always Love You,” “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me”), “The Greatest Love of All” and “Higher Love.”

Choreographer Fatima Robinson, who has worked with Rihanna, Kanye West, and Mary J. Blige, will oversee the production, which will include a live band and backup dancers.

“Whitney Houston was a talent beyond words, and her influence and artistry transcended all boundaries,” said Brian Becker, chairman and CEO of BASE Entertainment and BASE Hologram.

“What we are creating here is a new type of theatrical concert experience designed to capture that magic," Becker continued. "When she performed, there was an unmatched level of charisma and emotion to it -- that’s what we are going to bring to audiences and it’s an honor to be able to help add to her legacy with this project.”

Houston was 48 years old when she died of an accidental drowning in a Beverly Hills hotel in 2012. Throughout her decades-long career, she earned six Grammys, one Emmy, 22 American Music Awards, and 16 Billboard Music Awards.

This year, Houston returned to the Billboard charts, thanks to a remixed version of her 1990 cover of Steve Winwood's "Higher Love."

Tickets for the U.K. dates go on sale September 20.  North American dates will be announced later; that leg is set to begin in the fall of 2020.

Here are the announced tour dates:

1/23 – 2/9 -- Mexico (additional information to come soon)
2/27 -- M&S Bank Arena 2 Arena, Liverpool
2/28 -- Apollo, Manchester
2/29 -- First Direct Arena, Leeds
3/1 -- SEC Armadillo, Glasgow
3/2 -- P&J Arena, Aberdeen
3/3 -- Bord Gais Theatre, Dublin
3/4 -- Arena, Birmingham
3/5 -- Bournemouth International Centre, Bournemouth
3/6 -- Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff
3/7 -- Centre, Brighton
3/9 -- Royal Concert Hall,Nottingham
3/10 -- Hammersmith Apollo, London
3/12 -- Bozar, Brussels, Belgium
3/13 -- AFAS Live, Amsterdam, Netherlands
3/14 -- Capitole, Ghent, Belgium
3/19 -- Samsung Hall, Zurich, Switzerland
3/20 -- Admirals Palast, Berlin, Germany
3/22 -- Stadhalle F, Vienna, Austria
3/23 -- Inchebo Expo Arena, Bratislava, Slovakia
3/25 -- Forum Black Box, Copenhagen, Denmark
3/26 -- Folketeatret, Olso, Norway
3/28 -- Cirkus, Stockholm, Sweden
3/30 -- BKZ Oktyabrisky, St Petersburg, Russia
3/31 -- Kremlin Concert Hall, Moscow, Russia
4/2 -- Palace Ukraine, Kiev, Ukraine
4/3 -- Palace of the Republic, Minsk, Belarus

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Raphael Saadiq's "Something Keeps Calling" lands in 'Billboard' Adult R&B Songs top ten

Columbia Records

Raphael Saadiq continues to add impressive feats to his storied career with his latest effort, "Something Keeps Calling." 

Lifted from his newly-released album Jimmy Lee, the deeply introspective single has ascended to the #4 position on Billboard's Adult R&B Songs Chart. The Rob Bacon-assisted ballad accounts for Saadiq's first top-10 hit on the tally in 10 years, following "Never Give You Up" featuring Stevie Wonder and CJ, which similarly peaked at #4 in July 2009. 

Prior to that, the former Tony! Toni! Toné! frontman scored his first top-10 Adult R&B Songs entry with "Ask of You," which rose to #3 in May 1995. The deep cut is Saadiq's only top-10 hit on the chart as a solo artist. 

Monday, the veteran R&B crooner announced he'll embark on a North American trek next year in support of Jimmy Lee. The tour's slated to kick off in January in San Diego, CA and will hit major cities including New Orleans, Dallas, Atlanta, New York and Detroit before wrapping in Los Angeles. 

Here's the full 2020 tour itinerary:

1/27 -- Dallas, TX, House of Blues
1/28 -- New Orleans, LA, Tipitina's
1/30 -- Fort Lauderdale, FL, Parker Playhouse
1/31 -- Orlando, FL, The Plaza Live
2/1 -- Atlanta, GA, The Tabernacle
2/3 -- Asheville, NC, The Orange Peel
2/4 -- Nashville, TN, Marathon Music Works
2/5 -- Charlotte, NC, The Fillmore Charlotte
2/7 -- Norfolk, VA, The NorVa
2/8 -- Washington, D.C., 9:30 Club
2/12 -- Philadelphia, PA, The Fillmore
2/13/ -- New York, NY, Terminal 5
2/14 -- Newark, NJ, Prudential Hall
2/15 -- Boston, MA, Big Night Live
2/17 -- Louisville, KY, Old Forester's Paristown Hall
2/18 -- Royal Oak MI, Royal Oak Music Theatre
2/19 -- St. Louis, MO, The Pageant
2/21 -- Chicago, IL, Vic Theatre
2/22 -- Minneapolis, MN, First Avenue
2/25 -- Seattle, WA, Neptune
2/27 -- Portland, OR, Crystal Ballroom
2/28 -- Oakland, CA, Fox Theater
2/29 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Wiltern

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Wale reveals forthcoming album's title and release date in new 'Therapy Sessions' trailer

Warner RecordsWale has shared new details regarding his hotly anticipated sixth studio album. 

Monday, the DMV lyricist announced the forthcoming effort's title as well as release date in a playful new trailer, titled Therapy Sessions. In the J. Stone Alston-directed clip, Wale flexes his comedic chops as he begrudgingly explains the issues he's been having with his record label.

"What happens in therapy, stays in therapy," the rapper's therapist, played by Tetona Jackson, says reassuringly -- at which point two different versions of Wale appear and ease into the chairs to the right and left of him.  

The short concludes with the official reveal of the project's title, Wow...That's Crazy, which is due to arrive on October 11. The album's lead single, "On Chill," continues to climb the Billboard Hot 100 as it rises from number 55 to number 45 this week. 

Later this month, Wale is set to embark on his Everything Is Fine tour, which will hit major cities coast-to-coast before wrapping in Seattle on October 28. 

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

They said I should get help ..amongst other things ...my sixth album “Wow... that’s crazy “ officially on the way . October 11th pic.twitter.com/3QmBDRlsTu

— Wale (@Wale) September 16, 2019

 


Kenny G is collaborating with Kanye West: "Nobody knows what's going to happen"

Scott Dudelson/Getty Images for CoachellaIn February, you may have seen on Twitter that Kanye West hired none other than Kenny G to come to his house and give his wife Kim Kardashian West a private serenade for Valentine's Day.  Well, believe it or not, that's led to the two artists teaming up to collaborate on...something.

Speaking to the Dallas Observer, Kenny says of the Valentine's Day stunt, "[West] reached out to me and wanted me to come and do that. I didn't know him real well, but I was obviously flattered. He could not have been more welcoming."

"Since then we've actually been in the studio working on some music together," Kenny goes on to reveal. "I can't really say much else because he doesn't really want anyone to talk about music before he releases it. Just suffice to say that we're collaborating on some things, and nobody knows what's going to happen."

While it may seem strange that one of rap music's most polarizing artists would want to work with a soprano sax player who's considered to be a pop culture joke, Kenny G often pops up in unexpected places, like a Katy Perry video, an album promotion for Weezer, a Super Bowl ad for Audi, an episode of Drop the Mic and even at this year's Coachella festival.

"I may not be a person like Taylor Swift or Beyoncé or Kanye who's getting tons and tons of views and all the exposure that these guys get today," he tells the paper. "But that doesn't mean that there's not a huge amount of people that do listen to my music. They're out there."

Kanye's new album Jesus Is King comes out September 27. We'll have to wait and see whether Kenny G is one of the featured guests.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Schoolboy Q announces CrasH Tour with special guests Jay Rock and Nav

@xonie_Schoolboy Q is set to hit the road this fall as part of his newly-announced CrasH Tour. 

Monday, the Compton lyricist announced the 37-city run via social media and revealed he would be supported by Nav for the tour's North American dates, as well as fellow TDE label mate Jay Rock for its European leg.

Set to kick off on November 4, the U.S. trek will hit major cities such as Houston, Chicago, Atlanta and New York before wrapping on December 4 in Los Angeles. 

"I can't wait!," Q excitedly shared on Instagram along with the tour announcement.

Back in April, the rapper delivered his fifth studio album, CrasH Talk, which featured guest appearances from Travis Scott, 6lackTy Dolla SignYG21 SavageKid Cudi and Lil Baby.

Fans can get their hands on tickets to the tour starting Friday via Q's dedicated website

Here's the full itinerary for the CrasH Tour:

11/4 --- Houston, TX, Revention Music Center
11/5 --- Dallas, TX, South Side Ballroom
11/8 --- Nashville, TN, Nashville Municipal Auditorium
11/9 --- Atlanta, GA, Coca-Cola Roxy
11/11 --- Philadelphia, PA, The MET
11/12 --- Boston, MA, House of Blues
11/13 --- New York, NY, The Great Hall at Avant Gardner
11/15 --- Washington D.C., Echostage
11/18 --- Toronto, ON, REBEL
11/20 --- Detroit, MI, The Filmore
11/21 --- Chicago, IL, Aragon Ballroom
11/22 --- Milwaukee, WI, Eagles Ballroom
11/23 --- Minneapolis, MN, The Armory
11/25 --- Kansas City, MO, Arvest Bank Theatre 
11/26 --- Denver, CO, Fillmore Auditorium 
11/27 --- Salt Lake City, UT, The Complex
11/29 --- San Francisco, CA, Bill Graham Civic Auditorium 
12/1 --- Seatte, WA, WaMu Theater
12/4 --- Los Angeles, CA, The Forum

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


#GoodVibesOnly: Jhene Aiko delivers soothing "Trigger Protection Mantra" for "relaxation purposes"

Def Jam RecordingsJhene Aiko wants you to align your mind, body and soul with her latest offering, "Trigger Protection Mantra." 

Created to help relax listeners, the effort finds the Los Angeles songbird melding her breathy vocals with the soothing sounds of alchemy crystal bowls, which she plays herself.

The accompanying visual is even more of a chill pill: It features psychedelic images intercut with shots of the Trip singer on a beach, creating massive bubbles with a bubble wand. 

"Trigger Protection Mantra" arrives nearly four months after Aiko delivered the emotional and deeply introspective ballad, "Triggered (Freestyle)," marking her second solo release of 2019. It's not yet clear if these are standalone singles or part of a full-length project. 

While there's no word yet on when the singer intends on dropping a new album, Aiko has been busy on the performance circuit: She just headlined H.E.R.'s inaugural Lights Out Festival. 

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Russell Simmons says he's "deeply disappointed" after being banned from NYC Yoga studio

ABC/ Jeff NeiraRussell Simmons will have to find a new location to do yoga.

Page Six reports that Simmons is no longer allowed at a New York City yoga studio, due to the sexual assault allegations against him. According to the gossip site, Modo Yoga NYC emailed the music exec and asked him not to return to the location. 

“The management invited me, and then said that my presence had ‘triggered some members,’ ” Simmons told The Post from Bali. The fashion mogul relocated to the island in February 2018 amid allegations of sexual assault and misconduct by multiple accusers.

“I’m deeply disappointed and hurt by it,” Simmons said. “Guilty by accusation, I don’t believe is a good way to go forward.”

Modo Yoga also issued a statement on the ban.

“We do not pass judgment, gossip or comment on any of our students...However, when we receive complaints from students who are uncomfortable because of another student’s alleged conduct outside of Modo, we are put in a difficult position,” the statement reads.

Despite the numerous accusations of sexual misconduct, Simmons says he's ready to get back into the swing of things. This includes building a international school of yoga science and relaunching his signature clothing line, Phat Farm, which he'd previously sold in 2004.

Simmons says he's also working his upcoming memoir, Confessions of a Hip Hop Yogi.

“It’s about my advice for young men and the positivity that has come out of #MeToo and #TimesUp movement,” Simmons said. “If I want to service humanity, I want my book to be helpful...I want to build bridges. There aren’t a lot of bridges being built. There’s a lot of finger-pointing.”

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Kanye West confirms new album, 'Jesus Is King,' will arrive next week

ABC/Randy HolmesKanye West's long-awaited ninth studio album will officially see the light of day next week. 

Sunday night, the seasoned producer and rap vet confirmed the effort's release during a surprise appearance in Batesville, Indiana while attending an intimate Victory Boyd concert. At one point during the singer's set, Ye took to the stage to announce that his forthcoming album, Jesus Is King, will arrive next Friday. 

As previously reported, wife Kim Kardashian West teased a snapshot of what appeared to be the LP's track listing and release date -- September 27 -- two weeks ago via Twitter. Ye doubled down on the legitimacy of the cryptic tweet by posting the same photo on his official website.

Now, the Grammy-winning artist has put all speculation to rest. 

Dialing in at 12 songs, Jesus Is King is set to include cuts titled "Water" and "Garden," which were previously debuted during Ye's popular Sunday Service series. 

Meanwhile, this past weekend, the Chicago lyricist brought the Sunday Service to the Atlanta, GA area and delivered a testimony about his personal relationship with God.

"The power of God can't be calculated by a number, by a first week sale, by a bank account, by how many cars you drive, by how big your house is and how many acres you got," Ye told a roaring crowd in fan-captured footage

Per Billboard, a handful of top tier acts were in attendance at the event, including Lil Yachty, T.I., Jermaine Dupri, 2 Chainz, Chris Tucker and Nelly.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


How you doing...again? 'The Wendy Williams Show' renewed through 2022

Courtesy of The Wendy Williams Show Wendy Williams got some great news on Monday to help kick off her 11th season of The Wendy Williams Show.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Williams' daytime talk show has been renewed for two more seasons on FOX Television through 2022.

"I’m so excited to launch our 11th year by letting the world know I will continue to do what I love to do so much — and for a very long time," Williams said in a statement.

"I want to tell Fox and all of our stations today how much their support and confidence means to me," she continued. "They should know we will never stop working very hard to bring our dedicated Wendy Watchers and audience ‘co-hosts’ the freshest national daytime television!"

The renewal comes after a tumultuous year for the talk show giant. In January, Williams announced that she was taking an extended break from her show following complications from her Graves disease. However, after she returned, she revealed to fans that she was currently living in a sober house after seeking treatment for an unresolved addiction.

It was later revealed that Wendy had filed for divorce from her estranged husband Kevin Hunter, with whom she shares one son, nineteen year-old Kevin Jr.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Jamie Foxx says he tried to convince Idris Elba not to star in 'Django Unchained'

ABC/Lou RoccoJamie Foxx is opening up about how he secured his role in Quentin Tarantino's critically acclaimed 2012 drama Django Unchained.

According to Indie Wire, during a Toronto Film Festival conversation about Foxx's upcoming film Just Mercy, co-starring Michael B. Jordan, Foxx revealed that he wanted the part badly, but had to take matters into his own hands to secure it because his management hadn't gotten him on the shortlist of actors who were being considered.

According to Foxx, he intentionally downplayed the role to Idris Elba when the U.K. actor, who was one of those being considered, asked him his thoughts on the film.

“Your beautiful black a** riding up on a horse, there’s going to be some problems for everyone,” Foxx recalled telling Elba.

Tarantino himself later explained that Elba didn't get the role because he wasn't the right fit.  At the time, he told the British tabloid The Sun, "Yeah, Idris is British and this is an American story.”

According to Indie Wire, Tarantino was also considering Chris Tucker, Terrence Howard, Michael K. Williams and Tyrese for the role -- but after he met Foxx, it was all over.  The director told Playboy in 2013 that Foxx landed the role because of his Texas roots...and because he was an experienced horseman.

“Forget the fact that he has his own horse — and that is actually his horse in the movie," Tarantino told Playboy. "He’s from Texas; he understands. He understood what it’s like to be thought of as an ‘other.’”

Indie Wire also reports that Will Smith was Tarantino's very first choice, but Smith turned the role down because he wanted it to be more of a love story than a revenge story.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Rihanna inks new publishing deal as album rumors intensify

ABC/Lou RoccoThat Rihanna reign just won't let up: The singer has now joined the Sony/ATV Music Publishing family, Billboard reports. 

Monday, it was announced that the Fenty mogul had inked a global deal with the publishing company, which oversees more than three million copyrights of songs penned by some of today's most iconic artists.

The agreement reportedly encompasses Rih's entire music catalog, including her hits “Love on the Brain," “Rude Boy," "We Found Love," "Diamonds" and “Work" featuring Drake, as well as future offerings.

“I’m proud to have known Rihanna since the beginning of her career,” Sony/ATV head John Platt told Billboard while sharing the news. “Music, fashion, philanthropy and a heart of gold have solidified Rihanna’s position as one of the biggest icons in the world."

The new publishing deal has fans convinced that Rih is on the verge of delivering her hotly anticipated new album. There are recent reports that her follow-up to 2016's Anti could possibly arrive at the end of this year in December.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


Robin Thede explains why she didn't ask Beyoncé to appear on the first season of "A Black Lady Sketch Show"

Ann Marie Fox

Robin Thede says she had a long list of black women she wanted to guest star on her HBO hit series, A Black Lady Sketch Show. However, there was one mega-star she was hesitant to ask: Beyoncé.

"We did not ask Beyoncé, because we wanted to make sure that we got one season done and that she could see it," Thede tells ABC Radio.

"But, we got Kelly Rowland," Thede reveals. "Amazing! And unexpected, honestly."

Now that HBO has officially renewed the series for a second season, Thede says there's new hope for Bey to make an appearance. But even if she declines the offer, Robin says there are still plenty of women she'd love to have appear. 

"Halle Berry we tried to get; she was promoting John Wick 3," Thede says. "But, [she] gave us a very positive response. So there's lots of people. I would love Michelle Obama on the show...And black men."

Of course, Thede says if things go the way she plans, she'll have plenty of time to invite plenty of guest talent.

"We can do the show for 10 seasons and not run out," she explains. "That's how much talent is out there and I think that's what this show will serve to remind people about."

A Black Lady Sketch Show, also starring Quinta BrunsonAshley Nicole Black, Gabrielle Dennis and Issa Rae, is now available on demand on HBO.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


ABC to air exclusive Beyoncé documentary 'Beyoncé Presents: Making The Gift'

DisneyBeyoncé's new hour-long documentary special will take her fans on a journey through Africa.

ABC will air Beyoncé Presents: Making The Gift tonight, which will treat viewers to an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the making of her album The Lion King: The Gift.

The documentary will act as the singer's love letter to Africa and come complete with candid footage and interviews about the blood, sweat, and tears she poured into making of the album.

The Lion King: The Gift, a musical ode to Disney’s The Lion King, was released on July 19.  The release coincided with Walt Disney Pictures’ feature film and remake of the classic animated film of the same name, which so far has earned $533.9 million domestically.

The Beyoncé executive-produced album brought together some of the biggest African artists with well-known American talents to re-interpret the story and themes of the film.

Disney is the parent company of ABC News.

Beyoncé Presents: Making The Gift airs Monday at 10:00 ET on ABC.

Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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