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Tag: R&B (71-80 of 452)

Lauryn Hill asks for leniency in sentencing for tax evasion -- citing 'Threats to herself and family'

After pleading guilty to tax evasion last June, multiple Grammy winner and former Fugee Lauryn Hill is making one last ditch effort to avoid jail time.

In advance of her scheduled sentencing this Monday, April 22, Hill filed legal documents requesting that her sentence be limited to probation, as it would make it easier for her to pay back the bill she owes for the three years—2005, 2006, and 2007—she did not file taxes.

Over those three years, Hill earned a reported $1.8 million, but the documents explain she did not pay the IRS because she “withdrew from society at large due to what she perceived as manipulation and very real threats to herself and her family.”

Hill made similar statements in a blog post when the charges were first brought against her, adding that she had largely disappeared from public view because of the “climate of hostility, false entitlement, manipulation, racial prejudice, sexism and ageism” in popular culture.  READ FULL STORY

Listen to Jay-Z's 'The Great Gatsby' soundtrack sampler, featuring Fergie, Lana Del Rey, Jack White and more

No matter how The Great Gatsby does at the box office when it finally arrives in theaters next month, it’s eclectic, star-studded soundtrack is already a newsmaker.

Curated by Jay-Z, the Gatsby soundtrack includes tracks by Jay himself, Beyoncé, Jack White, Fergie, Sia, Lana Del Rey, the xx and more. Twelve of the 14 total core tracks are currently available in snippet form on YouTube, which you can stream below.

Highlights include Florence Welch wailing on the track “Over the Love” and the swing version of Beyoncé’s “Crazy in Love” delivered by Emeli Sandé.

There’s also the already-released “A Little Party Never Killed Nobody” by Fergie, Q-Tip, and GoonRock, which must be ironically titled given the fate of one Gatsby‘s main characters.

Listen to these, as well as Jack White’s cover of U2′s “Love Is Blindness” (as featured in the trailer to the film), a spin below: READ FULL STORY

Ray J debuts 'I Hit It First,' says song's not about Kim Kardashian: Hear it here

For the love of Ray J, what is his new song “I Hit It First” about exactly?

For a lot of people, it seems to be an obvious dig at his ex-girlfriend and sex-tape costar Kim Kardashian, currently pregnant with Kanye West’s baby. (Note to self: finish that soap opera spec script.)

But Brandy’s little brother took to Hot 97 this morning in an attempt to clear things up and avoid any potential beef with Yeezy and Co. “It’s a song, it’s not about that,” he told the radio station. “They just gotta keep it on the surface. I’m not trying to create no war, it’s all love; we’re doing music.”

Hmm. The music, in this case, includes lyrics like, “She might move on to rappers and ballplayers/But we all know I hit it first” and “If you were to come back to me, girl/We’ll make another movie” and  “I had her head going north and her a– goin’ south/But now baby chose to go west.” It doesn’t take a RapGenius page to figure out what Ray J might be alluding to here.

Listen to the song yourself with the player below and let us know your take on the matter:

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Beyonce's big reveal: Drinking sugar water, wearing clothes -- VIDEO UPDATE

After teasing us with a series of tour dates and a pair of strange preview tracks, Beyoncé finally made the big reveal.

Was it the official announcement of her new album? A proper first single? A killer new video? Or was yesterday’s teaser video with the hashtag #BeyHereNow merely a suggestion that there’s a lot of Oasis being played at the Carter household?

It was none of those things. Shortly after 9 a.m. ET on her official Tumblr, Beyoncé pulled back the curtain on… a photo of her drinking a Pepsi. Does that mean the check cleared on her $50 million deal with the soft drink manufacturer? There are two other new pics up, one of which suggests she’s doing something in video form, though whether it’s her own music video or some sort of Van Halen-esque hybrid is unclear.

So even though this big curtain-pulling moment is a bit of a letdown, rest assured you’ll have more Beyoncé than you’ll know what to do with in the coming months: She’ll be headed out on the Mrs. Carter World Tour, lending her face to H&M, covering an Amy Winehouse song for the soundtrack to The Great Gatsby, and doing even more shilling for Pepsi.

UPDATED: Shortly after we published, Bey unveiled a one minute Pepsi commercial, which includes her confronting famous former incarnations of herself, plus elements of a new song called “Mirrors,” a concept we’re totally not sick of in 2013 yet. Watch it below. READ FULL STORY

The ultimate Phil Ramone playlist: Hear definitive tracks from Billy Joel, Paul Simon, Dusty Springfield, and Paul McCartney

Over five-plus decades, album producer, engineering whiz, and recording innovator Phil Ramone won 14 Grammys and collaborated with some of the biggest lights in pop and rock: Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, Aretha Franklin, Barbra Streisand, Frank Sinatra, Lesley Gore, Dusty Springfield, Tony Bennett, Madonna, and Lady Gaga, just to name some of the bigger stars.

One of his most notable partnerships was with Billy Joel, whose sound Ramone helped hone on his mainstream pop crossover hit with 1977′s The Stranger. Over the course of Joel’s career, he became one of his most trusted collaborators. “I always thought of Phil Ramone as the most talented guy in my band,” Joel said in a statement on Ramone’s passing. “He was the guy that no one ever, ever saw on stage. He was with me as long as any of the musicians I ever played with—longer than most. So much of my music was shaped by him and brought to fruition by him.”

Ramone passed away at age 79 on Saturday, but his epic recorded legacy will live on. Check out our definitive Spotify playlist below, which includes hits from all points of his resume.  READ FULL STORY

Chris Brown returns with 'Fine China' single and video: Watch it here!

The Chris Brown Perpetual Comeback Machine lurched back into action this morning with the release of his new single and video, “Fine China.”

The combination of the song and video is possibly his most Michael Jackson-y move yet. The track is a buzzy, bubbly bounce with yet another killer chorus, and the clip, which Brown co-directed with Sylvain White (Stomp the Yard), features an awful lot of dance fighting in the tradition of “Bad” and “You Rock My World.”

Check it out below:

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Justin Timberlake confirms second '20/20' album

Justin Timberlake made everybody wait nearly seven years between albums. With that math, we’d be into the second term of the next Clinton administration before another opus surfaced.

But JT is a giver, and he won’t make anybody sweat nearly that long the next time around.

“I need to clear up a rumor,” he told the crowd at a release party for his new album The 20/20 Experience in Los Angeles last night, during an interview with Ryan Seacrest. “This whole thing about this being the first half of the album is true.” READ FULL STORY

Rihanna's '777' tour documentary to air on Fox in May

Survivors of last year’s infamous Rihanna Plane will have to relive their traumatic experiences all over again. And for those who weren’t in the air with her, there’ll be a chance to get a taste of the experience when Rihanna’s one-hour special will air on Fox this May.

Titled Rihanna 777, the documentary will feature performances, behind-the-scenes and on-the-plane footage from the singer’s “seven countries in seven days” tour that promoted Rihanna’s seventh album, Unapologetic. The special, according to Fox, “provides an inside look at the singer’s ambitious and often turbulent tour, from the sound of popping champagne corks on the plane to the backstage chaos to the singer’s special worldwide appearances.”

As for that turbulence: Part of the tour’s gimmick, if you recall, was the a coterie of press members and lucky fans got to jet around all week on the same Boeing 777 as RiRi. Ultimately, though, the experience was less glamorous than promised, and Rihanna issued an apology of sorts to the journalists.

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Beyonce premieres new songs 'Bow Down' and 'I Been On': Hear them here

No announcements of an announcement for her. Last night, Queen Bey (rather unceremoniously) debuted new music via SoundCloud and Instagram.

Check out “Bow Down” and “I Been On” below.

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Justin Timberlake closes SXSW on a high note -- VIDEO

Justin Timberlake performs at Myspace Secret Show @ SXSWIf you thought Justin Timberweek ended with Friday night’s Late Night With Jimmy Fallon, you had another thing coming.

Last night, seven days after he appeared on Saturday Night Live as both the show’s host and musical guest, Mr. Suit and Tie seized SXSW by putting on one of the festival’s most anticipated shows of the week. And while Timberlake’s Myspace showcase was this year’s Party To Go To for many, only a lucky few actually got to attend.

That’s because the event went down at Austin’s Coppertank Events Center, a small downtown venue that reached its legal capacity of 800 people so quickly, it seemed like the event was actually sponsored by the city’s fire marshals. Of course, that only enhanced the intimacy of the concert. In the end, the strategy paid off, with both Timberlake and the audience feeding of the night’s once-in-a-lifetime vibes.

The thrills (and shrieks) began the moment he walked out on stage with an acoustic guitar and performed the Justified favorite “Like I Love You.” Wearing a fedora, blazer, and one of those tuxedo-print novelty t-shirts that you thought were only worn by characters in ’80s teen comedies, the singer’s smooth stage presence suggested that he wanted to do more than bring sexy back — he wanted to bring JT back.

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