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Taylor Swift announces 'Red' tour dates

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Taylor Swift will launch a stadium and arena tour in March 2013 to support her new album, Red. Fifty-eight dates, covering 45 cities in 29 states and three provinces, are now listed on her website, and the first tickets will go on sale Nov. 16. Swift has asked that each show include tickets for under $50. She’ll play nine stadiums including Detroit’s Ford Field, Dallas’s Cowboys Stadium, Toronto’s Rogers Centre, Winnipeg’s Investors’ Group Field, Vancouver’s BC Place Stadium, Pittsburgh’s Heinz Field, Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field, Foxborough, Mass.’s Gillette Stadium, and Chicago’s Soldier Field. See the dates below. READ FULL STORY

Album Sales: Jason Aldean's 'Night Train' chugs to No. 1; Taylor Swift outsells it in one day

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In any other week, the first-week sales of Jason Aldean’s new album Night Train would be a very big deal.

The disc, a follow up to his double-platinum smash My Kinda Party, sold 409,000 copies in its first seven days — a huge number by any measure, and the second-best debut sales week of 2012 behind Mumford & Sons’ Babel, which moved 600,000 copies in its opening frame.

Unfortunately for Aldean, news of his chart-topping feat arrives less than a day after projections for Taylor Swift’s Red blew up the internet. Swift, who sold over 500,000 copies of Red in its first day, is expected to sell over 1 million copies in her first week, which would make her the first woman in history to have two albums sell more than 1 million copies in their first weeks. Yowza.

But let’s get back to Aldean’s accomplishment. Night Train is the rocking country star’s first No. 1 album on the Billboard 200. He formerly peaked at No. 2 in 2010 with My Kinda Party, but was kept out of the top spot, funnily enough, by Taylor Swift, whose Speak Now was reigning atop the chart.

Considering My Kinda Party became an enduring hit, ultimately moving 2.8 million copies, I’m expecting Night Train to be a freight train with buyers. After all, Aldean is selling out arenas across the country, and he (along with everyone else releasing albums in the final quarter of 2012) will get a big boost from the holiday buying rush. READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift's 'Begin Again' video: The French connection!

Taylor Swift is on her way to having a pretty great week. Sales of her just-released new album Red are expected to top one million, making her the only woman in the history of SoundScan to unleash two million-plus opening weeks in a row. (Of course, it helps that Red has been almost universally acclaimed by critics and is available just about everywhere, including inside your pizza delivery guy’s oven bag.)

But don’t forget that at the center of all of her success lies a whole lot of heartbreak, and her brand new video for “Begin Again” is another classic bittersweet Swift joint.

Though her boyfriend doesn’t laugh at her jokes and bores her with stories about his family’s Christmas movie-watching traditions, she finds the ultimate salve: Wandering through the streets of Paris, chuckling with handsome dudes in a café (and probably snacking on snails or something). Check it out below.  READ FULL STORY

What's the best song on Taylor Swift's 'Red'?

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The great thing about the release week of a new Taylor Swift CD is that everyone — that includes mega-fans, “which famous ex-boyfriend is this one about?” decoders, and outright haters — wants to talk about it. That’s just how it works when you’re one of the biggest stars on the planet.

This fact is especially true for Red, Swift’s latest album, which dropped yesterday. The disc finds the pop-country vixen pushing her musical boundaries further than ever before, and it’s causing a ruckus in the industry. “Country radio has been a little taken aback by it because it is so obviously pop,” Scott Borchetta, the President of Big Machine Records, Swift’s label, tells EW. “[But] we haven’t’ been hiding behind what she’s been doing.” he says. “She wrote this record with Max Martin, and Shelback, and it’s a big pop record with some country leaning.”

“We’d be in the studio,” Borchetta remembers, “and I’d say, ‘This record wants to do more than what you’re doing to it, and she’d say, ‘What do you mean?’ and I’d say, ‘If it’s country, run toward it, if it’s pop, run toward it, if it’s rock, run toward it. You have artistic license to do your music. I want to encourage you to go to the edges.'”

And go to the edges she did. Red finds Swift flirting with U2-esque arena rock on “State of Grace,” dubstep on “I Knew You Were Trouble,” Katy Perry party-pop on “22,” handclap-happy piano celebration on “Stay Stay Stay,” and crooning alongside Brit Ed Sheeran on “Everything Has Changed.”

It’s a lot to digest on a first listen, but now that you’ve had a whole day to process Red, let’s talk about the songs that work and the ones that don’t: READ FULL STORY

How Mumford & Sons and Taylor Swift are causing a seismic shift in the music industry

The biggest debut of 2012 doesn’t belong to a glossy pop act like One Direction or Justin Bieber.

Sure, those boys have hordes of teenage girls ready to download their music at the drop of a tweet, but they’ve got nothing on the scruffy gents of Mumford & Sons, whose new disc, Babel sold 600,000 copies in its first seven days. (The next-best opening? Bieber’s Believe, with 374,000 in week 1.)

Babel‘s success (it has now led the chart for three weeks and sold 865,000 copies total) is indicative of a larger shift within the music industry. As pop music morphs into a glow-stick dance party, country acts have adopted the traditional pop sound. That leaves Mumford and the burgeoning Americana and folk genres (think acoustic guitars, banjos, and innumerable fitted tweed vests) to fill the country void. Did you get all that? Allow us to break it down. READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift channels U2 on new track 'State of Grace': Hear it here

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If Taylor Swift has made one thing clear in the lead-up to her fourth album Red, it’s that her genre is nigh impossible to pin down.

First came the outright pop of her first no. 1 Hot 100 hit, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together.” Then came the plaintive, slow country sound of “Begin Again.” After that, we got more pop and sonic vocals with “Red.” And last week brought the dubstep-laden “I Knew You Were Trouble.” So obviously the next logical step was… Brit rock? READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift drops new single 'I Knew You Were Trouble': Hear it here

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“Ready to hear more about my romantic misadventures????”

That’s the teaser Taylor Swift tweeted yesterday in anticipation of the newest cut off of Red, “I Knew You Were Trouble.”

The song, which Swift previewed on Good Morning America yesterday morning, has the same kind of defiant pop-radio oomph that made her fourth album’s other big breakup banger, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” a number one.

But “Trouble” comes with an added twist: a smattering of dubstep, discernible each time the song’s chorus kicks in, an element that we’d been warned Red would contain.

Take a listen to the new track in the video below:

READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift releases 'Red' tracklist, previews new song

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Today, scores of Taylor Swift fans are seeing Red — its tracklist, that is.

The country-bred pop star unveiled the contents of her upcoming fourth studio album, due Oct. 22, and gave fans an idea of what topics the disc’s 16 tracks might tackle. At first glance, it looks like a lot of the songs might be about — surprise! — boys, though her stance changes depending on the tune (or boy, presumably). The Max Martin-produced smash “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” for instance, is immediately followed by a number titled “Stay Stay Stay,” which should definitely send mixed signals to whichever guy was unlucky enough to get on Swift’s bad side.

Take a look at the complete track list below:

READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift explains her personal rainbow of emotions on 'Red'

Yesterday Taylor Swift unveiled the title track of her upcoming fourth album Red on Good Morning America, and if you pinned me down, I’d say the pop track is really quite vermillion. Or perhaps tangerine.

What, you don’t attribute a color to every song you hear?

Then you and T-Swift are never ever ever going to be friends — this girl has a color chosen for everything! (To be fair, I do the same thing. I was debating this weekend whether Mumford & Sons’ new album is dark green or rich burgundy.)

According to the chorus of “Red,” here’s how Swift remembers a recent relationship:

Losing him was blue like I’d never known
Missing him was dark grey all alone
Forgetting him was like trying to know somebody you never met
But loving him was red

Those are the only colors the song — which Swift says is all about “intense emotion” — brings up, which kind of let me down. I feel like if we’re going with a color theme for a whole song, we need more splashes than just red, blue, and dark grey — I mean, is dark grey REALLY a color? How about some yellow and green? Weirdly, I’m being serious — I kept waiting for some other hue to pop up, and it never did. Now I feel totally mauve, you know?

Check out the track below: READ FULL STORY

Justin Bieber has been scalping his own tickets, says Nashville TV station

Hey Justin Bieber fans in Tennessee, did you have trouble scoring tickets to your boy’s upcoming show? You’re not alone.

According to documents obtained by Nashville’s NewsChannel 5, of the nearly 14,000 tickets available for Bieber’s forthcoming show at the city’s Bridgestone Arena, only 1,001 — or roughly 7% of the total — were actually allocated for sale to the general public.

So where did the rest of the tickets go? That’s where the information gets pretty damning. About 6,000 were held for American Express customers, who had access during a special pre-sale. Another 3,000 were held for members of Bieber’s fan club, who pay a fee for the opportunity to buy those seats. 500 went to Ticketmaster’s “Platinum Exchange” program, and another 900 were chopped up for various VIP packages.

But the smokingest gun is this: An entire block of seats was reserved for Bieber’s tour, and some of those tickets are currently available on resale site TicketsNow for $216 each.

The bottom line is that not only are only seven percent of the available tickets available for actual face value, but the Bieber camp is actually scalping his own ducats.

He’s not alone: READ FULL STORY

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