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Tag: Things That Are British (71-80 of 241)

Olympics opening ceremony soundtrack album becomes international hit

Some people loved Danny Boyle’s delirious Olympics opening ceremony (Music Mix among them!), while others were not so hot on it. But regardless of your opinion on bed-jumping children, odds are you liked the event’s soundtrack, which has been topping digital charts worldwide.

With a ceremony so loaded with highlights from Britain’s many musical exports, it’s no wonder that the 36-song, two-disc collection Isles of Wonder is burning up iTunes charts in places like the U.K., of course, as well as Belgium, France, and Spain. As for these United States, the album — which features English stars like David Bowie, Dizzee Rascal, and Arctic Monkeys — reached No. 5 on iTunes.

The physical version of Isles of Wonder will be available via Decca Records on Aug. 6. Take a look at the track listing below:

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'True Blood' star Stephen Moyer: What's On My iPod

The courtly True Blood vamp, who’s expecting twins with costar Anna Paquin, will also do double duty on the show, directing his first episode July 29.

But when he’s not fighting for Sookie and the fate of the empire, Moyer spends his time listening to raspy-voiced troubadours, genteel indie folkies, and bath-time anthems. Check out what the British actor likes to jam out to below:

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In honor of her death one year ago, listen to our Amy Winehouse playlist

It’s hard to believe it, but it’s only been a year since the talented and troubled British singer Amy Winehouse passed away at the age of 27.

The mark she left on the musical landscape is considerable (she helped usher the United Kingdom’s ongoing explosion of soul and R&B singers, and everyone from Patti Smith to Green Day have dedicated songs to her), and her absence has been felt more deeply thanks to string of posthumously released material, including a Grammy-winning duet with Tony Bennett and a collab or two with Nas.

There are many ways to remember Winehouse’s life. One great way is by donating to the Amy Winehouse Foundation, which provides “help, support or care for young people, especially those who are in need by reason of ill health, disability, financial disadvantage or addiction.”

Of course, another way to honor the singer is to listen to her music. She was only able to put out two albums (2003′ Frank and 2006’s platinum breakout Back in Black) in her lifetime, but she still supplied us with more than enough great songs. Combined with cuts from last year’s Lioness collection and a cameo on this year’s Nas album Life is Good, our playlist of Amy Winehouse favorites is worth a spin of three today.

Give it a listen with the Spotify player below:

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Yes, Spice Girls are reuniting for the Olympics

I’ll tell you what I want, what I really, really want: a Spice Girls reunion!

Thankfully, the 2012 Summer Olympics in London will feature just that. According to the always-excited British press, the ’90s group’s five ladies — including the reportedly reluctant Victoria Beckham — have “signed on the dotted line” to perform as one sexy unit again at the Aug. 12 closing ceremony.

The band’s first reunion since 2008 was once rumored to be in the cards for 2010’s FIFA World Cup, but it hasn’t happened for the quintet — made up of Beckham (the singer-turned-fashion director known as Posh Spice), Melanie Brown (Scary Spice), Emma Bunton (Baby Spice), Melanie Chisholm (Sporty Spice), and Geri Halliwell (Ginger Spice) — until now.  READ FULL STORY

The Who announce 'Quadrophenia' tour, one night only documentary

The Who haven’t windmilled their way through North America in four years, but that drought is about to come to an end. The surviving members of the band — guitarist Pete Townshend and singer Roger Daltrey — announced today that they will be embarking on a tour through the continent showcasing their legendary 1973 rock opera Quadrophenia.

Though Tommy has always had a much greater following (and had a genuine hit attached to it in “Pinball Wizard”), it’s only one of a series of rock operas constructed by the Who over the course of their career. Quadrophenia doesn’t have as clean a narrative as Tommy, but it does showcase the band’s legendarily dynamic sound. Set in London in the ’60s, it’s an exploration of mental illness told through the eyes of a British teenager.

The jaunt is set to kick off on Nov. 1 in Sunrise, Fla., and continue into 2013. READ FULL STORY

Elton John says he 'wasted' too much of his life on drugs

Not only did Elton John’s new book Love Is the Cure: On Life, Loss and the End of AIDS hit shelves today, but the Sir himself also hit the Today show this morning.

In the first half of his two-part interview with Matt Lauer (the other portion will air on tomorrow’s program), the 65-year-old musician admitted that he’s made a number of regrettable decisions in his time, many of which took place during the AIDS epidemic.

“I wasted such a big part of my life, when this epidemic was beginning to happen in the early 1980s and I was a drug addict and self-absorbed,” John told Lauer from his home. “You know, I was having people die right, left, and center around me — friends. And yet I didn’t stop the life that I had, which is the terrible thing about addiction. It’s that bad of a disease.”

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George Michael has a new video and Kate Moss is in it: Watch it here!

George Michael is happy to be alive. After a nasty bout with pneumonia, the 49-year-old former Wham! star bounced back heartily, and now has a new music video to show for it.

The clip is for the single “White Light,” whose lyrics include lines like “I’m back/Prouder than ever, baby” and “Was it music that saved me?/Or the way that you prayed for me?/Guess either way, I thank you/I’m alive.”

As for the visuals, there’s a lot going on: shots of IV drips and hospital beds, avian imagery, dancing, a zebra, and supermodel Kate Moss. Yes, you read all that correctly. Watch it all go down in the video below:
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Deep Purple co-founder Jon Lord dies

Jon Lord, the keyboardist and co-founder of Deep Purple, has died. He was 71 years old, and according to reports had been receiving treatment for pancreatic cancer since last year.

As a member of Deep Purple, Lord played on all the band’s definitive hits, including their breakout cover of Billy Joe Royal’s “Hush” (Lord’s vibey organ playing gave the song its haunting psychedelic quality) and on the iconic smash “Smoke on the Water,” which he also co-wrote.

All told, Deep Purple sold over 100 million albums worldwide, and the bulk of that business was done during Lord’s first tenure with the band, which lasted from the group’s inception in 1968 until the band collectively went on hiatus in 1976. He rejoined when the group reconstituted in 1984 and retired from the group for good in 2002.

In addition to his work with Deep Purple, Lord also worked with Whitesnake and found considerable success as a classical composer, penning a handful of well-received concertos mostly during the Deep Purple hiatus in the late ’70s.

Through his keyboard work in Deep Purple, Lord is often credited as the artist who made it reasonable for hard rock bands to incorporate strings, horns, and keys into their sounds, leading to the multiplatinum hybrid sounds of bands like Def Leppard and Bon Jovi.

In honor of Lord, check out this clip of him and the rest of Deep Purple playing “Hush” on a 1968 episode of Playboy After Dark: READ FULL STORY

Watch Madonna 'Turn Up The Radio' -- VIDEO

Madonna’s MDNA may have a track called Girl Gone Wild,” but the video for her third single, “Turn Up The Radio,” is downright mild. It features Madonna doing what Madonna does best — namely, flirting with guys half her age — but nothing scandalous happens.

The entirety of the video is Madonna riding around in a car with a few young guys attempting to turn up the music and get the party started. But a full dance party never breaks out.

Instead, we’re mostly treated to Madonna moving back and forth in the backseat in some sort of leotard/bustier/black top contraption. I’d love to talk about something — anything — else, but one really can’t ignore the serious cleavage happening throughout her jaunt around the city. In other Madonna chest news, she flashed her breast at a concert again over the weekend. Ho hum.

Check out Madge’s latest below: READ FULL STORY

Mumford & Sons announce new album, 'Babel'

mumford-album

It’s been three years since British crooners Mumford & Sons brought banjo back with their sleeper hit Sigh No More, which slowly but steadily sold over 2.2 million copies in the U.S.

When the “Little Lion” men‘s just-announced sophomore album Babel hits stores on September 24, it will likely arrive with a much more immediate bang.

On their official website, Mumford revealed the track listing for their new set, and if titles like “Broken Crown” and “Ghosts that We Knew” are any indication, the introspective lads are still struggling to grow up and clarify what they believe about life, love, and death.

The title track also carries an allusion to the Hebrew Bible; “Babel” was the name used for the City of Babylon, and the word also relates to the Tower of Babel, which the book of Genesis describes an enormous structure built in hopes of reaching the heavens  (that is, until God confounded the peoples’ languages and scattered them throughout the Earth).

Marcus Mumford, whose parents are leaders of the Vineyard Church in the UK and Ireland, appears to be serving up another set of brogue-infused Sunday-school angst. And perhaps some wedded bliss as well — we’re guessing “Lover’s Eyes” is about new bride Carey Mulligan.

Nine of Babel‘s twelve tracks have already found their way to the web, mostly in the form of live performances. Check out the full track listing below, along with a few embedded clips. (For a handy YouTube compilation of all the tracks currently floating through the web, click here.) READ FULL STORY

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