Ed Sheeran Sets Another Chart Record with His Album “X”

Atlantic RecordsEd Sheeran‘s Grammy-nominated album X (multiply) has done extremely well in the U.S., but in his native U.K., it’s a monster smash.

Britain’s Official Charts Company reports that even though the disc has been out for months, it sold more copies just in the past week — 214,000, to be exact — than any other album this year in the U.K. has sold in a single week. The sales surge is due to Christmas shopping: looks like a lot of Brits are getting X in their stockings this year. 

X has spent an amazing 11 weeks at #1 on the U.K. charts and has spawned four hit singles, including “Sing” and “Thinking Out Loud.”  

In the U.S., X is up for the prestigious Album of the Year Grammy, alongside discs by Pharrell Williams, Beck, Beyonce and Ed’s pal Sam Smith.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Lady Gaga Says Pop Singers Who Don’t Write Their Songs Are Doing “Karaoke for Pretty Girls”

Lady Gaga has always prided herself on the fact that she writes nearly all her own songs, but she made an exception for her #1 Cheek to Cheek, her duets project with Tony Bennett.  On that album, she’s recorded standards written by others, but she says that’s OK…only because she’s a great singer.

“If you’re not gonna write your own music, you better be able to blow,” Gaga tells Yahoo! Style, using the slang term for “singing really well.”  “Because if you can’t blow, there’s no reason to do the job.” 

She then adds, somewhat controversially, “Then you think about artists that can’t really sing, that have songs written for them, and it’s like, well why are they artists? Why are companies paying money to promote them? Because they’re beautiful and look good on camera and are kinda-sorta singing along? It’s like karaoke for pretty girls.”

“When you’re a singer-songwriter it doesn’t really matter if you’re beautiful,” she tells the website. “What matters is that you create a relationship with your fans, and they care what you have to say.”

Gaga also reveals that she’s already writing songs for the follow-up to her current album, ARTPOP.  Asked to describe it, Gaga says, “I want the fans to be surprised. But I will just tell you that it’s a wonderful, soul-searching experience.”

Lady Gaga Says Pop Singers Who Don’t Write Their Songs Are Doing “Karaoke for Pretty Girls”

ABC/Ida Mae AstuteLady Gaga has always prided herself on the fact that she writes nearly all her own songs, but she made an exception for her #1 Cheek to Cheek, her duets project with Tony Bennett.  On that album, she’s recorded standards written by others, but she says that’s OK…only because she’s a great singer.

“If you’re not gonna write your own music, you better be able to blow,” Gaga tells Yahoo! Style, using the slang term for “singing really well.”  “Because if you can’t blow, there’s no reason to do the job.” 

She then adds, somewhat controversially, “Then you think about artists that can’t really sing, that have songs written for them, and it’s like, well why are they artists? Why are companies paying money to promote them? Because they’re beautiful and look good on camera and are kinda-sorta singing along? It’s like karaoke for pretty girls.”

“When you’re a singer-songwriter it doesn’t really matter if you’re beautiful,” she tells the website. “What matters is that you create a relationship with your fans, and they care what you have to say.”

Gaga also reveals that she’s already writing songs for the follow-up to her current album, ARTPOP.  Asked to describe it, Gaga says, “I want the fans to be surprised. But I will just tell you that it’s a wonderful, soul-searching experience.”


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Jordin Sparks Is an “Equal-Opportunity” Dater, but Would “Never” Try Online Dating

Now that Jordin Sparks is single following her painful breakup with Jason Derulo this fall, she says she’s not quite ready to start dating again — but when she does, it won’t be via an online site or app.

Speaking to People magazine, Jordin says,  “I’m pretty much dating myself…I’m not ready to deal with all that. I don’t have time for distractions or people who are going to waste my time. But I’m in a really good place. Mentally, physically, spiritually — I’m in the best place I’ve been in years!”

When she’s ready to reconsider romance, Jordin says, “I’m pretty much equal-opportunity: black, white, brown, yellow, I don’t care. As long as you’ve got a good job, it really doesn’t matter what you do.” She adds, “”As long as you’re a good man who respects me, it doesn’t take much.”

But Jordin says she won’t be looking for Mr. Right on Tinder or OKCupid. “Oh my gosh, never in a million years!” she says. “If you see a profile on there, it’s not me.”

Meanwhile, Jordin’s focusing on her new music: her new album, Right Here, Right Now, is coming in early 2015. She says writing songs has been “a very therapeutic process.”  For a preview, check out her mixtape, #ByeFelica, which is available now.

 

Jordin Sparks Is an “Equal-Opportunity” Dater, but Would “Never” Try Online Dating

Image Group LA/ABCNow that Jordin Sparks is single following her painful breakup with Jason Derulo this fall, she says she’s not quite ready to start dating again — but when she does, it won’t be via an online site or app.

Speaking to People magazine, Jordin says,  “I’m pretty much dating myself…I’m not ready to deal with all that. I don’t have time for distractions or people who are going to waste my time. But I’m in a really good place. Mentally, physically, spiritually — I’m in the best place I’ve been in years!”

When she’s ready to reconsider romance, Jordin says, “I’m pretty much equal-opportunity: black, white, brown, yellow, I don’t care. As long as you’ve got a good job, it really doesn’t matter what you do.” She adds, “”As long as you’re a good man who respects me, it doesn’t take much.”

But Jordin says she won’t be looking for Mr. Right on Tinder or OKCupid. “Oh my gosh, never in a million years!” she says. “If you see a profile on there, it’s not me.”

Meanwhile, Jordin’s focusing on her new music: her new album, Right Here, Right Now, is coming in early 2015. She says writing songs has been “a very therapeutic process.”  For a preview, check out her mixtape, #ByeFelica, which is available now.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio 

Taylor Swift Makes “EW’s” List of 2014′s Most Memorable Pop Culture Moments

Fred LeeAs 2014 draws to a close, Entertainment Weekly has compiled a list of the year’s 25 most memorable pop culture moments and, as you might expect, Taylor Swift has a prominent entry on the list.

Coming in at #15 is “Taylor Swift replaces herself at #1.”  That refers to the moment in November, when her song “Shake It Off” was replaced at #1 by her song “Blank Space” on the Billboard Hot 100. She became the first female artist ever to replace herself at #1 on that chart, and it illustrated how completely her album 1989 dominated the pop culture conversation since its announcement in August, and its subsequent release in October.

Other vaguely music-related entries on EW’s Top 25 list:  Beyonce‘s sister Solange Knowles attacking her brother-in-law Jay Z in an elevator, which is #2 on the list, and at #5, John Travolta fumbling Idina Menzel‘s name at the Oscars, introducing her as “Adele Dazeem” before her performance of “Let It Go.”

Some of the other things on EW’s list: the release of the trailer for Star Wars: The Force Awakens; Marvel’s announcement of its upcoming slate of movies for years in the future; the Purple Wedding on Game of Thrones; the disappointing finale of How I Met Your Mother; and, of course, the Sony hack and cancellation of The Interview.  You can read them all over at EW.com.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio 

Adele Sends Elton John a Note Apologizing for Missing His Wedding

Eric McCandless/CBSAdele didn’t attend Elton John’s star-studded wedding to his longtime partner David Furnish over the weekend, but she did send a note of apology for her absence.

In an Instagram photo of the cards and notes that the couple received, you can see one from Adele, which reads, “‘Biggest congratulations my loves. Have a wonderful day. I’m sorry we are not there. See you in 2015. Love Adele, Simon and Angelo. x.”

Simon is Adele’s partner, Simon Konecki, the father of her son.  Adele has never publicly referred to her son by name, so this note serves as the official confirmation that the two-year-old’s name is Angelo.

One of several singers who did attend the wedding was Ed Sheeran, whose career is overseen by Elton’s management company.  He posted a photo on Instagram that shows him posing wearing Elton’s glasses, while Elton pretends to cry.

The perfect end to the perfect day. So many kind thoughts and wishes. #ShareTheLove

A photo posted by Elton John (@eltonjohn) on



Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

“The Voice 7″ Runner-Up Matt McAndrew Says He Doesn’t Think He Suffered “Too Much of a Loss”

Tyler Golden/NBCWhen The Voice season seven wrapped up last week, many viewers were surprised when Craig Wayne Boyd, the only member of Team Blake left, was declared the winner, since Team Adam had three contestants in the running: Matt McAndrew, Chris Jamison and Damien. Matt McAndrew was a favorite to win, especially after the original song he performed on the first night of the finale, “Wasted Love,” shot to #1 on iTunes.  But Matt says he doesn’t feel that he — or Team Adam — really “lost” in the grand scheme of things.

“I know he’s a really competitive guy, and I guess I am too, and I think we both wanted to win going in,” Matt tells ABC News Radio about Adam Levine‘s defeat at the hands of his arch-rival Blake Shelton.  “But Craig was up there singing his song, and me and Adam and Damien and Chris were all standing together and we just sorta had to laugh, you know…I mean, three people from his team in the finale.  I don’t think you can really call that a loss.”

“And, for me personally, I can’t imagine anybody considering my time on the show too much of a loss,” he adds. Indeed, Matt had several standout performances throughout the season, and thanks to his songs’ performances on the iTunes chart, and on the Billboard Hot 100, he’s encouraged and is eager to continue with his career.

“As much as I love the show, I mean, as much as it’s the best thing that’s ever happened to me, the show’s over and I gotta try to make something of it. So, I feel really good about everything,” he tells ABC News Radio.

Asked if he was disappointed to lose to Craig, Matt says he feels that people “voted” for him by sending “Wasted Love” to #1, and he thinks that’s much more important.

“You know, we don’t see the tally of phone calls and app votes and Facebook and all these other things, which obviously play a big part in this competition as a whole.  So, you know, I’m sure he had more of those votes than I did,” Matt says. “I’m happy that he won, and the guy really works hard and I think he enjoyed a great run on the show.  But, for me, if I had to pick between getting the most phone calls or getting the most iTunes, I would have gone with what I did.  So, it’s alright.”

During his time on the show, Matt says he and the other contestants appreciated the chance to work not just with coaches Adam, Blake, Gwen Stefani and Pharrell Williams, but with the guest mentors, such as Taylor Swift.  “She was really cool…she was really helpful for me as far as, like, she gave me some specific staging advice,” Matt says of Taylor’s help during his performance of “Drops of Jupiter.”  “It was really good to get some insight as far as her connection to the lyrics and as how that translates into her performance,” he adds.

As for coach Adam, Matt can’t say enough good things about him, but says he had one particular strength that really helped him during the course of the competition.

“Song selection.  You know, I think the right song at the right time,” Matt says. “And then, beyond that, just being a really cool guy…we had a good connection and we were able to get along really good and felt really comfortable around each other.  So it just made working together more fun.”

That being said, did Adam, who happens to have his own record label, promise to sign Matt if he didn’t win?  Well, not exactly.

“We talked about it a little bit.  I guess…it didn’t happen during the course of the show,” Matt says. “I mean, I’ve talked to him a little bit since and definitely I’m hoping to involve him as much as possible in everything moving forward.” 


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

 

Lady Gaga Posts Selfie with Mariah Carey; Mutual Admiration Ensues

ABC/Donna SvennevikWhen Lady Gaga talks about her favorite musical performers, she doesn’t often mention Mariah Carey.  But she’s evidently a big fan, as can be seen by the selfie she posted of the two of them over the weekend.

Gaga attended Mariah’s Christmas concert at New York City’s Beacon Theatre, and posted the selfie Instagram, with the caption, “Hey ladies, Merry F***king Christmas. Love, Mariah and Gaga. This lady is so kind, such a star, and sounding legendary tonight at Beacon Theatre.”   Mariah posted her own photo of the two posing, and called Gaga “beautiful.”

Mariah wraps up her six-show run of holiday concerts at the Beacon Monday night.





Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Nicki Minaj Blasts Safaree on Twitter

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images via ABCNicki Minaj‘s breakup with her longtime boyfriend, record producer Safaree “SB” Samuels, took an ugly turn Saturday when the two got involved in a Twitter war.

According to Vibe magazine, Minaj addresses rumors that Samuels is attempting to blackmail her by selling videos, describing her ex as an “ungrateful evil soul,” and adding that she protected Safaree and supported his desire to be famous.

All but two of Nicki’s tweets have since been deleted. One remaining tweet reads, “I’m sorry. My fans know this isn’t me. Hate this. But I’m human. I do so much. Too much. No man would have stayed loyal in this game like me.”

In another post, Nicki writes, “Let me be happy now. God.”

In tweets of his own, Safaree argues, “and speaking to some1 about pub and splits isnt blackmail. stop looking for pitty.. u handle your buisness why cant i ?”

He adds, “and its not Bout fame its about respect and youve had 0 for me the pass few years.the 0 respect u had for me at home had nothing 2do w/music.”

Last Wednesday, while promoting her third album, The Pinkprint, Nicki broke down during an interview while talking about the split.

The two had been dating for 15 years.


Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio