Lady Gaga & Tony Bennett Croon “Cheek to Cheek LIVE!” on PBS Tonight

Courtesy of Joseph SinnottEven if you didn’t get tickets to see Lady Gaga on her current tour, you can check her out on PBS tonight. 

Debuting tonight at 9 p.m. ET, Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett star in Cheek to Cheek LIVE!, a presentation of PBS’ Great Performances series.  Taped at New York City back in July, the special finds Gaga and Bennett running through the material on their #1 standards album Cheek to Cheek. 

But just because it’s an album of jazz duets doesn’t mean it’s sedate:  Gaga runs through a variety of crazy costumes and wigs while singing with the 88-year-old music legend.

Gaga tweeted, “Don’t forget to make your plans for tonight! 9pm EST dinner parties, , wine, food, Tony, Gaga. This is my most favorite TV moment! Ever!”

Here’s the set list for tonight’s show:

“Anything Goes” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“Cheek to Cheek” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“Nature Boy” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“How Do You Keep the Music Playing?” (Tony Bennett)
“Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)” (Lady Gaga)
“Firefly” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“I Won’t Dance” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“I Can’t Give You Anything but Love” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“Lush Life” (Lady Gaga)
“Sophisticated Lady” (Tony Bennett)
“Let’s Face the Music and Dance” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“But Beautiful” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)
“It Don’t Mean a Thing (If It Ain’t Got That Swing)” (Tony Bennett/Lady Gaga)

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Usher on Justin Bieber: “I’m Not Happy with All the Choices [He's] Made”

Courtesy: BillboardUsher is usually diplomatic when it comes to his one-time protege Justin Bieber and the Biebs’ recent troubles.  But in his new cover story for Billboard, the singer admits he’s not that pleased with Justin’s behavior lately.

“Our relationship is more man-to-man now,” he tells Billboard. “He’s making his own decisions and it’s important to show support. I can say I’m not happy with all the choices my friend has made, but I’m supportive of him. I try my hardest to give as much positive reinforcement as I can. I’ll punch him in the f***ing chest when I need to, and give him a hug and kiss when I need to. It’s more than just mentoring. I love the kid.”

Usher also talks about his album, which was supposed to have come out this fall, but which has been indefinitely pushed back.  “I just ain’t ready,” he says. “Meaning I have more that I want to say and more that I want to do. My process is pretty different. L.A. Reid will tell you, it takes two albums to make one with Usher.”

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Mariah & Nick’s Kids Unaffected by Their Parents’ Split, Says Nick

Angela Weiss/WireImageMariah Carey and Nick Cannon‘s marriage may be on the way to being over, but their split hasn’t affected their twins at all, according to Nick.

Appearing on Friday’s Meredith Vieira Show, Nick said of twins Moroccan and Monroe — affectionately referred to as “dem babies” — “They’re just happy. They love mommy.  They love daddy.”  That’s because, as Nick explained, the kids are used to one of their parents or the other being gone for long periods of time.

“We have always been people who have been on the go, coming and going, their life hasn’t changed one bit,” Nick told Vieira. “We spend holidays together, we do everything that we are supposed to do together as a family.”

Nick also decried the media’s coverage of his and Mariah’s marital issues, saying, “You know, the media, they can say whatever they want to say and obviously, because you are not giving them anything…they kind of create all these stories and make it way worse than it actually is.” 

Asked to name a particular rumor that irks him, Nick said, “You know what I heard the other day? I heard that there’s a family dispute over our eight dogs!”  He added that what’s needed now is for him and Mariah to ignore the distractions and just be “focused on family and what’s right and getting through these times and doing what’s right for the kids, so that’s just where we are.”

The twins are currently with Mariah as she tours Asia.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Lorde — Big Surprise — Wins Best New Zealand Act at 2014 MTV EMAs

ABC/Lou RoccoThe 2014 MTV European Music Awards will be held on November 10, but some preliminary winners have already been announced.  Lorde is one of them.

To the surprise of absolutely no one, Lorde has been named Best New Zealand Act at the MTV EMAs.  She now has the opportunity to compete against artists from many different countries in the Worldwide Act category.  That winner will be announced when the show airs on MTV from Glasgow, Scotland on November 10.  Among the competition: Justin Bieber, representing Canada, and Fifth Harmony, representing the U.S.

Voting for the final 10 nominees in the Worldwide Act category is open through October 30.  They’ll be revealed on October 31.

Nicki Minaj is hosting this year’s MTV EMAs and she’ll also perform, along with Ed Sheeran, Ariana Grande, Charli XCX, Kiesza, and Calvin Harris.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Ed Sheeran, One Direction, Coldplay to Perform at First-Ever BBC Music Awards

Credit: Ben WattsJust what we need: another music awards ceremony.  The first-ever BBC Music Awards will take place December 11 in London, the BBC announced, with One Direction, Ed Sheeran, Coldplay, Clean Bandit, and Calvin Harris among the artists scheduled to perform. 

“It’s an incredible lineup and we’re honored to be part of it,” said Coldplay’s Chris Martin.

Awards will be handed out in categories like Best British and Best International Artist of the Year, and the fan-voted Best Song of the Year.  The show will air live on BBC Radio 1 and 2.  So far, there are no plans to simulcast it in the U.S.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Sam Smith Sells Out NYC’s Madison Square Garden & the Forum in L.A.

Capitol RecordsA year ago, nobody in the U.S. knew who Sam Smith was.  Now, he’s managed to sell out shows in two of the country’s most prestigious venues.

Sam put tickets for his U.S. tour on sale on Friday, and quickly sold out shows in New York City’s Madison Square Garden and the Forum in Los Angeles. The British vocalist is quite excited about it. 


He tweeted: “MY MADISON SQUARE GARDEN SHOW JUST SOLD OUT IN 30MINUTES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!,” followed by, “Sold out my first ARENA in LA!!!!”

A second show has been added in L.A. on January 29.  Sam’s tour kicks off January 9 in Atlanta, Georgia.

The singer, who just announced that his new single will be “Like I Can,” is nominated for two American Music Awards, and will perform on the show, airing November 23 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.  His name is also been mentioned repeatedly as a potential Grammy nominee; we’ll find out if he is on December 5.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

One Direction, Danny DeVito Get Surreal in the Desert with “Steal My Girl” Video

SYCO/ColumbiaOne Direction’s video for “Steal My Girl” has just been released, and it shows once again that the guys definitely do not take themselves too seriously.

In the clip, Niall, Liam, Zayn, Harry, and Louis emerge from their trailer in the desert on the set of their video shoot, wondering where the director is.  That’s when the pretentious director, played by actor/director DannyDeVito, pulls up in a car and starts talking about how he’s going to help the guys take it to “the next level,” declaring, “We’re here in the name of art.  We’re here to commit ourselves to a higher form of expression.” 

“Today, we bring life to the desert!” he concludes, and then informs each member of the group what they’ll be representing in the video: Harry will be Love, Niall will be Light, Liam will be Power, Louis will be Danger, and Zayn will be Mystery.   The director says, “First you have to destroy your inhibitions. First you destroy: then you create. Balls!”

Cut to a shot of Liam destroying a series of floating silver balls, which spell out the word “inhibition.” Then things get really weird.  There are sumo wrestlers, a chimp, a marching band, dancing women, African tribesmen, cans of paint, a giant cage, balloons, hula hoops, women with parasols, and a rainstorm. 

When this whole Bizarro-world Cirque du Soleil spectacle is over, the director yells “Cut!,” turns to the camera, shrugs and says, “That was all right.”

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio


Backstreet Boys Set Sail Today on 2014 Fan Cruise: “It’s a Blast,” Says Nick Carter

ABC/Lou RoccoEvery year, it seems, another act announces that it’s starting their own fan cruise, but the Backstreet Boys have been doing it — very successfully — for several  years now.  This year’s installment gets underway on Friday, and as usual, the guys have a lot of great activities planned for their fans.  According to Backstreet’s Nick Carter, that the key to a successful fan cruise.

“You have to engage,” he tells ABC News Radio.  “It’s an opportunity to get really close to your fans and give them that opportunity that they don’t really necessarily get. And we put on shows on the cruise, I mean, we’re always trying to top ourselves and do something new.”

And concerts aren’t the only things fans get from the Boys on the cruise. There’ll also be a Q&A session with the group, A.J. McLean is hosting a poker tournament, and Howie Dorough is hosting a blackjack tournament.  

“When people comes on the cruise, what goes on the cruise, stays on the cruise,” Nick laughs. “No, it’s a party. The fans come out, they get a room, we throw night parties, three nights in a row — literally, people are crawling and limping off the cruise by the time they’re done!”

The theme parties are always a highlight: this year, one night will see the boys hosting “Backstreet’s Back Halloween Night: The Mummy’s Revenge,” while another night will be an “ABC” party — which means “Anything But Clothes.”  That’s right: fans and the Boys will all attend the party wearing….something, just not actual clothing.  According to the group, trash bags, saran wrap and cardboard boxes are all possibilities.

The cruise sets sail from Miami on Friday for four days aboard the Carnival Ecstasy, returning on Monday.

“It’s great,” says Nick. “You go to the Caribbean, go swimming…events, it’s a blast, you know?”  

Some of the bands that held their first-ever fan cruises over the past year include Train, Paramore and Matchbox Twenty.  So far, only Train has announced plans to do it again.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Maroon 5, Ariana Grande, Pharrell Williams to Perform on “A Very Grammy Christmas” Special

The Recording Academy/CBSFor the past several years, CBS has been airing The Grammy Nominations Concert Live!, a special that reveals the Grammy nominations in the top categories, interspersed with live performances.  This year, however, the network is changing things up.

Maroon 5, Pharrell Williams and Ariana Grande will all perform on A Very Grammy Christmas, a one-hour special that will replace the Grammy nominations concert show.  The show, taping November 18 in L.A., will air December 5, and will also reveal the nominees for the Grammys’ prestigious Album of the Year category. The rest of the nominations — 82 out of a total of 83 categories — will be revealed the morning of December 5, in a way that has yet to be announced.

The presence of Maroon 5, Pharrell and Ariana on the show likely indicates that the Grammy folks consider them good bets for nominations.  All three acts’ latest albums are eligible.

Tickets to attend the taping at the Shrine Auditorium are now on sale via Ticketmaster.

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio

Report: Chris Brown Appears in Court for Progress Evaluation

RCA RecordsChris Brown appeared in a Los Angeles court Thursday for a progress report related to his probation in the Rihanna assault case.

A judge increased Chris’ community labor from three days to four to ensure he’ll complete his requirement by the end of his probation in January, according to TMZ.

Chris’ therapist wrote a letter to the judge saying that Chris has been following his “medication management.”

Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio