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Empire, the Fox drama series with a storyline surrounding a hip-hop entertainment company (Empire Entertainment), is one of the most talked about shows in the States. This soundtrack, as well as the Season 1 disc which was released earlier this year, is comprised of songs performed on the show, by the actors/musicians themselves. The production is handled entirely by Virginia producer Timbaland, who has worked with pretty much everyone in hip-hop you can think of. Jussie Smollett, Yazz and Bre-Z make up a significant amount of the tracks on here, as well as Terrence Howard and Petey Pablo's collaboration Snitch Bitch, which was one of the main draws to giving this a listen.
The opening track Born To Love You features some pretty smooth, tasteful R&B vocals from Smollett, and the trap-influenced chorus is a nice switch up that is successfully executed. Snitch Bitch was exciting for me because of Petey Pablo's return. He is on the show (apparently because Terrence Howard owed him $200, and getting Pablo a part in Empire was his way of repaying the debt), and it's good to see him back in any capacity. Petey's first album, 2001s Diary Of A Sinner: 1st Entry, is an under-rated LP with some fantastic Timbaland production, but without a proper release since 2004s Still Writing In My Diary I was unsure if we'd ever get to hear more music from the North Carolina MC. This track is a collaboration between Pablo and Howard, and although it's not terrible, it falls a little flat; the repetitive production and auto-tuned chorus fell way short of my expectations. Perhaps they were unrealistically high.
Bout To Blow is a guilty pleasure for me to be honest. Throw it on at 2 AM after a few too many and you might catch me off guard on the dancefloor. The beat creates an instant vibe, and it's proof that Timbaland still knows how to craft energetic, well-structured club-bangers. Terrence Howard and Bre-Z's Boom Boom Boom Boom is another highlight. The menacing, tribal production finds the two artists delivering aggressive lyrics over a sinister, piano-laced beat. The percussion in the hook is classic Timbaland, and the sitar line is a great addition to the simple but effective chorus. Bre-Z's appearance is very impressive; her powerful, savage delivery and consistent flow sets her apart from many of the other artists that appear on the soundtrack.
Continue reading: Empire Season 2 Part 1 Official Soundtrack - Album Review
Ahead of its release, Jackson's posthumous XSCAPE is already on track to become a bestseller.
Michael Jackson’s new song (we’re using “new” very loosely, the song was recorded in 1983) is premiering today. Love Never Felt So Good, will debut tonight during the first ever iHeartRadio Music Awards, which air at 8 PM. on NBC, according to a tweet from iHeartRadio. The song will feature a “special guest” – likely Justin Timberlake, who is listed as the artist for the track – along with MJ, of course.
Jay-Z and his Magna Carta tour supporters Chris Martin and Timbaland take a liking to an unexpected method of transport on arriving in London.
Forget chauffeur-driven limousines, Jay-Z finds the easiest way to travel to his London gigs is by Tube - and we have to say, we're in agreement.
Like many city-dwellers, the 'Holy Grail' singer doesn't see the point of trying to get round busy London in a car and has instead opted to hit the subway to attend his O2 Arena show on the UK leg of his Magna Carta world tour. He was joined by Chris Martin of Coldplay, Timbaland and a 10-person entourage as he boarded the London Underground, rendering several nearby passengers in complete shock.
This isn't the first time Jay-Z has opted for efficient but unexpected subway travel; in 2012, he made acquaintance with a grandmother named Ellen on his way to a show at the Barclay Center in Brooklyn. The woman appeared not to recognise him as she asked him if he was famous and asked what he did for a living. The name rang a bell for the lucky old dear, though, and their adorable conversation was documented in a film called 'Life+Times' on Jay-Z's culture website.
The rapper wasn't alone, as Coldplay frontman Chris Martin and Timbaland joined him on The Tube to his concert at the O2 Arena.
Jay-Z decided to attend his final concert at the Barclays Arena in Brooklyn in an against-character fashion; by ditching the glitz and glamour that he so often raps about and riding the subway. Prior to a gig at London's O2 Arena this weekend, the rapper went back to his roots again and arrived to the venue via public transport, and even brought a few famous faces along for the ride.
Jay kick started his world tour earlier this year
Chris Martin and Timbaland joined Jay on his train part way through the journey, with producer Timbaland supporting Jay throughout his Magna Carta world tour. Coldplay frontman Martin isn't supporting him during the tour, however the pair are good friends and they also hooked up on stage during the performance. The trio were also accompanied on their journey by an entourage of about 10 people, with bodyguards included.
Jay Z skipped the glamour and took the fast route to his O2 Arena gig.
Multi-millionaire rap, fashion and sports mogul Jay Z has proven he is still a man of the people, by taking the Tube to his latest gig at London’s O2 Arena. But even the most tedious journey can be made fun, if there are friends along and lucky for him, Mr Carter was joined on the way by Coldplay frontman Chris Martin and collaborator Timbaland. Actually, it was probably lucky for the travelers on the tube that day as well, who will now, at the very least, get to brag that they’ve ridden in the same train car as Jay Z.
World-famous performer by night,
And, in the age of instant communication, the first (and sometimes second) hand accounts have already started flooding in, although the accounts do seem to vary. One user mentions Rihanna: “Jay-Z, Rihanna and Timberland all took the London Underground to their concert last night.... Love that.”
Continue reading: Jay Z's London Tube Adventure Makes A Few Fans' Days
Fresh off the release of his new single, 'TKO,' JT has made the 'Experience' complete, making his new album available to stream on iTunes
Justin Timber has completed his 'Experience,' and he's made it available for us all to listen to ahead of the official release date of it's second and final instalment. Can this man do no wrong? Part 2 of The 20/20 Experience was made available to stream in full on the iTunes Store late last night (23 September), four days ahead of it's official release.
The 20/20 Experience - 2 of 2 will be released officially on 30 September
With Jay-Z making another appearance, and Drake showing up for one of the songs too, the album was produced by JT's long-time collaborator Timbaland. We've already heard the singles 'Take Back The Night' and his latest release 'TKO,' and if these are anything to go by then we may have a poppier release than the more adult R&B-oriented 20/20 Experience Pt. 1. Then again, the album is a bit of a mammoth, clocking in at approximately 74 minutes, so there plenty of album room to slip in a few darker curve balls.
Justin Timberlake's latest single was released this week with just days to go until the full album drops.
After many teasers in the form of tweets and videos, Justin Timberlake’s new single, TKO, is finally here. This is the second single of Justin’s newest album, or rather, the deluxe edition of The 20/20 Experience, 2 of 2. The album features vocals from Drake and Jay Z, the latter of whom Timberlake recently collaborated with on a summer tour, as well as several tracks on both his 20/20 and Jay Z’s Magna Carta Holy Grail.
This is the second release off 20/20 part 2.
The track, released via Timberlake’s youtube channel, is a 7-minute ode to a former flame of Timberlake’s. It’s an impressive, rather upbeat electronic mix of sound and, like all tracks on 2 of 2, it was originally intended to go on the first release, but just didn’t make the cut. In an interview with Ryan Seacrest recently, the singer explained that the sheer bulk of songs made it impossible to fit everything on to the first album, but that he wanted to release all the songs none the less and that was how The 20/20 Experience 2 of 2 came about. The album’s release date – September 30, is fast approaching.
Ahead of the release of the second half of 'The 20/20 Experience,' JT has a new single out called 'TKO.'
Justin Timberlake is continuing his pursuit to make sure 2013 is his year and ahead of the release of his second album of 2013, the singer, actor and all-around Renaissance man has released the second full track from his upcoming release, 'TKO.' With production and backing vocals from regular collaborator Timbaland, the song has got us looking forward to the completion of the 20/20 Experience series all the more.
Justin will release the second edition of The 20/20 Experience this month.
Clocking in at a lengthy 7 minutes 6 seconds, it continues Justin's recent attempts to make challenging yet rewarding pop songs. The singer had three songs that clocked in at 8 minutes or over on the first 20/20 Experience and a further four clocking in at over 7 minutes, and when it comes to the second instalment of the 20/20 Experience, Justin will be continuing this trend. With only eleven songs stretched out across 74 minutes, the average length of each song in his will be over 6 and a half minutes long.
Continue reading: Justin Timberlake Unveils His Latest Track 'TKO' In Full
Jay-Z's latest album 'Magna Carta Holy Grail' has stormed to the top of the Billboard chart, though could it have been different had Hova not reconciled with Timbaland?
Jay-Z has finally explained why he and superstar producer Timbaland fell out during the making of the rapper's 2009 album The Blueprint 3.'The pair were believed to have feuded towards the end of the process, though Jay has never broken his silence on the issue - until now.
The two have since reconciled, with Timbaland producing the bulk of Jay-Z's Billboard topping album Magna Carta Holy Grail, though all was not well four years back.
During an in-depth chat with BBC Radio 1's Zane Lowe, Jay-Z hinted that Timbaland was unable to put his ego aside to make Blueprint. He said: "The fall-out happened at the end of that album. A couple of songs was getting leaked and they were his songs, and it just ruined the whole process. Kanye, who was executive producer of 'Blueprint 3' was like, lets get Tim, let's bring Tim in, and we were all inviting of him and he just wasn't accepting of the process.
A young Jay-Z looks...well...weird.
A photograph of a very young Jay-Z has surfaced online - and it's at the same time pretty cool, and a bit weird. We say 'surfaced' online - what we actually mean is it was posted on Instagram by his wife Beyonce following news that Hova's new album Magna Carta Holy Grail has gone platinum.
Wearing a graduation cap and gown, the young Jay has the whole 'I really don't want to be sat here' thing going on, but his faked smile gives the photograph an air of distinct eeriness.
Though Magna Carta has smashed the platinum sales barrier, Billboard said on Friday (July 5, 2013) it will not include 1 million album downloads the rapper gave to Samsung Galaxy smart phone users when compiling its latest chart ranking.
In a promotional video for his new song, rapper Jay-Z gets choked up while speaking about being a father.
Rapper Jay-Z appears to be holding back tears whilst talking to producer extraordinaire, Rick Rubin, in a behind-the-scenes video of the making of the rapper's new album. A record producer himself, Jay-Z is married to singer Beyoncé with whom he has a child - 1 year-old Blue Ivy who has clearly had a profound effect upon his creative output as a musician.
A Proud Father: Jay Z Has Admitted He Marvels Over His Daughter, Blue.
Speaking without any intro, Jay-Z (real name, Shaun Carter) tells how his past has affected his present: "My pop left when I was young so he didn't teach me how to be a man or how to raise a child or how to treat a woman. So of course, my karma, the two things I need I don't have. And I have a daughter," he says, adding the paranoia he associates with "not being a great dad."
Continue reading: Jay-Z Gets Choked Up Over His Daughter: "We Still Marvel At Her"
Jay has already been paid for 1 million sales by Samsung, but they wont count as legitimate sales in the UK Album Chart
It looked as though Jay-Z's next album already had the number one spot wrapped up before it was even released, however the powers at the Official UK Chart have decided that if Jay-Z wants a number one album he's going to have to do it the old fashion way; by selling Magna Carta Holy Grail, rather than just giving it away.
The rapper signed a $5 million deal with phone manufacturers Samsung to provide fans with early access to his upcoming album as well as a free download to the rapper/businessman's newest release. Samsung has purchased a million copies of the album that will be distributed amongst a million Samsung smartphone users on July 4th and should the free downloads count in the charts then it will all but guaranteed it a place at No. 1. Only thing is, now that this won't be the case in the UK, will other countries follow suit?
The Official Charts Company said this week: “Music which consumers receive free of charge, either as physical releases or downloads, have never counted towards the Official Charts and this release will be no different. Legitimate purchases of Jay-Z's album will count, however, as usual.”
The rapper aired a video featuring a behind the scenes look at the making of the new album, with Rick Rubin, Pharrell and Timbaland making an appearance
It may have seemed that Jay-Z was being relatively quiet in terms of new material recently, but that silence was only disguising his creativity because Hova has actually been in the studio putting together a new album and over the weekend, during a NBA championship game, the rapper revealed the details for his next album, and a corresponding website and app to go with it.
If you head over to www.magnacartaholygrail.com, it will tell you that the new album, possibly called Manga Carta Holy Grail, will be a "revolutionary" album that will be released in conjuncture with a new app that give fans the chance to look behind the scenes of the making of the album and the stories that helped make it. The app will be made available to download on June 24 and on July 4 the app will let fans download the album, a full three days before the official release date. And thats not all, because if you fancy treating yourself to a shiny new Samsung Galaxy S III or S4 or the Galaxy Note II, then you'll be given the app for free.
The fact that Jay hasn't called the album JeHova, to go side-by-side with his The Throne cohort Kanye West's Yeezus album that comes out on Tuesday (June 18), may be a let down for some fans, but given the wealth of treats on offer hopefully people wont feel too hard done. As the promo video released by Jay seems to indicate, we wont have a shortage of big-name guests either, with Rick Rubin, Pharrell Williams, Swizz Beats and Timbaland all making an appearance.
Continue reading: Jay-Z Announces Plans For New Album At NBA Championship Game
Beyonce has given fans the latest teaser of her new material in Pepsi's latest commercial.
Beyonce has unveiled a teaser of new track 'Grown Woman' in a commercial for Pepsi. The R&B superstar is seen dancing to the initial beats of the track in front of several mirrors, before taking a break, cracking open an icebox and helping herself to an ice cold can of Pepsi. No cokes in there, strangely.
After a long swig, Beyonce is fully refreshed but after looking into the mirror she is confronted with past images of herself, each representing her previous hits. Unperturbed, the singer continues dancing and singing to the new track, which features the lyrics, "They love the way I walk, Cause I walk with a vengeance, And they listen to me when I walk, Cause I ain't pretending, It took a while now I understand, This where I'm going, who I am, bout time I show it."
'Grown Woman' is produced by Timbaland and features on her currently untitled fifth studio album. It's the latest taster of Beyonce's new material, with new song 'Standing On The Sun' accompanying a video for her H&M summer campaign. She also collaborated with Andre 3000 on a cover of Amy Winehouse's Back to Black, for The Great Gatsby soundtrack. She released a snippet of a new song titled 'Bow Down/I Been On' earlier this year, to a mixed reception from fans and critics.
Continue reading: Beyonce Debuts New Song 'Grown Woman' (Washes It Down With A Pepsi)
John Legend is excited to perform on the same bill as Beyonce and a host of other famous acts, in aid of Chime for Change - an initiative, focusing on women's issues worldwide.
John Legend is excited to team up with Beyonce for a London concert, endorsing Chime for Change – a charity, aimed at helping girls and women around the world. The singers will perform at London’s Twickenham stadium on June 1st alongside a host of other international acts, including Florence + the Machine, Haim, Ellie Goulding, Iggy Azalea, Laura Pausini, Rita Ora and Timbaland. Chime for Change was founded by Gucci and profits from the initiative go to various NGOs around the world, which aim to affect change in the lives of underprivileged women.
John Legend himself has been working with various organisations, focusing on women’s rights, for a long time. For The Huffington Post, the singer said he was “inspired” to act after traveling to Ghana with Millenium Promise co-founder Professor Jeffrey Sachs, who wrote The End of Poverty.
The Grammy Award winner is excited to perform alongside Beyonce.
Continue reading: John Legend Would Love To Duet With Beyonce In Aid Of Women's Rights
Though we know Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel's wedding took place in Fasano, Italy, on Friday (October 19, 2012), further details of the ceremony have been pretty difficult to get hold of. The couple did a pretty good job of keeping the whole thing under wraps, though E! Online managed to get a quick look at the guest list, at least.
Timberlake - who recently unveiled his new version of MySpace - tied the knot with Hollywood star Biel in front of Jimmy Fallon, Timbaland and actress Beverly Mitchell. The newlyweds were spotted rolling their luggage through the airport on Sunday, though Biel ensured nobody got a look at her wedding band. Timberlake on the other hand was pretty happy to give photographers a glimpse of his. Justin's new wife has had an odd couple of years in Hollywood. Once hailed as an up-and-coming leading lady, she's underwhelmed in substandard efforts 'Valentine's Day', 'New Year's Eve', 'The A-Team', 'The Tall Man' and most recently, 'Total Recall'. Basically, if you're a movie producer and you can't get Angelina Jolie, Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Lopez, Sandra Bullock, Julia Roberts or Charlize Theron, you might give Biel a call.
Nevertheless, she has a couple of interesting looking projects coming up, not least 'Hitchcock,' with Sir Anthony Hopkins and Helen Mirren, and David O'Russell's highly anticipated 'Nailed', with Jake Gyllenhaal.
It wasn’t the steadiest of roads, but after a somewhat bumpy five years that included more than one break-up, Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake tied the knot over the weekend in a glorious Italian ceremony, and we’ve got just about all the details to tell you about it.
In what was a reasonably intimate affair in the Southern Italian town of Fasano, US Magazine was the first to get a sneak peak at the aftermath of the ceremony, and it was by no means a half-hearted affair.
The magazine reveals that the pair, who wedded in front of an estimated 150 close friends and family, held their wedding at the exclusive Borgo Egnazia resort, surrounded by olive trees and cactus plants and set in the rolling hills of the picturesque coastal town. Sources also revealed to the magazine that the resort was also adorned with white flowers hanging from the walls and balconies throughout the fortress-like resort, with the two exchanging their vows at the resort’s very own chapel.
Continue reading: Jessica Biel And Justin Timberlake's Wedding: Behind The Scenes
Missy Elliott insists she will not go ahead and work on a posthumous Aaliyah album unless the late singer’s family gives her the green-light. The Virginia born rapper – who was instrumental in Aaliyah’s career – has been rumoured to be involved in a possible project, executively produced by Drake, though after dropping by New York’s Hot 97 radio station, she insists that was not the case. Yet.
Missy and close friend Timbaland spoke to host Angie Martinez about the possibility of an Aaliyah album, though the former insisted, “No call has been made to me…I have to respect her family. Until they come and say they're ready to do an Aaliyah album, I don't wanna get into that.” For his part, Timbaland – who worked on Aaliyah’s 1997 album ‘One in a Million’ - said the idea of another record would be difficult for him to handle emotionally, “For me, I have a hard time just listening to her music. So to sit there and do some music?” he explained, before Missy added, “We're not talking about records that were put out, we're talking about songs that are unfinished…We don't know her reasoning for not putting her records out. She might have felt that that wasn't her best work.” The all-star producing team would probably want to avoid a situation whereby Aaliyah fans felt the posthumous record offered little in terms of interesting new material (similar accusations were targeted at those behind the Amy Winehouse album ‘Lioness: Hidden Treasures’)
In the meantime, fans of Missy Elliott and Timbaland can enjoy two new tracks ‘Triple Threat’ and ‘9th Inning’, released on Monday (September 17, 2012).
Madonna's 11th studio album and her last with Warner Bros will be named Licorice, stateside reports have said.
Former Billboard editor Larry Flick's OutQ radio show said the 13-track album would be released next April.
Two of the Queen of Pop's new tracks also got an airing; Candy Shop and the Kanye West-featuring The Beat Goes On.
According to fan websites, Justin Timberlake, Timbaland and Pharrell Williams all guest on the new CD.
OutQ also claimed that Licorice, understood to have been presented to Warner Bros bosses this week, will include a reworked version of The Devil Wouldn't Recognise You.
Licorice is set to be Madonna's last studio album with Warner Bros, not withstanding a new greatest hits collection, before she begins her ten-year contract with Artist Nation.
The groundbreaking deal encompasses the entire Madonna brand, from music and tours to DVDs and official merchandise.
Continue reading: Licorice: Madonna's New Album
Date of birth
10th March, 1972
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