Up-and-Coming: X-Factor Winner Alexandra Burke

December 30, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

While I haven’t seen Simon Cowell’s X-Factor - the UK counterpart for American Idol - I do know that so far several very talent folks have gotten their big break from competing on the show. More specifically, pop phenomenon, Leona Lewis and now Alexandra Burke.

Unless you live under a rock you cannot escape the buzz of Burke’s record breaking debut. In fact, the young chanteuses’ first official single, a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah,” has become the fastest selling single by a female vocalist in Europe, ever.

Hearing her sing, I was immediately enraptured with her brilliant voice and naked delivery. She may be new to the game, but she has already began to dominate the UK pop charts, knocking both Leona Lewis and Beyoné off of their pedestals.

Alexandra Burke is heading out on the X-Factor live tour in February and is set to release her debut LP (now available for pre-order) March 16, 2009. If you haven’t heard the single yet, check out the official video after the jump.

Alexandra Burke Official Video "Hallelujah"

Image: Amazon.uk

Kelly Clarkson Announces New Single “My Wold Would Suck Without You”

December 23, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

After nearly two years off the radar, Kelly Clarkson has just announced a new album in the works, tentatively scheduled for release March 17th.

The album is yet untitled, however the single first single “My Life Would Suck Without You” is slated to hit radio on January 19th.

In the meantime, Clarkson took time out during a recent photo shoot to record a video message to her fans. Check it out after the jump

For more information and the latest updates from Kelly Clarkson, visit KellyOfficial.com.

Singled Out: Lily Allen “The Fear”

December 16, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

A few months back there was a bit of drama surrounding Lily Allen’s sophomore release. Thankfully, everything got sorted pretty quickly and It’s Not Me, It’s You is due for release Feb 10.

To hold us over until then, Allen has graced us with a new single, “The Fear.” True to form, “The Fear” is a bubble gum pop number with decidedly pointed lyrics, which, when teamed with Allen’s lovely, lady like voice, create a sweet and quick-witted juxtaposition.

I want to be rich and I want lots of money
I don’t care about clever I don’t care about funny
I want loads of clothes and f***loads of diamonds
I heard people die while they are trying to find them

I’ll take my clothes off and it will be shameless
‘Cuz everyone knows that’s how you get famous
I’ll look at the sun and I’ll look in the mirror
I’m on the right track yeah I’m on to a winner

Allen keenly examines the trappings of the glam life and the do absolutely anything to get (and stay) famous celebrity culture we live in. The video features Allen surrounded by soft pastels, which, combined with the soft finish cinematography, complete the wink-and-a-smile tone of the song.

Image via Newscom

Kara DioGuardi Joins American Idol Judges’ Panel for Season 8

December 15, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

In case you didn’t hear about it back in August, a fourth judge has been added to the American Idol panel. This new element being added to the mix is none other than hit making, award nominated, song writer Kara DioGuardi.

“We are turning the heat up on Idol this year and are thrilled to welcome Kara to the judges’ table,” said creator and executive producer Simon Fuller. “She is a smart, sassy lady, and one of America’s most successful songwriters. We know she will bring a new level of energy and excitement to the show.” [source]

Lately folks have been buzzing about possible tension between DioGuardi and veteran Idol judge/pop icon Paula Abdul. Adbul laughed off the rumors, pointing out that she and DioGuardi are close friends.

According to the Daily Dish, if this was an attempt by Simon Cowell to throw Abdul off her game, or drive a wedge between the two women, he completely missed the mark. Apparently it was Abdul who gave DioGuardi her first big break:

“This one has backfired on him. Ten years ago on a rainy day in New York a girl comes up and says, ‘You’re Paula Abdul. There’s a signed thank you letter you wrote in my boss’ office.’ I asked who her boss was, and he was the president of Billboard magazine. So I invited her to lunch, and we wrote a song that day, on a napkin.

“It turned out to be the biggest song for Kylie Minogue ever (’Spinning Around’). It hit number one all over Europe.”[source]

Sounds like season 8 of American Idol is set to explode with drama. Catch the season premier January 13 & 14, on Fox. If you care not about the drama between the judges and just want to get a peek at the Season 8 auditions and get the latest American Idol news, visit the official website.

Image via Newscom

Singled Out: Britney Spears “Circus”

December 11, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

I know I dissed Brit’s last single. It hurt me to do it, but it was necessary. I’ve been holding my tongue while every top 40 radio station played the crap out of “Womanizer,” (ok so not really) keeping my fingers crossed that the next single would be better.

It is my distinct pleasure to say that Britney Spears is on the right track with “Circus,” an infectiously sultry pop number, absolutely indicative of Brit’s return to the top of the charts. “Womanizer” may have been more upbeat, but “Circus” is far and away a better representation of the Spears brand. Of course, the lyrics are still simple, but at least they are not bitter woman drowning in synthesizer tricks, choke it down and spit it out, simple.

Its good to see Britney going back to basics. Part of her appeal has always been her ability to make a smoking hot video in which she shows off her dance moves and her awesome physique. Where in many of her recent videos, Brit failed to show off her best assets, she is definitely on her game with this one; striking beautiful poses in silhouette and doing that fantastic belly dancer move.

Don’t forget Britney Spears is hitting the road with her “Circus” tour. Check out Britney.com tour dates.

Image and video via Total Assault

Cher Turns Back Clock with 60s Cover Album

December 4, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

Pop icon, Cher, has been bidding us fairwell for more than a decade. Apparently, it has all been for show since she still has a Las Vegas show.

She also seems to have an unquenchable thirst for her hayday. To wit, Cher is putting together an album of covers from the 60s.

“I’m planning an album of all these great songs from the ’60s that I’ve never covered before. It was such a magical time for music - groups like The Beatles, the Hollies, the Zombies, the Kinks, the Stones and singers like Dylan and Otis Redding . . . I want to pay tribute to a time when I used to listen to music on my little transistor radio or on my AM radio in my Ford Mustang.” [source]

It’s all about nostalgia for Cher. For those of you who, like myself, are wondering what the big deal is with the legendary diva, we can be certain that her cult following of cross-dressing showmen(girls?) come out in droves to purchase this release.

Image via Newscom

Pussycat Dolls Tour with Britney Spears and Lauch Lingerie Line

December 3, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

The Pussycat Dolls recently announced the schedule for their Doll Domination World Tour, sans any stateside dates. Great news for those of us who can’t follow the Dolls across the pond. Following the European leg of their tour, the Dolls will be joining Britney Spears on her North American “Circus” tour!

The Pussycat Dolls have also joined the ranks of celebs with fashion lines. Well…technically the line is the brainchild of PCD creator Robin Antin, and is inspired by the costumes worn by the original Pussycat Dolls dance troupe. The line, PCD Shhh…is available in BeBe stores in the US and in La Senza internationally.

Check out PCD Music for the full schedule of PCD tour dates and more information on PCD Shhh…

Image courtesy of Total Assault

Neko Case Announces Release Date for “Middle Cyclone”

December 3, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

After three years, Neko Case has announced a release date for her new album, entitled Middle Cyclone.

Middle Cyclone is a long awaited follow-up to 2006’s Fox Confessor Brings The Flood; Case’s most critically acclaimed album to date.

At Seattle’s Bumbershoot festival, Case was fantastic, her voice riding the breeze like a feather while maintaining its rich tone. According to Spin, Case has one of the best voices in pop music today.

Middle Cyclone is scheduled for official release on March 3, on Anti-Records. There are no singles as of yet, however, you check out the website for more information and the album track list.

Image by Jason Creps, courtesy of Shore Fire Media

Flashback Friday: Eurythmics “Sweet Dreams”

November 28, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

With Annie Lennox winning the Award of Merit at this year’s AMAs, I thought it apropos to feature a song from the Eurythmics for this flashback Friday.

For all the funk and R&B that pervaded my childhood, a few pop/rock songs broke through. If it wasn’t on the local R&B radio or in my mother’s record collection, I usually didn’t know it existed. I remember the Eurythmics playing at my step sister’s birthday party one year though. A pulsing song with a devilishly esoteric arrangement. The chorus was an infectious little ditty

Sweet dreams are made of these
Who am I to disagree
Travel the world and the seven seas
Everybody’s looking for something

So often people stop there and almost seem to forget the part about being used and abused. I often thought the song with either about the trappings of stardom or just trying to find your way in a world dominated by snakes. Either way, “Sweet Dreams” was one of the first songs to force me to think about the meaning behind the lyrics.

To this day, “Sweet Dreams” holds a certain sense of nostalgia for me. It has also been mixed and remixed in a number of ways, a favorite of mine happens to be with Eminem’s “W/outMe.” Embedding was disabled for the original Eurythmic video, but you can check out the Eminem/Eurythmics mashup after the jump…

Image via Newscom

Pussycat Dolls’ Doll Domination World Tour 2009

November 13, 2008 by Kimberlee Morrison  

The Pussycat Dolls are one of those groups that I really want to see live. Who doesn’t want to see the sexy femme fatal quintet group perform on stage? If you like nothing else about the Pussycat Dolls, there is no denying that they are hot, hot, hot.

In January the Dolls are kicking of their Doll Domination World Tour in Europe. Tickets are currently on sale for the UK leg of the tour, with state side dates yet to be announced.

Check out PCD Music for more news on the Pussycat Dolls’ World Domination Tour.

Image via Total Assault

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