Before there was Katy Perry and Justin Bieber, there was a pre-Nipple Gate Janet Jackson and Shaggy. Yes folks, we’ll be taking you back to the good ol’ days of 2001.
Warning: the music you are about to hear is not exactly my favourite nor is it possibly yours, but they were all the shit at one point of another. Let’s face it: we probably all own the CDs and the songs will probably be stuck in your head all week. SorryNotSorry.
“It Wasn’t Me” By Shaggy
Not only was this song impossible to get out of your head, it’s about cheating and trying to lie your way out of it! Not cool, Shaggy! It stayed at number 1 for two weeks.
“Ms. Jackson” by OutKast
Actually, this is one song from 2001 that should have a permanent place in your favourite iTunes playlist.
Butterfly by CrazyTown
This song was huge and I’m guilty I liked it. Listening to it now makes me hate it. Does that ever happen to you?
When it comes to hip hop covers, often than not you’re left thinking “why would they even attempt covering THAT song!?” But then there are those that cause you to begin dancing around your room with excitement.
But what’s most surprising is when those covers are done by non-hip hop artists. I don’t know if it’s the initial shock of “oh my god, this actually sounds good,” or the weird juxtaposition of when the song is done in another genre entirely. The bottom line, though, is that they’re good and all we want to do is listen to them.
Here are 10 of the best hip hop covers from non-hip hop artists.
Ed Sheeran and Passenger — “No Diggity / Thrift Shop”
A pretty recent cover comes from music’s most soulful ginger, Ed Sheeran, who teamed up with Passenger’s Mike Rosenberg during a recent visit to Australian radio to give us an amazing mash up of Blackstreet’s 90′s hit “No Diggity” and Macklemore’s “Thrift Shop.”
Ed Sheeran — “Empire State of Mind”
Ed Sheeran makes another appearance on this list with his cover of Jay-Z and Alicia Keys’ “Empire State” of Mind for BBC Radio 1. Ed can do no wrong, so it’s no surprise that this cover (like everything he does) is nothing short of perfection.
The lighting system was created by Philips Color Kinetics and can generate 16 MILLION colours and create special effects such as ripples, bursts, sweeps, sparkles, cross-fades, strobes and chasers.
Colour us impressed.
Alicia Keys performed the most epic version of the “Gummi Bears” theme song for Jimmy Fallon, and the best part is she didn’t crack a smile. The soulful rendition is the theme to the 1990s cartoon Adventures of the Gummi Bears. The Disney show was the first animated production by Walt Disney Animation Television and was loosely inspired by the gummi bear candies after CEO Michael Eisner’s requested the candies one day.
Alicia Keys played the introduction on the piano while singing the theme song. Apart from being a fantastic performance, it’s ridiculously hilarious.
Watch it here
Listen to the original theme song here Read more…
Once in a while a remix comes along that shakes YouTube so hard that the demand for a ten hour loop becomes inevitable. Razaltin remixed a clip about bacon pancakes from Adventure Time with Jay-Z and Alicia Keys’ “New York.”
You’ll probably want to listen to the mashup for eternity, or at least all day at school while you’re pretending to listen to your teacher drone on about the Great Depression. It’ll get to the point where your teacher will ask you “What caused the Wall Street Crash of 1929?” and you’ll just say “Bacon pancakes, bacon bacon pancakes.” (Source)
Watch it here
Alicia Keys’ new music video for “Girl On Fire” is an ode to super mom. You know, the moms who work so damn hard to keep everything together but never let the frenzy show on their face. The positive concept of the song and music video is a refuge from the club bangers on the radio and much more inspirational than tracks about hooking up, breaking up and smoking up.
This version also erases Nick Minaj’s verse, which seems to make the song flow better, plus I don’t know where Minaj would fit in the video.
Watch it here:
“Not Even the King” — Alicia Keys
After dabbling in the pop and hip hop scene, Alicia Keys goes back behind the piano in “Not Even the King,” the second single off her upcoming album, Girl on Fire. “Not Even the King” carries a special message: money alone doesn’t make you rich. The new, artsy lyric video for the single features positive, childlike paintings that reinforce Keys’ beautiful melody and gentle keystrokes. It’s a great track to remind you what matters most in life. “Girl on Fire” is released Nov. 27.
“Fall Down” — Diggy Simmons ft. Victoria Monet
Seventeen-year-old Diggy Simmons dropped “Fall Down” featuring Victoria Monet from his upcoming mixtape Out of This World. The track re-ignites beef between Diggy and J. Cole, who freestyled a rap about Diggy at a Kendrick Lamar show: “Picture me hating on a young n—a with talent/Album flopped, but it’s cool, he caked out on his allowance.” Diggy took the lyrics as a direct attack on him and came back with “Fall Down.” He raps: “Thought J. stood for Jermaine, not Jetsetter/ You see me and shook my hand, coppin’ pleas in person/ Now you act less than a man, mentioning me in verses.” Ouch!
“Parking Lot” behind the scenes — Nelly Furtado Read more…
It is a sad day for anybody who enjoyed the countless hours of entertainment from Megaupload. The FBI charged the operators of the site with copyright infringement and “conspiracy to commit racketeering.”
And here’s big news, Alicia Keys is connected to this controversy. Her husband Swizz Beats was revealed as the acting CEO of the company, who was brought on by founder Kim Dotcom. Beatz was partially responsible for the track “Mega Song,” which showed famous artists supporting the service.
It is unclear which seven Megaupload employees are to be arrested, and the extent to which Swizz Beats has been involved.
Before Arcade Fire and Radiohead snag the spotlight, Kanye doesn’t hesitate to remind everyone that he’s still around with his new neon-infested music video for “All of the Lights” that includes appearances by Rihanna and Kid CuDi.
The Hype Williams directed video starts with a solemn black-and-white shot of a young black girl strolling through the snow-covered streets in the projects, while Elton John’s ivory tickles provide the instrumental. As the blaring, triumphant fanfare of horns welcome the chorus of Alicia Keys, Rihanna and friends… the acid light show begins.
Michael Jackson tributes continue with CuDi’s red-leather jacker (hello, Thriller) and Ye’s tribal dancing on top of a cop car (Black or White).
And yes, there is the blatant nod to Gasper Noe’s Into the Void intro, which is done in respect.
And on top of that, we get Rihanna in what appear to be a boob harness. Yes. A boob harness.
But, of course, would anyone expect anything less than classy from the man? It won’t disappoint with the cinematic presentation, as it isn’t over done or too spectacular… just a few cop lights, flash lights, spot lights and strobe lights to kick one into seizure after one dose.
The musical pair of Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz has something to sing about: A baby and a wedding are both on the way, reports People. Keys, 29, and Beatz (real name: Kasseem Dean), 31, have been together since the fall of 2008 and are ready to start a family together.
A rep for the couple has confirmed that they “are expecting a baby and are engaged to be married in a private ceremony later this year.”
A friend of the musical duo says that “they’re very happy,” reports People.
Beatz has two sons, Kasseem Jr. and Prince Nasir, from two previous relationships but this will be the first child together for the couple. This will also be the first time Grammy-award-winning Alicia Keys will tie the knot.
So we’ve got one question: Will this baby have the same musical talent as its parents?
That’s what New York City fans were treated to last night at the Alicia Keys concert at Madison Square Gardens, reports MTV News. Before Keys hit the stage, fans were treated to Thicke, Fiona and Paul. Then Keys hit the stage appearing in a chain-wrapped cage, amidst the smoke that slowly flooded the stage.
After a few songs Beyonce surprisingly joined her fellow diva on stage for “Put It in a Love Song” that got fans riled up. And if that wasn’t enough, Jay-Z hit the stage later for “Empire State of Mind.” (see clip below)
That’s a lucky group of fans!
George Clooney’s “Hope for Haiti” benefit will feature performances by Justin Timberlake, Christina Aguilera, Bono, Sting and Alicia Keys, reports CBC. Clooney said he expects more than 40 celebrities to come out to the New York event on Jan. 22 to show their support for the victims of a recent earthquake in Haiti.
He said the goal of the fundraiser is “to show the people of Haiti that the whole world is paying attention.”
Clooney and Haitian-born singer Wyclef Jean will host the event, which will be broadcast on over a dozen television channels and will feature CNN’s Anderson Cooper live from the disaster-stricken country.
Alicia Keys and Jack White have teamed up to record the theme song to “Quantum of Solace,” making it the first duet in Bond soundtrack history.
The song, titled “Another Way To Die,” was written and produced by White, who also plays drums on the track, Columbia Pictures said in a statement Tuesday.
The announcement puts to rest questions surrounding who would record the latest Bond theme, with rumoured contenders having included Amy Winehouse, Leona Lewis and Duffy.
Coincidentally, Keys and White have both appeared in movies — the R&B songstress’s acting credits include “Smokin’ Aces” and “The Nanny Diaries,” and the White Stripes/Raconteurs frontman had a part in “Cold Mountain.”
Their new song will join the list of such past Bond themes as Shirley Bassey’s “Goldfinger,” Duran Duran’s “A View To A Kill,” Paul McCartney’s “Live And Let Die” and Chris Cornell’s “You Know My Name.” Cornell’s tune was featured in the most recently released Bond film, 2006′s “Casino Royale.”
The soundtrack to “Quantum of Solace” will be released Oct. 28, while the film itself — the 22nd James Bond flick — will hit North American theatres Nov. 7.
Daniel Craig reprises his starring role as Agent 007 in the Marc Forster-directed movie.
Alicia Keys may be taking on James Bond–but not as a Bond Girl.
The Grammy award-winning singer is rumoured to be the top contender to sing the title song for the next Bond film, Quantum of Solace.
Other artists–including Amy Winehouse, Beyonce, Leona Lewis, Duran Duran, Jack White, Duffy, and Annie Lennox–have also been linked to the movie, but an inside source told E! Online yesterday:
“I believe Alicia is the winner.”
Keys’ rep declined to comment. A rep for the movie also kept quiet, saying there was “no info” available about a potential title song.
Quantum of Solace, starring Daniel Craig again as Bond, is scheduled to hit theatres in November.
Alicia Keys is working hard – so that she can quit.
The talented songstress told Contact Music that she plans to retire at 30, just three years from now.
“I am working hard now so I have the choice to retire when I want,” she told the site. “I would like to travel the world and stay in places instead of having to move on like I do now. I want to experience difference cultures.”
Keys said that the reason for her early retirement is that she feels too pressured by the business and fame. In 2006 she took a break from it all, travelling to Egypt.
According to reports, Alicia Keys has reportedly signed a $25 million dollar deal with VitaminWater brand, joining other endorsement members 50 Cent and Kelly Clarkson.
Although the new deal has not yet been officially confirmed, possible details include several commercials, attendance at events and even concert tie-ins. According to website MediaTakeOut.com, the U.S. drinks firm Glaceau is expected to make the official announcement sometime in June.
50 Cent is said to have made $400 million in his deal with Glaceau, but sold his 10 per cent share of the company last year in May 2007 after Coca-Cola agreed to purchase Glaceau for $4.1 billion.
Songstress Alicia Keys was the big winner at Thursday’s NAACP Image Awards, taking home four awards including Outstanding Album for the platinum-selling “As I Am” and Outstanding Female Artist.
She also won top music video and song for “Like You’ll Never See Me Again” at the ceremony held at L.A.’s Shrine Auditorium.
Chris Brown won for Outstanding Male Artist, while “American Idol” winner Jordin Sparks won for Outstanding New Artist.
“Great Debaters” leads Denzel Washington and Jurnee Smollett won the Best Actor and Actress prizes for film. The movie, which was produced by Oprah Winfrey, also won Best Picture.
The night’s honourees included Stevie Wonder, who received the Hall of Fame Award, and Aretha Franklin, who won the prestigious Vanguard Award.
According to NAACP Chairman Julian Bond, the Vanguard “is presented to a person whose groundbreaking work increases our understanding and awareness of racial and social issues.” Previous winners of the award are Prince, Stanley Kramer and Steven Spielberg.
The NAACP Image Awards honour achievements in film, television, music and literature. This year marked the 39th anniversary of the awards.
Singer Alicia Keys will hit two major Canadian cities as part of her North American “As I Am” tour in the spring and summer.
Keys will stop by Toronto’s Air Canada Centre for a show on June 6, and Montreal’s Bell Centre on June 8.
The songstress is touring in support of “As I Am,” her third studio album. So far, 30 shows have been confirmed, with Keys kicking off the trek in Hampton, VA on April 19 and wrapping things up at Madison Square Garden in New York City on June 18.
‘Am I Am’ has spent weeks atop the Billboard charts, and the single “No One” has two nods at this Sunday’s Grammy Awards, for Best R&B Song and Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.
The dates for Keys’ North American tour are:
Hampton, VA – Hampton Coliseum (April 19)
Philadelphia, PA – Liacouras Center (20)
Pittsburgh, PA – Peterson Events Center (22)
Rosemont, IL – Allstate Arena (25)
Columbus, OH – Value City Arena at Schottenstein Center (26)
St. Louis, MO – Scottrade Center (27)
Minneapolis, MN – Target Center (30)
Kansas City, MO – Sprint Center (May 1)
Los Angeles, CA – venue to be announced (5)
San Diego, CA – San Diego Sports Arena (7)
Las Vegas, NV – MGM Grand Garden Arena (9)
San Jose, CA – HP Pavilion at San Jose (10)
Phoenix, AZ – Jobing.com Arena (12)
Grand Prairie, TX – Nokia Theatre at Grand Prairie (14)
Houston, TX – Toyota Center (18)
New Orleans, LA – New Orleans Arena (22)
Tampa, FL – St. Pete Times Forum (24)
Miami, FL – American Airlines Arena (25)
Atlanta, GA – Philips Arena (28)
Greensboro, NC – Greensboro Coliseum (30)
Cincinnati, OH – US Bank Arena (31)
Detroit, MI – Joe Louis Arena (June 3)
Cleveland, OH – Wolstein Center at Cleveland State (5)
Toronto, Ontario – Air Canada Centre (6)
Montreal, Quebec – Bell Centre (8)
Boston, MA – TD Banknorth Garden (11)
Washington, DC – Verizon Center (13)
Baltimore, MD – 1st Mariner Arena (15)
Newark, NJ – Prudential Center (17)
New York, NY – Madison Square Garden (18)
Alicia Keys and Jordin Sparks are hoping to avoid any pesky “wardrobe malfunctions” at tonight’s Super Bowl.
While veteran crooner Tom Petty will play the halftime show, Keys and Sparks are slated to perform before the big game kicks off.
Keys will start the festivities with some pre-show entertainment and Sparks is set to belt out the Star Spangled Banner.
The reigning American Idol is no stranger to Super Bowl Sunday hype. Her father is former New York Giant, Phillippi Sparks.
“I said, ‘Dad, I’m singing at the Super Bowl,’” Jordin Sparks was quoted as saying, EZ-Tracks News reports. “He said, ‘At least one of us made it.’”
Along with big-name performances, the Super Bowl always delivers memorable between-the-plays-entertainment. This year’s batch of high-profile commercials will feature the likes of Madonna, Justin Timberlake and Missy Elliott.
If you’ve been on a stroll past the Eaton Centre recently, hopefully you avoided stepping on Alicia Keys’ face.
Toronto chalk artist Victor Fraser re-created the songstress’ recently released album cover on the sidewalk. The entire 6-hour process was recorded and made into a fascinating time-lapse video, which can be viewed here.
Additional works by Fraser can be viewed at his MySpace page.