Rapper Yg has cancelled his upcoming Australian tour dates. The Like This hitmaker was scheduled to perform at dance festival Listen Out 2014 alongside fellow rapper Schoolboy Q in Sydney later this month (Sep14), but has dropped out due to unknown reasons and axed his other dates in the country.
A statement on Listen Out's Facebook.com page reads, "Unfortunately YG has cancelled his Australian tour, so he won't be appearing at Listen Out. "
YG, real name Keenon Daequan Ray Jackson, recently pulled out of a show in Spokane, Washington due to work commitments, but he did make the stage to perform at Jay Z's Made in America Festival in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on Sunday (31Aug14).
Singer Michelle Williams has spoken out in defence of former Destiny'S Child bandmate Beyonce's decision not to tame her daughter Blue Ivy's wild hair, insisting cruel critics should focus on their own kids. Style critics and Internet trolls have taken aim at the Crazy In Love hitmaker and her rapper husband Jay Z in recent months over their choice to let two-year-old Blue Ivy's locks grow out naturally.
The haircare debate even led to a bizarre petition launched online, calling on the baby's superstar parents to comb her afro, but Williams is baffled by the unlikely hot topic.
She tells America's Sister 2 Sister magazine, "Let's worry about your own children and nieces and nephews and make sure they're getting good grades in school and not worry about somebody's hair."
And Williams is warning cyber bullies everywhere not to mess with her or her loved ones.
She says, "I think the cyber bullying is just stupid because the majority of the time most of the cyber bullies just type it (online), but when they see you on the street, they're not gonna say it to your face.
"Every now and then, depending on what day you catch me, if you say something out of line to me - because I don't want you to be ignorant, I want you to be knowledgeable - I will spit something back to you that's factual and I'll say 'God bless you' at the end."
Williams' comments emerge days after Blue Ivy's appearance with her famous parents at the MTV Video Music Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday (24Aug14), when she helped her dad present Beyonce with the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award, prompted further haircare criticism from bloggers.
Chris Brown's on/off girlfriend Karrueche Tran also poked fun at the child's hair during a guest hosting stint on U.S. music video chart show 106 & Park on Monday (25Aug14), when she read from a script of jokes and quipped, as Blue Ivy, "I really did wake up like this because my parents never combed my hair."
The backlash she received prompted BET network boss Stephen G. Hill to apologise for the remark on behalf of his company.
Beyonce, Miley Cyrus and Katy Perry ruled the 2014 MTV Video Music Awards at The Forum in Inglewood, California on Sunday (24Aug14), by picking up the biggest honours. The Roar hitmaker took home the first Moonman trophy of the night for Best Female Video for Dark Horse and was joined onstage by rapper Juicy J who appeared on the track.
Cyrus, who returned to the prizegiving a year after causing a stir with her raunchy routine with Blurred Lines singer Robin Thicke, was all about the message this year, choosing to use her Video of the Year acceptance speech for Wrecking Ball to pay tribute to homeless youths.
The pop star sent a man named Jesse to accept the prize on her behalf for the "1.6 million runaways and homeless youths in the United States, who are starving, lost and scared for their lives right now."
He continued, "I know this because I am one of these people... If you want to make a powerful change in the world right now, please join us and go to Miley's Facebook.com page. A dream you dream alone is only a dream, but a dream you dream together is reality."
Beyonce was feted with the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award and wowed the crowd with a show-stopping performance featuring a medley of hits from her self-titled album, including Partition, Flawless and Drunk in Love.
After her stunning set, which brought the audience to its feet, she was presented with the accolade by daughter Blue Ivy and husband Jay Z, who called his wife "the greatest living entertainer."
Beyonce tearfully accepted her award, saying, "I'm so full. Thank you, I have nothing to say, but I'm filled with so much gratitude. I just thank God for this moment and I love y'all so much. Blue I love you, my beloved I love you, my fans I love you, MTV I love you, goodnight."
The moment appeared to be her bid to once and for all end divorce rumours.
Ed Sheeran and Fifth Harmony were also big winners, taking home the Best Male Video and Artist to Watch awards, respectively.
Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj and Jessie J kicked off the ceremony with Grande singing her hit Break Free, followed by Nicki Minaj giving a jungle-themed performance of her new track Anaconda.
Jessie J then started off the trio's new hit song Bang Bang, but Minaj suffered an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction when she did not complete her quick-change in time and was forced to hold the front of her dress together so as to not expose her bare breasts as she returned to the stage.
Other performance highlights included Sam Smith with his hit song Stay With Me and Maroon 5, who made their VMAs debut with a performance of Maps outside of the venue.
Iggy Azalea and Rita Ora also hit the The Forum stage for their first-ever live performance of Black Widow.
There was also a couple of serious moments in among the festivities - Robin Williams, who passed away earlier this month (Aug14), was remembered and rapper Common asked for a moment of silence for Missouri teenager, Michael Brown, who was killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri on 9 August (14), sparking the ongoing unrest in the state.
The 2014 MTV VMAs winners at press time were:
Video of the Year - Wrecking Ball by Miley Cyrus
Best Hip-Hop Video - Hold On (We're Going Home) by Drake featuring Majid Jordan
Best Male Video - Sing by Ed Sheeran
Best Female Video - Dark Horse by Katy Perry featuring Juicy J
Best Pop Video - Problem by Ariana Grande featuring Iggy Azalea
Artist to Watch - Fifth Harmony
Best Rock Video - Royals by Lorde
Best Lyric Video - Don't Stop by 5 Seconds of Summer
MTV Clubland Award - Stay the Night by Zedd featuring Hayley Williams
Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award - Beyonce
Mariah Carey has hired a new manager after parting ways with longtime collaborator Jermaine Dupri. The Hero hitmaker hired her superproducer pal as her manager last autumn (13), but after less than a year in his new role, Dupri is stepping down from the position.
A statement released by Dupri reads: "I'm a very hands-on person when it comes to my work. I put my all into every project. But when I'm not allowed to do what I do, then I know it's time for me to move on. Mariah and I enjoy working together and will continue to make great music together in the future."
Carey hired Dupri in the middle of production of her 14th studio album, Me. I Am Mariah... The Elusive Chanteuse, which she had been working on for the past two years.
The record was finally released in May (14), but had a disappointing debut in the U.S. selling just 58,000 copies in the first week.
Carey had previously been managed by music veteran and former American Idol judge Randy Jackson.
She has now reportedly hired Def Jam Recordings president Kevin Liles, who also manages Jay Z and Ludacris, to oversee her career, according to Billboard Magazine.
Jay Z's mum has followed her rapper son into the restaurant business by opening her own eatery in Newark, New Jersey. Gloria Carter celebrated the launch of Diamondz N Da Ruff with her famous son and daughter-in-law, Beyonce, on 26 July (14) with a ribbon cutting ceremony and a champagne toast inside the establishment, according to TMZ.com.
This isn't the first business venture for Carter - she also serves as the president of the 99 Problems hitmaker's college scholarship charity, the Shawn Carter Scholarship Foundation.
Jay Z opened the first location in his sports lounge and restaurant franchise, The 40/40 Club, in New York in 2003 and has since expanded with venues at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn and at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Georgia.
Getty Images/Kevin Mazur
Beyonce and Jay Z marked five years since Michael Jackson's death on Wednesday (25Jun14) by performing one of his hits on the first night of their tour. The couple, which married in 2008, kicked off their co-headlining On The Run trek on Wednesday at the Sun Life Stadium in Miami, Florida and they paid tribute to the King of Pop by playing Jackson 5 hit I Want You Back during the show.
Earlier that day, Beyonce marked the five year anniversary by writing in a post on her website, "Michael Jackson changed me, and helped me to become the artist I am thank you Michael. Love always, B." The pair opened the first show of the tour with their 2002 collaboration '03 Bonnie & Clyde, with Beyonce wearing a plunging fishnet leotard and balaclava.
The 42-song set list switched between the stars' own solo hits and duets, and the concert ended with Forever Young, which was accompanied by on-screen footage from their wedding and home videos of their two-year-old daughter Blue Ivy.
The tour's next stop is in Cincinnati, Ohio on Saturday (28Jun14) and will continue through to September (14).
Hitmaker Timbaland is set to serve up a double treat for fans by releasing a movie to accompany his forthcoming album Opera Noir. The Cry Me a River producer, who worked on the new posthumous Michael Jackson album Xscape, is hoping to unveil the double project by the end of this year (14) and he is convinced it is some of his best work to date.
He tells Vibe.com, "The album that I'm about to put out - if you think my work on the Michael Jackson album is something you have no idea what I'm about to unleash.
"The best way I can describe it is this is my Purple Rain (Prince classic). And I'm going to have a movie to go with it. And wait 'til you hear the director who is doing it. It's going to really bug you out (surprise you)!"
Timbaland has worked with a host of big names over his 15-year career, including Justin Timberlake, Destiny's Child and Jay Z, but he reveals his new album will not feature any superstar guests.
He continues, "Right now I'm putting the finishing touches on it. And the cool thing about it is there are no features, only me and my artists on it (sic).
"This is some of the best music you will hear over the last 15 years. I've been going to different studios and letting different people hear the tracks. You can go around and ask. I'm very excited about this album."
Rap mogul Jay Z has officially launched the long-awaited Atlanta, Georgia branch of his 40/40 Club sports venue in the world's busiest airport. The bar, located at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, opened for business on Wednesday (21May14), while the lounge portion of the club is due to welcome patrons this autumn (14). Jay Z, whose flagship venue is located in New York, had initially outlined plans for the Atlanta bar in 2010.
Sean 'Diddy' Combs' impact on popular culture is to be examined by students at New York University's Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music. Topics: Sean Combs & Urban Culture will be taught by Jayson Jackson, who was the former Vice President of Marketing and Promotions at the rapper/producer's Bad Boy Entertainment company.
The course description reads, "No single personality dominated the landscape of urban mainstream popular culture in the 1990s (and since) more than producer, rapper and entrepreneur Sean 'Puff Daddy' Combs."
The class will "investigate the social and cultural and political changes of the 1990s and how Sean Combs was catapulted to success by those changes".
Combs is not the only hip-hop musician to be the focus of a current college course - Jay Z and Kanye West are subjects of a class at the University of Missouri.
And, earlier this week (beg24Mar14), professors at Skidmore College in New York announced they were offering a course on singer Miley Cyrus, titled The Sociology of Miley Cyrus: Race, Class, Gender and Media.
For the bulk of every Rocky and Bullwinkle episode, moose and squirrel would engage in high concept escapades that satirized geopolitics, contemporary cinema, and the very fabrics of the human condition. With all of that to work with, there's no excuse for why the pair and their Soviet nemeses haven't gotten a decent movie adaptation. But the ingenious Mr. Peabody and his faithful boy Sherman are another story, intercut between Rocky and Bullwinkle segments to teach kids brief history lessons and toss in a nearly lethal dose of puns. Their stories and relationship were much simpler, which means that bringing their shtick to the big screen would entail a lot more invention — always risky when you're dealing with precious material.
For the most part, Mr. Peabody & Sherman handles the regeneration of its heroes aptly, allowing for emotionally substance in their unique father-son relationship and all the difficulties inherent therein. The story is no subtle metaphor for the difficulties surrounding gay adoption, with society decreeing that a dog, no matter how hyper-intelligent, cannot be a suitable father. The central plot has Peabody hosting a party for a disapproving child services agent and the parents of a young girl with whom 7-year-old Sherman had a schoolyard spat, all in order to prove himself a suitable dad. Of course, the WABAC comes into play when the tots take it for a spin, forcing Peabody to rush to their rescue.
Getting down to personals, we also see the left brain-heavy Peabody struggle with being father Sherman deserves. The bulk of the emotional marks are hit as we learn just how much Peabody cares for Sherman, and just how hard it has been to accept that his only family is growing up and changing.
But more successful than the new is the film's handling of the old — the material that Peabody and Sherman purists will adore. They travel back in time via the WABAC Machine to Ancient Egypt, the Renaissance, and the Trojan War, and 18th Century France, explaining the cultural backdrop and historical significance of the settings and characters they happen upon, all with that irreverent (but no longer racist) flare that the old cartoons enjoyed. And oh... the puns.
Mr. Peabody & Sherman is a f**king treasure trove of some of the most amazingly bad puns in recent cinema. This effort alone will leave you in awe.
The film does unravel in its final act, bringing the science-fiction of time travel a little too close to the forefront and dropping the ball on a good deal of its emotional groundwork. What seemed to be substantial building blocks do not pay off in the way we might, as scholars of animated family cinema, have anticipated, leaving the movie with an unfinished feeling.
But all in all, it's a bright, compassionate, reasonably educational, and occasionally funny if not altogether worthy tribute to an old favorite. And since we don't have our own WABAC machine to return to a time of regularly scheduled Peabody and Sherman cartoons, this will do okay for now.
If nothing else, it's worth your time for the puns.
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Cast as Perd Hapley in "Parks and Recreation" (NBC, 2009-)
Joins KUSI Television as news reporter
Cast in "Scandal"
Lands first acting role in "Dexter" (Showtime, 2006-2013)
Jackson lists opening before Nancy Wilson at the Vino Jazz Festival in Simi Valley as the highlight of his career.
"I don't do this for money. I think musicians have to shift from that mentality. When you love to entertain a crowd, give them a night to remember, that's most satisfying than a few dollars. Don't get me wrong. If I was offered a million dollar contract, I'd sign it in a hot second. But if I have to change what I do, I'd strongly fight against it." Jackson quoted on Agenda, July 1, 2012.
"There's no actor that can play a better reporter than I can because it takes years to develop the look, sound, pace and swag of a television news reporter." Jackson quoted on Zulkey.com, Sept. 27, 2013.