Soul legend Aretha Franklin has become the first woman to score 100 hits on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart since 1958 thanks to her cover of Adele's Rolling In The Deep. The song debuts at number 47, making Franklin only the fourth act to land at least 100 hits on the countdown - she joins rappers Jay Z (127) and Lil Wayne (135) and the Godfather of Soul James Brown (111).
Franklin first hit the chart 54 years ago this month with Today I Sing the Blues, and she last hit the countdown in 2012 with How Long I've Been Waiting.
Her take on Adele's hit features on Aretha's new covers album Aretha Franklin Sings the Great Diva Classics.
One-time abuse victim Rihanna's introduction to U.S. TV's Thursday Night Football special was yanked at the last minute on Thursday (11Sep14) and replaced with an interview with embattled league commissioner Roger Goodell amid the sport's ongoing domestic violence drama.
Rihanna’s Jay Z collaboration Run This Town was billed as part of the launch of the 2014 season of the CBS show, but network bosses decided the programme should open with a more serious message following the recent Ray Rice scandal.
Rice was arrested earlier this year (14) following an altercation with his then-fiancee in a hotel elevator in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Sickening footage of the incident has since been released and earlier this month (Sep14) the sportsman was kicked off the Baltimore Ravens roster and banned from playing in the National Football League (NFL).
Goodell came under fire from the media and women's rights groups for not acting sooner in dealing with Rice, amid accusations he and NFL bosses don't take domestic violence seriously enough. The commissioner has since spoken out about the scandal, dismissing reports that suggested the footage of Rice knocking his now-wife unconscious was made available to NFL executives in April (14), and his exclusive interview with CBS newswoman Norah O'Donnell was replayed at the beginning of the Thursday night football coverage, as well as a chat with Ravens team owner Steve Bisciotti.
As a result, Rihanna's reworked Run This Town, featuring a comedic segment starring Don Cheadle, was axed.
Announcing the decision hours before the big game, CBS Sports chairman Sean McManus said, "We thought journalistically and from a tone standpoint, we needed to have the appropriate tone coverage." Ironically, the featured game was a clash between the Ravens and Pittsburgh Steelers. Rihanna was a victim of abuse in 2009 when her then-boyfriend Chris Brown attacked her during a fight on the eve of the Grammy Awards. The R&B singer is still on probation following his violent actions.
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
Rapper J.cole has paid tribute to a black teenager killed by a police officer in Missouri by releasing a new song dedicated to him. Darren Wilson shot unarmed Michael Brown, who was suspected of stealing a box of cigars from a suburban St. Louis store, on 9 August (14), and the incident has sparked a series of tense protests between African-Americans and civil rights leaders and officials in the state.
As Governor Jay Nixon, President Barack Obama and Highway Patrol Capt. Ron Johnson join forces in a bid to end days of violence, hip-hop star Cole has released Be Free to voice his frustrations with the deaths of African-American men in the U.S.
In a post on his website, Dreamvillain.com, he writes, "That coulda (sic) been me, easily. It could have been my best friend. I'm tired of being desensitized to the murder of black men. I don't give a f**k if it's by police or peers. This s**t is not normal. I made a song. This is how we feel."
Cole is not the only celebrity to speak out about the incident in Missouri - John Legend, Kerry Washington and Mark Ruffalo have voiced concerns over the treatment of protesters by police following the shooting.
Legend took to Twitter.com to voice his opinion, writing, "I believe these cops are intentionally trying to inflame the situation. They want an excuse. Recall the local cop telling those 'animals' to 'bring it' on (news channel) CNN... He wants a fight.
"Calling us 'animals' has been the language to justify slavery... Dehumanization and racism go together."
Meanwhile, R&B star Frank Ocean took to Tumblr.com to comment on an image of Governor Nixon standing in front of a black woman as he addressed the slaying of Brown and wrote, "You see that black woman standing up there? I wonder if she was called to stand behind the governor because she’s black. I wonder if i’m supposed to think Missouri’s gov’t is pro-black because of her being stood up there with those other black men being all black and everything. I wonder if she was off the clock while she stood up there... then i wonder if she was getting paid for her time off like the guy who shot Michael 8 times."
Supplied by WENN
Pop superstar Beyonce looks set to triumph at the MTV Video Music Awards after scooping eight nominations.
The Crazy in Love hitmaker released promos for every track on her self-titled fifth album, and three of those clips have landed nominations, including nods for Video of the Year and Best Collaboration for Drunk in Love, which features her husband Jay Z.
She is also in the running for Best Female Video and Best Choreography for Partition, and Best Video with a Social Message for Pretty Hurts at the annual MTV prizegiving.
Beyonce's closest rivals are rappers Eminem and Iggy Azalea, who have picked up seven nods apiece.
Azalea's Fancy music promo, based on cult comedy film Clueless, will compete for Video of the Year and Best Pop Video, while she also appears in the Best Female Video category twice for Fancy and Problem, her collaboration with Ariana Grande. Other acts to land nods include Pharrell Williams and Grande, who have three nominations each.
The ceremony will take place at The Forum venue in Los Angeles on 24 August (14). Usher and 5 Seconds of Summer are scheduled to perform.
The list of main nominees is as follows:
Video of the Year: Drunk in Love - Beyonce featuring Jay Z; Fancy - Iggy Azalea featuring Charli XCX; Wrecking Ball - Miley Cyrus; Happy - Pharrell Williams; Chandelier - Sia
Best Female Video: Problem - Ariana Grande featuring Iggy Azalea; Partition - Beyonce; Fancy - Iggy Azalea featuring Charli XCX; Dark Horse - Katy Perry featuring Juicy J; Royals - Lorde
Best Male Video: Sing - Ed Sheeran featuring Pharrell Williams; The Monster - Eminem featuring Rihanna; All Of Me - John Legend; Happy - Pharrell Williams; Stay with Me - Sam Smith
Best Pop Video: Happy - Pharrell Williams; Fancy - Iggy Azalea featuring Charli XCX; Talk Dirty - Jason Derulo featuring 2 Chainz; Problem - Ariana Grande featuring Iggy Azalea; Wake Me Up - Avicii
Best Hip-Hop Video: 3005 - Childish Gambino; Hold On, We're Going Home - Drake; Berzerk - Eminem; Black Skinhead - Kanye West; We Dem Boyz - Wiz Khalifa
Best Rock Video: Do I Wanna Know? - Arctic Monkeys; Royals - Lorde; Demons - Imagine Dragons; Until It's Gone - Linkin Park; Fever - The Black Keys
Best Collaboration: Problem - Ariana Grande featuring Iggy Azalea; Drunk in Love - Beyonce featuring Jay Z; Loyal - Chris Brown featuring Lil Wayne and Tyga; The Monster - Eminem featuring Rihanna; Dark Horse - Katy Perry featuring Juicy J; Timber - Pitbull featuring Kesha.
Actor Rob Brown's racial discrimination lawsuit against bosses of U.S. retail giant Macy's has reportedly ended after the two parties reached an undisclosed settlement. The Treme star filed a class-action complaint against the department store chain last year (13) after alleging he had been handcuffed and questioned by undercover police at the company's New York venue.
Staff had suspected him of using a stolen credit card to buy a $1,350 (£900) watch for his mother, and Brown alleged he was "paraded" through the store like a criminal before being released without charge 45 minutes later.
Now editors at TMZ.com report the actor has settled his case with Macy's bosses.
Court documents reportedly confirm he has reached a settlement "in principle" and the case has been dismissed.
The controversy came in the wake of a similar incident involving a young black man at New York retailer Barneys, which prompted calls for rap mogul Jay Z to pull his holiday collection from the store's shelves, but the 99 Problems hitmaker decided to stick with the venture.
Beyonce was the toast of the 2014 BET Awards after scooping three top prizes and closing the show with a taped performance of Partition from her On The Run tour with husband Jay Z. The Crazy in Love hitmaker picked up Best Female R&B/Pop Artist, the FANdemonium Award, and Best Collaboration for Drunk in Love with her rapper partner.
Pharrell Williams kicked off the proceedings with his Miley Cyrus collaboration Come Get It Bae, but instead of performing with the Wrecking Ball hitmaker, he had a little help from reclusive rap superstar Missy Elliott. The pair then burst into a rendition of her 2003 hit Pass That Dutch.
The pair received a rapturous welcome from the crowd, and Williams went on to be named the winner in the Best Male R&B/ Pop Artist category and Video of the Year for Happy.
Drake saw off competition from Jay Z to win the Best Male Hip Hop Artist prize, while Nicki Minaj went home with the female equivalent. Best Group went to Young Money, Lil Wayne's collection of artists.
Oscar-winning drama 12 Years A Slave swept the board in the movie categories, being named Best Film, while its stars Lupita Nyong'o and Chiwetel Ejiofor won the top acting prizes.
Chris Brown surprised the crowd with a performance of his new track Loyal. He was joined by Lil Wayne and Tyga for his first high-profile post-prison show. Other performers to wow the crowd included T.I. and Iggy Azalea, Robin Thicke, Usher, Jennifer Hudson, Nicki Minaj, John Legend and Lionel Richie, who performed a medley of hits after being presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Although they couldn't be there in person, Beyonce and Jay Z closed the show with a pre-recorded performance from their collaborative tour.
Chris Rock acted as host. The full list of winners is as follows:
Best Female R&B/Pop Artist
Best Male R&B/ Pop Artist
Beyonce featuring Jay Z - Drunk in Love
Best Male Hip Hop Artist
Best Female Hip Hop Artist
Video of the Year
Pharrell Williams - Happy
Video Director of the Year
Best New Artist
Best Gospel Artist
12 Years a Slave
Subway Sportswoman of the Year
Subway Sportsman of the Year
Jhene Aiko - The Worst
Best International Act: Africa
Best International Act: UK
Krept & Konan.
Superstar couple Beyonce and Jay Z are set for a big night at the 2014 BET Awards with four nominations apiece. The Crazy in Love hitmakers will compete against each other in the Best Collaboration category, in which Beyonce's song Drunk in Love, which features her husband, will battle Jay Z and Justin Timberlake's Holy Grail. Drake and Majid Jordan's Hold On (We're Going Home), Robin Thicke, T.I. and Pharrell Williams' Blurred Lines, YG's My Hitta collaboration with Jeezy and Rich Homie Quan and I Luv This by August Alsina and Trinidad Jame$ are also up for the prize.
Meanwhile, rivals Jay Z and Drake will go toe to toe in the Best Male Hip Hop Artist category, alongside Future, J. Cole and Kendrick Lamar, while Beyonce will battle Janelle Monae, Jhene Aiko, K. Michelle, Rihanna and Tamar Braxton for the Best Female R&B/Pop Artist title. Jay Z and Beyonce will also vie for the coveted Video of the Year award with the videos for Drunk in Love and Partition, respectively. Pharrell Williams' Happy, Chris Brown's Fine China and Drake's Worst Behavior are also nominated.
In the movie categories, Angela Bassett, Gabrielle Union, Kerry Washington, Lupita Nyong'o and Oprah Winfrey will fight for the Best Actress prize, and Chiwetel Ejiofor, Forest Whitaker, Idris Elba, Kevin Hart and Michael B. Jordan are up for the Best Actor trophy. The Best Movie nominees are: 12 Years a Slave, The Best Man Holiday, Fruitvale Station, Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain and Lee Daniels' The Butler.
The 2014 BET Awards will be handed out at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles on 29 June (14).
The full list of nominees are:
Best Female R&B/Pop Artist: Beyonce, Janelle Monae, Jhene Aiko, K. Michelle, Rihanna, Tamar Braxton
Best Male R&B/Pop Artist: August Alsina, Chris Brown, John Legend, Justin Timberlake, Pharrell Williams
Best Group A$AP Mob Daft Punk Macklemore & Ryan Lewis TGT Young Money
Best Collaboration August Alsina featuring Trinidad Jame$ - I Luv This Beyonce featuring Jay Z - Drunk in Love Drake featuring Majid Jordan - Hold On (We're Going Home) Jay Z featuring Justin Timberlake - Holy Grail Robin Thicke featuring T.I. & Pharell Williams - Blurred Lines YG featuring Jeezy & Rich Homie Quan - My Hitta
Best Male Hip Hop Artist Drake Future J. Cole Jay Z Kendrick Lamar
Best Female Hip Hop Artist Angel Haze Charli Baltimore Eve Iggy Azalea Nicki Minaj Video of the Year Beyonce - Partition Beyonce featuring Jay Z - Drunk in Love Chris Brown - Fine China Drake - Worst Behavior Pharrell Williams - Happy
Video Director of the Year Benny Boom Chris Brown Colin Tiley Director X Hype Williams
Best New Artist Ariana Grande August Alsina Mack Wilds Rich Homie Quan ScHoolboy Q
Best Gospel Artist Donnie McClurkin Erica Campbell Hezekiah Walker Tamela Mann Tye Tribbett
Best Actress Angela Bassett Gabrielle Union Kerry Washington Lupita Nyong'o Oprah Winfrey
Best Actor Chiwetel Ejiofor Forest Whitaker Idris Elba Kevin Hart Michael B. Jordan
YoungStars Award Gabrielle Douglas Jacob Latimore Jaden Smith KeKe Palmer Zendaya
Best Movie 12 Years a Slave The Best Man Holiday Fruitvale Station Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain Lee Daniels' The Butler
Subway Sportswoman of the Year Brittney Griner Lolo Jones Serena Williams Skylar Diggins Venus Williams
Subway Sportsman of the Year Blake Griffin Carmelo Anthony Floyd Mayweather Jr. Kevin Durant LeBron James
Centric Award Aloe Blacc - The Man Jennifer Hudson featuring T.I. - I Can't Describe (The Way I Feel)" Jhene Aiko - The Worst LiV Warfield - Why Do You Lie? Wale featuring Sam Dew - LoveHate Thing
Best International Act: Africa Davido (Nigeria) Diamond Platnumz (Tanzania) Mafikizolo (South Africa) Sarkodie (Ghana) Tiwa Savage (Nigeria) Toofan (Togo)
Best International Act: UK Dizzee Rascal Ghetts Krept & Konan Laura Mvula Rita Ora Tinie Tempah
Jay Z, Kanye West, Beyonce, Rihanna and Chris Brown have been named in a bizarre $2.4 billion civil rights lawsuit filed by a prisoner in a California jail.
Richard J. Dupree, Jr. is convinced the musicians stole lyrics for over 3,000 songs he wrote while serving time behind bars, by spying on him via satellite with the aid of several law enforcement agencies, including the Central intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Homeland Security, according to Re-Tox.com.
It is not clear which songs Dupree is claiming feature his lyrics, but in the lawsuit, which he filed on 21 April (14) in California Eastern District Court, he is asking for damages and to be freed from California State Prison, Corcoran immediately.
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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