Thursday, 21 November 2019

Entertainment (166)

With the global success of Joker, it’s only natural to wonder what’s next for the character — and if there’s any chance we’d ever see Joaquin Phoenix put on his signature clown paint again. It’s hard to imagine how the film’s director, Todd Phillips, could pick up from the film’s haunting ending and continue the story. But that didn’t the film’s star from devising a creative way to try to convince him to make a sequel.

If it was a joke, it was an elaborate one. During production on Joker, Joaquin Phoenix would leave little hints to Todd Phillips about what the future could have in store for his character.

Joaquin Phoenix’s on-set antics may have been enough to get Todd Phillips to seriously consider continuing the Joker’s story. Phillips told The Los Angeles Times he definitely remembered the Yentl poster, and one for Forrest Gump, and another for his own previous movie The Hangover. He continued on the topic if a potential sequel:

The director isn’t sure it’s possible to recreate the unique set of circumstances that made Joker so successful. But he has given it some thought:

Posted On Saturday, 02 November 2019 23:51 Written by

Eminem and his lawyers received a visit from the Secret Service last year after the agency was contacted by a “concerned citizen.”

According to Buzzfeed, the 47-year-old rapper was visited by the Secret Service because of the controversial lyrics Eminem rapped about President Trump.

If you forgot, Eminem slammed Trump in his freestyle “The Storm,” which he performed during the 2017 BET Hip-Hop Awards.

On the track, Eminem called out the president for criticizing NFL players, for his reaction to the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, and more.

Then Eminem took aim at Ivanka Trump on his song “Framed” where he raps, “Donald Duck’s on, there’s a Tonka Truck in the yard/ But dog, how the f–k is Ivanka Trump in the trunk of my car?”

And it didn’t end there. On his track “The Ringer,” Eminem continued his attack on Trump, rapping, “‘Cause Agent Orange just sent the Secret Service/ To meet in person to see if I really think of hurtin’ him/ Or ask if I’m linked to terrorists/ I said, ‘Only when it comes to ink and lyricists.’”

It has now been reported that Secret Service agents did visit Eminemand looked into his controversial lyrics after they were contacted by a “concerned citizen.”

According to Buzzfeed, specifics from Eminem and the Secret Service’s conversation were redacted and Eminem‘s case was marked “non-referred” by federal prosecutors, who decided that his lyrics did not pose a threat against Trump‘s safety.

Posted On Friday, 25 October 2019 00:43 Written by

Beyoncé dropped her new Lion King-inspired album The Gift on July 19, and as expected, it’s amazing. Standout songs such as “SPIRIT” and “BIGGER” are like cocoa butter for the soul — smooth, soft, healing — but one track has especially been receiving a lot of buzz from the Beyhive: “Brown Skin Girl.” The song, which features Bey’s daughter Blue Ivy, is a love letter to black girls and black women everywhere, telling us that our natural selves are beautiful and worthy of being exalted.

After listening to the song for the first time, I knew that I loved it — the vocals, the flow, the lyrics, everything. The second time around, I still bobbed my head to the beat with the usual thoughts of how talented Bey is, but I sort of felt something within me begin to stir. By the third listen, tears were streaming down my face as the song’s message reallyset in.

I was suddenly taken back to my childhood, when my mom made me wear my natural hair to school, but I was too embarrassed to be proud of it. I was taken back to wishing my curly locks and gravity-defying frodidn’t make me stick out like a sore thumb in a classroom full of long, straight hair. I was taken back to thinking that maybe if my skin was lighter, I’d be prettier.

My parents always told my sisters and me to be proud of who we are, but it was much easier said than done when we were constantly bombarded with media that glorified a specific type of beauty over another. Although my mom didn’t allow magazines with nonblack women on the cover in our house, I always noticed that those were the ones placed front and center at grocery stores. In popular movies and TV shows, most of the desired women were fair-skinned with Eurocentric features. No matter how hard my parents tried to protect me from the toxicity of normalized white supremacy, there were traces of it everywhere, planting seeds of insufficiency in my mind.

After repeatedly listening to “Brown Skin Girl” and having my own little crying session, I was excited to head into work and ask some of my fellow melanin-infused colleagues if they had the same visceral response to the song. And, well, they most certainly did.

“I started getting a little emotional on my second listen, not just because of how much it means to me right now, but because I wish something like it existed when I was Blue’s age,” Content Director Britt Stephenssaid. “Being brought up in mostly white spaces and ingesting mostly white media can make black girls feel less than at such an early age, and 7-year-old me absolutely would have stanned a song like ‘Brown Skin Girl.'”

Assistant editor Mekishana Pierre echoed the same sentiment of appreciation for the song’s celebration of black girls. “It’s a message reminding us that regardless of what anyone else says or thinks, we are blessings,” she said. “We are beautiful; we are made of the sun and the earth and our skin is ‘just like pearls.’ By making this song, Beyoncé tells everyone that black women are untouchable. In a world where people try to make brown skin something ugly, it reminds us what the truth is: we are the realest magic there ever was!”

The Afrocentric bop’s outpouring of acceptance and validation is something social media coordinator Rachael Edwards also enjoyed. “I feel seen,” she said. “We often hear these songs with the general ‘you’re beautiful’ message, but ‘Brown Skin Girl’ is a direct love song to us. Beyoncé’s affirming anthem makes me feel detached from all the insecurities that racism and misogynoir tend to bring. It feels like I’m singing love over myself and young Black and Brown women. There is so much power behind that alone. I’ll be singing this forever, I’m sure of it!”

This is why “Brown Skin Girl” is unequivocally important for women of color to hear. I, too, wish my younger self could have listened to the song during those moments in which I felt inferior simply because of the way I naturally look. I appreciated the love and support from my parents greatly — and it certainly helped to have their reassurance — but there’s something especially significant about being uplifted by someone with a broad, influential platform; someone who can help to reconstruct the perceptions of blackness by showing that it deserves to be valued and respected, because it’s a part of who we are as human beings.

More than anything, I hope that other young black girls won’t have to go through what I went through to the same degree. I hope they hear “Brown Skin Girl” and unapologetically adore themselves for who they are inside and out. Because while there are complexities in our complexion, our skin glows like diamonds.

Posted On Saturday, 20 July 2019 03:14 Written by

Ciara turned Thursday’s Kids’ Choice Sport Awards into a family affair when she arrived in Santa Monica, CA, with husband Russell Wilson, their 2-year-old daughter Sienna, and her 5-year-old son Future Jr. (whom she shares with rapper Future). The brood was the epitome of cool as they hit the red carpet in color-coordinated ensembles — check out Sienna’s denim vest and Future Jr.’s sunglasses!

Ciara is set to perform a medley of her hits at the award show — which airs on Nickelodeon on Aug. 10 — while Russell previously hosted the show for three years, from 2015 to 2017. “The Kids’ Choice Sports Awards are always fun, we bring the whole family,” Ciara told Billboard. “The kids have been able to see Russell on the stage over the years so I’m excited for them to see me performing on the stage this year!” Ciara and Russell’s fun-filled family outing comes a day after the couple steamed up the ESPYs. See more of Ciara and Russell’s beautiful brood ahead!

Posted On Thursday, 11 July 2019 23:31 Written by

It seems so…

Liam Gallagher appears to have unveiled the tracklist for his second solo album, ‘Why Me? Why Not’.

The ‘Shockwave’ singer, who releases his new album on September 20, took to Twitter today (July 4) to announce – tweet-by-tweet – what looks to be the record’s run of songs.

If his Twitter posts are to be taken as official confirmation, the tracklist is as follows:

‘One Of Us’
‘Now That I’ve Found You’
‘Why Me? Why Not’
‘Be Stiill’
‘Alright Now’
‘The River’

Gallagher performed a storming set at Glastonbury last weekend, which NME said proved he could headline the festival solo.

In his review, Kevin EG Perry wrote: “the former Oasis frontman proved that, even without brother Noel, he has more than enough hits to provide a string of unforgettable Glastonbury moments

“Liam Gallagher was put on this earth for moments like this. His set on the Pyramid Stage on Saturday night after a glorious day of sunshiiiine was so full of ‘Glastonbury moments’ that it’ll be hard for any act this weekend to better him.”

Liam and Noel Gallagher in the latter days of Oasis

In other news, Liam has been caught up in another family fued with his brother Noel, which led to him calling for “perspective” over his recent “threatening” message.

The former Oasis bandmates made headlines in coming to blows once again this week when Noel shared a screenshot of a WhatsApp exchange. In it, Liam tells his niece Anais Gallagher that Noel’s wife Sara Macdonald better be “very careful” after she described the former Beady Eye frontman as a “fat twat” following his Glastonbury performance on Saturday night.

Liam, who has since apologised, has now accused some of his critics of hypocrisy, saying: “Since when has telling somebody to be careful worse than wishing someone drop DEAD or hoping someone dies of AIDS?” asked Liam. “Let’s get things into perspective. Wishing you all LOVE n LIGHT LG x”

Posted On Thursday, 04 July 2019 21:16 Written by

The smell of rotten love is more of a stench, like dying roses and salty tears. It’s intoxicating and it changes the atmosphere of your reality. Sour love turns into resent, then hate, and sometimes love again.

But in the case of Ellie Goulding and Juice WRLD‘s new collaboration “Hate Me,” the much-coveted emotion was snapped away from their respective relationships without an Infinity Gauntlet. Now all that’s left is the emotional debris and memory of better times in the wake of the devastation.

Goulding’s latest sounds like a soft, mid-tempo, mild case of the blues. She absolutely loathes an ex who has a new girlfriend, and she wants him to know, telling her everything that he doesn’t do with his new girl that he did with her. She knows that he doesn’t kiss her with his eyes closed. She knows that he moved on so fast because he wants to replace her. She spews the toxic fumes that cloud the atmosphere, enabling Juice WRLD to come in and immerse himself in the feels of the moment.

His verse is equally as jarring as he reflects on a lover’s animosity towards him, revealing how she believes that he’s easily replaceable. He gets migraines from the pain that the relationship causes. Together, the two sound sick of the entire situation. And medicine won’t clear up the infection — only time apart will.

“Hate Me” follows Goulding’s recently released videos for both “Sixteen” and “Flux.” She was also featured on the Game of Thrones album For the Throne – Music Inspired by the HBO Series.

Listen to the toxic environment of “Hate Me” up above.

Posted On Thursday, 27 June 2019 01:09 Written by

News of a medical emergency involving Michael Jackson started filtering through at around 22:00 BST on Thursday 25 June 2009.

I know because I was on my way to watch cheesy 90s boy band East 17 in the Dance Tent at the Glastonbury Festival. They were a warm-up act the day before the event properly began.

My editor called. Michael Jackson might have been rushed to hospital. He might be in a coma. That was according to TMZ, which was gaining a reputation for celebrity scoops.

But no-one knew if it was true. Strange stories about the King of Pop often bubbled up. A few weeks earlier, it had been reported that he had skin cancer, which was later denied.

Even so, I turned around and headed back to the dusty backstage cabin I had just been working in and searched for an update. In London, Los Angeles and around the world, newsrooms swung into action to try to find out what had happened. The BBC’s LA bureau phoned spokespeople, associates and business managers. None would confirm anything. Some just hung up.

A short time later, my editor called again. “Er, TMZ are saying he’s dead.” A deep breath. Michael Jackson was arguably the biggest pop star of the previous 30 years, and the greatness of his music is undeniable. But there was a more troubling side – accused (and acquitted) of child molestation, and with a downright strange persona and personal life.

At that stage, the world had no details about what had happened in the preceding hours. But in the months and years that followed, details of his final day became clear.

Jackson was just weeks away from a series of lucrative comeback concerts at the O2 Arena in London, and was under pressure to make them a success.

He had left rehearsals in Los Angeles shortly after midnight the night before his death, according to the book 83 Minutes: The Doctor, The Damage and the Shocking Death of Michael Jackson. But for years, the superstar had been unable to sleep without the help of sedatives. 

Dr Conrad Murray, who had been employed as his $150,000-a-month personal physician for the shows, was waiting when the star arrived home at his mansion. In Jackson’s bedroom, pill bottles, vials, syringes and oxygen tanks littered tables, shelves and the floor.

Dr Murray told police he had given the singer propofol – a powerful drug usually given before and during surgery in hospitals – for 60 nights in a row until 22 June 2009, when he tried to wean him off.

In the early hours of 25 June, the physician gave Jackson a series of different sedatives in an attempt to help him sleep. But they didn’t have the desired effect, and Dr Murray said Jackson was getting increasingly agitated about the forthcoming day’s rehearsals. “I must be ready for the show in England,” he said, according to the physician.

It reached 10:00 local time and the singer was still awake. Dr Murray told police Jackson had begged him: “Please, please, give him some milk so that I can sleep.” He was referring to the milk-like propofol. The physician consented, and said he administered the drug via an intravenous drip around 10:40 PST.

Dr Murray told detectives he had the necessary equipment to monitor heart rate and oxygen levels in the blood, and that he stayed at Jackson’s bedside before leaving for two minutes to go to the bathroom. When he returned, he found his patient wasn’t breathing.

But Dr Murray’s timeline was called into question by phone records, which suggested it was just before noon that he noticed something was wrong.

He said he then found a pulse and a frantic attempt at resuscitation followed. He claimed he couldn’t call 911 straight away because he was doing CPR, but he eventually called for one of Jackson’s security guards. Alberto Alvarez said Dr Murray ordered him to clear away vials, bottles and an IV bag first before calling the emergency services. That call was not made until 12:21 PST.

Jackson’s children Prince and Paris were distraught as panic engulfed the household. The paramedics didn’t recognise the star when they arrived. He appeared pale and underweight. Seeing his condition and the IV drip stand, paramedic Richard Senneff assumed he was a terminally ill patient.

Jackson was taken the short journey to UCLA medical centre, where resuscitation attempts continued. He was declared dead one hour and 13 minutes later.

By then, fans and media were gathering outside the hospital, and TMZ broke the news of his death to the world around 14:44 PST – which was 22:44 in the UK.

TMZ, the dogged upstart website, had scooped the established media. And with smartphone use taking off, it became one of the first major stories to spread via social media.

Word magazine editor Andrew Harrison was among those at Glastonbury and told BBC Radio 5 Live that night: “What you’re seeing here is a lot of people crouched over these little glowing screens trying to find out if it’s true or not, because people really can’t believe it. People are searching every website they can think of to try to find more information.”

The demand for information overwhelmed the internet. Some Google users couldn’t access results when searching for Michael Jackson’s name because its software mistook the volume of requests for a malware attack. Twitter, the LA Times, TMZ, Wikipedia and AOL Instant Messenger all suffered crashes.

It was not until 23:45 BST that 5 Live presenter Richard Bacon told listeners the BBC felt confident enough to confirm the news, after the Los Angeles Times and Associated Press had also done so.

Two years later, Conrad Murray was convicted of involuntary manslaughter and served less than two years of a four-year sentence.

In the Glastonbury cabin, I was bashing out an appreciation of Jackson’s career. By the time I staggered out in the early hours (UK time), everybody had heard the news, either via Twitter, old fashioned word of mouth, or because his music was being pumped out from scattered sound systems and stalls around the site.

“They started playing loads of his music and we thought, ‘Oh, that’s really strange’,” one fan said. “And then someone said, ‘Michael Jackson’s dead’ and we were like, ‘No way’.”

If anyone still hadn’t heard, some people wore T-shirts bearing the words “Michael Jackson is dead” and “I was at Glasto when Jacko died”, which had been printed by enterprising T-shirt stalls within hours of the news breaking.

That weekend, a few festival performers referenced Jackson on stage or played covers versions, but few were willing to give interviews about him. Perhaps their PR people feared they might come to regret any gushing tributes if more scandals emerged after Jackson’s death. Which came to pass earlier this year, when two men gave persuasive testimony in a documentary, saying Jackson had repeatedly abused them when they were children.

In the past decade, we have learned details about the sorry circumstances in which Michael Jackson died. While his music will always remain, we have also had some more troubling insights into his life.




Posted On Tuesday, 25 June 2019 02:13 Written by

The series will document the making of their upcoming album, ‘Beneath The Eyrie’.

Pixies have shared a trailer for their new podcast, It’s A Pixies Podcast.

The 12-episode series will document the making of their upcoming new album, ‘Beneath The Eyrie’, which was announced earlier this month (June 3).

In the trailer video, a voiceover explains “highly acclaimed British music journalist Tony Fletcher was given all areas access in the studio” while the band recorded their seventh album. “You’ll hear his enlightening conversations with band members and eavesdrop on the band as they build ‘Beneath The Eyrie’,” it continues. 

Although the album won’t be released until September 13, It’s A Pixies Podcast will begin streaming on June 27. It will be available on all podcast platforms globally, with a new episode arriving every Thursday.

According to a press release, fans will be given “an up-close and personal perspective to the interaction between the band members and with the album’s producer Tony Dalgety” direct from Woodstock’s Dreamland Recordings studio. You can watch the trailer above now.

‘Beneath The Eyrie’ is the follow-up to 2016’s ‘Head Carrier’ and was described in the official announcement as a place “where tales of witches, Daniel Boone, misfits and other characters fit utterly into the band’s inherent weirdness.” One song from the album, ‘On Graveyard Hill’, has already been released.

Meanwhile, Pixies are set to return to the UK in September, when they will embark on a new tour, kicking off in Cardiff on the day of the album’s release.

Posted On Sunday, 23 June 2019 16:05 Written by

It’s their first material in two years

Spoon have released a new single called ‘No Bullets Spent’, which will feature on their upcoming Greatest Hits compilation. Stream the song and find more details below.

The Austin outfit’s latest album ‘Hot Thoughts’ arrived back in 2017. In a three-star review, NME said the LP was “more evidence of [the band’s] serious knack for, ahem, spoon-feeding weird ideas.”

While fans await news on their next full-length effort, it’s been announced that Spoon will release a collection of their best tracks to date. ‘Everything Hits at Once: The Best of Spoon’ will be available on July 26 via Matador Records.

As well as containing well-known tunes such as ‘The Way We Get By’, ‘The Underdog’, and ‘Inside Out’, the album will feature the newly-released ‘No Bullets Spent’. 

The master returns, there’s always some kind of war / And counting his steps, you know it’s him at the door,” sings Britt Daniel through a surreal vocoder effect on the track. Snapping into a crisp drum beat, the song boasts classic indie-rock guitar chugs and screeching solos.

Revealing the inspiration behind Spoon’s new collection, Daniel said: “The idea of doing a best-of came to us a couple of times. First I wasn’t sure how I felt about it but at some point, I remembered that when I got my first Cure record it was [Greatest Hits album] ‘Standing on a Beach’. When I got my first New Order record, it was ‘Substance’.

“That was how I met those bands, and I moved backwards from there but I still listen to those comps. I love a greatest hits LP when it’s done well. It can be a thing unto itself.”

You can find the full tracklist for ‘Everything Hits at Once: The Best of Spoon’ below and pre-order here.

I Turn My Camera On
Do You
Don’t You Evah
Inside Out
The Way We Get By
The Underdog
Hot Thoughts
I Summon You
Rent I Pay
You Got Yr Cherry Bomb
Got Nuffin
Everything Hits At Once
No Bullets Spent

Speaking to NME last year, Spoon revealed that their next studio album could take a more “earthy” and “rock n’ roll” direction.

“I want to make a rock n’ roll record,” Daniel said. “We always said this last record [‘Hot Thoughts’] was a rock n’ roll record that didn’t have a lot of guitars on it. Maybe the next one will.”

Posted On Thursday, 20 June 2019 04:30 Written by

If you know Kacey Musgraves, then you must know that she is not only exceptionally talented (and low-key hilarious) — she is also exceptionally hot. The 30-year-old country singer has had a serious beauty evolution since she first came on the scene in 2007, graduating from laid-back country girl to red carpet glam queen (seriously, did you see her 2019 Met Gala look?). Whether she’s debuting a new hairstyleor taking home four freakin’ Grammy Awards in one night, Kacey is always looking flawless as f*ck, and we have the photos to prove it. Read on for some of Kacey’s sexiest pics of all time.

Posted On Tuesday, 18 June 2019 01:59 Written by
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