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J. Cole Debuts Big On Billboard 200

December 18th, 2014 10:21am EST
J. Cole Forest Hills Drive
For J. Cole, the number one spot is a familiar one. For the third time in his career, J. Cole sits atop the Billboard 200. This time, he earns the largest sales of his career as 2014 Forest Hills Drive sold a robust 354,000 copies. Translated to the Billboard 200’s new formula of ‘units’, J. Cole’s latest impacted 375,000. Even more remarkable about J. Cole’s numbers is the lack of a single to drive album sales – “Apparently” was issued upon the album’s release as a single. Initially, the album was forecasted to sell more than 300,000 copies.

So with the debut of J. Cole, Taylor Swif...
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10 Must Hear ‘Traditional’ Christmas Carols

December 15th, 2014 7:41pm EST
10 Must Hear ‘Traditional’ Christmas Carols
It’s not called “the most wonderful time of the year” for nothing! With the holiday season ago – the hustle and bustle – what better to enjoy the season than some must-hear traditional carols? Sure, not every musician sticks to the formula on this list (cough* Justin Bieber), but regardless, all ten performances are definitely ‘something’ if nothing else.

1) Pentatonix featuring Tori Kelly, “Winter Wonderland/ Don’t Worry Be Happy” (That's Christmas To Me, 2014)

Call this a two-for-one, and who doesn’t like a two-for-one? Pentatonix slaughter (in a good way) this rendition of “Winter W...
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Terry McDermott Talks Lotus Crush's Impending World Domination

December 15th, 2014 12:07pm EST
Terry McDermott Talks Lotus Crush's Impending World Domination
Season three of The Voice was livened up by Terry McDermott, the Scottish rocker with the winning personality who started off the season, joined Team Blake, and ultimately came in as runner-up on the NBC show.

Having worked steadily since then, Terry has reunited with his band Lotus Crush for their second album, Rabbit Hole, which is set to make waves with audiences in the US and UK alike. While they may not take over the world, they're certainly poised to win over a large part of it.

We reconnected with Terry (pictured above center) last week to discuss why we should be excited about the...
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Nicki Minaj’s ‘The Pinkprint’ Leads Albums to Check Out

December 15th, 2014 11:36am EST
Nicki Minaj’s ‘The Pinkprint’ Leads Albums to Check Out: This We
As the fourth quarter nears its close, fewer albums of note arrive for consumers to partake of. Few artists/labels are brave enough to release big-time albums in a time where Christmas album sales inflate and the select few albums with staying power dominate sales. While the releases have slowed, Nicki Minaj’s The Pinkprint leads five other albums to check out this week.

1) Nicki Minaj, The Pinkprint (Republic)

After being delayed, Nicki Minaj finally releases her highly anticipated The Pinkprint. After a so-so start with tame single “Pills N Potion,” Minaj turned up the heat and ...
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Early Grammy Predictions: Who Will Win?

December 14th, 2014 11:00am EST
Early Grammy Predictions: Who Wins Album, Record And Song Of The
Now that the burning questions have been answered – those Grammy nominations of course – more burning questions loom on the horizon. What are these questions? Well, it’s who wins album of the year, record of the year, song of the year, and best new artist. Sure, there are plenty of categories within the Grammys, but none are more coveted and hyped than the ‘big four.’ Here are early prediction for album, record, and song of the year, as well as best new artist.

Album of the Year:

Nominees: Morning Phase, Beck; Beyoncé, Beyoncé; X, Ed Sheeran; In The Lonely Hour, Sam Smith; Girl, P...
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Taylor Swift Still Tops On Billboard

December 11th, 2014 10:59am EST
Taylor Swift
The Billboard 200 may be completely revamped, but Taylor Swift’s constant stay atop the chart regardless of changes is unsurprising. After three consecutive weeks, a week in the runner-up slot, and last week’s return to the top, Swift now sits at five weeks at #1. Baller status – yep, definitely – she’s a playmaker. Overall, including overall “consumption” to quote the new chart language, Swift’s impact was 274,000. Again, only a portion of that were sales, specifically 230,000 copies. Regardless of technicalities, Swift rules.

But enough about Taylor, what about the newbies to th...
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J. Cole Leads Albums to Check Out: This Week In Music

December 10th, 2014 8:00am EST
J. Cole performs at Made In America concert in Philadelphia Phil
Who has dominated the fall (musically)? Taylor Swift has dominated the fall. While her dominance continues onward towards Christmas, the week of December 9 does have some notable new efforts dropping. The biggest album to watch is one few know little about – J. Cole’s 2014 Forest Hills Drive. Can Cole put some pressure on Taylor Swift? It’s possible as he put some pressure on Kanye West in 2013. Cole does indeed lead albums to check out this week, which also includes Carrie Underwood’s greatest hits compilation.

1) J. Cole, 2014 Forest Hills Drive (Columbia)

J. Cole gives rap fans ...
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How's Bono's Recovery Coming?

December 5th, 2014 2:15pm EST
The Edge Updates Fans On Bono's Recovery
U2 guitarist The Edge, updated fans with some not-so-good news about frontman Bono's health status.

Bono was injured in a bicycle accident in November. His injuries were rather serious, requiring a five hour survery for the singer.

Said The Edge, "He acutally showed us an X-Ray a couple of days later, and it looked like a miniature of the Eiffel Tower was in his elbow. And then the same had to happen with a fracture of his pinky; the joint there was totally messed up, so that needed a bone graft. And the most vulnerable was actually his upper back, the scapula, because they couldn’t put a...
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Mary J. Blige Leads Albums To Check Out: This Week in Music

December 2nd, 2014 9:56am EST
Mary J. Blige
Back in 2005, one of the holiday season’s smartest album releases was Mary J. Blige’s The Breakthrough. The Breakthrough is considered to be one of the preeminent R&B albums of 00s, no questions asked. Besides its savvy R&B IQ, why was the release so smart? The reason is because it ended up selling 727,000 copies to debut commandingly at #1. Blige has never surpassed or matched those numbers again, but one has to think that she’s a frontrunner among new releases this week with The London Sessions.

1) Mary J. Blige, The London Sessions (Capitol)

The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul, Mary J....
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CD Review: His Dream Of Lions - 'Part II'

December 1st, 2014 7:33pm EST
CD Review: His Dream Of Lions - 'Part II'
An impressive array of profound, heart-on-sleeve showmanship (“Next Stop, Fall City”) mingles with slightly less weighty offerings brimming with precision hooks and captivating melodies (“The Ordinary,” “Dreams Equipped”) throughout Part II, an EP that offers up a lot to like as a mere six-song clip. There’s the Jimmy Eat World meets Something Corporate meets Get Up Kids swagger of the opening single “The Pace Car” and the deliciously not-so-subtle underlay of keys on the subsequent “Summer Song,” not to mention the set closer “All the Salt In the World,” which somehow manages to encapsulat...
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