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Product Vs. Promotion: Fantasia’s ‘The Definition Of…’


Grammy-winning R&B gem Fantasia has always shone as an anomaly (in many ways) for the genre.

A fiery performer whose career-long stage shows boast one of the most consistent deliveries of any of her contemporaries (and beyond), Fannie’s commitment to her craft seemed to be only matched by the commitment of her fan base.  Indeed, much like the failing music industry around her, each of her album’s numbers may have taken hits over time, but without fail, the figures associated with each of the songbird’s first week sales easily soared above the others in her lane  (a testament to fan loyalty if you ask us).

Well, that was until 2016’s ‘The Definition Of…‘ – the latest addition to the soulstress’s self-coined ‘Rock-Soul’ movement.

Released July 2016, ‘Definition’ – Fannie’s fifth album – was executive produced by veteran record producer/songwriter/engineer Ron Fair and featured contributions from the likes of R&B royal R. Kelly, Brian Kennedy, Stacy Barthe, Neff-U, and more.  Yet, while the production credits was lined with proven winners, their efforts seemed lost upon music lovers who generally ignored the set’s two official singles – ‘No Time (For It)’ and the Kelly-penned ‘Sleeping With the One I Love.’

Their failure on the singles chart and streaming front seemed to signal the worst for their parent album:


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Calculating A Comeback: Christina Aguilera

TGJ Weigh-Up How Xtina Can Make A Renewed Mark In Music


Christina Aguilera finds herself in a junction many 90s & 00s veterans have unfortunately come to know.

With her last Platinum album dating a decade back to 2006, Aguilera has some serious ground to make to win back her pervious prowess – especially after the limp response to her last LP ‘Lotus’ in 2012.

In an age so saturated with female Pop stars and after a lengthy spell out of the spotlight, what can Xtina do to set herself apart?

We have a few suggestions. Join us after the jump…


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Album Certifications: Is Silver The Solution?

TGJ Assess Whether A Fresh Tier Can Calm The Confusion


There once existed an era where obtaining a Gold and arguably Platinum record was a given for even the most modest of acts. Today, we see “A List” artists struggling to hit bronze. With 2016 nearing its end, only three acts (Drake, Beyoncé, and Rihanna) have reached Platinum status with their new releases; and even that count has been called into question (see: ‘ANTI,’ Samsung, and streaming).

As sales have dived, streaming has thrived – helping the U.S music business grow by 8.1% over the last year. And still, in the sea of changing rules and weekly revisions, it remains difficult to decipher who is dominating and whose success may be attributable to smoke and mirrors. Indeed, it’s now become commonplace for projects that have yet hit to hit Platinum in pure sales being certified double and even triple Platinum thanks to “other” factors.

A simple sign of changing consumption patterns? Perhaps. But what is becoming problematic is how said plaques are being used and arguably abused to market the meagre as major.

This reality has led some corners to call for the implementing of a Silver certification by the RIAA. It’s already a “thing” in large markets such as the U.K and we, here at TGJ, feel the States could benefit from the same.

Tune in after the jump to see what me mean…


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Why Is Usher So… ‘Hard II Love’?

TGJ Weighs Up The Singer’s Missteps & Moulds A Comeback Plan

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Usher unleashed his eighth studio album ‘Hard II Love’ on the masses last week. And though the final tally has yet to be counted, the official sales forecast sent the net into a flutter.

For, the set – led by singles ‘Crash’ and ‘No Limit’ – is on course to debut with 25,000; the lowest US numbers of the crooner’s career.

Given the unforgiving nature of today’s age and the fickleness of select fans, some have deemed it “the end” for the 8-time Grammy winner.

We’re not so sure about that, but can’t distract from the fact that something is…off.

Join us below as we unpack the problems and size up the solutions…


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That Grape Juice’s Fall 2016 Release Preview


As last days of the summer season play out, the fun doesn’t stop this Fall. Because an onslaught of new music is set to be unleashed in the months ahead.

Many of which we are all sorts of excited about.

Join us after the jump to see which releases we here at That Grape Juice are most eager to get our hands on.


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Product Vs. Promotion: Rihanna’s ‘Kiss It Better’


After a number of false starts courtesy of singles ‘FourFiveSeconds,’ ‘B*tch Better Have My Money,’ and ‘American Oxygen,’ Grammy winning pop diva Rihanna saw her 8th era finally get an official kickoff with the Drake-assisted single ‘Work.’  Skyrocketing to the top of the Hot 100 shortly after its debut, the Caribbean-kissed tune would at long last lead her faithful fans on the path to unlocking her octonary opus ‘Anti.’

Yet, while ‘Work’ won week after week atop the singles charts thanks to some serious sales and streaming, its parent album wasn’t exactly singing the same tune.  Living up to its apt titling by boasting a track list of some of her most sonically adventurous and daring work to date, initial critical and commercial reception almost seemed to reflect her fan base’s displeasure with the product and the long wait for its delivery.  Evidenced by a less than impressive #27 debut on the Billboard 200, the project’s promotional campaign didn’t help matters and left many-a-head scratched (see: free downloads, “platinum status,” etc.).

But, as officially counted streaming figures helped float the island beauty’s 8th project to the upper rankings of Billboard 200, fans continued to whine their waists to ‘Work’ with hopes its follow-up, ‘Kiss It Better,’ would be just what the doctor ordered to remedy the era’s shortcomings.

However, time would prove the suggestion a misdiagnosis:


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Product Vs. Promotion: Jennifer Lopez’s ‘Aint Your Mama’


After spending the latter half of the noughties garnering more misses than hits on the Billboard Hot 100, Jennifer Lopez‘s musical career hit a homerun in the early ’10s courtesy of the RedOne-produced ‘On the Floor.’  With the assistance of rapper PitBull, Lopez’s return to dominance and prominence spelled of much promise until fans were greeted with a number of rehashes of the J.Lo/Pitbull formula over the four years that followed.

The absence of ‘On the Floor’s catchiness and magical flair proved an impotent punch for its successors as all of them failed to come anywhere near its chart performance.  But, while she was hitting a number of sour notes on the Hot 100, Jenny’s star was proving itself hotter than ever thanks to ‘American Idol,’ a hit scripted series ‘Shades of Blue,’ and a hotly-selling Vegas residency.

The reignition of overall public interest in “Jennifer Lopez: the star” may have acted as the catalyst for the triple threat diva to try her hand yet again at her ailing music career.  Tapping an unused number from hitmaking newcomer Meghan Trainor and producer extraordinaire Dr. Luke, the trio birthed ‘Ain’t Your Mama’:  the first official single from Jenny’s 9th album…


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