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Official: Kelly Rowland Leaves Music WorldI have literally just received this from Music World. Kelly Rowland has officially ended her working relationship with the company:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 28, 2009

Joint statement from Mathew Knowles and Kelly Rowland on their amicable professional split:

“After a very positive meeting between Kelly Rowland and myself, we have amicably agreed to end our professional relationship. My company, Music World, will continue to manage Destiny’s Child as a group. As an artist Kelly has incredible talent and I only wish her the best. We will always be family first and foremost, and as a dad I only have love for Kelly.” —-Mathew Knowles

“Mathew Knowles has been a positive influence in my career. I have had great success under his guidance — both as a member of Destiny’s Child and with my solo projects. Although we have decided to part ways professionally, the Knowles family and the entire Music World Entertainment team will always be my family.” —Kelly Rowland

What I would have done to be a fly on the wall during Kelly and Mathew’s convo LOL. That said, it will be very interesting to see what the future holds for Ms. Kelly. Is she still with Sony? Who is her new management? Roll on album #3!
Your thoughts?

Rapper Lil’ Wayne performed ‘Prom Queen’, the first single from his rock-inspired LP ‘Rebirth’ last night at a Facebook/AT&T show in San Diego. Summed up in a few words, the performance was the hottest of messes! I legitimately believe something was being strangled to death in the arena when he started screaming ‘Prom queen….’. SMH…
What do you think of the performance?

‘Long Distance’, the 2nd release from Brandy’s critically acclaimed new album ‘Human’, is set to be sent to Pop radio next week, however it will a revised version of the cut which will be serviced to stations. Still the same lyrically, the new version features different production, which, put simply, has more of a ‘thump’ to it. I must say I’m liking the song even more after listening to this. Here’s hoping Brandy does big things with this one.
Hit or Miss?
Kelly Rowland Parts With Mathew Knowles?
The ‘net has been abuzz the last few months with whispers that Kelly Rowland had ended her management relationship with Mathew Knowles – Beyonce’s father. It appears the such murmurings are only intensifying, with a new report claiming the ‘Like This’ singer really has moved on to pastures new:

Former DESTINY’S CHILD star KELLY ROWLAND has reportedly dumped the man who took her in as a teenager and managed her to pop stardom – former bandmate BEYONCE’s dad. The singer has parted company with Mathew Knowles following a heated row, according to website Bossip.com.

A highly-placed source in Rowland’s camp tells the website the split has been on the cards for months – because the Dilemma singer is unhappy she’s not a bigger star in America.

A spokeswoman for Bossip.com says, “We were told Kelly was really upset that she’s not better represented in the United States. She’s a big hit in Europe, but not in America.”

Publicists for Knowles and his MusicWorld organisation were unavailable for comment as WENN went to press. {Source}

Could this really be Kelly’s Janet/Control moment? Whatever the case, I just hope Kelly’s third album – which we should be hearing material from very soon (official word) – gives Kelly the success she deserves. {Thanks Jonelle!}
Your thoughts?

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Solange recently participated in Yahoo Music’s ‘Cover Art’ series, offering her own spin on Coldplay’s ‘Viva La Vida’. ‘Interesting’ dancing aside (LOL), I really enjoyed this one. Solange continues to establish herself as a viable artist in her own right. Good performance.
What do you think of the performance?

Check out singer/songwriter The Dream taking to KissFM radio about his work on Mariah Carey’s brand new album (tentatively ‘MC3’), as well as his own sophomore LP ‘Love vs Money’.
Though new music from heavyweights such as Mimi are always welcome, I can’t help but think she should sit down for a little while and re-focus. I’m pretty sure it will do her a world of good after the so-so’ness of ‘E=MC2’.
Any thoughts?
That Grape Juice To Interview D. Woods
I’m sure many of you will be pleased to hear that That Grape Juice has secured a confirmed interview slot with former Danity Kane star D. Woods – ironically on the same day as our interview with Dawn Richards from the group! Some of you may remember, we were meant to interview D late last year, however scheduling conflicts caused for a delay.
When catching up with D here in London last year, she insisted she would be setting the record straight about the Danity Kane / Making The Band fiasco, as well as what the future holds for her.
Therefore, please drop any questions you have for her in the comments section below. As usual, only legit questions will be considered. Thanks guys!
Janet Cancels Japanese Tour
In news that unfortunately comes as no surprise, it has been confirmed that Janet Jackson’s Japanese leg of her ‘Rock Witchu’ tour, which was supposed to kick off in 3 weeks, has been postponed due to the ‘global financial crisis’:

Janet Jackson is having a rough time of it. She split with her second major label in less than three years after her latest album, Discipline, failed to catch fire. Her 2008 Rock Witchu Tour was plagued by postponed and canceled dates due to an unexplained illness that was later described as severe vertigo.

And now the singer has been forced to postpone her upcoming tour of Japan due to the global financial crisis. According to BBC News, Japanese concert promoter Kyodo Yokohama announced on Monday that Jackson would be postponing the five dates the singer had scheduled in Japan between February 14 and February 22 “due to the impact of [the] economic crisis.”

Jackson, 42, had planned to hit such major Japanese cities as Nagoya, Osaka and Fukuoka on the world Rock Witchu outing, which was her first major tour in nearly seven years. According to reports, the tour will be rescheduled for later this year with new dates expected to be announced in March.

The announcement comes on the heels of the recent news that Jackson’s longtime boyfriend, rapper/producer Jermaine Dupri, has left his position as the head of Island Def Jam Records’ urban music department after what he described as a troubled relationship with label boss L.A. Reid. {Source}

It kinda goes without saying that we here at That Grape Juice both love and respect Miss Jackson and her many achievements, but this is BS if I’ve ever heard it. ‘Global economic crisis’ is far from a legit reason for ‘postponing’ a tour, only to suggest new dates will be announced in March for later in the year; the financial crisis isn’t heading anywhere anytime soon -so…? I wish Janet and/or her team could get themselves sorted, as her tour, by all accounts, is a must-see. SMH…

Your thoughts?

Former Mis-Teeq star Alesha Dixon continues to establish herself as a viable solo act with the success of current single ‘Breathe Slow’. The 30 year old performed the track, which is currently sitting at #8 on the iTunes chart – with a physical release still to come, on the BBC’s Your Country Needs You show this past Saturday. 
Great live showing IMO, which really drove home Alesha’s vocal prowess. Good stuff.
What do you think of the performance?

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Peep former Danity Kane vixen Aubrey O’Day get her classy on in this preview of her forthcoming shoot for the March 2009 issue Playboy magazine. The issue will hit newsstands in February. As Aubrey would say, it’s ’empowering’ LOL.
Your thoughts?

Having enjoyed much success with his ‘Tha Carter III’ LP, rapper Lil’ Wayne is currently prepping the release of a rock-inspired album called ‘The Rebirth’ (due April 7th). The record will be preceded by first single ‘Prom Queen’, which you can listen to above. While the production has enough grit to accommodate the ‘hardest’ of rappers, Wayne misses the mark with this one. From the annoying vocoder effect, to the down right embarrassing chanting of ‘Prom Queen…prom queen’, this is just…no. Hell no. Here’s hoping Wayne isn’t the one who prematurely ends his ‘winning’ streak with this garbage.
Hit or Miss?
That Grape Juice To Interview Dawn Richard
That Grape Juice are pleased to inform you that we will be interviewing Danity Kane’s Dawn Richard during the latter part of this week. Richard is set to star in the forthcoming new season of Making The Band 4 along with fellow Bad Boy artists Day26 and Donnie Klang. 
With the dramatic events which saw the ousting of original members D. Woods and Aubrey O’Day last year and the uncertainty surrounding the group moving forward, we’re sure many of you will be eager to present questions to Dawn. As I’m sure longtime visitors will know, we here at That Grape Juice do not shy away from asking the questions you really want answers to. Therefore, please drop any questions you have for Dawn in the ‘comments’ section below. Remember only genuine questions will be considered. Thanks guys 😉
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