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JoJo Update In a recent interview with theLIFE.Files, JoJo confirmed that her forthcoming album, her third, will be titled ‘All I Want Is Everything’. Set for a ‘Late 2008’ release, she also revealed that the LP will boast production from the likes of Timbaland, Tank, DJ Toomp, and Polow Da Don. {Source}
As I’ve said quite a few times, JoJo’s sophomore effort ‘The High Road’ surprised me to the core; with it’s stellar R&B cuts, the album arguably served as one of best Urban/Pop releases of 2006. The 17 year old’s undeniable vocal prowess, in conjunction with the impressive list of producers, makes her LP one I’m definitely looking forward to.

Your thoughts?
Beyonce & Jay-Z At Houston Rockets Game Newlyweds, Beyonce and Jay-Z, were snapped together at the Houston Rockets vs Phoenix Suns basketball game in Houston, Texas yesterday.

In other ‘Jayonce’ news, click here to read this NY Post article that has been making the rounds recently about the mainstream media’s lack of interest in ‘the wedding’.

Your thoughts?
Mariah Covers JET Continuing along the promo trail for her forthcoming ‘E=MC²’ LP, Mariah Carey appears on the cover of the latest issue of Jet Magazine (on newsstands now). It’s set to be a busy week for the ‘Touch My Body’ singer, starting with an appearance/performance on the Oprah Winfrey Show this coming Monday, followed by American Idol on Tuesday and Wednesday. Mimi’s BET Special, which was taped last month, will air on Thursday.
* Our review of ‘E=MC²’ will be up shortly.
You can still enter our ‘E=MC²’ CD-Give-Away (which ends tomorrow) by clicking here

Any thoughts?
 Alicia Keys: 'Gangsta Rap Is A Government Tool To Incite Black-On-Black Killings' R&B songstress Alicia Keys features in the latest issue of Blender magazine. As well as checking out outtakes from her shoot – shot by Andrew Eccles – below, peep Alicia’s controversial stance on Gangsta Rap:

We ask what other gangsta rappers she liked. And that’s when Keys drives a steamroller through the wall.

“‘Gangsta rap’ was a ploy to convince black people to kill each other,” she says, putting down the sandwich. “‘Gangsta rap’ didn’t exist.”

Come again? A ploy by whom?

She looks at us like it’s the dumbest question in the world. “The government.”

Alicia says Tupac and Biggie were essentially assassinated, their beefs stoked “by the government and the media, to stop another great black leader from existing.”
{Click here to read the rest of the interview

Wow. It’s kinda unexpected to see Alicia being so outspoken. It’s a pretty deep conspiracy theory, though, and I’m not entirely sure where I stand on the whole issue. You?


{Click pics to enlarge}
Alicia Keys / Blender Alicia Keys / Blender Alicia Keys / Blender Alicia Keys / Blender

Your thoughts?

That Grape Juice To Interview Tamia That Grape Juice are pleased to confirm that we will be interviewing R&B songstress Tamia towards the end of next week. The Grammy nominated star is currently gearing up for the start of her North American tour, in support of her most recent release – the stellar ‘Between Friends’. Do you have any questions for Tamia? As usual, drop them in the ‘comments’ section. Remember, only appropriate questions will be considered. Thanks guys 🙂

As the release of Mariah Carey’s much-hyped ‘E=MC²’ album draws nearer, ‘Heat’ – a bonus track from the Japanese edition of the LP -has surfaced. Check it out:

Though this will.i.am produced cut is far from being Mariah’s best effort – I’m really liking it for what it is – light, tongue-in-cheek, with enough hooks to have you humming along before it ends. I chose to interpret the song’s ‘I will hunt you down-esque’ lyrics comically; I mean she can’t really be serious, can she? LOL…

Hit or Miss?

Bobby Valentino Leaves DTP In a recent interview with DJBooth.net, R&B singer Bobby Valentino confirmed that he is no longer signed with Disturbing The Peace (DTP) or the label’s distributor Def Jam. The news comes just three weeks before the digital release of his new EP ‘Come With Me’:

“The decision to leave [the label] was totally mine,” said Valentino. “I sat down with Ludacris and Chaka Zulu, and I explained to them that it was time for me to venture out on my own. They had no problem with it; they are cool with it, no beef at all.”

I’m not buying the whole ‘it was my idea’ to leave the label thing at all; they’re probably just allowing him to save face. I guess the news of LA Reid clearing house over at DTP a couple of months ago was accurate. The hunger for a record deal must be at an all-time high these days; as more and more seem to be signing to these artist-led labels, only to receive 2nd-rate treatment i.e. DTP, G-Unit, St. Lunatics etc.


Your thoughts?
Ne-Yo On The Set Of 'Closer' VideoIt seems the release Ne-Yo’s third album ‘Year of The Gentleman’ is approaching much sooner than expected. The singer filmed the video for the set’s first single ‘Closer’ yesterday at the Santa Clarita Studios in California yesterday. Check out more pics from the shoot below:

Ne-Yo On The Set Of 'Closer' VideoNe-Yo On The Set Of 'Closer' VideoThese new albums/projects are coming thick and fast this year…

What do you think of the pics?

New R. Kelly Promo Pic With R. Kelly lining up his next record for a ‘Summer 2008’ release, a new promotional shot for the LP has surfaced. Granted he looks a complete mess (what in the…), it’ll be interesting to see what direction the album will be going in.

What do you think of the pic?

Teen stars Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown performed their hit ‘No Air’ on American Idol last night. For all it’s success, the song doesn’t really move me – ok, at best. About the performance, Jordin sounded great; Chris, however, has had better days.

What do you think of the performance?

Brandy Signs With Epic Following months of speculation, AOL Black Voices have confirmed that R&B star Brandy has indeed signed with Epic Records, with plans to release a new album by the year’s end. The singer, 28, will no doubt be hoping that her new beginning over at Epic will allow for her to leave recent troubles in the past.
It’s been almost four years since the songstress severed ties with longtime label Atlantic, following the release and subsequent poor performance of her highly underrated (IMO) ‘Afrodisiac’ LP. I’m definitely amped to see what she serves up this go round. {Source}

Any thoughts?
US Label Want Estelle to 'Fix' Teeth? According to reports, R&B star Estelle is receiving pressure from her US label to make changes to her appearance:

US label Atlantic Records wants Estelle to have surgery on her teeth to help her break into the American charts, say reports.

Her bosses also want her to ditch the boyish haircut she has in her ‘American Boy’ video and would like to give her image a complete overhaul, according to The Sun.

“The American executives are adamant she makes a lot of significant changes,” said a source. “They want rid of her tomboy hair and want her to get her teeth fixed.

“Estelle is not happy. She feels her teeth and the rest of her look are a big part of her character.”

The R&B star has spent the last three weeks at number one on the UK singles chart.

{Source}

The truth of the matter is anyone’s guess, however it does raise a few interesting questions. Do you feel Estelle should comply with what the label want of her or refuse? Is this another (unfortunate) case of image over talent?

Your thoughts?

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