Jay-Z's 'Blue Print 3' Delayed According to MTV, Jay-Z’s eagerly awaited ‘Blueprint 3’ has been pushed back until next year, after initially being expected to hit stores before 2008’s end:

Jay-Z has all but confirmed that The Blueprint 3 is not coming out in 2008. When Hov premiered his new record, “History,” on Angie Martinez’s Hot 97 New York radio show last week, Martinez playfully reminded him that he was supposed to be coming out with an album this year. Jigga countered that he’d never told anyone that the album would be dropping this year and didn’t know where the speculation came from.

While in Europe for the EMAs last week, Kanye West, who has produced a gaggle of tracks for Jay’s new album, shed a little light on what’s holding up the highly anticipated album.

“I mean, it’s phenomenal,” West told MTV Base. “We went in and we done the whole album. He wanted to do a few more joints, so he kinda pushed it back. Now we’re gonna go in and just work on some more records. So I got some more stuff to kill it with! I think [Jay pushed the album back because] ‘Swagger’ just did so incredible. We wanted to go up [and make sure] everything was on that level.”

The likelihood of the album dropping between now and December was slim anyway IMO. With Jay seemingly back at his best, I’m sure a few more months wouldn’t hurt. In fact, I feel the anticipation will be more. Roll on next year…

Your thoughts?

Though R&B star Usher is out on the road supporting his latest effort ‘Here I Stand’, Ne-Yo who he is currently working with on the follow-up (due 2009), has gone on record to express his feelings of a lack of direction with the lukewarmly received album. Here’s what he had to say to MTV:
I really couldn’t agree more. Usher is undeniably very talented – possibly one of the best in this New-Post-Michael Jackson-Era. However he seemed a little out of touch musically on this recent effort. What’s more over he turned a lot of folk off with his insistence on shoving his personal life down our throats, something which only served to heighten the media circus surrounding it all, as well as the negativity. I’m hopeful that he gets it together for the next album and delivers what we all know he can.

Your thoughts?

It seems as of late Beyonce is everywhere. The singer performed her smash singles ‘If I Were A Boy’ and ‘Single Ladies (Put A Ring On It)’ at the 2008 World Music Awards last night in Monte Carlo’s Sporting Club arena. Though her live showings of ‘If I Were A Boy’ continue to be solid, many have been keen to see what she’d deliver live with ‘Single Ladies’ – myself included.

Watching the ‘Single Ladies’ performance back, however, has me a little disappointed. I can’t put my finger on what exactly it was; but between the distracting hordes of weave on her head, the tacky outfits and the generally unpolished feel of the performance of the song, something wasn’t quite right. Here’s hoping she irons out the messiness of it all and makes it work next time.

What do you think of the performance?

Brandy On The Set Of 'Long Distance'Check out a stunning looking Brandy on the set of her brand new single ‘Long Distance’. The Chris Robinson directed clip will be premiering soon. I must say, Brandy looks stunning.

Brandy On The Set Of 'Long Distance'Brandy On The Set Of 'Long Distance'Brandy On The Set Of 'Long Distance'Brandy On The Set Of 'Long Distance'Brandy On The Set Of 'Long Distance'

What do you think of the pics?

As reported, Beyonce has been over here in the UK promoting her new single ‘If I Were A Boy’. ITN caught up with the Bootylicious beauty for a pretty random, yet hilarious interview.

Tidbit: I guess those looking forward to a Destiny’s Child reunion of sorts may be in luck.

Your thoughts?

Balfour To Remain Behind BarsThe prime suspect in the murders of Jennifer Hudson’s mother, brother and nephew, William Balfour, was denied release from prison today by the Chicago authorities:

The man police have called a suspect in the murder of actress Jennifer Hudson’s family will remain in prison while investigators continue to investigate the triple slaying.

The Illinois Prisoner Review Board ruled this morning that there was reason to believe that William Balfour, 27, had violated his parole. The major reason was that his girlfriend had said that she had seen him with a gun that matched the murder weapon, according to Jorge Montes, chairman of the review board.

In addition, the board said he had violated parole by being in places where drugs were sold. That stems from a June 19 drug arrest, but Balfour’s parole was not revoked at that time.

During the hearing, Balfour protested the use of the evidence that authorities presented to hold him, Montes said. Balfour was not represented by a lawyer. {Source}

The whole situation is still beyond sad. I hope this guy gets locked for life.

Your thoughts?

R&B songstress Keyshia Cole features on the cover of the latest issue of Billboard Magazine. Speaking on her third studio album ‘A Different Me’, Cole said the following in her feature:

“The first two albums were more … painful,” she tells Billboard over lunch in Los Angeles. “It’s a different me this time: a young woman who’s still growing and finding myself, exploring life through different routes musically and in other areas. I wrote more about other people’s situations than my own. I’m moving forward.”

The article goes on to read…

“A Different Me” features Cole collaborating with a combination of marquee names and newcomers, including Polow Da Don, the Runners, Neffu, Kwame, Orthodox & Ransom and the Trackmasters. On her previous albums, Cole worked with such songwriter/producers as Greg Curtis, Missy Elliott, Scott Storch, Bryan-Michael Cox, Rodney Jerkins and Sean Garrett.

And while the pain quotient is definitely lowered on “Me,” the emotional realness and accessibility that fans have come to love in Cole’s music remain — as do her searing vocals.

As part of a 360 deal she recently inked with Interscope, Cole is developing a movie based on her life. A screenwriter has been hired to go on the road with the artist in 2009 to begin developing the script. {Source}

The set, due December 1th, is also set to feature a collaboration with Monica. Interesting.

I’m definitely paying a lot of attention to this record, as I really feel as though her team scored an own-goal by releasing ‘Playa Cardz Right’ as the first single. It’s just not first, second or even third single material IMO. I guess this will be a case of wait and see…

Your thoughts?

Beyonce has been on a whirlwind promotional trip here in Europe as of late, plugging her International single ‘If I Were A Boy’. The former Destiny’s child front-woman performed the hit on Strictly Come Dancing this weekend. As ever, she delivered a stellar performance. Good stuff (though, I’m sure everyone is itching for a ‘Single Ladies’ live performance instead!)

Ms. Knowles’ new single ‘Ego’ (which will be one of two new singles released. The other being ‘Halo’) has surfaced in full form too. Listen below:

Wow. Beyonce is really feeling herself with this one (check that ‘Piano’ part LOL). She has good reason, though – the song is a winner. Kanye West is said to be on the song’s remix. Watch this space.

Hit or Miss?

X Factor 2008: Live Shows - Week 4The fifth week of X Factor 2008 live shows aired tonight here in the UK. Check out my 2 Pence on the Mariah Carey themed week below:

{For those unfamiliar with the show; The X Factor is the UK’s version of American Idol – with a twist in that groups and over 25’s are eligible to enter. The show also birthed the career of a certain Leona Lewis}
Undeniably the ‘shocker’ episode of the series thus far, tonight saw the ousting of favourite (and one of my personal favourites) Laura White over the far less talented Ruth. A damn shame.
Anyway, Mariah herself was in the building, mentoring the contestants as well as performing twice. You can check out her performances of ‘I Stay In Love’ and ‘Hero’ (with the remaining finalists) below as well as that of standout contestant Alexandra Burke:

Mariah – I Stay In Love

Mariah – Hero

Alexandra – Without You

Mariah, Mariah, Mariah. What awful performances! Ms. Cannon looked so lost up there when miming through ‘I Stay In Love’ and her live rendition of ‘Hero’ which reminded one of how much her voice is a shadow of a shadow of what it once was. What’s more, she was stiffer than stiff; yes, she’s no ‘mover’ but come on now. I’m sitting here scratching my head wondering why she seemed to be full of personality during the interview segments, yet – with her years of being a performer – offered such a dry and lifeless showing. If she doesn’t fix whatever is wrong with her or simply sit down soon, she will be tarnishing what was a remarkably successful career with such crappy performances (which she seems to have a knack for giving these days). Rant over lol.

On a more positive note, Alexadra nailed it once again – showing in the process why she must win this show!

Your thoughts?

With Britney Spears’ ‘comeback’ looking more a certainty than otherwise, a new track from her hotly anticipated ‘Circus’ LP has surfaced in the form of ‘Kill The Lights’. Produced by Danja, one of the creative forces behind much of her last album ‘Blackout’, the track is definitely a winner.

Unlike ‘Womanizer’, which required several plays to become ‘listenable’ (or may have just been shoved down our throats), ”Lights’ instantly grabs with its infectious production, which Britney rides with ease.

‘Circus’ hits stores December 2nd.

Your thoughts?

IT girl of the moment Rihanna fainted onstage while performing her smash ‘Umbrella’ with Chris Brown during a concert in Sydney, Australia today.

As seen in the video above, the 20 year old star is visibly clutching her stomach in pain and stumbles off stage into the hands of her handlers, while rumored boyfriend Brown completes the song.

Her camp have since confirmed that she is ok after being taken to the hospital following the occurrence.

Though I don’t mince my words about Ms. Fenty (with good reason), here’s hoping she’s actually better.

Your thoughts?

R&B star Usher recently stopped by the Angie Martinez show on Hot 97 to promote the New York tour stop of his ladies aimed ‘One Night Only’ Stateside trek. Though, the ‘Love In This Club’ singer mainly spoke about the tour, he confirmed that wife Tameka is due with the couple’s second child next month (Wow, they didn’t waste anytime!) as well as her reaction to his provocative stage-shows. A pretty interesting listen, I must say.

Any thoughts?

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