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R&B star Alicia Keys performed her current single ‘No One’ on the Jay Leno show last night (October 12th). She did fantastic! Each time she performs the song, she really brings it to life; makes you believe what’s she’s singing. A true performer. ‘No One’ is doing great on the Billboard Hot 100, having cracked the top top (at #8) this week. Alicia’s new album ‘As I Am’ will hit stores November 13th.
What do you think of the performance?
Ok, this becoming overkill now. Rihanna is featured on yet another magazine cover – this time the November issue of Teen Vogue. Yes, she looks good, but she needs to disappear for a while. With four months gone since the release of ‘Good Girl Gone Bad’ and the monster hit that was ‘Umbrella’, the album has sold 722,440 copies – I doubt she’s gonna be able to squeeze much more out of it.

What do you think of the cover?
R&B superstar Beyonce was on hand at the Samsung Experience store in New York City yesterday for the launching of the ‘B Phone’ – a ‘Beyonce’ branded Samsung model. Not feeling the phone myself. Whatever the case, Matthew and co are really prepping her for total world domination. I mean, in between her mega-star music status, these endorsements just keep pouring in. I can’t hate on her hustle.

Any thoughts?
Since reuniting with Ludacris’ Disturbing The Peace’ collective over at Def Jam this past April, rapper Chingy has been hard at work on his fourth studio album ‘Hate It Or Love It’. This new track ‘Fly Like Me’, which features R&B songstress Amerie, is slated to be the album’s first single. Though I’m feeling this one, particularly Amerie on the hook, I’m kinda looking it as it a missed opportunity. With his sales having been on a downward spiral recently, it may have better for him to switch things up a bit, yet this seems like a typical ‘it’s good now, but I won’t care for it later’ Chingy track.

Hit or Miss?

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I really have to give it to Fergie; despite making songs of next-to-no relevance (most of which sound pretty bad too) she’s managed to carve out a very successful solo career outside of the Black Eyed Peas. This new single/video ‘Clumsy’ is set to be the 5th single from her multi-Platinum LP ‘The Dutchess’. I’m kinda liking the Marc Webb and Rich Lee directed video. Word has it, Fergie is already recording her 2nd album which is to be released in 2008.

What do you think of the video?

Janet Jackson has really been hitting the promo trail hard for her new film ‘Why Did I Get Married’ as of late. Check out some of her most recent appearances below:
Good Morning America

Extra: Regis & Kelly: Part 1 // Part 2

Janet, alongside co-star Tyler Perry, appeared on a CW morning show yesterday (October 11th). The interview was going fine, until one of the stupid interviewers brought up the infamous Superbowl accident/incident. It’s wasn’t even funny and bizarrely came across as if he took the whole thing personally. Thankfully, Tyler kinda put the guy in check. Click below to see the interview:

Click here to watch the interview

In other Janet news, boyfriend Jermaine Dupri has revealed that the singer is working with Maroon 5 on her as-yet-untitled new album. According to the hit-making producer, the album is set to drop February/March next year. It’s good to hear of Janet working artists unexpected artists; hopefully she’ll deliver the goods come next year. {Source}

Any thoughts?

As previously reported, Usher and wife Tameka Foster are featured on the cover of November’s issue of Essence magazine. Check out a few extracts from their joint interview:

Usher on how the media and bloggers reacted negatively to the news of his engagement to Tameka Foster:

“It was like, wow. (Getting married) and having a child is something that everyone should celebrate. What’s happened to us as a culture and a people? I’m not ignorant, so I’m not going to go out there and lash out….”

Usher on how he and Tameka have stayed strong:

“Ours is not a typical love story, but it is a true one. Tameka and I have been fortunate enough to go through the thick of it in the beginning. We’ve had that opportunity to huddle up as a team, to make sure that we’re clear and speak as one voice.”

Tameka on when she knew to trust her instincts, instead of her girlfriends, about starting a relationship with her future husband:

“Thank God I didn’t listen to my girlfriends…. Usher was my road dawg. I’d seen him love, and I’d watched him date women who were not worthy of him. He was so sweet, going out of his way to cater to their every need. And I’d see them not even be grateful.”

Tameka on falling for her husband:

“I feel totally uninhibited with Usher. I’ve never been in a situation with anyone, even as far back as high school, where there were no secrets. I know I can tell him anything and he’s not going to judge me. I can finally share my dreams. And because of that, I know that man loves me.”

Blah. I find it funny how they totally dodged anything to do with the controversy surrounding Usher’s mom and their marriage. Though I don’t really care for their union, I still think there’s something kinda ‘off’ with it – no matter how much they profess their love for one another.

Your thoughts?

The video for the first single from Jay-Z’s forthcoming ‘American Gangster’ album premiered yesterday. Famed director Hype Williams directed the video for the Pharrell Williams produced ‘Blue Magic’. I don’t know if it’s because I’m not feeling the song or what, but the video is ‘just there’ to me – nothing more, nothing less. If Jay insists on cranking out more albums (especially after the lukewarm reception his last CD met), then he’ll have to come harder than this.

What do you think of the video?

With the release of Cherish’s new album set for early next year, the CD’s alleged first single has surfaced. The track, which features Bad Boy’s Yung Joc, is somewhat of a departure from their material of past. Unfortunately, I don’t feel it to be a step in the right direction; the track sounds very generic and doesn’t really go anywhere. Here’s hoping they bring the goods with the rest of the album.

Hit or Miss?

 

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It has been announced that the release of Mary J. Blige’s forthcoming album ‘Growing Pains’ has been pushed back. The CD, which was originally supposed to drop on November 27th, will now hit stores 2 weeks later on December 11th. Interestingly, the album will now go head-to-head with Ashanti’s comeback ‘The Declaration’ which also drops on the same date. {Source}
I’m guessing Mary’s label are hoping to capitalize on the Holiday sales season, as they did with the release of her last album ‘The Breakthrough’ back in December 2005. It makes sense, but whether it’ll work again is uncertain. A tidbit: Poor Ashanti (no really). Her album was reportedly pushed back in order not to compete with Mariah and now she dropping the same day as Mary. What’s more, there is still talk that Mariah’s album may be held back a week to drop on December 11th too; if that were to happen, Ashanti’s release would, no doubt, get lost in the shuffle. Whatever the case, the next few months should be pretty interesting.

Your thoughts?
Jennifer Lopez has gone into promotion overdrive for her new CD ‘Brave’ (which hits stores today in the US) and has seemingly been everywhere as of late. She performed a mini-set yesterday on ‘Good Morning America’ consisting of current singles ‘Do It Well’ and ‘Hold it Don’t Drop It’. Despite her not really ‘working’ the stage, I kinda enjoyed both performances. This whole being pregnant thing (which we all know she is) is doing wonders for her live vocal ability; without choreography she doesn’t sound bad live at all.

What do you think of the performance / Will you be buying ‘Brave’?

Former ‘Moesha’ star and Kevin Federline’s ‘Baby Momma’, Shar Jackson, is currently a contestant on MTV reality show ‘Celebrity Rap Star’. On a recent episode, Jackson performed Twista’s 2004 hit ‘Overnight Celebrity’. Woah! She nailed it! From her flow to to her overall swagger, she was on-point. Though I’m sure the show is tacky as anything, it’ll hopefully help her shake off the ‘Kevin Federline’s useless ex’ tag she’s had on her for the last couple of years. She’s really got skills.

What do you think of her performance?

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