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03_9

R&B diva Beyonce performed to a sold out crowd of 15, 000 patrons at the Olympic Indoor Hall on Sunday in Athens, Greece. However, before she took the stage, the singer posed with her mother, Tina Knowles, on the red carpet. Beyonce’s body is ON in that dress!

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What do you think of their looks?

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According to our good friends over at LeToya Online, things are going from bad to worse with Capitol Records‘ handling of LeToya’s latest project ‘Lady Love’.

Ever reliable, the site, run by Toya’s camp, assert that the label have pulled the plug on all promotion for the album, inclusive being new single ‘Regret’. A video for the song, which has been a surprise hit considering the lack of any promo, was commisioned soley due to the countless fan petitions calling the label out for ignoring the Ludacris-assisted song’s success. Yet many internally are scratching their heads at the point of giving Ms. Luckett the green light for a video, yet refusing point-blank to promote it. What’s more, a crossover remix of ‘Regret’, with all new lyrics, beat, melody (the full works) is ready to drop, however the label apparently aren’t willing to service it to radio. {Source}

Though the ‘done-wrong-by-label’ argument is levelled by many an artist and fan, I really feel LeToya is being mistreated here. I never understood  the logic of a label under-promoting a project from the jump, it goes on to perform badly, and they hastily drop all support (and usually the artist). Itjust doesn’t make any sense. Here’s hoping things work out for LeToya in the long-run – she seems to have a thick, media/industry-savvy skin, so I’m sure it will.

In other LeToya news, the video for ‘Regret’ premieres this Friday on BET’s 106 & Park.

Your thoughts?

Holding true to our promise of keeping things fresh here at That Grape Juice (v.2.0 baby!), we bring you ‘Cover Star’. Completing our current feature-list (From The Vault, Back In The Beat etc), Cover Star will each week showcase regular folk’s rendition of your favourite tracks. Recent history has shown the web to be the place to discover new talent – talent which is undeniably out there in abundance. So what better way to give shine to undiscovered talent than on your favourite site and mine – That Grape Juice!

This week’s Cover Star is 18 year old Cortez from Richardson, Texas, who gives his own spin on Whitney’s ‘I Look To You’. Check it out:

Great rendition! Though not perfect, he actually sounded almost as good as Whitney’s version – yes, I went there (permission to slap me if I’m being OTT lol).

For more on Cortez, check out his Youtube page

What do you think of Cortez’ version?

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Songstress Mariah Carey and husband Nick Cannon were snapped leaving her taping of The Tonight Show With David Letterman. The diva was interviewed and performed new single ‘H.A.T.E U’ on the show, which airs this Friday. Ms. Carey-Cannon looks great!

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What do you think of the look?

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Rihanna was named one of Glamour 2009 Women of the Year at the Carneige Hall in New York today (I know…I was thinking the same thing too). Def Jam label honcho L.A Reid accompanied Ms. Fenty, who donned a flowing, white ensemble.

‘That’ hair has yet to grow on me, but she definitely looked a picture of beauty.

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Thoughts?

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It’s been a tough few years for St.Louis native Nelly, who hasn’t been able to catch a hit for the longest. However, as they say, it’s during the down times that an artist will hit you with their best work. Indeed, a new Nelly cut (said to be from his new album – due March 2010), in the form of the ‘She Got Me’ surfaced today and it’s a sure-fire winner. With great 80’s throwback production courtesy of JR Rotem and several catchy hooks (a tried and tested formula for many a hit), this is radio-food if I ever heard it. Welcome back Nelly!

Hit or Miss?

Peep R&B star Ciara starring in the commerical for Verizon’s new LG Chocolate Touch phone. The 23 year old singer recently signed a major dollar deal with the company to front their campaign (print and TV) for the the line of phones {Source}

More power to Ms. Harris for getting her endorsement on! In an industry which is ever-uncertain, it’s all about expanding your profile any which way possible.

Your thoughts?

Singer (and you use that term loosely) Rihanna was recently featured on MTV’s ‘On With Alex Chung’. Ms. Fenty discussed her ’20/20′ interview with Dianne Sawyer,  her new album ‘Rated R’, and her fashion choices among other things. Rihanna’s new single ‘Russian Roulette’ currently sits at #75 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #49 on the Hip-Hop/R&B charts – and is struggling on iTunes. ‘Rated R’ hits stores on November 20th. Peep part 1 above and part 2 below:

This was the typical light-hearted interview that exemplifies most album promotional ventures. One thing that I did notice, however, is the dynamic nature of Rihanna’s accent. Anyone else notice how her Bajan accent almost completely disappeared during the interview? As a Caribbean native myself (Trinidad and Tobago!), this is something that we observe to be quite the norm with West Indians. People from the region go to the States and abandon every aspect of their culture, with their accent being the first thing to go. It seems that Rihanna only remembers where she comes from when it suits her marketing strategy. That’s a damn shame.

Thoughts?

R&B singer Omarion has finally released the full version of  video for his new single ‘I Get It In’ featuring ‘it’ rapper of the moment Gucci Mane. The song, which was produced by Tank, has thus far peaked at #99 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #29 on the Hip-Hop/R&B charts. Omarion’s new album ‘Ollusion’ hits stores on January 12th 2010.

What was that supposed to be? Judging by the preview of the video (seen here), I was not expecting to be blown away but this is simply insulting. From the dated choreography to the overuse of tricks, I felt like I was watching a rejected audition tape from ‘America’s Best Dance Crew‘. The mere fact that he dedicated this to Michael Jackson only makes matters even worse. A couple years back, Bow Wow got very upset when an interviewer asked Omarion if he copied Chris Brown. Well now I am certain that he does not as this video proves that Chris is in a completely different league. O could’t even get the moon walk right! Hot mess.

Thoughts?

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Young singer JoJo has been hard at work attempting to get her latest album ‘All I Want Is Everything’ to be released. One of the songs that is supposedly included on the LP is ‘Back Words.’ The 18 year old’s album will be released by her tumultuous label, Blackground Records, via a distribution deal with Interscope, in the projected period of January 2010.

JoJo has shown impressive growth as an artist and vocalist in the last few years; improving her craft from being ‘just another teen singer’ to becoming a respectable presence in the industry. Listening to this track, I hear a heavy Brandy influence in her style, with strong similarities to a of the work that Ms. Norwood did on the ‘Human’ album. I am in no way complaining though because if you’re gonna be influenced by someone then it might as well be one of the best. Hopefully all of JoJo’s hard work pays off.

Hit or Miss?

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The worldly Beyonce made a trip to the Pyramid Plateau in Egypt to visit the Sphinx this weekend. The singer, who is currently facing serious legal allegations, was taught a bit about Egyptian history from the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Zahi Hawass.

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On the other side of the globe, B’s husband, Jay-Z, was photoed watching the L.A. Lakers/New Orleans Hornets game that the Staples Center in Los Angeles.

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Rapper Flo Rida and his gigantic watch also enjoyed watching some basketball at the American Airlines Arena in Miami.

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Lil Wayne was at the American Airlines Arena as well. Finally, we can see what’s in his cup!

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And last but not least, R&B singer Monica, her fiance Rodney “Rocko” Hill and adorable son Rodney were spotted at a bowling alley in Atlanta this weekend. Monica always looks on point.

What do you think of the looks?

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The accusations of song-stealing against Beyonce aren’t seeming to subside, with the superstar possibly due in court soon over yet another copy-cat claim against her. Destiny’s Child’s 2005 single ‘Cater 2 U’ is the song in question, after a Chigcago songwriter’s copyright infringement, lodged in 2006, is set to go to before a judge next month. The Chicago Sun-Times elaborates on the story:

…Chicago songwriter and performer Rickey Allen says it’s his song, and a judge has given the green light for a jury to hear his claims against Mrs. Jay-Z.

Allen first copyrighted his “Cater 2 U,” — with the same spelling — in the mid-1990s. He performed the song locally and updated the copyright three times, as recently as 2000.

Allen’s song is about “relieving the stress of a significant other, and getting them to relax.” He says Destiny Child’s version contains similar steamy lyrics.

When Allen’s song says: “I want to rub you down,” Destiny’s Child asks: “Want a foot rub?”

Allen’s lyrics say: “The tub has hot steam rising,” and “I’m waiting to soak your body through.”

The Destiny’s Child song offers to: “Let me run your bath water.”

“Do we say [Beyonce’s] responsible for copying? Yes. But there’s no such thing as innocent copying, even if it’s unintentional,” said Allen’s lawyer, Matt Wildermuth. “The jury will decide the notion that these are simple coincidences.”

Allen says he passed a copy of his “Cater 2 U” to Chicago remixer Maurice Joshua, and the two planned to collaborate on a demo.

That never happened, Allen says. But Joshua later spent several hours in a session with Destiny’s Child recording a different song, according to court papers. Joshua says he never had a copy of Allen’s work.

Lawyers for the threesome say the case has no merit and asked that it be tossed.

It was Knowles who was the source for the idea of “Cater 2 U,” her lawyers said in a court filing.

“She is perhaps the most important witness for the defendants,” they said.

U.S. District Judge James Holderman has ruled there’s enough evidence for the case to go before a jury, pointing to Joshua as the link and saying it’s possible he could have provided a copy of Allen’s song before they released their hit. The trial was delayed once because of conflicts with Knowles’ schedule but is set for Dec. 10.

Lord knows if this is actually true (though in this particular case I am quite doubtful). That said, Bouncy sure is having this copy-cat thing thrown at her a hell of a lot. One has to wonder if it’s a case of “no smoke without fire” or folk just coming at her every which way as she’s at the top of her game.

Your thoughts?

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