The New York Post is reporting that R&B singer Fantasia will continue to star in the Broadway adaptation of ‘The Color Purple’ until January 2008. After gaining rave reviews from critics for her portrayal of leading character Celie, the shows producers announced today that the 2004 American Idol winner has extended her stay – which was suppose to run through until October this year.
In other Fantasia news, her single ‘When I See You’ spends its third week atop of the Billboard Hot R&B & Hip Hop chart. The song is the singer’s biggest hit to date.
It’s great that her career is again on the up. Genuine talent nowadays is a hard find and artists like Fantasia are rare. More power to her. Can’t wait for her next album.

Your thoughts?
Following Rihanna’s recent success here in the UK, it has been announced that the Bajan star will be touring the UK this December. The 11 date tour will hit all major UK cities including London’s renown Wembley Arena. Tickets are set to go on sale tomorrow (July 13th) and will be available from / 0871 2200 260. Considering her questionable live performances, I’m kinda surprised she’s actually touring. Then again, with her album sales lower than expected, the label have to make their money back somehow.
In other Rihanna news, her single ‘Umbrella’ is set to enjoy its 9th week at #1 on the Official UK Singles chart, according to mid-week sales. Who is still buying this song?!

Will you be going to see Rihanna?

Keyshia Cole’s video for her new single ‘Let It Go’ (ft. Missy Elliott & Lil’ Kim) premiered last night on BET’s Access Granted. The song is lead single from the star’s upcoming album ‘Just Like You’ (due September 11th). Though the ‘club video’ concept has been done so many times before, I still think the Benny Boom directed video turned out pretty good – it definitely fits the overall vibe of the song. All three ladies are looking great too. I’m a little surprised by how good Kim looks in the vid; even with the botched, surgery she’s still looking on-point.

What do you think of the video?

It appears there may be truth to the rumours of Danity Kane splitting. TMZ caught up with member Aubrey O’Day, who was looking slightly worse-for-wear outside a Hollywood restaurant. O’Day called out Diddy for essentially ditching the group. In what comes as, somewhat of, a surprise, Aubrey didn’t deny the reporter’s question of whether she is set to join the Pussycat Dolls. {Click here to watch the video}.

With the recent reports of D. Woods leaving the group to pursue acting (as reported by Wendy Williams), along with Dawn’s recent solo material, the news is hardly shocking. Still, it’s ridiculous seeing yet another Bad Boy act left out in the cold by Diddy. Despite the fact that the group’s album was certified Platinum, he opted to wrap theirs up and promote his own CD instead. With Bad Boy’s lacking roster, Danity Kane, showed the most potential. In spite of the rumours, member Dawn insists the group is still together and will be recording another album. Whatever the case, things are not looking good for the girls.

What do you think about Danity Kane’s potential break-up?
So the numbers are in, and its not particularly good news for Kelly Rowland. According to Hits Daily Double, the Destiny’s Child singer sold approximately 83,000 copies of her new album ‘Ms. Kelly’ in its opening week. Despite charting at a respectable #6, the sales will obviously come as a disappointment to Kelly and her fans. There inevitably will be fresh calls for Kelly to leave the Knowles camp and spread her wings elsewhere. For, perhaps, the first time I agree.

Unlike many, I don’t lay blame on Matthew Knowles or Beyonce; in fact I don’t lay specific blame on anyone. However, there are a number of factors that have contributed to the current situation. Fact is, Beyonce is a major money generator for the label, explaining why they pump so much promotion and funds into her. Kelly, on the other hand, didn’t fare so well with her debut effort ‘Simply Deep’, hence she would not have been as high a priority with the label. It’s all business – Kelly most likely understands this too. Having said this, by not giving Kelly the platform to do better – via inadequate promotion – the label were (in)directly hindering her chances of success from the outset.

According to industry sources, Matthew Knowles and Music World, stepped in when they realised the label weren’t handling the project as it should – hence the recent increased presence of Kelly on TV, radio and magazines. Therefore, accusations of Matthew trying to sabotage the project etc are unfounded. Still, for many – as the sales show – his interjection may have come too little too late.

So what does the future hold for Kelly Rowland – the solo artist? I expect it to be business as usual – the video for the album’s 2nd single ‘Comeback’ is set to be shot in the coming weeks. Assuming the following singles achieve major-moderate success, the album may continue to sell steadily (ala Amy Winehouse); a re-release similar to that of Robin Thicke may also be a step in the right direction. Looking further ahead, it may be in her best interest to quietly (without controversy) leave the Knowles’/Music World and start afresh elsewhere – which may be inevitable if the label decide to let her go. I’m sure Kelly’s Destiny’s Child repertoire will ensure other labels’ interest. ‘Ms. Kelly’ proved that Kelly can deliver and is on par with her industry contemporaries; all she is in need of is the platform to showcase her full potential. There’s a time for loyalty and a time for business – now’s the time for Kelly to handle her business.

What do you think Kelly should do next?
The 2nd single to be lifted from Eve’s upcoming album ‘Here I Am’ (due August 7th), has surfaced. Produced by Swizz Beats, ‘Give It To You’, featuring Sean Paul, is a Caribbean tinged uptempo track – perfect for the summer. E-V-E’s first single ‘Tambourine’ has grown on me considerably and with the debut of this great new track, I’m anticipating her album all the more. Be on the lookout for the video in the coming weeks.

Hit or Miss?

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To celebrate the release of Kelly Rowland’s sophomore effort ‘Ms. Kelly’, an album release party was held in New York last night. The whole Destiny’s Child / Knowles crew came out to celebrate with Kelly. A slightly off-looking Beyonce rocked a ‘Ms. Kelly’ t-shirt to support her long-time band mate. It’s nice to see the love being reciprocated.

What do you think of the pics?

There seems to be no stopping Rihanna here in the UK. The singer’s monster hit ‘Umbrella’ spent its 8th consecutive week at #1 on the Official UK Singles Chart. Though, I’m growing tired of the song, there’s no denying that it’s an amazing achievement for the Bajan star. She’s really establishing herself as viable artist here.
A statement issued by Sean’ Diddy’ Combs’ rep has confirmed that the Hip Hop mogul and partner Kim Porter have indeed ended their relationship. The confirmation comes after much speculation as to the status of the on-off couple. Recent rumours have linked Diddy with a host of other females, most notably actress Sienna Miller. However the statement denies any romantic link between the two – dismissing it as ‘literally nothing’. Porter and Combs have three children together, the most recent being twin daughters D’Lila Star and Jessie James – who were born in December last year. {Click here to read the full story}

I can’t say I didn’t see this coming. Weird as it may sound, I think Kim is the one to blame – she should have known better. Diddy dumped her like she was yesterday’s garbage for J.Lo in 1999, yet even after they reconciled and had the twins, he insisted he wasn’t ready to marry her. Still, she insisted on proclaiming his love for her; I remember reading a recent interview of hers and marvelling at how dumb she came across. A shame.

What do you think of their break-up?

As Twista preps the release of his new album ‘Adrenaline Rush 2007’, the video for the set’s lead single ‘Give It Up’ has premiered. I instantly liked the track upon first listen and the video turned out great too. Directed by Hype Williams, the vid has all the makings of the standard Hip Hop video, yet I’m feeling the whole pop art inspirations the video has. ‘Adrenaline Rush 2007’ is set to hit stores September 18th.

What do you think of the video?

A pyrotechnics mishap left two fans injured at a Beyonce concert in St. Louis this past Sunday night. The accident occured when raining pyro -part of the spectacle of the singer’s entrance – spread into the front row of the audience. Having been taken to a nearby hospital for treatment of their minor injuries, the fans were surprised with an emergency room visit by none other than the ‘Crazy In Love’ singer herself, who spent around 45 minutes with them. {Source}

A genuine sign of concern or the prevention of a potential lawsuit?

What do you think?

Choreographer Laurie Ann Gibson appears to be cashing in on her ‘Making The Band’ fame by launching her own reality show. The show is being shopped around to different networks at present. In this trailer for the pilot episode, the concept is revealed: she wants to be a singer and is recording an album. This has to be a joke, right? If not, this pretty much confirms that the whole ‘Diddy incident’ a few months back was a publicity stunt. Ridiculous.

Will you be tuning in?