Beyonce Set To Retire? According to the NY Daily News, Beyonce may be retiring (you read right) following the release of her upcoming LP:

The diva is currently working on a new album, but her cousin Angelica Knowles tells our source that it will be her last. Instead, Beyonce plans to spend her days scouting talent for new hubby Jay-Z’s upcoming label, The Carter Music Group.

Beyonce’s first protege is rumored to be an R&B artist named Chelsea Thomas. Her reps couldn’t be reached for comment.

I have a hard time believing this; as we all know, it’ll be a cold day in hell before Papa Knowles ever allows such a thing to happen. The way I see it, if there’s an ounce of truth to this, then be prepared for ‘Jay-Z / Blackout’ round 2. Anyway, hate it or love it, the industry needs Beyonce IMO. Granted I’m still waiting on her to come with her ‘A-Game’ musically, her performing skills (in comparison to her peers) are second to none.

Your thoughts?

Danity Kane Perform On SoundcheckDanity Kane recently performed a set for Walmart’s online concert series SoundCheck in New York. The setlist included:

* Poetry
* Showstopper
* One Shot
* Damaged
For the most part, they nailed it! Watching this really shows how far they’ve come both vocally and performance-wise. While all the performances were great, their vocal runs and riffs on ‘Showstopper’ were overly on-point.

What do you think of the performances?
Chilli: In a recent interview with our good friend Necole Bitchie, former TLC member Chilli spoke candidly about her ex. Usher and her feelings towards him now:

Necole: I mean because everyone was rooting for the two of you. You were like the cutest couple ever

Chilli: Well you know what’s funny. I will say this and I know it’s gonna be everywhere. Lord, Tameka gonna be trying to fight people. But honestly I will say, although Marlon (Wayans) is the one that got away, Usher is the one that I truly did love. Like that was truly my first adult love. I love him very much and I will always love him. I don’t know how you love someone that deeply and just stop loving them. I’m not in love with him anymore but I can’t say that I don’t love him anymore. And of course I do want him to be happy and all but me and him had what I never had in any of my other relationships, and that was chemistry. Even in that picture that you have up. Any picture that you see with the two of us, you see it. It’s just there! I could be standing next to him til this day and people will be like “Wow”. It’s not that you are wondering if we are back together again, it’s just that we look like we just go together.{Click here to read the rest of the interview}

I applaud Chilli for not giving the ‘media-trained’ answer and talking around the topic. Still, I wonder exactly what caused the break-up…

Any thoughts?

Steve Harvey Unveils New BodyComedian Steve Harvey and his team of radio staff are particiating in a ‘Take Your Shirt Off’ campaign, which promotes weight loss and living a healthy lifestyle.
Steve Harvey Unveils New Body Steve Harvey Unveils New Body

What do you think of Steve’s new look?

R&B singer Ray J performed his hit ‘Sexy Can I’ on The Tonight Show Jay Leno yesterday night. I can’t front, I’m really liking the song and tip my hat to Ray J on his success (the song peaked at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100). About the performance, it was pretty decent.

What do you think of the performance?

Mariah Carey -  'E=MC²'Exactly three years after release of Mariah Carey’s 2005 smash ‘The Emancipation of Mimi’, the Diva serves up her 11th studio effort in the form of ‘E=MC²’. Billed as the emancipation of the 38 year old superstar ‘to the next power’, the age old adage ‘sequels never top originals’ echoes loudly throughout the set. By no means bad, it’s worse – mediocre; which after associating itself with its career-rivalling predecessor, doesn’t bode well for the record overall.


Ne-Yo - 'Let's Just Be' As Ne-Yo readies his third studio album ‘Year Of The Gentleman’ for a June 24th release (via Def Jam), a new track from the set has surfaced. ‘Let’s Just Be’ sees the singer/songwriter re-embrace a more smooth R&B sound (in comparison to the album’s material heard thus far). The solid mid-tempo cut is laced with Ne-Yo’s trademark melodic harmonies and compliments the album’s title well. Still, I’ve yet to be ‘Wowed’ by anything I’ve heard thus far from the project. Here’s hoping the best is yet to come.

Hit or Miss?

{Link Removed As Requested}

With the release of Mariah Carey’s much anticipated new LP ‘E=MC²’ today, there’s no doubt the multi-octave songstress will seemingly be everywhere this week. Carey’s first stop was the Oprah Winfrey Show yesterday. As well as performing current single ‘Bye Bye’, she spoke on, among other things, her new slim-line figure, marriage to Tommy Mottola and of course the new record. Check out the interview and performance below:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

‘Bye Bye’ Performance

Great interview and pretty decent performance; shame about the lip-synching at the end though.

Your thoughts?

While the Blog Performance Indicator (BPI) Team are currently prepping the next installment of the Top-40 Urban Blog list (click here to see this month’s), they have released a Top Ten Blog Heat Seekers list – which we charted on. Check it out:

So here are the BPI Urban Blog Heat Seekers…The Top 10 newest, hottest urban blogs who are less than a year old and are burning it up in terms of growth and momentum. This list does not measure overall traffic or inbound links like the BPI Top 40, but rather focuses on how fast a blog is growing month over month. For example, Highbrid Nation has less traffic and inbound links than A Hot Mess, but Highbrid Nation’s metrics are growing at a faster in the past four months than A Hot Mess. So The Heat Seekers are all about growth. Get it? Good. Take a look at the chart in detail after the jump…

1.Necole Bitchie – Urban blog networking guru. Hard work and hustle is paying off. Traffic and linking momentum off the charts

2.Highbrid Nation
– Great layout, branding and dedicated fanbase is helping build traffic

3.Blogs Is Watching
– Proving regionalized hip-hop blogs outside of NY, The ATL and LA can work. Fast growing Seattle hip-hop blog

4.Soul Bounce
– An eye for unique news and well-written commentary. Already becoming an established urban blog in less than a year

5.Ill Seed
– Capitolizing on his famed AllHipHop gossip column. Took a little to build up the buzz but now traffic is growing rapidly

6.Satchel of Gravel
– The anti-street wear blog, takes a look at the anti-coporate/trend side of style and hip-hop; attracting broad audience

7.That Grape Juice
– One of the U.K.’s fastest growing urban blogs; gaining heat in the U.S. in the past three months

8. A Hot Mess
– Light hearted look at urban news with plenty of updates per day, slowly escalating to Top 5 Urban Blogs level

9. The Corporate Takeover
– Unique take on business side of hip-hop. Dedicated core group of readers allows for high linking momentum

10. Ill Doctrine
– Jay Smooth’s video blog gains popularity stemming from his original blog

You will notice a common theme to The BPI Heat Seekers is the unique angle or twist each blog positions itself as. Some take advantage of their credibility from other sites, others find truly unique angles to share about hip-hop or urban news. But this list just proves being unique, having your own voice and getting your networking on are critical for early blogging success. Congrats to this month’s BPI Heat Seekers!

As I have, and will continue to stress, this wouldn’t be possible without you all. Thank you! Remember spread the word and keep it locked on That Grape Juice.

Any thoughts?

That Grape Juice To Interview Lil' Mama That Grape Juice will be interviewing teen star Lil’ Mama on Thursday (sorry, I know it’s kinda short notice). Set to release her much-anticipated debut ‘VYP: Voice of The Young People’ on April 29th, the ‘Lip Gloss’ rapper has been tipped by many to be the ‘next big thing’. Have any questions for Lil’ Mama? As always, drop them in the ‘comments’ section. Remember only genuine submissions will be considered. Thanks guys 🙂
Toni Braxton Cancels All April Vegas Shows According to Billboard, Toni Braxton has scrapped all her scheduled ‘Revealed’ Las Vegas shows for this month, following her hospitalisation for an undisclosed illness:

The Flamingo Las Vegas says Braxton’s show will remain dark this week while the 40-year-old Grammy winner has more medical tests following her April 7 hospitalization for chest pain. Braxton was released the following day, but last week’s shows were canceled.

Flamingo President Don Marrandino said her Tuesday-through-Saturday shows are also off, and Braxton will take advantage of a previously scheduled two-week break.

She is due to resume her show at the Flamingo Showroom on May 6. The Flamingo is offering refunds for the canceled shows.

The exact cause of Braxton’s chest pain hasn’t been made public. She has been treated in the past for pericarditis, a viral inflammation of the heart.

Braxton is in the midst of a two-year run at the Flamingo.

Here’s hoping she has a quick recovery. Selfish as it may sound, I’m wanting her to prove that she still has what it takes; I’m still kinda salty about the poor performance of her last LP – 2005’s ‘Libra’, which stands as one of my best R&B albums in a long while.

Your thoughts?

Kelly Rowland recently performed her European smash ‘Work’ at the Hilfiger Sessions in Germany. I really enjoyed this performance, just watching Kelly jam with the band. Good stuff.

What do you think of the performance?