Alicia Keys - 'Doesn't Mean Anything' (New Single)
The full version of Alicia Keys’ new single ‘Doesn’t Mean Anything’ surfaced literally moments ago, more than a week before it was initially supposed to debut. In any case, it’s here. The real question here is: is it actually any good?
In short, the answer is ‘yes!’ Very much in the vein of Alicia’s previous smash’s such as ‘No One’ and ‘If I Ain’t Got You’, ‘Doesn’t Mean Anything’ is beautiful piano-driven mid-tempo ballad, with lyrics given a real vividness via Alicia’s emotive vocal delivery. If there’s one critique that can be levelled here, it’s that the song perhaps sounds quite ‘samey’ in comparison to Alicia’s past material. Still, a great cut, which sits effortless beside her past material – which for the most part are equally as great.
Hit or Miss?

Beyonce Lines Up Her Own Fragrance
After fronting major campaigns for Tommy Hilfer and Armani, Beyonce recently inked a deal to launch her very own fragrance:
BEYONCE has landed a multi-million dollar deal with fragrance house Coty to launch her own perfume.
The singing superstar is already the face of Emporio Armani’s Diamonds perfume and previously fronted the promotional campaign for a range of True Star fragrances for Tommy Hilfiger.
But the Crazy In Love hitmaker is now branching out with her own signature scent so fans can smell just like her.
She tells WWD.com, “For me, fragrance reflects a woman’s attitude and unique sense of style.
“While I love various perfumes, I haven’t found a scent that truly personifies me as a woman. Working with Coty, I was able to turn my ideal fragrance into a reality by creating an alluring and sophisticated fragrance; one that’s reflective of my inner power.”
The exact value of the deal has not been made public, but experts predict Beyonce could net as much as $20 million (£13.3 million) over the next three years.
The as-yet-unnamed fragrance will hit stores in spring 2010. {Source}

More power to her!

Your thoughts?
Alexandra Burke To 'Overcome' On Debut LP
X Factor winner Alexandra Burke has revealed that her debut album will be titled ‘Overcome’. Now set for release on October 19th, the singer will now avoid a chart-showdown with mentor Cheryl Cole’s debut solo LP, which hits stores October 26th – the same day Alex was to release hers. {Source}
And the award for worst ‘I won a reality TV talent show’ album title goes to….(!) With Alex herself confirming in the very same interview that the album will feature just 3 ballads, I’m struggling to understand the logic of the record being named after a such a cliche ballad (which ‘surfaced’ months ago). This especially with all signs pointing to the LP being an uptempo, danceable affair (see: ‘Bad Boys’). But really, where is the correlation? Here’s hoping, silly title aside, the album actually delivers. Despite numerous plays I’m still on the fence as to my take on ‘Bad Boys’ – it’s either marginally passable, and at best a grower, or completely awful. Anyway…
Your thoughts?

As I ready my popcorn for the 2nd episode of Whitney’s interview on Oprah, which starts in about 1/2 hour, I continue to SMH at this video which I stumbled upon earlier. Without pre-empting it, all I’ll say is that this is both shocking and nasty. Where the hell are her parents? Hot mess.
Your thoughts?
Alicia Keys - 'Doesn't Mean Anything' (Snippet)As Alicia Keys readies her fourth studio album for release later this year, a very brief snippet of the LP’s lead single ‘Doesn’t Mean Anything’ surfaced. While it’s a little difficult to give a definitive view of this one, I must say I’m liking the sound of it. Similar to ‘No One’ in that it sounds chartable, yet unique in that it has a qualitative edge to it, this is sounding like a winner. Of course, it could end up being trash once the full version premieres on September 29th, but all signs are positives at present.
Tidbit: Did you know Jay-Z’s ‘Empire State of Mind’, which features Alicia, is currently #1 on iTunes?

Hit or Miss?

Following the media storm that ensued following Kanye West’s behaviour at this past Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards, the rapper took to the Jay Leno show last night to apologise and express his regret regarding the situation.
I’m all for second chances, and ultimately do believe Kanye’s career isn’t as damaged as some are hyping it to be (I actually think this will blow over pretty quickly), however he needs to genuinely recognise that as much as he may believe his own hype, the ‘media’ are very much the ones in the driving seat and can throw him off his pedestal at any time. One need not look any further than the stars that have come and gone before him.
Tidbit: Did anyone else recognise the tone of the interview changed dramatically at the mention of Kanye’s mother?
Anyway, check out Kanye joining Jay-Z and Rihanna for a performance of ‘Run This Town’ later on the show:
Ok, I guess. To think Rihanna’s live vocals aren’t offensive to some is beyond me. Sigh…

Your thoughts?
Janet Jackson Releasing '#1's'; Working With Darkchild On New LP
It’s been a whirlwind week for Janet Jackson fans; from her Harpers Baazar interview to the announcement that she’d be performing at the VMA’s, to the electrifying performance itself, to debut of new song ‘Make Me’, it’s been a great time to be a Janet fan.
Well, things seem to be looking even greater for Ms. Jackson (if you’re nasty) supporters as it has been confirmed that the singer, 43, is set to release a new ‘#1’s’ LP via A&M/Interscope on November 13th. According to AOL, ‘Make Me’ is indeed the lead single from the 2-CD set, which will comprise of 30 of Janet’s global #1s. {Source}
Initially assuming the LP was some typical label cash in (Janet released her first 3 albums including ‘Control’ and ‘Rhymthn Nation’ on A&M), I was surprised to see the compilation will be 30 songs long and a 2 disc – this has me thinking it really will also include Janet’s newer material (from the ‘janet’ album right through to ‘Discipline’). Interscope’s involvement (as part of A&M/Interscope-Geffen/Universal) really has me leaning towards the notion that they may just be Ms. Jackson’s new label – which would be fantastic as they are a great label (home to Black Eyed Peas, Mary J Blige, Lady GaGa and more).
In other Janet news, hitmaker Rodney ‘Darkchild’ Jerkins has confirmed that he is working on her new original album (due 2010) – and has been for the last few months! Check out the report via MTV:
Sunday night, on the red carpet of the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards, Grammy-winning super-producer Rodney Jerkins spoke fondly of his late friend Michael Jackson and how MJ once beat him at pool. Jerkins also revealed that he and the King of Pop’s baby sis, Janet Jackson, have been collaborating a lot lately. The first record from their sessions, “Make Me,” dropped just a few hours later.
“It’s about dancing,” Jerkins said. “It’s all about her. It’s about [saying], ‘Listen, if you really want to get with me, you gotta make me feel a certain way.’ “
Jerkins, who produced several tracks on Janet’s 2008 album, Discipline, said he and Ms. Jackson have a lot more songs to come.
“I’m working heavily with Janet,” Jerkins said, adding that her new album will have a throwback feel. “We’ve been in the studio for the last month. We’ve been getting it in. We’re going back to basics and fundamental sounds of Janet. We’re trying to target her fans [by making] the records that her fans will embrace. A lot of uptempo stuff makes you feel good. There’s so many different colors of Janet. I’m a fan, I’ve always been a fan of Janet. The Rhythm Nation, the Control, the Janet. record … those make you feel a certain way. It’s been fun. I’m excited about it.”
With their last big collabo being ‘Feedback’ – a Janet classic IMO; I’m definitely excited to see what they come up with. Insiders initially speculated that Janet would solely be making the album with longtime collaborators Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, which evidently isn’t the case. Still, reports still suggest the award-winning production duo will feature on the album in a major way. With Darkchild being the producer who has brought out the best in Janet in recent years, a Darkchild, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Janet album sounds like one hell of a record.

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Whitney Houston’s much hyped interview with Oprah Winfrey aired last night in the US. For those who missed the shockingly candid interview, you can watch it above. Houston, 46, talks in vivid detail about everything from her much publicized drug addiction, ex-husband Bobby Brown, and a whole lot more. An awesome watch!
*Yesterday’s episode is part 1 of 2, with the 2nd airing tonight in the US on ABC.
Your thoughts?
15th Sep
That Grape Juice Update

Hey!

Many, many thanks for making the transition with That Grape Juice over to our temporary home! As as sure many of you know by now, we are currently in the process of moving from the Blogger platform to the far superior WordPress – a move which will take approximately one week. In our postition as one of net’s ‘premier’ Urban blogs, this move is both befitting and long overdue. LONG overdue!
In terms of what you can expect from the new That Grape Juice; a hot new design, great new features, ability to register as a That Grape Juice user (i.e. for comments), new blogger(s) and a whole lot more!
So, prior to rolling out the new site, here will be the best place to get you’re daily dosage of your favourite site and mine….That Grape Juice!
Thanks so much for your continued support!
Sam
That Grape Juice
www.thatgrapejuice.net
P.S
Do be sure to spread the word about the temporary address!
That Grape Juice Update
As many of you know, That Grape Juice will be moving over to the following address TOMORROW (Tuesday September 15th) for approximately 1 week, while the ‘new’ site is installed at this address (www.thatgrapejuice.net). I must stress this is for approximately one week only. In order to make you feel right at home, the ‘temporary’ site looks exactly the same as the one I’m typing on right now. The fun moves over to the following address TOMORROW (please be sure to bookmark the address):

Thanks for your continued support!

Janet Gives Fans A Gift - A New Song! 'Make Me'

Following her electrifying tribute performance at the VMA’s, Janet Jackson gave her fans a ‘special gift’ on her official website in the form of a new song called ‘Make Me’. Little officially is known about the cut, though it’s assumed it was produced by longtime collaborators Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis and that (for a fact) it isn’t her new single – although it may feature on her new album.

Wow! This is Janet overload these last 48 hours! About the song, it’s classic Janet served up with a helping of Funk and a helping of a contemporary Electro-Pop undertone. After years of hearing her singing (and whispering) over harder beats (See: ‘Feedback’, ‘So Excited’), it’s surprisingly weird hearing her sing (and she is singing here) on more light-hearted production on this – which IMO gives a nod to the Janet of ‘All For You’. A little repetitive lyrically, but I’m liking this one.

The next few months should be uber interesting as we find out how Janet intends to proceed with this project of hers i.e. label, release window etc. Anyway, enough of my rambling…{Thanks Oggie!}…
…and of course let us know what you think lol….

Hit or Miss?

UK’ers not living under a rock will be aware with the recent drama surrounding the country’s top girl group, the Sugababes. With newest member Amelle Berrabah now at the center of the latest happenings, original ‘Babe Keisha Buchanan has gone on record to say she thinks Berrabah wants to leave the group, insisting she is not the cause – as the media so ruthlessly seem intent on presenting as fact. Check out Keisha’s interview with the News of The World yesterday:
KEISHA BUCHANAN last night sobbed as she told me how missing SUGABABE AMELLE BERRABAH ducked out of last week’s gigs by claiming a pal had been in a CAR CRASH.
Giving an eXSclusive interview in her LA hotel room, Keisha broke down and wept: “We thought she was broken up about the accident and were really worried. We did two shows without her, genuinely thinking her friend’s been in a really bad car accident.
“I said to our management can we please get the police around there because I’m really, really worried about her.
“That request didn’t come from her family or (bandmate) HEIDI, it came from me. The police went round and checked on her. They said she’s fine and had been home all week.”
Yesterday Amelle, who vanished for four days, said she’d spoken to her bandmates but Keisha insisted: “She hasn’t spoken to anyone.”
Keisha, who is being comforted by close friend LEONA LEWIS in Los Angeles, says she will try and sort things out with Amelle IF she travels there to film the video for their new single this week.
“I’m not going to lie to you and say everything will be fine because I don’t know. But as far as I’m concerned, we’re the Sugababes; me, Heidi and Amelle.
“The reason why I’m panicking and the reason why I’m crying is because maybe Amelle wants to do things on her own for good.” Keisha is distraught at claims she’s jealous of Amelle’s No 1 single with TINCHY STRYDER – ironically titled Never Leave You.
And she said ex-bandmate MUTYA BUENA, who Amelle replaced, is more talented.
She said: “What exactly is there to be jealous of? I’ve been doing things on the underground for God knows how long. Heidi’s talented too. Amelle’s really talented but the most talented person I’ve ever been around in my life was Mutya.”
Keisha says Amelle, who recently dumped gypsy boyfriend Freddie Fuller, regularly went AWOL.
“Every couple of months it will happen. At certain times there are people thinking they’re bigger than the band.
“She’d blame it on Freddie, she’d blame it on her family on all sorts of things. But what’s the excuse this time?
“Maybe she doesn’t have the balls to say she wants to go.” Keisha also hit back at claims that she’s bullying Amelle out of the band: “I say what’s on our mind. But that’s not bullying.
“It’s a huge accusation to make and I’m not going to let it lie. I was f***ing bullied myself at primary school.
“She’s thinking about leaving but I’m not going to be used as the scapegoat. These things make me stronger. I’m going to use this and write a killer song and I’m going to be fine.”
Not a good look with a new single and album around the corner. That said, if they weather this, I’m sure it will play out as ‘any publicity is good publicity’.
Your thoughts?
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