Showing posts with label concerts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label concerts. Show all posts

Monday, April 8, 2024

Missy Elliott, Busta Rhymes, Ciara To Headline Summer Tour

Even a total solar eclipse couldn't outshine the brilliance of Missy Elliott's latest announcement: her first-ever headlining tour, "Out of This World – The Missy Elliott Experience." The tour launches this summer across North America and will feature hip-hop heavyweights Busta Rhymes, Ciara and Timbaland.

“This is an incredible time in my life as I am experiencing so many milestone ‘firsts,’” Elliott said in a statement announcing the tour. “Being the first female hip-hop artist to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and now going out on my first headline tour – fans have been asking me to tour forever, but I wanted to wait until I felt the time was right. If I was ever going to do it, I had to do it big, and I had to do it with family! So get ready to be taken out of this world with me, Busta Rhymes, Ciara, and Timbaland!”

The 24-city tour kicks off July 4th at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, with stops in Los Angeles, Atlanta, Brooklyn, and more, before concluding in Rosemont, Illinois, at the Allstate Arena on August 22nd.


News of the tour was shared in a sci-fi-themed video posted hours before Monday's total solar eclipse. The clip features Elliott, Busta Rhymes, and Ciara venturing outside a spaceship after accidentally landing on a strange planet.

The tour announcement follows Elliott's historic 2023 induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, making her the first female rapper to receive this honor.

"Missy has always been an iconic groundbreaker," Mona Scott-Young, Elliott's longtime manager, added. "This headlining tour is another testament to her enduring impact and a long-awaited gift to her dedicated fans."

Out of This World — The Missy Elliott Experience tour dates
According to Monday's announcement, Elliott's tour will be stopping by the following locations:
Thursday, July 4 — Vancouver, British Columbia — Rogers Arena
Saturday, July 6 — Seattle — Climate Pledge Arena
Tuesday, July 9 — Oakland, California — Oakland Arena
Thursday, July 11 — Los Angeles — Crypto.com Arena
Saturday, July 13 — Las Vegas — T-Mobile Arena
Tuesday, July 16 — Denver — Ball Arena
Thursday, July 18 — Austin, Texas — Moody Center
Saturday, July 20 — Houston — Toyota Center
Sunday, July 21 — Fort Worth, Texas — Dickies Arena
Wednesday, July 24 — Tampa, Florida — Amalie Arena
Thursday, July 25 — Sunrise, Florida — Amerant Bank Arena
Saturday, July 27 — Atlanta — State Farm Arena
Thursday, Aug. 1 — Baltimore — CFG Bank Arena
Friday, Aug. 2 — Hampton, Virginia — Hampton Coliseum
Saturday, Aug. 3 — Belmont Park, New York — UBS Arena
Monday, Aug. 5 — Philadelphia — Wells Fargo Center
Thursday, Aug. 8 — Washington — Capital One Arena
Friday, Aug. 9 — Newark, New Jersey — Prudential Center
Saturday, Aug. 10 — Boston — TD Garden
Monday, Aug. 12 — Brooklyn, New York — Barclays Center
Thursday, Aug. 15 — Detroit — Little Caesars Arena
Saturday, Aug. 17 — Montreal — Bell Centre
Monday, Aug. 19 — Toronto — Scotiabank Arena
Thursday, Aug. 22 — Rosemont, Illinois — Allstate Arena

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Watch: Big Sean Brings Hits, Heart to Tiny Desk Performance


Detroit rapper Big Sean took the virtual stage for his debut performance at NPR's Tiny Desk concert series. In a 26-minute set uploaded to NPR Music's YouTube channel on Wednesday, he captivated viewers with a 14-song performance accompanied by a small string quartet.

Sporting a Beastie Boys shirt and a Detroit Tigers cap in tribute to the late J Dilla, Big Sean's Tiny Desk debut held special meaning. He left his cap on the set as a keepsake, a tradition among Tiny Desk performers. "This is something my kids can look back on, something my family can look back on to see where I was at in my career," he shared.

The rapper kicked off with "Memories," the opening track from his sophomore album "Hall of Fame." He then showcased hits like "One Man Can Change the World," his Grammy-winning collaboration with Kanye West and John Legend. Pausing between tracks, Big Sean acknowledged fellow Detroiters in the audience and even debuted a new song dedicated to his partner, Jhené Aiko, and their son Noah.

Reflecting on his rise to success, Big Sean expressed gratitude for his fans, highlighting his journey as a "blog-era mixtape rapper" who built a fanbase organically. "To make it out of there, it wasn't easy... It really made me who I am," he remarked, highlighting the resilience and determination that propelled his career.

SET LIST
"Memories"
"Nothing Is Stopping You"
"Blessings"
"Play No Games"
"Light"
"My Last"
"Marvin & Chardonnay"
"All Me"
"Beware"
"I Know"
"Bounce Back"
"One Man Can Change the World"
"On Up" (unreleased?)
"I Don't F*** With You"

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

R&B Legends Headline Massive 'Queens of R&B' Concert Tour

The Queens of R&B Tour. Photo Credit: Derek Blanks with crowdMGMT
In a historic moment for R&B, powerhouse groups Xscape and SWV are teaming up for "The Queens of R&B Tour." They will be joined by fellow '90s hitmakers Mýa, Total and 702.

The tour was announced on Sherri Shepherd's talk show on Tuesday following a viral video depicting a playful therapy session between the groups. Produced by Monami Entertainment and Live Nation, the tour kicks off June 27 at the Toyota Pavilion in Concord. It will journey through 30 cities nationwide, including stops at Madison Square Garden in New York City and the Kia Forum in Los Angeles.
Fans may remember that Xscape (Kandi Burruss, Tameka "Tiny" Harris, Tamika Scott) and SWV (Cheryl "Coko" Gamble, Tamara "Taj" George, Leanne "Lelee" Lyons) attempted to organize this tour on their 2023 Bravo series, "SWV & Xscape: The Queens of R&B." Despite initial challenges, the groups have united to deliver what promises to be an unforgettable R&B concert event.

"To bring this HERstorical tour to life during Women's History Month is a dream come true," said Mona Scott-Young, CEO of Monami Entertainment. "This celebration of R&B royalty is going to be something special."

Tickets for "The Queens of R&B Tour" go on sale March 26.

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Megan Thee Stallion Unveils 'Hot Girl Summer Tour' with Global Reach

Three-time Grammy Award-winning artist Megan Thee Stallion today announced her highly anticipated global "Hot Girl Summer Tour," produced by Live Nation. The 31-city tour will feature special guest GloRilla, the Grammy-nominated artist behind hits like "Tomorrow 2 (feat Cardi B)" and "Yeah Glo!."

The tour will kick off on May 14 in Minneapolis, with stops in major U.S. cities including New York City, Los Angeles and Houston. It will wrap up its North American leg in Las Vegas on June 22. European dates include performances in Scotland, England, France, Germany and Ireland.

Tickets will be available through a Citi presale starting March 20, followed by additional presales. General on-sale begins March 22 at 10 AM local time.

The announcement comes on the heels of Megan's recent chart-topping success with her single "HISS," which reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in February.

2024 HOT GIRL SUMMER WORLD TOUR DATES
North America
May 14 – Minneapolis, MN – Target Center^
May 17 – Chicago, IL – United Center^
May 18 – Detroit, MI – Little Caesars Arena^
May 21 – New York, NY – Madison Square Garden^
May 22 – Philadelphia, PA – Wells Fargo Center^
May 24 – Napa, CA – BottleRock Napa Valley Festival*
May 26 – Boston, MA – Boston Calling Festival*
May 28 – Baltimore, MD – CFG Bank Arena^
May 30 – Memphis, TN – FedEx Forum^
Jun 1 – Atlanta, GA – State Farm Arena^
Jun 4 – Raleigh, NC – PNC Arena^
June 6 – Hollywood, FL – Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino^
Jun 8 – Tampa, FL – Amalie Arena^
Jun 10 – New Orleans, LA – Smoothie King Center^
Jun 11 – Dallas, TX – American Airlines Center^
Jun 13 – Austin, TX – Moody Center^
Jun 14 – Houston, TX – Toyota Center^
Jun 16 – Manchester, TN – Bonnaroo Music & Arts Festival*
Jun 17 – Denver, CO – Ball Arena^
Jun 19 – Phoenix, AZ – Footprint Center^
Jun 21 – Los Angeles, CA – Crypto.com Arena^
Jun 22 – Las Vegas, NV – MGM Grand Garden Arena^

Europe
Jul 4 – Glasgow, UK – OVO Hydro
Jul 5 – Manchester, UK – Co-op Live
Jul 7 – Paris, FR – Zenith
Jul 10 – Amsterdam, NL – Ziggo Dome
Jul 11 – Cologne, DE – Lanxess Arena
Jul 14 – Dublin, IE – 3Arena
Jul 16 – Birmingham, UK – Utilita Arena
Jul 17 – London, UK – The O2
^With Support From GloRilla
*Festival Appearances

Thursday, March 7, 2024

J. Cole, Nicki Minaj, SZA to Headline Dreamville Festival

J. Cole's Dreamville Festival returns to Dorothea Dix Park in Raleigh, North Carolina, on April 6-7, with a lineup packed with music industry heavyweights.

R&B stars SZA and Chris Brown headline Saturday's performances, joined by Jeremih, Amaarae, Teezo Touchdown, J.I.D., ScHoolboy Q, Sexyy Red and others.

Sunday's lineup is just as exciting, with J. Cole and Nicki Minaj taking the stage as headliners. Festival-goers can also catch performances by Monica, Muni Long, Chase Shakur, Rema and Jeezy.

Dreamville Festival isn't just about the music. The event also features carnival rides, art installations, a variety of food vendors, and more, creating a weekend celebration of music and community.

This marks the fourth edition of Dreamville Festival, and tickets are selling fast. Limited general admission passes are still available for this two-day music extravaganza.

Full Lineup:
Saturday, April 6
SZA
Chris Brown
J.I.D.
Lil Yachty
ScHoolboy Q
Sexyy Red
Jeremih
EARTHGANG
Teezo Touchdown
Amaarae
Lute
Luh Tyler
Domani

Sunday, April 7
J. Cole
Nicki Minaj
Rema
Jeezy
Monica
Rae Sremmurd
Key Glock
Bas
Muni Long
Cozz
Omen
TiaCorine

Wednesday, March 6, 2024

Kid Cudi Announces 'Insano World Tour'

Kid Cudi, the Grammy Award-winning multiplatinum artist, producer, and actor, announced his "Insano World Tour" on Wednesday. The tour kicks off June 28th in Austin, TX, hitting 25 North American cities before extending to the UK and Europe in February 2025.

He will be joined by an impressive lineup of supporting acts: hip-hop legend Pusha T, multi-hyphenate Jaden Smith, and the dynamic duo EarthGang. The tour boasts stops in several major cities including New York, Toronto, Chicago, Atlanta, and Los Angeles, concluding its North American leg on August 30th.

Tickets for the general public go on sale Friday, March 15th at 10:00 a.m. local time. For more information on the lineup, tickets or tour dates click here.

The tour follows the release of Kid Cudi's ninth studio album, "Insano," which debuted in January 2024. The 21-track album includes collaborations with Travis Scott, Pharrell Williams, and others. 


Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Megan Thee Stallion Announces Tour and Album Amidst Feud and Doxxing


In a bold move, Megan Thee Stallion has announced a summer tour and album titled "Hot Girl Summer" on Tuesday, reclaiming the term associated with her and fellow rapper Nicki Minaj despite their recent public feud.

The tour and album signal a powerful revival of empowerment and self-love, harking back to the collaboration that Megan and Minaj once celebrated together. This revelation unfolds amidst a contentious back-and-forth between the two artists, turning what was once a celebrated partnership into a clash marked by subliminal disses and online confrontations.

Confidently declaring on "Good Morning America," Megan stated, "The Hot Girl Summer Tour is gonna be 2024 summertime." This announcement goes beyond a mere return to the stage; it's a bold assertion of ownership for Megan, reclaiming a phrase she helped popularize and infusing it with fresh energy after years of navigating industry dynamics and personal battles.

While specific tour details, including dates and locations, remain under wraps, fans can anticipate the ultimate "Megan Thee Stallion experience." Expect sweat-drenched anthems celebrating self-love and female empowerment, interwoven with fire beats to create an electrifying spectacle. Adding to the excitement, Megan teased a new album dropping before the tour, promising fresh bangers to soundtrack the season's liberation.

However, the impending summer's heat is shadowed by a chilling development. Minaj, once a collaborator and friend, has become an antagonist in this unfolding drama. According to TMZ, Paradise South Cemetery, where Megan's mother rests, is now under heightened security after Minaj's fans leaked its location online — an incident that adds another layer to the ongoing battle between the two artists.

Their collaboration began showing cracks in late 2019, coinciding with Megan's work with Cardi B, Minaj's longtime rival. Public appearances together dwindled, and social media interactions became less frequent. In August 2020, Minaj's tweet questioning the narrative surrounding Megan's shooting was interpreted by many as insensitive, sparking accusations of betrayal. Minaj later clarified her tweet as a general message about protecting women, but the damage was done.

Subliminal disses in both artists' music fueled further speculation about a rift, reaching new heights in January 2024 when Minaj made disrespectful comments about Megan's late mother on a streaming platform. This ignited a social media firestorm and led to the doxxing of Megan's mother's gravesite.

Despite the ongoing drama, both Megan and Nicki Minaj continue to be successful solo artists with dedicated fan bases and numerous accolades. As Megan gears up for her "Hot Girl Summer" reclamation tour and album, the unfolding personal conflict will undoubtedly be closely watched by the public eye.

Monday, December 18, 2023

Watch: From Geto Boys to Grandmaster, Scarface Reigns in Soulful Tiny Desk Concert

In the realm of hip-hop, Scarface, also known as Facemob and Brad Jordan, has etched his legacy as one of the genre's most influential storytellers. Monday on NPR's Tiny Desk Concert, the legendary emcee and producer delivered a 30-minute set that stands as a testament to a rap career spanning decades, defined from his time as a seminal member of Houston's Geto Boys to his stellar solo journey.

Anticipation for Scarface's Tiny Desk appearance crackled after DJ Cuzzin B, the series' producer, declared on X (formerly Twitter) last week, "Just watched an edit of Scarface's Tiny Desk. Yeah.... it's the best hip-hop Tiny Desk we've ever put out. A new crown holder.... Monday." The hype proved prescient.


From introducing his backup band to the final song, Scarface took the audience on an intimate lyrical and musical journey, raw and unflinchingly honest yet undeniably entertaining.

"I don't know if you want to call me the DJ or the conductor of the railroad but my name is Facemob. We came here to jam for y'all tonight, this morning, whenever the f—k it is," Scarface shares, setting the tone for an intimate and powerful performance.

Mike Dean, grabbing the mic, interjects with humor, questioning, “You were high?” Scarface responds affirmatively, "That's going to be the basis of all our f—ing songs, man. I swear," before launching into the rap star's signature tune, "On My Block." The performance is gritty, soulful, and captures the essence of what has made Scarface's hip-hop career special.

The Tiny Desk concert offered a rare glimpse of Scarface not just as a seasoned emcee but as a conductor, navigating through multiple eras of his extensive catalog. Classics like "Mary Jane," "Smile," "Fk Faces," and the bone-chilling "I Seen a Man Die" all made the setlist.

Days before the show, Scarface added a surprise element by bringing in Dean, elevating the performance with unmatched authenticity and shared stories. This dynamic collaboration underscored the profound impact Dean's production has had on Scarface's classics and Rap-A-Lot records.

Scarface's influence extends beyond the stage, as evidenced by his recent recognition alongside Rakim with the inaugural Hip-Hop Grandmaster Award from the Paid in Full Foundation. This accolade, coupled with substantial financial and healthcare support, reaffirms Scarface's place as a pivotal figure in hip-hop history.
Watch the entire performance in the video below.


Set List:
"On My Block"
"Mary Jane"
"Smile"
"I Seen a Man Die"
"F**k Faces"
"Mind Playing Tricks on Me"

Musicians:
Scarface: Lead vocals, guitar
Mike Dean: Keys
Steven "Spud" Howard: Vocals
Takai "Cookie" Hicks: Vocals
Peigh Jones: Vocals, guitar
Corey "FunkaFingers" Stoot: Guitar
Josh Henderson: Keys
Jason "The Bishop" Allen: Keys
Savar Martin: Drums
Anthony "Antboogie" Nicholson: Bass, musical direction

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

R&B Kings & Rap Royalty: Jodeci & Wu-Tang Clan Unveil Electrifying Las Vegas Residencies in 2024

Las Vegas, prepare for a double dose of nostalgia and electrifying performances. Two of music's most iconic acts, R&B quartet Jodeci and hip-hop collective Wu-Tang Clan, have officially announced their Las Vegas residencies, promising unforgettable nights for fans old and new.

Jodeci: Bringing "The Show, The After Party, The Vegas Residency

"The New York-born R&B group, known for their smooth vocals, intricate harmonies, and timeless hits like "Forever My Lady," "Stay," and "Freek'n You," will take over the Mandalay Bay Resort at the House of Blues for a nine-week run. Their aptly named "The Show, The After Party, The Vegas Residency" kicks off on March 15, 2024, and boasts multiple shows stretching until March 24.


"Vegas here we come! We're excited to announce our The Show, The After Party, The Vegas Residency at the @hoblasvegas March 15-24 and July 5-13 Pre-sale starts tomorrow, 12/13 at 10am local time with code VEGAS. Tickets on sale Saturday, 12/16 at 10am local time. #Jodeci @kcihailey @mr.dalvin #Jojo @pmusicgroup," the group posted on their official Instagram, sparking immediate excitement among fans.

Jodeci, formed in the late 1980s by brothers DeVante Swing and K-Ci & JoJo, along with Mr. Dalvin, rose to fame during the New Jack Swing era. Their smooth blend of R&B, hip-hop, and gospel influences earned them multi-platinum albums, chart-topping singles, and a devoted fanbase. Their Las Vegas residency promises to be a journey through their musical legacy, reliving their greatest hits and showcasing their enduring stage presence.

Wu-Tang Clan: "The Saga Continues... The Las Vegas Residency"

Across the Las Vegas Strip, the iconic hip-hop collective Wu-Tang Clan will be bringing their signature blend of rhymes, beats, and kung-fu references to the Theater at Virgin Hotels. Their "Wu-Tang Clan: The Saga Continues... The Las Vegas Residency" will unfold in two installments, with the first four dates set for Super Bowl weekend (Feb. 9-10) and March Madness (March 22-23).

"This residency is more than a concert—it serves as a tribute to their prolific careers as individuals and as the most storied group in hip-hop history," reads Virgin Hotels' press release.

Wu-Tang Clan, formed in Staten Island in the early 1990s, revolutionized hip-hop with their gritty storytelling, razor-sharp lyrics, and innovative production. Their debut album, "Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)," remains a hip-hop masterpiece, and their influence is undeniable. Their Las Vegas residency promises to be a celebration of their musical journey, featuring classic tracks, guest appearances from fellow Clan members, and the raw energy that made them hip-hop legends.

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Minaj Embarks on 'Pink Friday 2' Tour, Cardi B Announces Solo Path in 2024

Nicki Minaj, the undisputed Queen of Rap, not only dropped her highly anticipated album "Pink Friday 2" but also set the stage for a colossal global tour in 2024. The 41-year-old rap icon, fresh from the album's release on Dec. 8th, sent her devoted Barbz into a frenzy with the announcement of the "Pink Friday 2 World Tour" on Monday.

"BARBZZZ!! It’s time for the #GagCity TOUR. So excited to see you guys!! Presale this week and tickets available FRIDAY," Minaj joyously declared on Instagram, amplifying the anticipation surrounding her latest musical journey.

The "Pink Friday 2 World Tour" promises to be a historic event, marking Minaj's most extensive tour to date. Kicking off with the North American leg on March 1 in Oakland, California, the tour will crisscross major cities, including Las Vegas, Atlanta, Philadelphia, New York City, and Chicago, concluding on May 12 in Austin, Texas. As Barbz eagerly anticipate the global spectacle, Minaj will then traverse the U.K. and Europe in late spring (see the complete list of tour dates at the end of this story).

Meanwhile, in another corner of hip-hop royalty, Cardi B is making headlines with her personal journey. The "WAP" sensation confirmed her newfound single status after parting ways with Offset. During an intimate Instagram Live session on Sunday, Cardi candidly acknowledged her single status and alluded to rumors of Offset's alleged infidelity.

"I don't know if you guys have been getting clues from me from my Lives or from my Stories, when I put some certain music or find my unfollowings," she said. "When it comes for today's events and stuff, I don't know if it's—I don't think it's true. I don't care to find out because I have been single for a minute now. But I have been afraid to like—not afraid, I just don't know how, like, to tell the world. But I feel like today has been like a sign."


Cardi B added, "I have been single for a minute now. I wanna start 2024 fresh, open. I'm curious for a new life, for a new beginning. Yeah, I'm excited."

Pink Friday 2 World Tour Dates:

North American Leg:
March 1st - Oakland, CA - Oakland Arena
March 3rd - Denver, CO - Ball Arena
March 8th - Las Vegas, NV - T-Mobile Arena
March 10th - Seattle, WA - Climate Pledge Arena
March 13th - Phoenix, AZ - Footprint Center
March 15th - Inglewood, CA - Rolling Loud California
March 18th - New Orleans, LA - Smoothie King Center
March 20th - Atlanta, GA - State Farm Arena
March 22nd - Orlando, FL - Amway Center
March 26th - Charlotte, NC - Spectrum Center

International Leg:
May 25th - Manchester, UK - Co-Op Live
May 26th - Birmingham, UK - Resorts World Arena
May 28th - London, UK - The O2
June 1st - Paris, France - Accor Arena
June 2nd - Amsterdam, Netherlands - Ziggo Dome
June 5th - Cologne, Germany - Lanxess Arena
June 7th - Berlin, Germany - Mercedes Benz Arena

Monday, November 6, 2023

Iconic R&B Sextet New Edition Announces Six-Show Residency at Wynn Las Vegas

New Edition, the iconic R&B sextet, is set to embark on a long-awaited residency in Las Vegas in early 2024. From February 28 through March 9, the group will grace the stage at Wynn Las Vegas' The Encore for six intimate performances.

The news, initially teased by the group during its recent tour, was confirmed on Monday. In a joint statement, Bobby Brown, Ralph Tresvant, Ronnie DeVoe, Johnny Gill, Michael Bivins and Ricky Bell expressed their enthusiasm for this career-defining moment. They stated, "Fulfilling a career-long dream to solidify ourselves with a residency performance in the entertainment capital of the world, we are beyond excited to embark on this fantastical journey at the Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas."


The group is committed to providing a unique experience for their fans. As Johnny Gill added, the residency will feature classic hits like "Candy Girl," "Can You Stand The Rain" and "If It Isn't Love." He teased, "It'll be the best show on Earth."

Bobby Reynolds, Senior VP of AEG Presents Las Vegas, noted the significance of New Edition's upcoming residency. "We are honored to have Encore Theater at Wynn Las Vegas serve as the home to New Edition's first-ever Las Vegas residency," he said. "Encore Theater's roster is comprised of legendary talents, and it only makes sense to have an iconic music group like New Edition join its ranks."

Tickets for these highly anticipated shows will go on sale this Friday, November 10, at 10 a.m. PT, with prices starting at $79.95.

The Las Vegas residency announcement follows New Edition's performance at the 2023 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony on Friday, where they paid tribute to The Spinners. They delivered a memorable performance at Brooklyn's Barclays Center, showcasing songs like "I'll Be Around," "Could It Be I'm Falling in Love" and "The Rubberband Man."



This performance was not only a tribute to The Spinners but also celebrated the legacy of Soul Train host and creator Don Cornelius, who received the Ahmet Ertegun Award this year. The 2023 Hall of Fame inductees included Kate Bush, Missy Elliott, Rage Against the Machine, Sheryl Crow, George Michael and Willie Nelson.

With a string of top 10 hits, such as "Cool It Now," "Hit Me Off," "If It Isn't Love" and "I'm Still In Love With You," New Edition has left an indelible mark on the R&B genre and continues to captivate audiences.

For more details on the upcoming residency or to purchase tickets click here

SZA Named Variety's 'Hitmaker of the Year'

The Come Up ShowCC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
SZA has been crowned "Hitmaker of the Year" at Variety's seventh annual Hitmakers celebration. The event, set to grace the Nov. 29 publication and accompanied by an exclusive invitation-only brunch on December 2, recognizes the individuals who have played a pivotal role in shaping and defining this year's 25 most-consumed songs, according to Billboard and Luminate Charts.

Variety's Executive Music Editor, Jem Aswad, succinctly captures the spirit of the event, stating, "The goal of Hitmakers has always been to honor the top artists and songs of the year, and especially the people behind them." He goes on to elaborate, "SZA, her 'SOS' album and tour, and her hits this year are not only a creative and commercial triumph but one with a reach that extends far beyond the music world. We are immensely proud to honor her as our Hitmaker of the Year."

SZA's distinction as Hitmaker of the Year follows a string of award nominations, solidifying her status as a dominant force in the music industry. Most recently, Femme It Forward announced its Give Her FlowHERS Awards Gala, featuring SZA alongside notable artists like Teyana Taylor, Brandy, Flo Milli, and others.

Furthermore, the BET Soul Train Awards recently revealed that SZA, Usher, and Summer Walker are leading the pack with nine nominations each. The awards ceremony, scheduled to air on Nov. 26, marks a remarkable month for the talented artist.

SZA's critically acclaimed album, "SOS," made a significant impact with its debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart in December. The album comprises 23 tracks, including hit singles like "Kill Bill," "Snooze" and "Nobody Gets Me," with collaborations featuring renowned artists such as Don Toliver, Phoebe Bridgers, Travis Scott and Ol' Dirty Bastard.

Following the album's remarkable success, SZA embarked on an extensive tour across Europe and the United States, captivating audiences with her artistry. The North American leg of her tour commenced on Sept. 20, spanning major cities and concluding in Phoenix, Arizona, on Oct. 29.

Variety's 2023 Hitmakers program, meticulously curated by the editorial team, includes a lineup of distinguished awards:

  • SZA – Hitmaker of the Year
  • Olivia Rodrigo – Storyteller of the Year
  • Boygenius – Group of the Year
  • Metro Boomin – Producer of the Year
  • Mark Ronson – Soundtrack of the Year
  • Billie Eilish and FINNEAS – Film Song of the Year: "What Was I Made For"
  • Maren Morris – Changemaker of the Year
  • Republic Records – Label of the Year
  • Grammy Museum President and CEO Michael Sticka – Music Education and Advocacy Leadership Award, presented by City National Bank

Monday, October 16, 2023

Watch: Smokey Robinson's Age-Defying Performance Delights NPR's Tiny Desk

On Monday, NPR presented the latest installment of its "Tiny Desk Concert" series, featuring legendary Motown icon Smokey Robinson. The 83-year-old music sensation graced the stage at NPR Headquarters in Washington, D.C., accompanied by a 12-piece ensemble.

Robinson's influence on the music industry is undeniable. Known for his pivotal role in shaping the Motown sound, R&B, and soul music, he remains a distinguished artist even at the age of 83.

The performance commenced with a rendition of his 1981 classic, "Being With You," showcasing the enduring charm of his falsetto.

Robinson continued by performing "The Tears Of A Clown," a song he co-wrote with Stevie Wonder during his time with The Miracles. This classic delighted the audience, and Robinson's talent shone through.

Two tracks from Robinson's latest album, "Gasms," were also part of this intimate performance. "Beside You" exuded romance, with a standout saxophone solo by Brandon Wright in "If We Don't Have Each Other."

Robinson concluded the concert with his timeless hit, "Cruisin'." The audience participated with enthusiasm, creating a heartwarming atmosphere.

Smokey Robinson's legacy as an influential figure in the world of R&B, soul music, and the Motown sound is well-documented. His ability to craft timeless and romantic tunes has set a standard for generations of songwriters.

The concert featured two tracks from Robinson's latest album, "Gasms," revealing his ongoing commitment to creating soulful and timeless music.

NPR's "Tiny Desk Concert" series has hosted other celebrated R&B artists this year, such as Babyface and Charlie Wilson, in line with its commitment to showcasing musical excellence.

Monday, October 2, 2023

Watch: Beyoncé's 'Renaissance World Tour' Comes Alive in New Film

Beyoncé is gearing up to mesmerize global audiences as she takes her acclaimed "Renaissance World Tour" from the stage to the silver screen.

Following the tour's triumphant finale in Kansas City, Missouri, on Sunday night, the iconic diva unveiled the hotly-anticipated trailer for "Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé." This cinematic sensation is set to premiere worldwide in theaters on December 1.

The forthcoming film promises an inside look at the extraordinary journey of the "Renaissance World Tour," spanning its inception and grand opening in Stockholm, Sweden, to the climactic finale in Kansas City, Missouri.

It also delves into Beyoncé's unwavering dedication, meticulous involvement in all aspects of production, boundless creativity, and unwavering commitment to crafting a lasting legacy while perfecting her artistry.

"The film encapsulates Beyoncé's unwavering determination, dedication, and comprehensive involvement in every facet of production, showcasing her creative genius and her mission to establish an enduring legacy while elevating her craft," underscores the official synopsis.

Get a sneak peek of this cinematic treat by watching the first trailer below.

Monday, September 11, 2023

VP Kamala Harris Shimmies to Iconic Beats at Hip-Hop's 50th Bash

Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for The Recording Academy
Vice President Kamala Harris hosted a gala celebration at the vice presidential residence in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, commemorating the 50th anniversary of hip-hop. The event featured a lineup of iconic hip-hop artists and pioneers, including Common, MC Lyte, Roxanne Shante, and more

The celebration marked a significant milestone in the genre's history, with hip-hop enthusiasts from across the nation gathering to honor its cultural impact. Harris, a self-professed fan of hip-hop, emphasized its profound influence on American culture.



"Hip-hop is the ultimate American art form," Harris declared. "It tells stories that often go unheard, serving as a powerful medium for truth. As the great Chuck D once said, rap is Black America's CNN. It calls us to action."
The event, a collaborative effort between Harris's team, the Recording Academy's Black Music Collective, and Live Nation Urban, drew approximately 400 guests. DJ D Nice, renowned for his Club Quarantine events during the pandemic, co-hosted the celebration, adding musical flair to the festivities.

Harris and Second Gentleman Douglas Emhoff embraced the hip-hop spirit, dancing to classic tunes, including Q-Tip's "Vivrant Thing." The celebration showcased hip-hop's evolution from a local phenomenon in the Bronx to a global cultural force, intertwined with social and racial justice movements.

Notable political figures in attendance included Sen. Raphael Warnock of Georgia, Gov. Wes Moore of Maryland and Rep. Cori Bush of Missouri. The event underscored Harris's connection to hip-hop, a cultural touchstone that resonates deeply with a diverse range of Americans.

The celebration also featured electrifying performances, with Lil Wayne making a surprise appearance and thrilling the audience with a rendition of "Mrs. Officer" from his critically acclaimed album "Tha Carter III."

Thursday, September 7, 2023

Sean 'Diddy' Combs to Receive Global Icon Award and Return to Stage at MTV Video Music Awards

Photo Courtesy MTV
Sean "Diddy" Combs, a pioneering figure in the rap industry and the founder of Bad Boy Records, is set to be honored with the Global Icon Award at this year's MTV Video Music Awards. The award recognizes Combs for his unparalleled career and significant influence in the world of music and beyond.

The VMAs ceremony, set to air live from New Jersey's Prudential Center on September 12 at 8 p.m. EST, marks Combs' return to the VMAs stage after a 16-year absence, with his last appearance dating back to 2005.

In addition to the Global Icon Award, Combs is nominated in four other categories at this year's VMAs. Notably, he's recognized in the Best Collaboration category for his contributions to tracks like "Creepin' (Remix)" and "Gotta Move On," featuring Bryson Tiller, Ashanti, and Yung Miami. He's also nominated in the Best Rap and Best R&B categories.


Combs' history with the VMAs goes back to his 1997 debut, where he performed "Mo Money Mo Problems" live. In 2005, he hosted the ceremony, solidifying his connection with the VMAs.

The Global Icon Award has previously been presented to renowned artists like Red Hot Chili Peppers. However, Combs holds a unique distinction as the first Black artist and solo performer to receive this honor.

As part of the celebration, Sean Combs will perform live for the first time in 16 years. His last appearance was in 2005 when he hosted the show in Miami, delivering a memorable medley of songs by The Notorious B.I.G. alongside Snoop Dogg.



Apart from the Global Icon Award, Combs received nominations in the Best R&B and Best Collaboration categories for his work on "Gotta Move On (Queens Remix)" and "Creepin' (Remix)."

Additionally, Combs is set to release "The Love Album: Off The Grid" on September 15 via Love Records. This 23-song album will feature collaborations with notable artists such as Babyface, The Weeknd, Mary J. Blige, John Legend, Herb Alpert, Jazmine Sullivan, The-Dream, K-Ci Hailey and H.E.R.

Combs also has been generating excitement on social media with his collaboration with Mary J. Blige, titled "I Like," believed to sample Blige's 1994 track, "Don't Go."

"The Love Album: Off The Grid" follows Diddy's 2006 release, "Press Play," which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart. This upcoming project marks his return as a lead artist under the name Diddy, following previous releases under different aliases, including Puff Daddy & The Family and Diddy – Dirty Money.

The 2023 MTV Video Music Awards feature a lineup of leading artists, with Taylor Swift, Doja Cat, and SZA leading the nominations. The VMAs will also include performances by Måneskin, Demi Lovato, Karol G and Stray Kids.

Thursday, August 31, 2023

50 Cent's Aggressive Microphone Toss Sparks Legal Concerns at LA Concert

Rapper 50 Cent's actions at a recent concert might lead to legal repercussions, as he aggressively threw a microphone into the crowd during his "Final Lap" tour performance at Cryto.com Arena on Wednesday.

Videos capturing the incident swiftly circulated after the concert, revealing an irate 50 Cent tossing his microphone not once, but twice, into the audience. Reports indicate that the rapper's frustration stemmed from microphone malfunctions. The situation escalated when the second microphone also malfunctioned, prompting him to launch it into the crowd with heightened force.

The altercation unfolded while 50 Cent was sharing the stage with special guest YG. Pictures of the apparent victim, identified as Power 106 host Bryhana Monegain, emerged online, showing her with a bleeding forehead wound.

Although initial reports didn't indicate any police involvement, TMZ later reported that 50 Cent is now a subject of a criminal battery report following Monegain's complaint. Law enforcement sources suggest that 50 Cent aimed the microphone at his crew in the production area, inadvertently hitting the victim. In contrast, the victim asserts that 50 Cent made direct eye contact with her before hurling the microphone.

As of now, representatives for 50 Cent, Power 106, and Crypto.com Arena have yet to provide any official statements regarding the incident.

Friday, August 25, 2023

Lauryn Hill Marks Album Milestone with Global Tour, Joined by The Fugees

Global music sensation Lauryn Hill is set to embark on a highly anticipated international tour alongside The Fugees, in celebration of the 25th anniversary of her groundbreaking solo album, "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill."

In a press release issued on Tuesday, it was announced that Hill will take the stage, treating audiences to performances of her seminal album that encapsulate the musical brilliance and nostalgic magic of an era.

Starting on September 8 in Minneapolis, the tour will include a notable highlight at the Global Citizen Festival in New York City later in the month. Hill's musical journey will span continents, encompassing Australia, Canada, and several cities across the United States, culminating with a finale in Seattle in November.

The Fugees, the iconic hip-hop group, will reunite with Lauryn Hill for the US leg in October and November, adding an extra layer of excitement for fans who hold a special place for the trio.

Reflecting on the profound impact of her album, Hill shared, "‘The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill’ is and was a love song to my parents, my family, my people, my musical and cultural forebears, my teachers, my loves, my Creator." She emphasized that the album provided a platform to share wisdom and perspectives through music, challenging stereotypes, and championing the idea that diverse expressions and people have a rightful place anywhere, driven by imagination, creativity and love.

Released on August 25, 1998, "The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill" remains a cornerstone of hip-hop and R&B history, featuring enduring tracks like "Doo Wop (That Thing)," "To Zion," and "Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You." The album secured Hill five Grammy Awards, including the coveted Album of the Year and Best New Artist. Importantly, Hill made history as the first woman to clinch five or more Grammys in a single night, and the album marked the first hip-hop record to earn the Album of the Year honor.


The Fugees, comprising Hill, Wyclef Jean, and Pras Michel, recently reunited in June, gracing the stage at the Roots Picnic in Philadelphia. The trio had initially announced a reunion tour in 2021 to honor the 25th anniversary of their iconic album "The Score." However, the tour faced cancellation due to challenges stemming from the ongoing pandemic.

Notably, member Pras Michel was recently found guilty of 10 criminal counts in federal court for his involvement in a plot to assist China in influencing U.S. government officials. These counts encompass conspiracy to defraud the US, witness tampering, and acting as an unregistered agent of a foreign government. He faces a potential sentence of up to 20 years in prison.

Tickets for Lauryn Hill's highly anticipated tour will go on sale to the general public on Friday at 10 a.m. local time. A pivotal moment on the tour is the performance at Newark's Prudential Center on October 17, underscoring the celebratory journey of both Hill and The Fugees.

Lauryn Hill Tour Dates:
September 8 – Minneapolis, MN – Mystic Lake
September 23 – New York, NY – Global Citizen Festival
October 1 – Gold Coast, AUS – Promiseland Festival
October 3 – Melbourne, AUS – Rod Laver Arena (with Koffee)
October 5 – Sydney, AUS – Kudos Banks Arena (with Koffee)
October 7 – Auckland, NZ – Eden Festival
October 17 – Newark, NJ – Prudential Center (with Fugees)
October 19 – Brooklyn, NY – Barclays (with Fugees)
October 21 – Washington, DC – Capital One Arena (with Fugees)
October 23 – Philadelphia, PA – Wells Fargo Arena (with Fugees)
October 26 – Toronto, ON – Scotia (with Fugees)
October 28 – Chicago, IL – United Center (with Fugees)
October 30 – Fort Worth, TX – Dickies Arena (with Fugees)
November 2 – Denver, CO – Ball Arena (with Fugees)
November 5 – Los Angeles, CA – Kia Forum (with Fugees)
November 7 – Oakland, CA – Oakland Arena (with Fugees)
November 9 – Seattle, WA – Climate Pledge Arena (with Fugees)

Slider[Style1]

Trending