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Britney Spears premiered the video for her song “Ooh La La” from “The Smurfs 2” today. The video features her sons, Sean Preston and Jayden James. The clip is super cute and offers a rare glimpse into the relationship Spears has with her kids.

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The highest-grossing tour of 2012 and the second highest-grossing tour by a female artist, otherwise known as Madonna’s “MDNA Tour,” premiered tonight on Epix. The concert film was filmed mostly in Miami, Florida along with many other locations used for the final edit. This made for a great opportunity to create the best version of the show possible. And while the film, for the most part, lives up to that expectation, there are some inevitable imperfections. Such imperfections include a lack of continuity in some areas. During “Like a Virgin/Love Spent,” there’s a shot where Madonna had a tattoo that said “Eva” on her back, but the rest of the shots show that her tattoo said “Psyche.”

The edit did a great job at capturing the cinematic nature of the show. I was pleased to see the venue was indoors, as it added to the “theater” feel of the show. This was much more of a theatrical production. The show told a story and, at times, felt like you were watching a movie. I was particularly impressed with the visual gun shot effects used during “Gang Bang” as well as seeing “Like a Virgin/Love Spent” in black and white. The audience shots were great, too. One guy was dressed in the same Gaultier bustier that Madonna wore during “Vogue,” and another girl was dressed in a nun’s habit. This tour has earned a reputation as Madonna’s most controversial tour ever. From the violence to the nudity to the swastika, this tour had many memorable moments. It was so important that this film did the tour justice. And, after viewing the special twice, I can say that it definitely meets that challenge!


Ray Manzarek passed away on May 20, 2013 after a long battle with bile duct cancer. He was the founding member of The Doors, after a chance meeting with Jim Morrison on Venice Beach in California. After Morrison sang some lines from “Moonlight Drive” to Manzarek, the beginning of The Doors was in full swing. The Doors became a pivotal rock band in the late 1960s, standing out from the usual hippie-themed music of the time. Death was a frequent theme in their songs. There was a darkness to their work that was unusual and unique at the time. “I was deeply saddened to hear about the passing of my friend and band mate Ray Manzarek today,” said Manzarek’s former band mate Robby Krieger. “I’m just glad to have been able to have played Doors songs with him for the last decade. Ray was a huge part of my life and I will always miss him.” “There was no keyboard player on the planet more appropriate to support Jim Morrison’s words,” former Doors drummer John Densmore wrote on his Twitter page following the news. “Ray, I felt totally in sync with you musically. It was like we were of one mind, holding down the foundation for Robby and Jim to float on top of. I will miss my musical brother.” Their hits include, “Break On Through (To The Other Side),” “Light My Fire,” “The End,” and “L.A. Woman.”

Jennifer Lopez and Pitbull are like a match made in dance/pop Heaven. The world first got a taste of “On The Floor” in 2011, and it became one of the biggest singles of Lopez’s career. Then, “Dance Again” served as the lead single off her greatest hits album in 2012. Well, now in 2013, Pitbull and J.Lo are back with “Live It Up.” The song is an irresistable summer anthem that will hopefully be all over the radio very soon. The lyrics, “Make love, don’t fight/Let’s fuck tonight,” will hopefully become a national catchphrase.

Lopez will perform the song on the “American Idol” finale and the “Good Morning America” Summer Concert Series on July 19th.

Mariah Carey has just released the new song, “Almost Home.” The song is from the new Disney film, “Oz: The Great and Powerful.” The song is an inspirational ode to perseverance through struggle. It ranks up there with previous Mariah classics, “Hero,” “Through The Rain,” “Make It Happen,” and “Can’t Take That Away (Mariah’s Theme).” Carey’s vocals are stellar and it is a significant improvement following the disappointing “Triumphant (Get ‘Em)” that was released last year. Here’s hoping “Almost Home” will be included on Mariah’s upcoming album.

Last night saw “The X Factor” season finale. Country artist Tate Stevens won the competition, beating out young Carly Rose Sonenclar. Throughout this season, I became less and less interested in the show. This is the first time I’ve ever actually watched “The X Factor,” and it’s only because Britney Spears is a judge. The show had some great auditions and it got me really excited for some of the contestants. However, once the competition part of the show started, I felt letdown. The contestants were broken up into groups and each judge acted as a mentor for these groups. There are several things wrong with this. First of all, it pits the judges against each other. Second of all, it pits the judges against the contestants. And probably the most unsettling part of all, the contestants seem to have their artistry stripped away. I view artistry as having your own voice and being the person you are. In many cases, it felt like the contestants turned into the judge’s view of who they are as opposed to who they actually are. CeCe Frey is a good example of this. I wish Tate Stevens the best and actually respect him, as he seemed to maintain the artist he was from the beginning. And that is probably why he won the competition.

Madonna’s new video for her single “Turn Up The Radio” premiered this morning on the singer’s official VEVO page on YouTube. In the video, Madonna, desperate to escape the annoying paparazzi, goes for a car ride to remember. And she picks up some colorful characters along the way. There’s not much more to say about the video, other than that it’s perfect for the summer! The song’s fun, carefree vibe is reflected in the video. It’s this year’s summer anthem! Great job, Madonna!


Last night was a big night for Little Monsters, especially in Springfield. Lady Gaga came to town and attempted to cheer up the depressed citizens. Mother Monster is portrayed as an intuitive creature who can sense when someone isn’t feeling happy. And Gaga does everything in her power to make them happy. In last night’s season finale of “The Simpsons,” that person was Lisa Simpson, who gets ridiculed by her school for posing as an anonymous user on a message board who posts nice things about her. All of this, after Lisa won the “Least Popular Student” award, slips her into a depression, of sorts.

So, Gaga arrives in Springfield on, what can only be described as, “The Gaga-mobile,” and tries everything she can think of to cheer Lisa up. However, Lisa just wants to be left alone. Her rage comes to ahead when Gaga visits Lisa at school where she is getting brutally teased on the playground. Lisa yells at Gaga and accuses her of doing good for others just to get attention. This makes Gaga cry tiny diamonds, which she claims “hurts like hell.” After thinking the incident over in her treehouse a bit, and some insignificant advice from Homer, Lisa discovers Gaga did help her after all. She catches Gaga’s train as it takes off, and explains to her that she is feeling much better after unloading her suppressed anger onto Gaga. Gaga tells her there’s one more thing left before she can be a Little Monster… sing. So, the episode ends with Lisa and Gaga doing a duet in front of Springfield, highlighting who Lisa is and why she is special.

After watching the episode, I felt utterly pleased. My hats go off to both Lady Gaga and the team behind “The Simpsons.” The script was a funny one, but one with a message. It also had plenty of memorable moments. Highlights include Gaga showing Ned Flanders her pyro-bra, kissing Marge, and Homer eating Gaga’s meat dress. The fact that Lady Gaga would do a show like “The Simpsons” shows that she doesn’t take herself too seriously and is able to take a joke. It also puts her in the company of stars such as Michael Jackson, “Weird Al” Yankovic, and Britney Spears. All of whom, to some degree, have played themselves on the iconic show.

Whitney Houston Passes Away at 48

One of the most beloved singers of her time, Whitney Houston, The Voice, passed away on Saturday, February 11th. Houston was in her hotel room preparing for Clive Davis’ pre-Grammy Awards party set to take place within hours. Houston was found in her room at the Beverly Hiton Hotel submerged in the bathtub and when paramedics arrived on the scene, attempts to revive her failed. She was pronounced dead at approxamitely 4:00 P.M. and police claimed there were “no obvious signs of criminal intent.” The cause of death is still under investigation.

The death of Houston saw an outpouring of grief and sadness by loved ones, fans, and fellow artists. It reminded the world why they fell in love with her magical voice when she first set the music world on fire in 1985. Born on August 9, 1963 to John and Cissy Houston, Whitney came from a musical family. Cissy was a professional singer who was often on tour, while Houston’s cousin was the singer Dionne Warwick. Whitney Houston grew up surrounded by musical greatness.

She was discovered by Clive Davis, head of Arista Records, and was signed to the label in 1983. Her self-titled debut album was released in 1985 and peaked at number one on the Billboard 200 Albums chart. It remained sealed to that position for an outstanding 14 weeks. The singles, “You Give Good Love,” “Greatest Love of All,” and “How Will I Know” helped make Houston a household name. Another single from the album, “Saving All My Love For You,” won Houston her first Grammy Award for Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female. The award was presented to her by her cousin, Dionne Warwick.

On her sophmore album, “Whitney,” Houston scored another number one with “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me).” “Didn’t We Almost Have It All,” “So Emotional,” and “Where Do Broken Hearts Go” also hit number one. Houston had earned seven consecutive number one singles, breaking a record previously held by The Beatles and The Bee Gees. Houston formed The Whitney Houston Foundation For Children in 1989. It’s a non-profit organization that raises money to aid children who are homeless, even ill with cancer or AIDS. “I’m Your Baby Tonight,” Houston’s third album, was released in 1990. A year later, she delivered a mind-blowing performance of “The Star Spangled Banner” at Super Bowl XXV.

Houston’s next avenue was one that she had previously visited breifly in the early eightes after appearing on sitcoms. However, she never landed a role in a feature film until Kevin Costner asked Whitney to star alongside him in “The Bodyguard.” It was an opportunity Houston was reluctant to take at first, but Costner waited as long as he could until she was ready. The film was released in 1992 and became a major success. The soundtrack featured Houston’s now-signature song, “I Will Always Love You.” The song hit number one on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and the album became the best-selling soundtrack album of all time, selling over 44 million copies worldwide.

On July 18, 1992, Houston married R&B singer Bobby Brown. On March 4, 1993, Houston gave birth to their daughter, Bobbi Kristina Houston Brown. Houston’s success continued with roles in “Waiting to Exhale” in 1995 and “The Preacher’s Wife” in 1996. The films also had adjoining soundtracks with songs sung by Houston. Her first studio album in eight years came in 1998 when “My Love Is Your Love” was released. The album’s first single was a duet with Mariah Carey for the film, “The Prince of Egypt.” The song, “When You Believe,” won the Academy Award for Best Original Song. The album also featured the hits, “It’s Not Right, But It’s Okay,” “Heartbreak Hotel,” and the title track.

By the start of the new decade, rumors of drug use ran rampant in the tabliods. Houston’s frail appearance at Michael Jackson’s 30th Anniversary Trbute concert caused the public to worry about her health. In 2002, Houston released the “Just Whitney” album. It debuted at number nine on the Billboard 200 Albums chart and gave Houston the highest opening week sales of her career. However, by her standards, the album was a commercial disappointment, selling approxamitely three million copies worlwide.

In 2004, Houston entered a rehabilitation facility to get treatment for her drug addiction. In 2005, she starred alongside husband, Bobby Brown, on the reality show, “Being Bobby Brown.” The show shocked viewers, causing harm to Houston’s public image. In 2006, Houston filed for divorce from Brown in October 2006. Many fans hoped this would be Whitney’s opportunity to return to music. In 2009, she earned another number one album with “I Look to You.” To promote the album, Houston gave a revealing interview with Oprah Winfrey where she opened up about her marriage, drug use, and other personal topics. Houston further promoted the album with the “Nothing but Love World Tour.” The shows received negative reviews from critics and fans alike, claiming Houston’s voice wasn’t the same as it was in her glory days.

Houston began work on the film “Sparkle” alongside Jordin Sparks. The film is set for release in August 2012. Her death came the night before the Grammy Awards and producers wondered what to do to pay tribute to the fallen singer. Jennifer Hudson came on stage during the show and sang Houston’s classic, “I Will Always Love You.” It was a mere two years after Hudson sang for Houston herself when she was honored at the 2010 BET Honors.

The music world has lost one of the most memorable voices in the history of music. Whitney Houston will go down in music history as one of the greatest talents of her generation. Despite her personal stuggles, Houston always lifted people’s spirits with her music and films. She leaves behind an impressive musical legacy that extends beyond time. Whitney Houston’s voice is timeless and will be admired by music lovers for generations to come. When it comes to real legends, they never die.


Gloria Estefan premiered her new music video last night, “Hotel Nacional.” It is from her new album, “Miss Little Havana” and peaked at number one on Billboard’s “Latin Songs,” “Tropical Songs,” and “Hot Club Dance Play” charts. The video pays homage to films like “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and has a similar feel to Estefan’s 1992 video, “Go Away.” The song (and quite frankly, the entire album) is great and the video is quite entertaining. There’s also a cameo appearance by Susan Lucci.