Category: Music

Gigi Cesare: Actress & Singer Poised to Conquer 2018 and Beyond

One of the characteristics of a successful artist is “hustle.” Although some actors and musicians seem to become hits overnight, in truth there is a lot of work behind building their careers. This means years of acting and voice lessons, paying one’s dues in small productions, and generally “working it” for the love of the craft until hopefully, one day, success arrives.

12-year-old Gigi Cesare represents that level of hustle. This Imagen Award-nominated beauty with Uruguayan roots works on her acting and singing chops constantly, and has just released a music video for her first single, called Valentine. She also has several film projects in the works. With this amount of dedication and hard work, great success will surely come knocking on Gigi’s door sooner rather than later.

Let’s find out more about her…keep scrolling for her interview with TWK!

Hello Gigi, nice to e-meet you! You’ve just released a music video for your new single “Valentine.” Tell us what the song and video are about!

Hi TWK! I am so excited to be here with you. Thanks for asking, I am so excited about “Valentine.” This song is about anyon’e love story, it can be applied to any teen, tween, person really who has love interest in someone and wants them to know. Its about it being ok to say “I like you” and taking a chance. Its about not being afraid of rejection or looking silly if those feelings aren’t returned. Let’s face it, we have all been there, right?

What was the best part about making it?

Wow, that’s a great question….there are so many firsts in this process it’s hard to choose just one. I would have to say that hearing my own voice on a studio recording of my very own song is totally epic and the ‘what will happen next’ part is super exciting. I will never forget making the video. There are just so many artistic, incredible moments this process is giving me. I’m really humbled and grateful.

Do you have more music coming out after that? If so, tell us about it!

Oh my gosh I am so excited you asked, I have written a song called “Don’t Cry” that is such a special song written from a really raw place of sadness about my own experiences being bullied. My lyrics are now in the hands of the composer, the same songwriter who composed “Valentine” and he will begin adding music to them.

I want to sing great songs of course, that people enjoy but I also want to say something in the process. I want other kids to know I have been there and you’re not alone and well, there is hope. If you can take your sadness, anger, frustrations and channel them into something positive like writing your own music or go belt out a song, write a poem, wonderful things can and will happen.

Who is your biggest musical inspiration?

I was raised on so many musical genres and decades, it’s hard to choose just one. In current day, I would choose Sia. She makes the kind of music I love and she actually sings her own songs which is very rare, most singers are talking through their songs, she doesn’t use autotune and she can slay the high notes. I aspire to have a similar musical career because she is reaching kids with her lyrics too, not just talking about getting a new “Rolex.” Not that there’s anything wrong with getting a new “Rolex!”

You were nominated for Best Actress at the 2017 Imagen Awards, along with huge names such as Salma Hayek, Eva Longoria, and Edy Ganem. Going back to the night of the awards
ceremony in August, which memories stand out the most for you?

Wow the Imagen Awards were literally a magical Cinderella evening. There were so many people in the room that I never thought I would meet, let alone be in their company as an artistic equal. Meeting Ricardo Hurtado from School of Rock was really cool. His parents were as cool as he is! Meeting Lin Manuel Miranda and Rita Moreno and Norman Lear, I mean these people are Hollywood and stage icons, it was just incredible.

I have seen a few clips of you working on your punching skills. Are you a martial artist, or is this preparation for a role? If prep, tell us about the movie!

Haha yes, that’s great you found those! I am taking boxing for my upcoming role in STREET II DEATH FIGHT. It is an MMA (mixed martial arts) film franchise I have been a part of since I played Jessy when I was age 8 in STREET I. I couldn’t love the producer, Lyle Howry, cast and crew more than I do. Long-time Hollywood Director Dwight H. Little has just signed on to direct, with the script being finished soon, this sequel is going to be an incredible, action-packed, adrenaline-pumping hour and a half of pure entertainment.

You’ve mentioned that Angelina Jolie is an inspiration because she uses her fame to promote important causes. If you were in her shoes which cause would YOU promote?

I think the work she does with clean water, building wells and attention to international human rights are all so important. I would definitely want to be part of those organizations and there’s one more cause I promote across social media platforms which is awareness on the fur trade.

Most people don’t realize how fur is farmed, how the animals suffer for long periods of time before a painful death. I just want to bring awareness to those who don’t know. Faux or fake fur is as genuine looking as the real thing nowadays, and when you think that an animal lost their life in a torturous way so you can have a pink fuzzy ball keychain or decorative fuzzy tassel hanging from your bag or boots, it could cause you to rethink those buying choices. If there’s no demand, those trades go out of business. Learn where your clothing is coming from, know your cosmetics – know if they are tested on animals and just share the word that cruelty is never ok.

I understand that your biological dad passed away when you were little. Can you tell us what happened and what your best memory of him is?

My biological dad, Fernando Marcelo Cesare de Matera (that’s a mouthful) was a professional soccer player from Uruguay South America, Canelones. He was a vibrant, funny, full of life person who was family oriented and I look just like him. When my mom was 7 months pregnant with me, he was taken to INS holding, held for several months then later deported. What we know is that he passed away around the USA border while working toward legal re-entry into the USA. We just don’t have many details. The whole thing is deeply tragic, he was so young.

He was from Uruguay – what part of the Uruguayan culture do you like or feel proud of most?

You know my dad spoke 5 languages and its not unusual for most people there to speak several languages. I love that aspect of South America. When you see how simply my family lives in Uruguay you can’t believe it. The focus there is not on material possessions, its on food, family, love and laughter. Its on building memories. They have these big open backyard outdoor pavilions with fireplaces bigger than you’ve ever seen. They are really into barbequing and roasting on open flames. It’s really incredible. And all the families live on connected plots of land where they can just walk next door and spend their days together. It’s incredible. The sense of family closeness is in all they do. I wouldn’t have minded some street lamps at night, but let me tell you with no streetlamps and lighting to interefere, the skies light up like diamonds at night.

If you could clear up just ONE misconception people have about young performers like yourself, what would it be?

Maybe a big misconception is that we are spoiled and live fabulously 24/7. The reality is it can be lonely, working as an actor, young performer or musician requires a tremendous amount of time dedication, preparation and perseverance and thick skin. If the audition or filming interferes with your plans – a dance, a prom, a party, the biz waits for no man. They will move on without you, so you must be present and available at all times. So sacrifices are big. Sure it looks like fun when you watch someone’s Instagram life, but that is not reality until you’re in it for years most of the time. They say “overnight success” but really there’s five or ten plus years what were part of that “overnight” no one talks about. And there’s bullying. I get it, I know it’s a gift that I get to do what I do. I think if the kids who want be an actor or performer were to ask me for help / guidance I would help in a nanosecond. I am always here to lend advice or guidance when someone wants to know how to enter the biz.


Photographer Natalie Warr @natwarr Photography. Styled by @howardveronika. HMUA by @coconicole.artistry

Biggest pet peeve?

Being mean to others. Mean people. Just be nice. And it always comes back to you. It always will come back to you.

Tell me something people would be surprised to know about you.

Hmmm, I write stories… I keep something with me at all times so I can write. I am always writing. Oh a fun fact that I have an Auntie in the biz, Brooke Hogan who isn’t just my aunt but a female power force and super positive role model.

Future goals?

To work on some amazing indie films, maybe something in Europe or an awesome NETFLIX series. I am hoping to carve out a career kinda like Hailee Steinfeld. She is multi-dimensional actress who can do drama and comedy and is on fire with her new music career. And of course once I have a platform, to shut down as many fur farms as I can get my hands on.

What other projects are you working on in the near future?

I am partnering with Spreading the Love 101, cause for Autism awareness, which is a cause close to my heart. I will be performing “Valentine” at their event on Sat., April 7th in Burbank with Party Bash for Kids and many other young performers organized by founder @madisynsblog Madisyn Alexis, a young celeb blogger with Asperger’s who is pioneering breaking the stigma on autism spectrum awareness. She’s incredible.

I just wrapped WITHIN AND WITHOUT playing Emily in an emotion-fueled drama piece about a family who loses their mom. The STREET franchise is going to keep me on my toes for years to come thankfully, and I am also cast in THE KING’S PROPHECY as Exandra, the lead in this awesome medieval fantasy tale of cousins, murder and survival. I understand that my film THE KIDS FROM 62-F (I play Nina with an ensemble cast of 4 youth actors) will debut on NETFLIX in early 2018 with a sequel in the works as well. And who knows, maybe one of my stories will make it onto a screen!


Gigi Cesarè as Emily and her on screen dad played by Robert Sciglimpaglia rehearsing a scene on set of film Within and Without. Shot in Connecticut 12/10/2017

Can we get a quick selfie of whatever you are doing right now?

Oh my gosh, ok here goes! Thank you Willie and TWK! I love your vibe and what you do for teens everywhere. Thank you for this fun chat sesh!

DJ and Singer Chloe Jane is a Rising ‘Superstar’

Chloe Jane is on a roll. The pop singer, YouTuber and DJ released her debut single called “Superstar” just a few months ago, which was written by Meghan Trainor and The Elev3n (video embedded below) and recently deejayed at one of the most famous nightclubs on the planet: Amnesia on the Spanish island of Ibiza.

And, she’s only 14 years old!

Born in New York into a family of professional musicians, Chloe Jane learned piano at age 9 and started singing and dancing at the age of 10. Summer holidays with her parents in Ibiza and a special friendship with the legendary DJ Jellybean Benitez (who remixed and produced some of Madonna’s early music) inspired her to go to the DJ school Dubspot in NYC. She started her professional DJ career by performing at the age of 12 at Le Ti and Do Brazil in St Barth. During the Summer of 2016 she spun at KM5 in Ibiza as well as a string of charity events hosted by Paris Hilton.
We got the chance to do a written Q & A with Chloe for TWK, and she also recorded a quick cover video for you guys, our lovely readers! (Video is embedded at the bottom of the page)

Hi Chloe, nice to e-meet you! Tell us a little about yourself and where you grew up.

I am 14 years old. I sing, DJ, play piano, write songs and dance. I grew up in New York City.

What made you get into DJing and how did you learn how to do it?

My parents met in Ibiza, Spain and Ibiza is the biggest music island in the world. Every summer I went and watched DJs play. I watched them perform and wanted to learn how to DJ myself. A family friend of mine, Jellybean Benitez is a legend in the DJ/music industry. When I was 12 years old I told him I wanted to learn to DJ. He taught me all his tricks and that is how I started DJing.

How would you describe the style of music you play?

I play all different types of music. Depending on where I am playing, and for which crowd, I play different tracks. When I play for teenagers at my Glow Parties at Amnesia in Ibiza, I play a lot of EDM and pop.Which deejay has made the biggest impact on you and why?

I love Martin Garrix because I admire how much he has accomplished at such a young age. I love the music he creates and I love the shows he puts on.

What is the best piece of advice you have gotten from a fellow DJ or mentor?

PRACTICE and always keep looking for new music and remixes.

You are only 14. What was it like DJing at one of the most famous nightclubs in the world, Amnesia in Ibiza at such a young age? Were you uncomfortable at any point?

I loved having my own Teenage party at Amnesia because it gave the kids an opportunity to have a party and have fun as there are really no places for them to party. I always have fun when I DJ and sing. When I am on stage I have so much fun and I get to interact with the crowd.

What do you like to do besides spinning?

I sing, write songs and dance.

Get this EDM Trucker Hat at Zazzle now!
AD: Click pic to buy this EDM Trucker Hat at Zazzle!

What are your goals in show business/DJing—where would you like to see yourself in 5 to
10 years?

In 5-10 years I would like to see myself releasing music throughout the world, touring in large venues around the world and appearing in major movies and television shows.

Tell me something people would be surprised to know about you.

My mom and aunt are from Australia and my aunt was Ms. Australia.

Can we get a quick selfie of whatever you are doing right now?

 

Chloe Jane on Social Media
Snapchat: Chloejanesworld

Forever In Your Mind (FIYM) Perform Smooth on The Oh My Disney Show – Video & Interview

Pop band Forever in Your Mind, consisting of Liam Attridge (age 17), Ricky Garcia (age 18) and Emery Kelly (age 19), has released its latest single “Smooth” today, along with another, more serious track called “Missing.”

The L.A.-based trio is on a roll, having toured North America on the 2015 DigiTour alongside Demi Lovato. One of its members, Ricky, starred on the Disney Channel Original Series “Best Friends Whenever.” Emery also made appearances on Disney Channel shows such as “Dog With a Blog” and “Lab Rats.”

And today the three of them made an appearance on Disney’s new show called “The Oh My Disney Show” a talk show-style entertainment program headed by influencer Alexys Gabrielle.

We were granted access to the taping, and are happy to present some behind the scenes footage as well as an exclusive interveiw we got with the guys.You can see that here:

If you are unfamiliar with the band, here is some history provided by their publicist:

“In 2013, on a whim, then-15-year-old Emery signed up for the hit TV talent show, “X Factor.” He passed the first audition and headed for Los Angeles. Luckily for him, while waiting to perform for Simon Cowell, he met fellow competitor, San Antonio native Ricky Garcia.

“I started pursuing music at 10,” remembers Ricky, who grew up in a home filled with soul, R&B, hip-hop, country and pop music. “My parents were supportive. They knew I liked to sing and act.” How supportive? The Garcia family moved to Los Angeles in 2011 to get his career on track. Ricky entered several talent showcases, a strategy that paid off when he met artist manager Joby Harte, who connected Ricky with the Walt Disney Company. Joby is FIYM’s manager today.


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When Ricky and Emery met at “X Factor” they instantly became friends. Rather than compete as soloists, the two joined forces with a third hopeful to form a band, dubbed Forever In Your Mind by Simon Cowell. From there, the trio built a foundation, but in time it was clear a new third member was needed. That’s when Emery called his cousin back east.

By then, Liam had become a veteran stage performer, a trained singer and an accomplished multi-instrumentalist, just what FIYM needed. “When someone asks you to come to L.A. and do this, no 15-year-old would say no,” Liam recalls. “I bought a one-way ticket to Los Angeles, and I’ve never left.”

In the two years since, FIYM has been on a roll, acting in hit Disney shows and creating a string of thrill-ride cover videos, such as their remakes of “Cake By The Ocean, ” “Shake Your Booty,” and “Night Changes.” Over time, the band has matured as players, performers and songwriters. “Songwriting is another way to increase our creative ability and express how we feel,” Emery says. “When I write with Liam and Ricky, we’re like triangle. We come together and shoot a beam to the sky.”

Here is the FULL performance of the song here, plus an interview with Alexys Gabrielle on “The Oh My Disney Show”

Follow FIYM:

http://twitter.com/officialFIYM

http://instagram.com/officialFIYM

http://facebook.com

 

Anti-Bullying Month Tune: Honey and Jude’s “Weirdos and Freaks”

October is National Bullying Prevention Month, and lots of artists are releasing work to spread the message that bullying is not acceptable, and that to accept yourself for who you are despite other’s opinions or mean words is the most empowering thing you can do.

Los Angeles-based pop duo, Honey and Jude, have just released their own track to support the cause, called “Weirdos and Freaks.” Produced by Mike “WUFF” Wofford (formerly of RedOne Productions), the song is now available for download on iTunes and for streaming on Spotify.

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‘ ‘”Weirdos and Freaks” is a call to arms for self-acceptance and empowerment. While the track is a sugary pop tune with mesmerizing harmonies, there is much more to it than an upbeat pop tempo, the song also serves to send a serious message. The song was written for anyone who has ever been pushed around or called a name, but really it is for everyone. “We want to spread the message that who ever you are, be proud of it regardless of what anyone else may think,” Honey and Jude comment. Digging deeper into the song, you can hear the inspiring message behind it with lyrics like, “Here’s to the weirdos and the freaks, we don’t pretend, we just be who we want to be,” The duo then fires back at bullies with lines like, “You’re just not worth it and I ain’t got time.” The pair was inspired to write the single, after a fan wrote a Facebook post about struggling with bullies. “Weirdos and Freaks” was written to give victims of bullying a voice.’

The pair are encouraging the use of the hashtag #beautifulfreaks to get the word out that no matter how weird you or your friends are, bullying is not okay.

If you haven’t heard Honey and Jude’s music, you are in for a treat. They have been performing together since 2012 and officially formed as a duo in 2015, sort of modelling themselves after Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta in Grease. Catchy hooks and great vocals throughout…we recommend giving their “Summer Fling EP” a listen.According to a press release, it was released in 2015 and “has gained attention most notably from Music Connection Magazine, who included the duo in their “Top 100 Unsigned Artists of 2015.” Honey and Jude have played various Los Angeles venues such as House of Blues, Hard Rock Café, as well as countless malls and schools.”

Here is one of our favorite tracks, a sweet ballad with GREAT vocal performances:

To learn more about Honey and Jude, visit them at www.HoneyAndJudeMusic.com.

15 Year Old Caroline Romano Sings for National Bullying Prevention Month

Singer and songwriter Caroline Romano, while just beginning her career, has already performed alongside the likes of Shawn Mendes, Kelsea Ballerina, Frankie Ballard and Daya.

Despite her achievements, Caroline is just like any other teenage girl, capable of insecurities and body image worries. This is reflected in her latest song “Inside” from her recently released EP “Hashtag.”

Just in time for National Bullying Prevention Awareness MonthOctober, the song deals with her struggles with bullying and for self-acceptance, and is being promoted by PACER as part of their  National Bullying Prevention campaign.

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Above: Caroline Romano; credit: Gregg Roth

“It’s basically the story of the struggles I’ve faced with body image and bullying. There was a point in my life where I changed everything about myself in order to meet other people’s standards of ‘beauty.’ I felt completely overlooked-simply because I wasn’t ‘pretty’ enough. I thought no boy would ever like me and no girl would be friends with me unless I looked a certain way. I believed all of the lies.

“One day, I came to the realization that I wasn’t defined by what I looked like,” she goes on. “The real me was on the inside. Dress sizes, compliments, and meeting certain standards don’t make people happy. The happiest people are who they are. I wrote this song after experiencing that epiphany. I want to share this and encourage everyone to stop believing the lies.”

While the song has a message we have all heard before, it is the polished production and Caroline’s delivery that make it stand out. She has a powerful, mature voice — and in the music video below you can see that she is a lot more interesting then the cookie cutter pop-stars the music industry loves to create and promote until they quickly burn out. There is something very genuine about her which we really like, and think you will too. She deserves a much bigger audience!

 
 “Inside” has already begun to resonate with listeners everywhere, including fans overseas. Since going to radio, it debuted at #26 on the International Pop Chart and reached #11 on Algoa FM radio in South Africa.
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Above: Caroline Romano with Daya (left) following their performance at
Delta Fair and Music Festival
Credit: Lawrence Hsia
 A full-length debut from Caroline is due in 2017 — follow her on her social media and website for news on its release!
For more information on PACER, visit:

Little Mix Talk About Their ‘Get Weird’ Album Release – and Show Off their Weird Dance Moves!

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British girl group sensations and X-Factor winners Little Mix caught up with our friends at Sweety High at Radio Disney Studios to talk all things ‘Get Weird’!

Watch their EXCLUSIVE VIDEO and check out Little Mix showing off their dance moves with Sweety High in celebration of their new album, ‘Get Weird’ before performing at their album release party. Tune in to see Perrie, Jade, Jesy and Leigh-Anne show us how weird they can be!

 

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Isabela Moner from “100 Things to do Before High School” Releasing Debut Album “Stopping Time” Sep. 18

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14-year old Isabela Moner, star of Nickelodeon’s “100 Things To Do Before High School,” is releasing her debut, 12-track album called Stopping Time tomorrow, September 18, which will be available on iTunes, Amazon.com, BroadwayRecords.com and other retailers.

The album is a mix of both originals, such as the first single “Dream About Me” which she wrote with her father’s help at age 11, and covers ranging from Beyonce’s “Halo” to Oasis’ “Wonderwall.” In a nod to her Broadway origins, she also performs “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina,” from the Evita revival which ended its run in 2012.

Also of note is the brand-new song “Angel,” which was written by Debbie Gibson.

The song selection seems random at first glance, as even “The Girl From Ipanema” is thrown into the mix, but in Isabela words she explains that, “I have chosen a wide range of songs from all over the world and different decades written, or originally performed, by artists who have inspired me in my search for who I continue to become musically. I wrote my first song, ‘Dream About Me’ when I was 11 years old on the ukulele.  My mother is from Peru and that part of my heritage is very important to me and is reflected on my album along with many other aspects of my personality.”

While there are some cute tracks that will appeal to younger teens, we like that Moner chose to mix things up and show a wide range, rather than release a pure bubblegum pop record for her debut as so many other Disney and Nick stars choose to do. It sets her apart and establishes her as a teen singer already capable of tackling mature music. This is impressive for a 14 year old (she was 13 when she recorded the album) and points to her having a great shot at an enduring career, rather than struggle or even disappear as soon as her series stops hitting the airwaves.

Check out the video for the first single “Dream About Me” here:

About Isabela:

Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Isabela made her Broadway debut in the revival of Evita at age ten. That same year, Isabela made her national and international television debut as a singer in “The Next Big Thing: New York”. She earned her first feature film lead role in the critically acclaimed “The House that Jack Built”, winner of numerous awards at film festivals across the United States.

In 2013, Isabela went on to star as Wendy in the world premiere of Fly the Musical. Other workshop and theatre credits include: Zorro (Young Lisa), Little Miss Sunshine(Rosa Maria), A Christmas Carol (Sarah Cratchit), Annie (Annie) and Les Miserables(Young Cossette).

Broadway Records’ Van Dean, already an ardent fan, quickly signed her to a recording pact with the intention of developing a more pop-oriented vehicle for her. Says Dean, “I recognized immediately that Isabela is an artist with her own unique vision and is an incredible musician. We started working together when she was only 11 but it was already clear that she had an astounding knack for crafting new songs and making songs we’ve heard before, very much her own.  Given how accomplished she is already, I can only imagine what the future holds for her.  She is definitely one to watch and I am honored to have been there at the beginning.”

Isabela currently stars as CJ Martin in the Nickelodeon show, “100 Things To Do Before High School”. She sings the show’s theme song “Brand New Day”, as well as an episode solo “Rock Out”. She previously appeared in NBC’s “Growing Up Fisher” and the Nickelodeon movie “Splitting Adam”, as well as voices a series regular character on the Nickelodeon animated preschool series, “Dora and Friends: Into the City”. She has performed with the Cleveland Pops Orchestra and Contemporary Youth Orchestra, and has performed at various notable venues such as 54 Below, Lincoln Center, Joe’s Pub, and the Apollo Theater.

ISABELA MONER SOCIAL MEDIA —

Facebook: http://facebook.com/theofficialisabelamoner
Twitter: http://twitter.com/isabelamoner
Instagram: http://instagram.com/@IsabelaMoner
Website: theofficialisabelamoner.com
YouTube: youtube.com/user/IsabelaMoner

Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar, Drake & More – Top 8 Most Anticipated Hip-Hop Albums for 2015

 

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So Help Me God – Kanye West

What We Know:

The follow-up to West’s polarizing industrial hip-hop album Yeezus, So Help Me God has been described by Ye during a Power 105.1 interview as “bars, songs, cookout music that just feels good … This album is embracing the music, joy. Being of service to the people. I just hope people like it and enjoy it.” According to G.O.O.D. Music member Evian Christ, West requested Otis Redding, sample-inspired production: “He wants something that sounds a bit like Otis Redding, a bit like Mobb Deep.” With Kanye dramatically re-inventing his sound every release, you can never be sure what his projects are going to sound like. We’re excited nonetheless.

Release Date: TBD (Surprise Drop Rumored)

Singles:

All Day (Ft. Allan London & Paul McCartney)

Only One

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To Pimp a Butterfly – Kendrick Lamar

What We Know:

After blowing up overnight in 2013 with his album Good Kid M.a.a.d. City (and following it up with his killer Control verse), there was a lot of speculation as to what Kendrick Lamar could do to top his last, seemingly perfect, release. It’s 2015, and Kendrick’s new album To Pimp A Butterfly, is here. Drawing influence from funk, jazz, and spoken word, this record is even more nuanced than his earlier projects, and really does require multiple listens to really absorb. Fans and Critics alike are raving TBaP as a breath of fresh air for any hip hop head just a little bit tired of the modern sound.

Release Date: March 15, 2015

Singles:

I

The Blacker The Berry

King Kunta

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I Don’t Like Sh*t, I Don’t Go Outside: An Album by Earl Sweatshirt – Earl Sweatshirt

What We Know:

This is Earl at what might be his darkest; I Don’t Like is depressed and moody, brutally honest at times, and that vibe is reflected heavy in the subject matter. Tackling topics like his final night with an ex, his absent father, missed opportunities, and even his feelings about distancing himself from Odd Future, this album hits you hard and heavy; it feels like depression. One of the most impressive parts of the release is the musty, sleepy feel of the instrumentals, original production all done by Earl himself. A very solid record overall, this is definitely a step in the right direction for Earl Sweatshirt

Release Date: March 23rd, 2015

Singles:

Grief

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Meow The Jewels – Run The Jewels (& Friends)

What We Know:

All the way back in September, when RTJ’s album Run The Jewels 2 was released, fans assembled on Kickstarter, with the intention of funding a new remix version of the album. The twist? This iteration of RTJ2  would be re-recorded using only cat samples. Like that, Meow The Jewels became an internet phenomenon, with people even outside Run The Jewels’ fan base funding the project just to hear what promised to be a hilarious, albeit ridiculous, result. El-P and Killer Mike jumped on the opportunity very quickly, and promised to give the money raised to support “the families of those who have lost their lives to police brutality this year”, as well as a number of animal related charities. Better yet, artists like Just Blaze, Alchemist, Geoff Barrow (from Portishead), and feline celebrity Lil’ Bub have all agreed to contribute to the album. Is it too soon to call Meow The Jewels album of the decade?

Release Date: TBD

Singles:

Do Instagram Snippets Count?

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Chance The Rapper x The Social Experiment – Surf

What We Know:

After making a huge splash in the hip hop scene with his 2nd mixtape Acid Rap, Chance the Rapper is back, this time teaming up with band and production group The Social Experiment for another free project: Surf. From what we’ve heard so far, Surf is supposed to be even bigger and more musical than his previous projects, focusing the talents of each member of the group into one cohesive project, rather than just a focus on the rapping. Chance himself says this of the project in an interview with Fader: “Every record has like 50 people on it, the idea is to make a singular, four-minute-and-30-second song that feels like a year’s worth of music.”

Release Date: TBD

Singles:

Sunday Candy

No Better Blues

Nothing Came to Me

 

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Lil Wayne – Tha Carter V

What We Know:

Announced all the way back in early 2012, with a promised release in 2013, The Carter V is Lil Wayne’s purported retirement album. What should have been a simple release, however, has turned into somewhat of drama-fest, with multiple delays in the album dropping, Cash Money Records taking the album hostage, and a lawsuit filed against Birdman by Lil Wayne for $51 million dollars. As an apology to his fans, Wayne self-released a mixtape titled Sorry 4 The Wait 2 in order to tide them over until the album dispute settles; However, fans are still finding themselves thirsty for new Weezy

Release Date: Ask Birdman

Singles:

Believe Me (Ft. Drake)

Krazy

Grindin’ (Ft. Drake)

Start a Fire (Ft. Christina Millian)

 

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At.Long.Last.A$AP – A$AP Rocky

What We Know:

Executive Produced by Danger Mouse, At.Long.Last.ASAP features collaborations with FKA Twigs and Clams Casino, and according to an interview with Billboard, this project seems to be Rocky at his best and most experimental: “People really don’t know the other side of me. The deeper side, the more musical side, the more intellectual side. When I first came on the scene it was more of this trendy, bourgeois, pizazz attitude. That’s still me but at the end of the day I think that kind of overshadowed the whole purpose of me doing what I do. I’m an incredibly diverse artist, I’m a universal artist. At least that’s how I see it.”  And according to another interview with GQ, “there’s Rocky’s signature jet-setting swag and the usual fashion shout-outs, but you can also hear psychedelic ’60s London and introspection. You hear Rocky singing. And acoustic guitar.” While the new direction Rocky is taking his music might seem out of left field for some hip hop heads, fans are all excited to hear what he comes out with next.

Release Date: May 26, 2015

Singles:

Multiply

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Views From The 6 – Drake

What We Know:

The second Drake album scheduled to be released this year, and successor to If You’re Reading This It’s Too Late (IYRTITL‘s title being a dig at Birdman). Not much is known about this project, which comes as no surprise; No information regarding his last release was revealed by Drake officially until the day the project dropped: tracks from the album were teased through a short film called Jungle, and the project wasn’t officially announced until the day of its release. Even with a release as cryptic as that, Drake sold about 495,000 in three days, and his next official album is bound to do better. We have no idea how it’s going to play out sonically, but there’s a good chance there’ll be mention of women, and his sensitivity.

Release Date: TBD

Singles:

How About Now

Karmin Adds “Along the Road” to its Slate of Cool Music Videos

Pop/Rock duo Karmin, comprised of members Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan and best known for their mega-hit “Brokenhearted” which was played everywhere, released a new music video last night for “Along the Road.”

karmin photo_41181It’s a cool addition to a pretty funky collection of music videos from the pair, who recently parted ways with their label Epic Records to go a more indie route.

What’s cool about the vid is that it was taken in a single shot, which is hard to do. Also, if you are into sneakers, you are going to like it too.

Check out the new video here, and if you are not too familiar with Karmin, scroll down for their official bio and some more videos:

Karmin Official Bio

The journey for Karmin’s Amy Heidemann and Nick Noonan has been a wild one to say the least after the duo signed to Epic Records and scored the double-platinum hit “Brokenhearted” off their 2012 EP Hello, and appeared on Saturday Night Live. Not to mention, Amy’s stunning appearance gracing the cover of Rolling Stone. Along the way they have earned esteemed accolades from hip-hop heavy hitters ranging from The Roots’ Questlove, Diplo, Jermaine Dupri, and The Game. The duo has performed more than 600 live shows and has racked up over a billion collective views of their eye-popping videos (fueled by the devotion of millions of loyal fans around the world, who call themselves “Karminites”).

With triumphs to long to list, the duo have not forgotten their roots as two Berklee College of Music graduates that have been on a crazy journey since being pulled from their basement apartment in Boston and set on the tumultuous path to music stardom. They are recipients of the American Music Award and have appeared on SNL, Dancing With the Stars, Good Morning America, and The Ellen Show, just to name a few.  “We were kind of in a honeymoon phase for a while, like, ‘Holy sh*t, that actually happened?’” Amy says of the events of the last few years.

Karmin photo_41341After surviving the hype of a major label deal, the band parted ways with Epic Records in order to pursue a distinct creative vision that is represented on their upcoming album, Leo Rising,due out later this year. Despite the struggles they’ve endured, Karmin have emerged with a stylistically wide-ranging and truly artistic statement-making album that finds them presenting the most authentic version of who they are to date. All this thanks to clear-eyed, honest storytelling, sonic boundary-pushing, and expanded creative control with Amy and Nick serving as executive producers and Nick stepping up as both a lead vocalist and producer.

“We were ready to make a new sound where you’re like, ‘Nothing else sounds like this,’” Amy says.  “I think Lorde, Macklemore, and Goyte have proven that artsy, original music can be accepted by the mainstream and millions of people can love you for being unique. We wanted to find out what made us unique without too many people talking in our ear.”

Their first major single, “Along the Road”, from their upcoming release, depicts feelings of birth, renewal and new transitions exquisitely, describing the bittersweet feeling of friends and loved ones traveling in and out of life. It serves as a departure piece for the cutting edge duo. The real-life couple also released a music video filmed at YouTube Space in Los Angeles, CA and can be seen on Karmin’s YouTube channel. Earlier this year, Karmin released a taste of their new sound with songs, “Sugar” and “Yesterday.” Leo Rising will be released later this year, alongside a short film and a traveling art exhibit.

“Our live show is of the utmost importance to us because we feel so confident going out and performing the music,” Amy says. “Live, we’re more of a rock band,” Nick says. “It’s great to have a pop hit, but it immediately puts you in a super pop box and we’re not that at all. It’s much deeper than that.” With their new found freedom and creative control back in their hands, Karminites will be thrilled to know the band will be hitting the road again later this year. “We are so proud of the show,” Amy adds. “It’s an emotional and energetic roller coaster, like the album is. It’s not choreography and confetti, but raw energy and musicianship.”

Blake English from After Romeo Sings Johanna from Sweeney Todd

So we became fans of After Romeo after we interviewed them back in November (you can see that video at the bottom of this page), but we didn’t realize just how talented each individual member was.

Take Blake English for instance. Not only can he dance and sing pop music, but he also has a powerful voice for musical theater. It seems that Blake has been performing in musical theater since he was a wee lad, and you can tell by a couple of videos he put up on his Youtube channel where he performs “Johanna” from Sweeney Todd and “It Takes Two” from Hairspray.

We were shocked–in a good way! What do you think of his voice? (watch the vids below)

And we wonder what secret talents the rest of the boys have? ; )

Follow Blake English on Twitter and Instagram!