News / Arts & Entertainment

    Bruno Mars Rocks Super Bowl Halftime Show; Motley Crue Disbands

    Bruno Mars performs during the halftime show of the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks in East Rutherford, New Jersey, Feb. 2, 2014.
    Bruno Mars performs during the halftime show of the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks in East Rutherford, New Jersey, Feb. 2, 2014.
    Mary Morningstar
    Accompanied by a light show that featured 80,000 fans with illuminated hats, pop
    star Bruno Mars rocked the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII halftime show on February 2, with a selection of his hits including "Treasure" and "Runaway Baby." Dressed in a glittery, 1950s-style jacket and narrow tie, the bouffant-topped Hawaiian-born singer danced across the stage as fire effects and fireworks lit up East Rutherford, New Jersey's MetLife Stadium. The Red Hot Chili Peppers joined him on stage.

    The halftime show is the most-watched musical event of the year.  According to NFL.com, last year’s show, which featured Beyonce, drew more than 164 million viewers.  This year’s pre-game show featured performances by The Band Perry, Phillip Phillips and the cast of Broadway’s “Jersey Boys” and “Rock of Ages.”  Opera singer Renee Fleming sang the national anthem and Queen Latifah performed “America The Beautiful.”

    Motley Crue Disbands

    From left, Vince Neil,Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, and Mick Mars seen at Motley Crue Press Conference, Jan. 28, 2014, in Los Angeles.From left, Vince Neil,Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, and Mick Mars seen at Motley Crue Press Conference, Jan. 28, 2014, in Los Angeles.
    x
    From left, Vince Neil,Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, and Mick Mars seen at Motley Crue Press Conference, Jan. 28, 2014, in Los Angeles.
    From left, Vince Neil,Nikki Sixx, Tommy Lee, and Mick Mars seen at Motley Crue Press Conference, Jan. 28, 2014, in Los Angeles.
    The four members of the hard rock band Motley Crue will go their separate ways following their upcoming world tour.  Vince Neil, Nikki Sixx, Mick Mars and Tommy Lee held a press conference in Los Angeles to announce the tour, which begins July 2 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  Motley Crue’s 67 North American dates wrap up on November 21 in Vancouver.  Alice Cooper will be the band’s special guest on the tour.  The four members signed a binding “cessation of touring” agreement to “prevent future unauthorized touring.”  Motley Crue will release its 10th studio album before kicking off the tour.

    Bieber Skips Grammys

    Justin Bieber, second right, and Chantel Jeffries, far left, walk with unidentified people on a beach in Punta Chame, Panama, Jan. 25, 2014.Justin Bieber, second right, and Chantel Jeffries, far left, walk with unidentified people on a beach in Punta Chame, Panama, Jan. 25, 2014.
    x
    Justin Bieber, second right, and Chantel Jeffries, far left, walk with unidentified people on a beach in Punta Chame, Panama, Jan. 25, 2014.
    Justin Bieber, second right, and Chantel Jeffries, far left, walk with unidentified people on a beach in Punta Chame, Panama, Jan. 25, 2014.
    ​Justin Bieber skipped the January 26 Grammy Awards to spend the weekend vacationing in Panama.  He left the U.S. after posting bail for his January 23 arrest in Miami.  The 19-year-old pop star was charged with driving under the influence, driving without a valid driver’s license and resisting arrest.  Bieber’s arraignment is set for February 14 in Dade County, Florida.  On January 29, Bieber released the video to his single “Confident,” from his latest album “Journals.”

    Frozen Soundtrack Tops Billboard 200

    The soundtrack to Disney’s animated film “Frozen” climbs back to Number One on this week’s Billboard 200 chart.  By spending three non-consecutive weeks in the top spot, “Frozen” becomes the longest chart-topping movie soundtrack since 2003’s “Bad Boys II.”  According to Nielsen SoundScan, “Frozen” has sold 769,000 copies since its November 25 release.

    The various artist compilation “2014 Grammy Nominees” debuts at Number 2 on this week’s Billboard 200 chart.  The collection features tracks by Daft Punk, Bruno Mars, Taylor Swift, Lorde, and more of today’s biggest stars.  Other Top 10 entries on the Billboard 200 chart include A Great Big World’s “Is There Anybody Out There?” at Number 4 and Young the Giant’s “Mind Over Matter” at Number 7.

    New Album Releases / Feb. 4

    “Now That’s What I Call Music! Volume 49” by various artists
    “Love Songs” by Tina Turner
    “Love, Marriage & Divorce” by Toni Braxton and Kenny ‘Babyface’ Edmonds
    “Unconditional Love” by Ruben Studdard
    “Augustines” by Augustines
    “Music Speaks” by Candice Glover
    “Eric Paslay” by Eric Paslay,
    “Four Foot Shack” by Les Claypool’s Duo de Twang
    “July” by Marissa Nadler
    “Along the Way” by Mark McGuire
    “Vargar” by Tim Larson

    Musical Events / Festivals / Benefits

    The 2014 “Fest For Beatles Fans” will be held February 7, 8 and 9 in New York City.  British singer Donovan is the headlining act.  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee accompanied the Beatles on their 1968 spiritual trip to India.  In addition to performing, Donovan will give a speech and join the Beatles cover band Liverpool on stage.  A New York City Beatles Walking Tour led by Beatles expert Susan Ryan will take fans to Central Park’s Strawberry Fields, the Dakota building where John Lennon and Yoko Ono lived and The Ed Sullivan Theater.  The Beatles made their first U.S. television appearance at that theater on February 9, 1964.  Beatles festivals are also planned later this year in Chicago, Illinois (August 15-17) and Los Angeles (October 10-12).

    Star Birthdays

    Colombian singer Shakira performs at the opening concert for the soccer World Cup at Orlando stadium in Soweto, South Africa, 10 jun 2010Colombian singer Shakira performs at the opening concert for the soccer World Cup at Orlando stadium in Soweto, South Africa, 10 jun 2010
    x
    Colombian singer Shakira performs at the opening concert for the soccer World Cup at Orlando stadium in Soweto, South Africa, 10 jun 2010
    Colombian singer Shakira performs at the opening concert for the soccer World Cup at Orlando stadium in Soweto, South Africa, 10 jun 2010
    February 2 - Colombian pop singer Shakira celebrated her 37th birthday.  Shakira’s 2001 breakthrough album “Laundry Service” sold 13 million copies worldwide and produced the Number One hits “Whenever, Wherever” and “Underneath Your Clothes.”  In 2011, Shakira was named the Latin Recording Academy’s Person of the Year.  For the second time, she’ll substitute for Christina Aguilera as a coach on the upcoming season of “The Voice.”  Shakira recently released the new single “Can’t Remember To Forget You,” featuring Rihanna.  The track will be included on her upcoming studio album.  The self-titled set is due out on March 25.

    February 4 - Country singer Clint Black turns 52.  Black’s 1989 debut album, “Killin’ Time,” produced four consecutive Number One singles.  Since then, he’s earned nine more chart-topping hits.  Last year, Black released the new album “When I Said I Do,” which is being sold exclusively at Cracker Barrel stores throughout the U.S.  The album combines 11 re-recorded love songs from his RCA Records catalog and three new tracks. On February 6, Black kicks off a U.S. concert tour, which runs through late April.

    Pop singer Gavin DeGraw will celebrate his 37th birthday. DeGraw earned his big break in 2003 with the Number One Mainstream Pop single “I Don’t Want To Be,” which was used as the theme for the CW Network’s teen drama “One Tree Hill.”  His other hits include “Chariot,” “In Love With A Girl” and the Number One Adult Contemporary chart hit “Not Over You.”  Last year, DeGraw released his fifth album, “Make A Move.”

    Sara EvansSara Evans
    x
    Sara Evans
    Sara Evans
    February 5 - Country singer Sara Evans turns 43.  Sara left her home state of Missouri and moved to Nashville in 1991.  Her major label debut, “Three Chords and the Truth,” was released in 1997.  Since then, Evans has topped the Country charts with such hits as “No Place That Far,” “Born To Fly” and “A Little Bit Stronger,” which became her first million-selling single.  Her new album, “Slow Me Down,” will be released on March 11.

    February 6 - Singer Natalie Cole celebrates her 64th birthday.  The daughter of the late pop crooner Nat King Cole made her professional debut at age 11.  In 1975, she won the Best New Artist Grammy.  Throughout Cole’s career she has recorded many styles of music, from pop and R&B to standards and jazz.  Her 2008 album, “Still Unforgettable,” brought her a Grammy Award for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album.  The collection includes a virtual duet with Nat King Cole on “Walkin’ My Baby Back Home.”  In 2009, Cole underwent a kidney transplant.  She returned to performing later that year.  Last year, Cole topped Billboard’s Latin Pop Albums and Top Latin Albums charts with her first Spanish-language release, “Natalie Cole en Espanol.”

    Birth date of late reggae singer Bob Marley (born 1945).  Nicknamed the “King of Jamaican Reggae,” Marley formed his group The Wailers in 1965.  The band helped popularize reggae music worldwide.  Marley’s songwriting credits include “I Shot the Sheriff,” a Number One hit for Eric Clapton in 1974.  Marley died of cancer at age 36 in 1981.

    The cover of Garth Brooks' 8-disc box set, "Blame It All On My Roots."The cover of Garth Brooks' 8-disc box set, "Blame It All On My Roots."
    x
    The cover of Garth Brooks' 8-disc box set, "Blame It All On My Roots."
    The cover of Garth Brooks' 8-disc box set, "Blame It All On My Roots."
    February 7 - Garth Brooks turns 51 years old.  The Country superstar began his rise to fame in 1987, when he moved from Oklahoma to Nashville.  His 1989 self-titled debut album produced four Number One Country hits.  Brooks’ 1990 sophomore release, “No Fences,” sold 17 million copies in the U.S., making it the biggest-selling Country album of all time.  In 2012, Garth was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.  This year, Brooks wrapped up a four-year solo acoustic engagement at The Wynn in Las Vegas and announced his return to touring.  He recently held a press conference in Dublin, Ireland, where he’ll kick off his world tour in July.  Brooks’ three upcoming concerts at Croke Park on July 25, 26 and 27 sold out in 90 minutes.  He’s also working on a new album, his first full album of new songs since 2003.

    February 8 - Birth date of late Country-pop singer Dan Seals (born 1948).  At age four, Seals began performing with his brother Jim.  In 1976, he helped form England Dan & John Ford Coley.  Seals left the pop duo four years later to pursue a solo career in Country music.  His many hits include “Bop,” “I Will Be There,” “One Friend” and “Big Wheels in the Moonlight.”  In 2007, he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.  Seals succumbed to the disease in 2009 at age 61.

    Conductor, composer and arranger John Williams will celebrate his 82nd birthday.  In 1980, Williams replaced Arthur Fiedler as conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra.  He held the post until 1993.  Williams has received more Oscar nominations than any other living person.  Throughout his career, he’s won five Academy Awards and 21 Grammy Awards.  Williams also composed the themes for four Olympic Games.  In 2004, he received a Kennedy Center Honor and was given the National Medal of Arts in 2009.

    Awards Presentations / Winners

    Tim McGraw and Miranda Lambert are the leading nominees for the 49th annual Academy of Country Music (ACM) Awards.  Each received seven nominations.  Lambert earned her eighth ACM Female Vocalist of the Year nod and her third consecutive Entertainer of the Year nomination.  She’s up against her husband Blake Shelton, Luke Bryan, George Strait and Taylor Swift in the Entertainer category.  Keith Urban follows close behind with six mentions.  Lee Brice, Blake Shelton, Taylor Swift and Kacey Musgraves received five apiece.  The ACM Awards, hosted by Blake Shelton and Luke Bryan, will be presented on April 6 in Las Vegas.

    Look Who's Going On Tour!

    American performer Bruce Springsteen, left, performs during a soundcheck with band member Steven Van Zandt, right, before performing in Cape Town, South Africa, Jan. 26, 2014.American performer Bruce Springsteen, left, performs during a soundcheck with band member Steven Van Zandt, right, before performing in Cape Town, South Africa, Jan. 26, 2014.
    x
    American performer Bruce Springsteen, left, performs during a soundcheck with band member Steven Van Zandt, right, before performing in Cape Town, South Africa, Jan. 26, 2014.
    American performer Bruce Springsteen, left, performs during a soundcheck with band member Steven Van Zandt, right, before performing in Cape Town, South Africa, Jan. 26, 2014.
    On February 5, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band will kick off the first of 13 concerts in Australia and New Zealand.  Shows begin in Perth, Australia, Springsteen first-ever visit to that city.  The band will wrap up the tour with two concerts in Auckland, New Zealand on March 1 and 2.  It’s been more than 10 years since Springsteen and his band performed in New Zealand.

    Kings of Leon begin a North American arena tour on February 5 in Atlanta, Georgia.  The band is supporting its latest album “Mechanical Bull.”  Its lead single, “Supersoaker,” reached the Top 10 on Billboard’s Alternative Songs chart.  Twenty-nine shows are scheduled through April 11.  Gary Clark Jr. is the special guest on the first leg of the tour.

    You May Like

    Video Democrats Clinton, Kaine Offer 'Very Different Vision' Than Trump

    In a jab at Trump, Clinton says her team wants to 'build bridges, not walls'; Obama Hails Kaine's record; Trump calls Kaine a 'job-killer'

    Turkey Wants Pakistan to Close Down institutions, Businesses Linked to Gulen

    Thousands of Pakistani students are enrolled in Gulen's commercial network of around two dozen institutions operating in Pakistan for over two decades

    AU Passport A Work in Progress

    Who will get the passport and what the benefits are still need to be worked out

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movementi
    X
    July 22, 2016 11:49 AM
    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Poor Residents in Cleveland Not Feeling High Hopes of Republican Convention

    With the Republican Party's National Convention underway in Cleveland, Ohio, delegates and visitors are gathered in the host city's downtown - waiting to hear from the party's presidential candidate, Donald Trump. But a few kilometers from the convention's venue, Cleveland's poorest residents are not convinced Trump or his policies will make a difference in their lives. VOA's Ramon Taylor spoke with some of these residents as well as some of the Republican delegates and filed this report.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video With Yosemite as Backdrop, Obama Praises National Parks

    Last month, President Barack Obama and his family visited some of the most beautiful national parks in the U.S. Using the majestic backdrop of a towering waterfall in California's Yosemite National Park, Obama praised the national park system which celebrates its 100th anniversary this year. He talked about the importance of America’s “national treasures” and the need to protect them from climate change and other threats. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Counter-Islamic State Coalition Plots Next Steps

    As momentum shifts against Islamic State in Iraq, discussions are taking place about the next steps for driving the terrorist group from its final strongholds. Secretary of State John Kerry is hosting a counter-IS meeting at the State Department, a day after defense ministers from more than 30 countries reviewed and agreed upon a course of action. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb reports.
    Video

    Video Russia's Participation at Brazil Olympic Games Still In Question

    The International Olympic Committee has delayed a decision on whether to ban all Russian teams from competing in next month's Olympic Games in Brazil over allegations of an elaborate doping scheme. The World Anti-Doping Agency recently released an independent report alleging widespread doping by Russian athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. So far, only Russian track and field athletes have been barred from the Summer Games in Brazil. VOA's Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.
    Video

    Video Millennials Could Determine Who Wins Race to White House

    With only four months to go until Americans elect a new president, one group of voters is getting a lot more attention these days: those ages 18 to 35, a generation known as millennials. It’s a demographic that some analysts say could have the power to decide the 2016 election. But a lot depends on whether they actually turn out to vote. VOA’s Alexa Lamanna reports.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora

    New in Music Alley

    Take It From The Top: Stanley Jordani
    || 0:00:00
    ...  
     
    X
    May 17, 2016 5:01 PM
    Jazz fusion artist, Stanley Jordan is known for his touch technique which allows him to play melodies and chords simultaneously. He can also play two different guitars or a guitar and piano at the same time.

    Jazz fusion artist, Stanley Jordan is known for his touch technique which allows him to play melodies and chords simultaneously.  He can also play two different guitars or a guitar and piano at the same time.