News / Arts & Entertainment

    Women Dominated Pop in 2011

    Ray McDonald

    Women ruled the pop music scene in 2011, be they rising rappers, country crossover stars, or fallen idols.

    Women Dominated Pop in 2011
    Women Dominated Pop in 2011

    No pop album cast a longer shadow in 2011 than Adele’s 21. Released in January, it chronicled the young British singer’s struggles in a failed relationship. Already the 10th best-selling album of all time in her native England, it’s expected to sell 15 million copies globally by year’s end. Adele is nominated for six Grammy Awards, including Record, Song, and Album of the Year. She hopes to be able to perform at the February 12 Grammy ceremony, having recently undergone throat surgery.

    Nicki Minaj
    Nicki Minaj

    Diametrically opposing Adele’s confessional ballads are the supercharged hip-hop dance hits of Nicki Minaj. Last November, the New York rapper released her long-awaited debut album Pink Friday, and soon became a full-fledged star. Radio hits such as “Super Bass” and a slot on Britney Spears’ North American tour helped Nicki earn Billboard magazine’s nod for Rising Star of 2011.

    Taylor Swift (file photo)
    Taylor Swift (file photo)

    Earning the Billboard Woman of the Year trophy was Taylor Swift, who turned 22 on December 13. A star since age 16, she spent much of the year on a global tour promoting her third album, Speak Now. Highlighting her U.S. dates were guest appearances by other acts; stars ranging from Nicki Minaj and Justin Bieber to rapper T.I. gladly came when Taylor called. The young singer reinforced her squeaky-clean image by donating more than $1 million to charity over the past year.

    Amy Winehouse's "Lioness: Hidden Treasures" CD
    Amy Winehouse's "Lioness: Hidden Treasures" CD

    Providing a somber counterpoint to this female trio’s triumph was the tragedy of Amy Winehouse. The 27-year-old singer died from alcohol poisoning in her London home on July 23. Her final recording, a duet rendition of “Body and Soul” with Tony Bennett, was released in September to commemorate her 28th birthday. Sales proceeds go to the Amy Winehouse Foundation, founded by her father Mitch to help at-risk youth. The posthumous compilation album Lioness: Hidden Treasures topped the British album chart following its December 5 release.

    Lil Wayne's "Tha Carter IV" CD
    Lil Wayne's "Tha Carter IV" CD

    Women didn’t have the market all to themselves in 2011: rapper Lil’ Wayne was the year’s most successful male artist. His album Tha Carter IV sold more than one million copies in its first week.

    Also enjoying a banner year was Bruno Mars. The 26-year-old singer - whose real name is Peter Hernandez - received six Grammy nominations. One, Non-classical Producer of the Year, honors his songwriting-production trio, The Smeezingtons.

    Steve Jobs
    Steve Jobs

    The man who revolutionized music retailing in the 21st Century, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, died of cancer in October at age 56. His iPod music player and iTunes store have irrevocably altered the global entertainment field.

    Also leaving us in 2011 were hip-hop performers Nate Dogg and Dwight “Heavy D” Myers; rock guitarist Gary Moore and Warrant singer Jani Lane; and musician-poet Gil Scott-Heron.

    In November, Michael Jackson’s physician Conrad Murray was found guilty of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the singer’s death in 2009. He was sentenced to four years of incarceration.

    The band R.E.M. with lead singer Michael Stipe performs on the plaza of Rockefeller Center during the Today Show (file photo)
    The band R.E.M. with lead singer Michael Stipe performs on the plaza of Rockefeller Center during the Today Show (file photo)

    Finally, R.E.M disbanded in September. Thirty-one years into their careers, the members of the Rock Hall of Fame band decided to call it a day. Lead singer Michael Stipe said “All things must end, and we wanted to do it right, to do it our way.” The quartet’s biggest U.S. hit single - from 1991, was “Losing My Religion.”

    You May Like

    Multimedia Obama Calls on Americans to Help the Families of Its War Dead

    In last Memorial Day of his presidency, Obama lays wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery

    The Strife of the Party: Will Trump Permanently Alter Republicans?

    While billionaire mogul's no-holds-barred style, high-energy delivery are what rocketed him to nomination, they also have created rift between party elites and his supporters

    China's Education Reforms Spark Protest

    Beijing is putting a quota system in place to increase the number of students from poor regions attending universities

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    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.

     

     

     

     

    Blogs

    African Music Treasures