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The annual Mixtape Festival gathers artists from different genres every year not only to perform live on stage, but to do collaborations and mixes of their songs right on the spot, which makes it a standout event in the music world.
And in this year’s celebration, the surviving members of the legendary R&B girl group TLC, will be joining the fun. Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins and Rozanda “Chili” Thomas have already confirmed to be performing at the event, which will take place at the Hersheypark Stadium in Hershey, Pennsylvania, on July 26-27.
The group started to lie low when Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes died in a car crash eleven years ago. Their last high-profile performance was back in May 2011, when T-Boz and Chili went onstage to sing on “American Idol”.
TLC will be featured on the second day of the festival, along with fellow 90s boy group, Boyz II Men. The Jonas Brothers and New Kids on the Block will also take the stage, thus creating a three-generation lineup of performance. It has also been quite a while since the group released a studio album, though they gave in to a few small venue performances during the past year.
The first day of the fete will feature Train, The Script, Hanson and OneRepublic. Hanson recently entered the music mainstream after doing a lot of indie work for almost a decade.
Last year’s festival highlights included the reunion of boy band 98 Degrees, who is bound to release their comeback album “2.0”, The Fray and Kelly Clarkson. NKOTBSB also went onstage to perform last year as part of their rolling tour.
The Mixtape Festival is held in different venues across the United States, which started last year. This highly-anticipated fair lasts for only two days, but it does more than just the mere gathering of artists from different music genres-it relives the glorious past and reintroduces it to the present, with the hit makers of yesterday and today coming together to share their music to the audiences.
It has also been a venue for artists and groups who are aiming to make a comeback in the music mainstream.
Here is the lineup for this year’s Mixtape Festival:
Friday, July 26
Rev Run & DJ Ruckus
Saturday, July 27
New Kids on the Block
Boyz II Men
Benji Madden (DJ Set)
Will.i.am finally addresses the accusations against him about stealing a song from a Russian dance producer which was used in his new album.
“You can’t steal if you credited somebody,” the Black Eyed Peas singer said. “He and I communicated. It’s not my fault he didn’t tell me about the other guy. So who is to blame?”
The producer-rapper-singer acknowledged the fact that he stole a song from the said producer, but he didn’t do it intentionally. Rather, he asked one of the song’s creators, trance producer Arty, to the piece after hearing it in London back in 2011. Will.i.am then made a new version out of it with Chris Brown, now titled “Let’s Go.”
According to the BEP hit maker, he emailed Arty, who responded positively about collaborating with him using the song. However, during the recent weeks, the Russian DJ told his Facebook fans that there was no deal between their labels and “the matter is under review by our legal teams.”
Will.i.am has credited Arty, as the writer of the song in the liner notes for his album “#willpower,” which will be released this week. The problem about the “song theft” however arose as he didn’t know Arty had worked with another producer to create the track, which is now causing a media frenzy and legal stir between both parties.
According to Will.i.am, whose real name is William Adams, his album contains collaborations with other, well-known electronic dance music producers, such as Steve Angello, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Afrojack.
“I respect that world and in a way helped cross over for it to be played on radio,” he explained. “So it’s just-it’s just- it’s kind of wack the way this situation has turned out because it’s undetermined in a way-not really, it hasn’t, but it’s undermined my contributions to that world and my respect to that world. Because the way they’re painting it is not the way it is.”
His group, the Black Eyed Peas, went on indefinite hiatus back in 2011, and he said that he encountered similar problems with the rather slow legal clearances when Kanye West and Estelle released “American Boy” using the beat from his 2007 piece “Impatient.”
“I don’t mind because I like the song and I’m excited about the collaboration with Kanye and Estelle,” he said. “And then the paperwork happens after it’s out. That happens a bunch of times where legal takes so long. The creative is instantaneous. You want things to come out.”
Lauryn Hill may just be going back to the studio to record new tunes, not because she wants to.
Because of her looming tax evasion case, the former Fugee was left with no choice but to sign a new record deal with Sony Worldwide Entertainment, which she confirmed in a Tumblr post yesterday.
According to reports, Sony agreed to pay off her tax debts, and in return she would be recording a new album with them.
The terms of the deal have not yet been released, although Hill says in the letter she posted on the social media site that the $1 million she will be getting is only a chunk of the contract. The Grammy-winning singer-songwriter has not released a new album since 2002’s MTV Unplugged 2.0, nor has she come up with a new record since the platinum-selling The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill in 1998.
To read her full letter, see below:
It has been reported that I signed a new record deal, and that I did this to pay taxes. Yes, I have recently entered into an agreement with Sony Worldwide Entertainment, to launch a new label, on which my new music will be released. And yes, I am working on new music.
I’ve remained silent, after an extensive healing process. This has been a 10+ year battle, for a long time played out behind closed doors, but now in front of the public eye. This is an old conflict between art and commerce… free minds, and minds that are perhaps overly tethered to structure. This is about inequity, and the resulting disenfranchisement caused by it. I’ve been fighting for existential and economic freedom, which means the freedom to create and live without someone threatening, controlling, and/or manipulating the art and the artist, by tying the purse strings.
It took years for me to get out of the ‘parasitic’ dynamic of my youth, and into a deal that better reflects my true contribution as an artist, and (purportedly) gives me the control necessary to create a paradigm suitable for my needs. I have been working towards this for a long time, not just because of my current legal situation, but because I am an artist, I love to create, and I need the proper platform to do so.
The nature of my new business venture, as well as the dollar amount reported, was inaccurate, only a portion of the overall deal. Keep in mind, my past recordings have sold over 50,000,000 units worldwide, earning the label a tremendous amount of money (a fraction of which actually came to me).
Only a completely complicated set of traps, manipulations, and inequitable business arrangements could put someone who has accomplished the things that I have, financially in need of anything. I am one artist who finds value in openly discussing the dynamics within this industry that force artists to compromise or distort themselves and what they do, rather than allowing them to make the music that people need. There are volumes that could (and will) be said.
Sad news for country star Jason Aldean. He and his wife, Jessica, finally call it quits.
The country singer-songwriter, who has been in hot water a few months ago after admitting that he “acted inappropriately” with former “American Idol” contestant Brittany Kerr, is now living separately from his wife and kids.
According to sources, the couple has already been apart since January. “There were obvious problems before the bar kiss, but he finally left earlier this year,” said the source, pointing out that Jessica was absent at the ACM Awards, an event in which she was usually seen with her husband. Aldean won two awards in the event, including Male Vocalist of the Year.
“I can confirm that Jason and his wife are having problems, but there is nothing more to share at this time,” said a rep for the singer to Us Weekly. “It’s a private family matter, and we hope everyone will respect that he would like to keep it that way.”
Aldean and his wife have been together since their high school days, and were married for 11 years. They also have two daughters, Keely and Kendyl. In a joint appearance on “CBS This Morning” last year, the couple admitted that there were times that they struggled to make their relationship work.
“Anytime you go through anything like that, it’s tough,” said Jason. “We’ve been together for a long time, and been through a lot of things together. Those are things that most people get to deal with in private, we didn’t have the luxury of doing that.”
During the guest stint, Jason gave his wife the credit of taking care of business tasks which he didn’t want to manage.
“I’m the guy who wants to play my music and meet my fans,” he said in an interview back in 2011. “She picks up the phone and makes the business call. When it comes to the music, she’ll give me her opinion if I ask her but that’s about it. it works out pretty good.”
There have been no divorce talks yet for the couple.
Aldean broke into the music scene in 2005, with the hit “Hicktown.” This was followed by a slew of successful records and platinum selling albums, such as Relentless, and My Kinda Party, and his current record, Night Train. He recently went on a road tour with Luke Bryan, Miranda Lambert, Jake Owen, and Kelly Clarkson to promote his latest album.
Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, Duff McKagan of Guns’n’Roses, and Barrett Martin of Screaming Trees are joining forces to create a new band with a cast of singers. Is this going to be a new supergroup in the making?
According to reports, McCready has teamed up with McKagan, who is a former member of the hair metal group, Guns’n’Roses. The two are joined by Martin, who was a member of bands Screaming Trees and Mad Season. While their group is not yet fully functional and is still in need of a singer, they are expected to create a side project in the not so distant future.
“Duff and Barrett and I got together,” said McCready. “We wrote some new stuff and we took some of those old Mad Season demos from that (unreleased) second ‘Disinformation’ record, so we are trying to find something to do with those. We’re talking to Jaz from Killing Joke and I’ve been trying to find some singers to work on some of that stuff.”
The always busy McCready, who is currently preparing the expanded reissue of Mad Season’s 1995 album “Above” for April, says that the new record will feature fresh tunes from the said era. After the release of the reissue, he will be going back to the studio, this time to work on Pearl Jam’s upcoming album. He is also hoping to release songs from the still untitled group that he formed with Martin and McKagan, this time under his own label, Hockeytalkter Records.
“I have a little record company called Hockeytalkter Records-it’s what my three year old son calls a helicopter,” he said. “I would like to put some of this stuff out on 45. If that happens, it’ll be great.”
“A bunch of stuff was happening last year,” Barrett Martin says about his team-up with McCready and McKagan.. “Mike and I were putting together this Mad Season collection. Duff and I and Jeff Angell were starting the Walking Papers album which we asked Mike to play on. Then Mike started his own record label… I had a whole bunch of song ideas and Mike had a whole bunch of song ideas and Duff had a whole bunch of song ideas that were not making it into Walking Papers. We decided that we would go into the studio and record them. Right now they’re being sent out to different singers. Mike and Duff are overseeing that because they know everybody.”
There’s no date yet as to when their material will be released, but Martin says it will depend on their unrevealed line of singers. “As the different singers finish their songs and turn them in, that will determine when they get put out,” he said.