Country music is a pretty polarizing genre - and most polarizing subjects are ripe for memein'. Get a load of these twangy treats.
“The Trump Inauguration Party for Freedom That’s Not Sad, But Rather Good Bash at the Beach 2017” has had a hard time finding performers. Between Elton John giving them a flat out “book Ted Nugent,” a woman quitting the Mormon Tabernacle choir because she saw performing the inauguration as “endorsing tyranny and fascism,” and the team just going ahead and booking a bunch of wedding bands, it’s starting to look like DJ Barron’s going to be pumping the mega mix from his iPod Touch all night.
Well, things haven’t changed much.
Apparently, the Trump team has asked Rebecca Ferguson a chart-topping singer-songwriter and X-Factor runner-up to perform.
After being asked, Ferguson had one request: She would sing the Billie Holiday song “Strange Fruit,” which, as TIME puts it, “contains gut-wrenching imagery of black lynching victims swinging from Southern tree limbs in the early 20th century. The phrase ‘strange fruit’ refers to ‘black bodies swinging in the southern breeze,’ and the song is widely considered one of the major anti-racist songs of the 20th century.”
Ferguson made her response to the Trump team public on Twitter:
“I've been asked and this is my answer. If you allow me to sing "strange fruit" a song that has huge historical importance, a song that was blacklisted in the United States for being too controversial. A song that speaks to all the disregarded and down trodden black people in the United States. A song that is a reminder of how love is the only thing that will conquer all the hatred in this world, then I will graciously accept your invitation and see you in Washington. Best Rebecca X”
Ferguson certainly knows how to make a statement.
When the Internet uses its powers for good, the results are incredible.
It’s been an difficult year for Angela McElhiney, an understatement to say the least. Her 15 year-old son Nathan committed suicide in October. To remember him, she cherishes a video of Nathan singing “Wayfaring Stranger,” taken one month before his death.
via A Promise to Nathan
However, because the video was taken in a high school gymnasium, the audio quality is poor to say the least, muffled by the audience’s restless noise.
"It was such a bad recording and I just wanted to be able to hear him better," Angela told CNN. "Right now, I feel like it's very therapeutic because I feel like it's the journey he's taking.”
So Angela turned to Internet. After posting the video to Reddit, she asked if anyone could help fix the audio or, at the very least, begin the path to cleaning it up. An hour later, she started getting new mixes with cleaner audio.
In total, she received about 20 versions of the clip.
"I never expected so much kindness and so many people taking time out of their day," she said. “We can't express our gratitude enough.”
However, as CNN reported:
The first Christmas without Nathan has been hard for McElhiney and her family and this has been a welcome distraction for her. She tried to thank everyone who responded to her post, but fell behind when the number of comments grew into the thousands.
Twitter, don’t you know that you’re toxic?
Yesterday, hackers found their way onto Sony Music Global’s Twitter account and left a harsh post for a world that just isn’t in the mood for this type of thing. I mean, come on, enough with it already.
Of course, of all the fake news this year, this hacked account was among the poorest. Without even a though to capitalization – let alone syntax — the hackers’ tweet wasn’t really fooling anyone and just being kind of big jerks about everything. Give us a break with "dead by accident."
Sony pulled the tweet and released a follow-up, assuring us that Britney is fine and blaming the hacking group OurMine.
via The Daily Dot/@SonyMusicGlobal
According to the The Daily Dot, “OurMine is the hacking group that took control of several Twitter accounts just last week, including those from the NFL, Netflix, and Marvel. The group also hacked and released the stupidly simple password of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s account back in June.”
Maybe you didn’t hear us: Leave. Britney. Alone.
One part "White Christmas," two parts “Baby Please Come Home.”
What is it that makes Christmas music so Christmassy? Is it the chestnuts? The nutmeg? The cinnamon? Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
According to this new video from Vox, it’s a special chord found in some Christmas song classics that give it that special yuletide feel.
In this video, Vox talks to Adam Ragusea from Mercer University, who explains the influences of Mariah Carey’s hit and breaks the songs down note by note. When played together, Carey’s song sounds an awful lot like Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas” and the Phil Spector-penned “Baby Please Come Home.” But there’s one chord in particular that makes them brings them all together. In music terms, it’s going from a “tonic chord” to a “diminished chord.” But all you need to do is hear how similar these things seem to get the gist.
Check out the video above, and enjoy the songs below. See if you can hear what makes them so Christmassy.
An up-and-coming musician who goes by the name of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart has the best-selling CD of the year. Not Kanye. Not Drake. Not even Salieri. Mozart.
So how did it some guy that no one’s ever heard of sold more CDs than Drake? And how come no one cares for Salieri anymore?
Turns out, Decca released a monster collection in commemoration of the 225th anniversary of Mozart's death, which sold 1.25 million copies in its first five weeks. That’s right, while Salieri was becoming “the patron saint of mediocrity,” Mozart was going platinum.
Mozart 225: The New Complete Edition contains every piece of music Mozart ever wrote, reports Billboard. That's 240 hours worth of music — not that anyone’s trying to make a collection for Salieri, who just wanted to sing to God, but God made him mute.
Still, this man, this creature, who still outsells Salieri, had a trick up his sleeve. The box set contains 200 CDs, so actually 6,250 box sets were sold. So while it’s a lot for someone no one has ever heard of, Drake still beat him in streaming. According to The Verge, Drake, who also outsells Salieri was streamed 4.7 billion times.
And yet, Salieri goes unnoticed, absolving mediocrities everywhere.
Side Note: Milos Forman’s Academy Award-winning biopic of Mozart, Amadeus is streaming on Netflix. If you didn't watch twice a week in band during high school, now's your chance to check it out.
When you’re Shia LaBeouf, the provactive star of a bunch of movies with big fighting robots, you like to start beef.
Whether you’re wearing a bag on your head in the name of art or you’re ripping off a Daniel Clowes comic for your short film, if you’re Shia LaBeouf, you want to push buttons.
But some buttons should not be pushed, as the real Shia has recently learned.
According to Uproxx, “The rift between the two originates from a new freestyle by LaBeouf premiered on The Breakfast Club by Charlamagne Tha God. On the track, the Transformers star namechecks several different hip-hop figures ranging from Drake and Jean-Claude Van Damme to Lil Yachty and Peter Rosenberg, who LaBeouf rhymed with “frozen turd” in a stroke of genius.”
One person who did not find it to be a particular stroke of genius was Atlanta rapper Soulja Boy, who took to Instagram over the verse.
“Shia, you a b*tch *ss n****, you could never come to Atlanta, you could never come to the streets in the hood. You could never live my life, you need to stick to acting, real shit n****. This rap shit ain’t for you n****, for real have some n**** pull up on you, f*ck Shia LaBeouf n****, f*ck you talking about keep my name out your mouth, you don’t want no beef, on my mama. You better stick to acting n**** cause this sh*t get real.”
The message is clear, Shia: Stay out of Atlanta.
If you punch someone in the face at a charity event, does that mean you punched someone in the face for charity?
That’s probably not the question on the mind of country-music star Luke Bryan, who decked a fan at charity concert last night. Bryan was performing at the Charlie Daniels’ 80th Birthday Volunteer Jam, a benefit show for veterans, when he popped some rude dude with a bad 'tude in the front row.
Why did Bryan hit this guy for charity?
According to Taste of Country, the man was making “crude hand gestures,” which questioned Bryan’s honor and the honor of the vets. Without a white glove with which to challenge the heckler to a duel, the musician smacked the man in the face and continued his song. What a bro, er, pro. PRO!
A rep for the musician elaborated, "It was insulting not only to him, but more importantly to the men, women and families sitting around him who were there to support and celebrate Charlie Daniels and the efforts of raising money for the military veterans — some of whom were in the audience. The concert security personnel saw the man’s disruptive actions of the event and he was escorted out.”
Best to just let the musicians play and save your comments for the web, dude.
Have you heard of this musical Hamilton that’s lighting up Broadway? Have you heard of Broadway, the Great White Way?
Have you seen this thing? Heard the soundtrack? Boycotted it? Actively ignored it? Whatever it is, people love it, and at long last, there’s more Hamilton. Sort of.
At midnight last night, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Hamilton’s creator and star, dropped The Hamilton Mixtape, a new album of rappers and pop-stars reinterpreting the songs from Hamilton. And surprise, people are losing it.
Check out some of the best reactions to the mixtape while listening to it here.
Everyone loves Adele, right? With her dulcet tones, she’s captured the hearts of millions of fans worldwide, and they’re not all human.
At her concert in Mexico City on Tuesday night, Adele met the welcoming committee: A bat.
The bat, who’s probably just a huge fan that got a little too excited, fluttered around the concert hall and totally freaked out the “In the Deep” singer. Upon seeing said bat, the Grammy award-winning superstar began flapping her arms as if to mimic the flight of the bat and spinning in circles. She seemed scared.
“Oh my god,” she said. “There’s a f****** bat.”
In the end, Adele, who seemed a little shaken at first warmed up to her new fan and laughed it off.
But this is no laughing matter. Bats are dangerous, they are scary, they turn into vampires, and we should all respect their awesome power. Ok, Adele?
Metallica’s done a lot of brilliant things in their career. They have made or been involved with at least four perfect works of art. Their first three albums and the documentary Some Kind of Monster are cultural touchstones that will be looked to and enjoyed for generations.
They’ve also done some things that have not been so great. In 1999, they led the charge against mp3-sharing platform Napster, which alienated some fans — and got some us kicked off the site, not that we’re holding any grudges. They also released St. Anger, which come on.
Jimmy Fallon loves to play games and have fun. He likes to make politicians wear funny pants and give noogies to a reality gameshow host turned most powerful person on the planet. It’s his thing.
And now there’s this, a video of Metallica performing “Enter Sandman” with Jimmy Fallon and The Roots on classroom instruments. Only time will tell if this falls into their works of cultural touchstones or cultural blunders. But honestly, it’ll probably just be a cute thing that makes a lot of people smile for three minutes. Enjoy!
Drake made good on his promise "to buy the neighbors house if they complain about the noise":
His new digs, according to Trulia's Hidden Hills, were "built in 1955, is a charming ranch-style house tucked away on a peaceful cul-de-sac. Located on 1 acre, the 4,445-square-foot four-bedroom, five-bathroom home is the perfect cozy complement to the 7,444-square-foot home next door."
Time for some loud parties, yo'
Norwegian metal legend Fenriz is now "Councilman Gylve Fenris Nagell" for the next four years. He's officially an alternate, showing up when folks get sick or can't attend meetings at the local neighborhood council in Kolbotn, a suburb of Oslo.
According to Factmag,
What a cuddly potential Mayor:
We're all pretty psyched about it...
Drake and Future were performing at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix Tuesday night when a thief (or thieves) made off with a suitcase containing $2-$3 Million dollars worth of jewelry. The suitcase has been on one of the tour buses that the thieves had broken into.
Drake freaked out when he heard the news, and security footage is being reviewed to catch a glimpse of the criminals.
Good thing Drake has a hotline set up for just these purposes...