While Adele continues to conquer the world with her record-breaking 21, an honest collection of bluesy, rollicking odes to heartbreak and sorrow (which is still the best-selling record of 2012, despite being released last year), England may well have just found themselves their next humble hometown glory by the name of Jessie Ware.
Earlier this evening, the Associated Press confirmed that Whitney Houston died at age 48.
Whitney’s death is no more or less tragic than that of any one person’s struggle with addiction, but the fact that she was and forever will be a musical icon made her own inner demons as universally known as her music. As with Amy Winehouse‘s untimely death last year, Whitney’s passing is a tragic reminder that addiction is a disease and that no one–not even a legend–can survive chronic self-destructive behavior without help.
Ultimately however, Whitney’s legacy will extend far beyond the tragedy of her demise.
By numbers alone she reigns supreme, having sold over 170 million albums, singles and videos worldwide. She shattered records constantly, from becoming the first female in history to debut at #1 on the Billboard 200, to becoming the only artist to notch seven consecutive #1 singles. According to the Guiness Book of World Records, she’s the most heavily awarded musical artist in history, including 6 Grammys, 22 American Music Awards and 30 Billboard Awards.
She touched millions across the world with her music, which has only continued to impact pop culture: Britney, Lady Gaga, Beyonce–all of our favorite contemporary pop stars credit Whitney as one of the key inspirations for their own careers.
The songs she sang–”I Will Always Love You,” “I Wanna Dance With Somebody,” “Greatest Love Of All”–aren’t just memorable pop songs, but classic anthems that will go down in history as the most defining records of all time. How often do we watch as an Idol or X Factor contestant gets brutally dismissed after failing to pull off a Whitney song? It’s because no one does or will do it better than Whitney.
It was her voice–that voice–which made Whitney Houston truly larger than life, whether found in the joyful revelry of her uptempo dance tracks or the devastating, crushing depth displayed on her power ballads. She was, quite simply, the best.
Rest in peace, Whitney.
As we all know by now, Beyonce‘s been churning out singles from 4 in radio, remix and video form for the entire year.
It’s been a bit exhausting, and at this point, I’m fairly certain that the entire album’s been released in one way or another. Well, except for MY FAVORITE SONG ON THE ALBUM OBVIOUSLY: “I Miss You.” (UGH! Give it some love already, Bey!)
Nevertheless, “End of Time” is one of the best songs off of King B’s fourth studio package, and the diva’s just gone ahead and unleashed a whole bunch of official remixes onto her SoundCloud.
The Wideboys mix gives the song a nuts o’clock wailing alarm call, while the Wawa take provides a reliable club thumpa-thump. Better still is the Manny Lehman “Labor of Love” remix, which gives the song a slightly ‘millennial banga’ re-rub (think Jennifer Lopez‘s “Waiting For Tonight” green laser lights). But far and away the best remix of the bunch is the Redtop remix–which is basically from another planet. (Or rather, from yesteryear.)
As my friend David described it, the Redtop mix of “End of Time” is “like a Madonna record from 1987.” Truly! Once those classic synths come shooting into the speakers, don’t be surprised if you hear “And you can dance…for inspiration” echoing in the distance. But the throwback track isn’t just a touch of Madge–it’s a glorious Jackson 5-meets-Whitney Houston jubilee of flashing lights, blaring horns and funky rhythms that’ll make you want to throw on your mom’s best sequined number and go sashaying right down to the grocery store in full glam mode. (Caution: Don’t actually do that.)
So check out all the official remixes streaming below, and get ready to get into the groove just in time for the New Year!
4 was released on June 28. (iTunes)
If you’re looking for Sasha Fierce, don’t bother: She’s gone.
Well, not entirely–she’s certainly still there twerking her hips above the militant beat of “Run The World (Girls)” and the frenzied horn-filled club bounce of “Countdown,” but for the most part, the divalicious alter ego of one of the world’s greatest entertainers has (temporarily?) stepped a stiletto to the side for the majority of her fourth studio album, 4–allowing the record to remain a decidedly Beyoncé experience.
On Saturday night, Lady Gaga sat spread eagle atop a delivery table on the stage of Saturday Night Live, belting out “Born This Way” while grasping her very pregnant prosthetic belly before flooding the delivery table with goo and glitter.
“My water just broke,” the 25-year-old superstar tweeted late on Sunday night. And today, on May 23, Born This Way, Gaga’s second studio album, was born to the world.