The Week in Music Politics:
Rihanna spoke with French President Emmanuel Macron two weeks ago about improving children’s education around the world, and this week Rihanna continues to just do great things. Traveling to Malawi, Rihanna gave children their bikes and scholarships which will last as a five year partnership. She’s just the best. She also recently called a beat Diplo sent her “reggae music in an airport,” so she’s hilarious as well.
Also getting a lot of buzz this week is Taylor Swift’s sexual assault trial. Testifying this Thursday, Swift claimed that a radio DJ had reached under her skirt and grabbed her ass during a photo session back in 2013. “He stayed attached to my bare ass-cheek as I lurched away from him,” she said. He sued Taylor afterwards for $3 million in defamation claiming that she cost him his job and his reputation. Taylor, on the other hand, isn’t asking for any money, just justice against sexual assault. Pictured above is a court room sketch of Taylor Swift that looks nothing like her. (UPDATE): The judge has officially dismissed the DJ’s lawsuit and the jury will hear the closing remarks this Monday.
The Week in Music Role Models:
Big Boi visited a young five-year old girl in Atlanta this week that was paralyzed when a gunman took fire into a children’s bounce house, and brought her a puppy. A breeder of bulldogs himself, the Outkast rapper had heard that she had always wanted a puppy before the accident paralyzed her from the waist down, so after hearing the story, Big Boi gave her one of his own. Watch here.
The Week in Music Business:
In Mid-July, Wiz Khalifa and Charlie Puth’s “See You Again” surpassed PSY’s “Gangnam Style” as the most watched YouTube video of all time. This week changes the title-holder once more, as the video for Daddy Yankee and Luis Fonsi’s “Despacito” takes the number one spot with 3,130,491,596 views (as of 8/11).
Shea Serrano’s book on the history of rap music, titled The Rap Year Book, chronicles the most important rap song of every year. According to Variety and AMC, Questlove and Black Thought of the Roots are going to executive produce a show called Visionaries, a six-episode series revolving around the important hip-hop songs of the past and the MC’s who created them. No information about when the show will air. Google also celebrated the birth of hip-hop this week with a Doodle for the 44th Anniversary here.
Also this week, SoundCloud was saved from its untimely demise with a $170 million invesment and regime change from Temasek (a merchant bank and investment company out of Singapore). No news as of yet to how the platform might change, but it’s here to stay… for now.
The Week in Music Oddities:
If you’re both a Jack White fan and a Detroit Tigers fan, you’re in luck, as each purchase of White’s new aptly-named single “Strike Out” will include Detroit Tigers tickets. It sounds as weird as his bowling alley that includes a ball with Bob Dylan’s face on it.
Pharrell got stuck in an elevator for a half-hour this week on his way to the premiere of his new Netflix animated series True and the Rainbow Kingdom, with the song “Happy” ironically playing in the elevator car until the rescuers broke him out.
Also this week, Kidd Creole of Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five was indicted for murder. He allegedly stabbed a homeless man to death for “hitting on him.”
In even more outrageous news, Liam Gallagher of Oasis, someone who is constantly outspoken, thought rapper A$AP Rocky’s name was “WhatsApp Ricky.” “That’s a better fucking name anyway,” he said, and I happen to agree. Another outspoken comment this week, Chance the Rapper said in an interview with NPR that he has a “bigger voice than Donald Trump…” yikes. You don’t, Chance. He’s the President.
The Week in Music Releases:
- Kesha – Rainbow
- Ugly God – The Booty Tape
- Sean Price – Imperious Rex
- The Districts – Popular Manipulations
- Guided by Voices – How Do You Spell Heaven
Lastly, if you haven’t had a chance to see it yet, here’s the new jam: “Kinda Crazy” by Drake’s dad, Dennis Graham.