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Hip Hop News
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Janet Jackson Denies Working on New Album


Image Courtesy Mary Ellen Matthews/UniversalIs Janet Jackson working on new music? That seemed to be the question after her vocal producer and engineer Ian Cross announced that the the singer was reportedly back in the studio to record the follow-up to 2008's Discipline.

Cross, who contributed to Jackson's last three studio albums, claimed they were recording around the world during an interview with Bare Foot Sound.

"The Janet Jacksons of the world can’t just spend their time in one studio in one city anymore…we’ve been working in Qatar. We’ve been working in Paris, the Middle East, and now we feel like we can work anywhere," he said.  "The new album is going to be great. It’s a process. There’s a lot in store, yet to come."

However, Janet has responded to the claims by posting a message to fans on Twitter. "If there is a new project, you'll hear it from my lips," she wrote.

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Jeremih Renames Upcoming Album "Late Nights: The Album"


Image Courtesy Def JamJeremih is headed into a new direction with his third studio album. The singer has announced that he's changed the title of his upcoming project from Thumpy Johnson to Late Nights: The Album.

The singer tells XXL that his set will serve as a continuation of his popular mixtape, Late Nights with Jeremih.

"The last body of work I put out was Late Nights," said Jeremih. "I still feel like how I was feeling when I recorded that. I was traveling, up late nights, recording all the time."

He continued, "My first two albums I was making sad songs. I don’t feel like that no more. I was in a relationship then. I’m single as hell right now. You’re getting the best of my last single years."

Before he releases Late Nights: The Album on September 30, fans will be able to download Jeremih's new mixtape, titled N.O.M.A (Not on My Album) on August 4.

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Kendrick Lamar to Debut Short Film at Sundance NEXT Fest


Image Courtesy Mark Davis/NBC

Next weekend will see Kendrick Lamar debuting m.A.A.d, a 14-minute short film inspired by his classic debut album, good kid, m.A.A.d city.

The project, which was helmed by award-winning director Kahlil Joseph, will premiere at Sundance’s first annual NEXT Fest, a mini-film festival showcasing budding directors and rising artists.

The film has been described as "a kaleidoscope of storylines and ideas that defy typical categorization to explore new languages and new forms."

The event takes place Saturday, August 9 at the Theatre at Ace Hotel.

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Ne-Yo Shows Off New Girlfriend in "Money Can’t Buy" Video


Image courtesy Frank Micelotta/FOXJust a week after confirming his new relationship, Ne-Yo shows his affection for his model girlfriend Crystal Renay in the video for his latest single, "Money Can’t Buy" featuring Jeezy.

In the clip, posted to his YouTube page, the singer spends quality time with his special lady as they hang out during a family birthday party. Later, the pair head to the beach and watch the waves crash.

"Money Can’t Buy" is the first release from Ne-Yo's upcoming, sixth album, Nonfiction. The set is due to arrive later this year featuring collaborations with T.I. and Trey Songz.


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There’s Another Aaliyah Biopic Coming Out Next Year


Photo by Kevin Mazur/WireImageAlthough Lifetime is already in production on a TV biopic of Aaliyah, the late singer's life will also be retold on the big screen.

According to Sister2Sister, a feature film about the singer will arrive next year, featuring some of her classic tracks as well as some unreleased music.

"We’re in a position where we can do the feature film and we can do the music," said a source close to production.

Singer B. Simone has been hired to portray the singer, who was affectionately called Babygirl. Other possible co-stars are said to include Terrence Howard and Wood Harris.

Unlike Lifetime's Aaliyah: Princess of R&B biopic, Aaliyah’s uncle and former manager Barry Hankerson is working with scriptwriter and author Zane to produce the film project. 

"I think if we do our due-diligence, people will watch the TV movie and still say, 'I need to see the feature film,'" the source said.

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Kelly Rowland Gushes About Her "Amazing" Husband Tim Witherspoon; Reveals She's Having a Baby Boy


Kelsey McNeal/FOXKelly Rowland had nothing but great things to say about Tim Witherspoon, her husband and daddy-to-be to her child.

During an interview with E! News,  the pregnant singer expressed her joy about preparing for her first child, who is due this fall.

"I'm extremely excited. First of course for myself and my husband. We couldn't be more happy," Rowland says.

"He's just super supportive. He's like have you eaten today? Did you take your vitamins? Did you drink enough water? He's so hands on and I'm just so blessed," she adds. "I just love him, he's like the greatest guy ever. He's so awesome I just can't believe how blessed I am...and he is too! He's an amazing man."

Kelly accidentally revealed she’s having a baby boy during an interview with Fox411.  Speaking about her pregnancy, the 33-year-old Caress spokeswoman said, “So far, everything has been good. I just feel like the baby is already [spoiled] rotten -- like literally, my Caress family has gotten him all of his little bathing stuff, his toys. It’s just so cool.”

Kelly immediately realized she used the pronoun “his” and tried to retract her comment, only to give up and declare, “Aw, f**k. It’s a boy. It’s a boy.”

This will be the first child for the newlyweds, who exchanged vows in a private ceremony in May in Costa Rica.

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Lil Wayne Discusses "Tha Carter V" in XXL’s New Issue


Image Courtesy Cash Money RecordsLil Wayne graces the front of the August issue of XXL magazine, in which he discusses his 12th studio album, Tha Carter V. The rapper reveals that his Carter series has transformed into a movement that he didn't anticipate.

"I was feeling the success of Tha Carter I. I felt like people wanted to hear me. I was amped to do that, but then Tha Carter III? I don’t know what happened," he tells the mag. "It was amazing. And then Tha Carter IV was just unexplainable, and now this one here, there’s no words. I just hope everyone likes it."

Wayne adds that he feels anxious about how people will respond to his highly anticipated set. "I’m always feeling like I ain’t done sh**. I’m still nervous about Tha Carter V… I’m confident about what I do, but I’m still nervous about what people think."

If his lead single, "Believe Me" featuring Drake, is any indication, the rapper will be just fine. The song currently sits in the #1 spot on Billboard’s R&B/Hip-Hop Airplay chart.

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K. Michelle Teases Instagram Pictures from Studio Session


Image Courtesy Atlantic RecordsSince announcing that she was working on her sophomore album, K. Michelle has remained tight lipped about the progress and direction of her upcoming effort. Now, the singer has given fans a quick glimpse into her recent recording session.

The singer shared an image of herself in the studio via Instagram, in which she seemingly refers to the disc as "AWBAH."

"My heart breaks just like glass on the floor. Outside looking in I'm so strong ?? AWBAH," she wrote in the caption.

In another shot, the singer stands before a mixing board and declares: "Yea I might be crazy but I'm talented as f**k!!"

She also teased what appears to be a song lyric: "It'll soon be over when my thoughts are sober AWBAH."

The set will serve as the follow-up to last year's Rebellious Soul.

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Report: Nicki Minaj Pushed Back "Anaconda" Release for Beyoncé Collaboration


Frazer Harrison/Getty Images via ABCNicki Minaj may have a great reason for delaying the release of her upcoming single, "Anaconda." The rapper is reportedly working on a collaboration with Beyonce, according to HipHopWired.

The site quotes an industry source as saying Nicki pushed back her new song to make sure it wouldn't be overshadowed by the duet, which will mark the first time the pair have worked together. The source's claims seem to support what Bey's management company, Parkwood Entertainment, confirmed last December via Twitter -- that the pair were recording a tune for Nicki's album.

As previously reported, Minaj kept a tight lip about the delay, writing on Instagram, "My darlingz, I’ve pushed the release of Anaconda to next week, Monday 8/4. I promise you will understand why before the week is out. Loveeeeeeee uuuuuu."

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Chris Brown's "Loyal" Goes Platinum


Image Courtesy RCA Records

Chris Brown's music career managed to stay afloat during his extended jail stint thanks to his hit single "Loyal," which just hit a new milestone.

The singer has announced on Twitter that his catchy tune, which features Lil Wayne and Tyga, has officially reached platinum status, meaning the song has sold more than one million copies.

"1,000,000 units! #Loyal has now reached platinum sales. Thank you Team Breezy!," he tweeted.

He later added, "These hoes ain't loyal but my fans damn sure are!"

The singer will have plenty of time to celebrate as he's currently sailing on a yacht in Saint Tropez and Marbella, Spain to host several club gigs.

Last week, Brown thanked his fans for making the song's accompanying video Vevo Certified for garnering 100 million views.

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Kanye West Tops "GQ"'s "21 Best Albums of the 21st Century" List


Dana Edelson/NBCKanye West has the best album of the 21st century, according to GQ.

The publication awarded the rapper's 2010 effort, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, with the top spot on its list of the best albums of the century so far, calling it a "hard-won, titanic achievement" on the culture.

"It could've been any one of the seven albums West released this century, as fascinating a catalog of celebrity, triumph, love, loss, terrible puns, pretty decent puns, that was ever f***ing put together by a single artist," GQ says. "MBDTF was just the record where he talked about all those things at once -- a portrait of a man seizing the spotlight, drowning in it, and then somehow finding a way to turn that harrowing experience into art."

The mag suggests that "anybody who wants to be famous or make music for a living -- or do both at the same time --should be forced to listen to MBDTF first."

The GQ list also includes OutKast's Stankonia, Frank Ocean's Channel Orange, and  Jay Z's The Blueprint, among others.

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Miguel Producing Girlfriend Nazanin Mandi's Debut Album


Kevin Mazur/WireImage via ABCIn addition to working on his third studio effort, Miguel is contributing to the debut album of his longtime girlfriend, model Nazanin Mandi.

The crooner has signed on as executive producer of the set, which Mandi describes as a collaborative project.

"When we head to the studio, we automatically turn off relationship mode and go into work mode. If he doesn’t like something, if I’m doing it wrong, if I’m not feeling a song or lyric, we’re 120 percent honest," Mandi says in an interview with Complex. "In order for this to work the way we need it to, we have to put our feelings aside and become business-minded. And that’s exactly what we’re doing."

Mandi adds that Miguel helped her hone her artistry.

"I was always too shy to even sing in front of him or say, 'I want to do this.' But one day, maybe three years ago, I had a breakdown and he said, 'Babe, you have to let me help you. You can do this, you’re a star, and I’m not just saying that because I am your man. I see it, everyone else sees it, you have to see it, and I think it’s time that you open your eyes.' And since then, we’ve been working with each other," says Mandi.

While Mandi has yet to announce the details for her first album, Miguel is expected to release his follow-up to Kaleidoscope Dream this fall.

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Alicia Keys Expecting Second Child with Swizz Beatz


Michelangelo Di Battista/RCA RecordsAlicia Keys gifted her husband, Swizz Beatz, with the sweetest wedding anniversary gift ever: she's expecting her second child with him.

On Thursday, the R&B singer announced the news via Instagram. "Happy Anniversary to the love of my life @therealswizzz !! And to make it even sweeter we've been blessed with another angel on the way!! You make me happier than I have ever known! Here's to many many more years of the best parts of life!" Alicia accompanied the post with a picture of herself, beaming as she cradles her baby bump in her hands, standing next to her smiling husband.


The couple, who wed July 31, 2010, already have a three-year-old son, Egypt Dean.

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Beyonce Posts Family Photos to Instagram Amid Divorce Rumors


Image Courtesy Cliff Lipson/CBSFollowing reports of that she was apartment-hunting for a $21.5 million pad without her husband, Beyonce continues to use her Instagram seemingly to suggest that everything is fine between her and Jay Z.

In a recently posted picture, the rapper is snapped walking along the beach with their daughter Blue Ivy.  "My favorite hue is JayZ Blue," Bey wrote in the caption.

Fans seemed to have read between the lines. One commented, "I like to think of this as hope the rumors aren't true," while another chimed in: "Damage control."

Meanwhile, sources close to the couple continue to leak new details about the alleged strain in their marriage.

"This is a classic case of damage control. Staged photos, tweets, it’s a business relationship," a source tells the New York Daily News. "They’re on tour and to get through the tour they have to put up a persona. It’s all spelled out. It’s more financially beneficial for them to continue the tour and the Instagrams and tweets while all this is happening. That’s how damage control works."

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Janelle Monáe Releases Video for "Electric Lady"


Image Courtesy Altantic Records

Janelle Monae has finally released the video for her latest single, "Electric Lady," lifted from her album of the same name.

In the clip, posted on her YouTube page, the singer transforms into a college kid who is in a sorority called the Electro Phi Betas. After throwing an epic house party, Janelle dances with friends, including T.I., T-Boz, Estelle, Esperanza Spalding and Monica, among others.

The video comes after Janelle recently honored First lady Michelle Obama as the "First Electric Lady."

"First of all, I am honored to be the First Electric Lady. I got my letter in the mail -- I framed it; it’s up," said Michelle Obama in a statement. "I love that she is one of the young artists here who is making music that means something. She has a message. She has a voice. She has a power in her."

President Barack Obama echoed the same sentiments. "Anybody who gets a chance to talk to [Janelle], this is just a remarkable, strong, smart young lady," he said. "And I have to say nice things about her because she may be the only person in possession of a video in which I try to keep up with her and Usher on the dance floor. Now, this is top secret. She has promised that this will never be released. But she can blackmail me at any time."

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Keyshia Cole to Premiere Video for "She"


Image Courtesy Interscope RecordsKeyshia Cole is scheduled to release the video for her new single, "She," on BET's 106 & Park later today.

The singer announced the news on her Instagram page and included four stills shots from her upcoming visual.

"Tune in to BET @106andpark 2day @ 6pm EST to see the premiere of my new video "SHE" #106&park #bet #PointOfNoReturn," Cole wrote in the accompanying caption.

The song is lifted from her highly anticipated album, Point of No Return, due out this fall.

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Jennifer Hudson Contributes to Stand Up to Cancer


ABC/Richard HarbaughJennifer Hudson has partnered with Stand Up to Cancer (SU2C) and biotech company Genentech for their latest campaign, “Two Worlds. One Dream.”

The singer, who serves as an SU2C Ambassador, will star in a new public service announcement to spotlight the latest efforts in the fight against cancer.

“I, like many others, have friends and loved ones who have been affected by cancer,” said Hudson in a statement. “I’m proud to join Genentech and Stand Up to Cancer on this PSA campaign, which showcases cancer researchers as the rock stars they really are and highlights the importance of supporting their vital work.”

For more information on the campaign, visit StandUp2Cancer.org.

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Common Scores Top Five Debut with "Nobody’s Smiling"


Image Courtesy Def Jam RecordingsCommon has secured a top five debut with his latest album, Nobody’s Smiling.

The rapper’s tenth studio effort has entered the Billboard 200 album chart at #5 selling 24,000 copies in its first week. It's his highest-charting album since Finding Forever debuted at #1 in 2007.

Although Nobody's Smiling is Common's third top 10 set, his previous album, 2011′s The Dreamer/The Believer, had a stronger sales start with 69,000 units sold.

The disc features guest appearances from Jhené Aiko and Big Sean.

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Chris Brown Shows Off $1.5 Million Dogs on Instagram


Sara De Boer/STARTRAKS PHOTO via ABC

Chris Brown has expensive taste. The singer posted an Instagram video to show off the "most expensive dogs in the world."

In the clip, Breezy reveals that a pair of Tibetan mastiffs are an estimated $1.5 million each.

"Man, yall gonna have to step your game up," he says in the clip. "These dogs, I'm about to show yall..its 3 million dollars worth."

Although he did not confirm if the dogs actually belonged to him, fans seems to have mixed feelings about the pricy dogs. One fan commented, "I bet when a he goes broke he gonna be trying 2 sell them dogs... #SMDH #WasteOfMoney." Another added, "They are cute."

The video racked up 152,000 likes.

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Eminem & Rihanna Prepare for Their Monster Tour


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Eminem and Rihanna are gearing up for their joint, three-city Monster Tour, which will visit Slim Shady's hometown of Detroit, among other places. Following Rih's tweet last week about loving her tour band, Eminem has shared a photo of himself and Rih Rih during rehearsals.

In the Instagram picture, a stone-faced Eminem poses next to the singer who is sitting next to a keyboard -- both are wearing causal outfits and fitted caps.

The duo are scheduled to begin their short outing at Pasadena, California's Rose Bowl on August 7 and wrap up at Detroit's Comerica Park on August 23. Tickets are still available for select dates. Visit Eminem.com for all the information.

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