MTVSome of the biggest names in music will be in attendance at the 2015 MTV Video Music Awards tonight.
Pharrell Williams, A$AP Rocky, and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis will all take the stage at the Miley Cyrus-hosted ceremony on Sunday night. They'll be joining previously announced performer The Weeknd, who will showcase his chart-topping hit, "Can’t Feel My Face."
Beyonce is up for awards in five categories, including Video of the Year and Best Female Video for "7/11," as well as Best Choreography. Other nominees include Kendrick Lamar, who scored four nominations -- the rapper's "Alright" will compete for Best Hip-Hop Video against Fetty Wap’s “Trap Queen,” Nicki Minaj’s “Anaconda,” Wiz Khalifa’s “See You Again” and Big Sean’s “IDFWU” featuring E-40.
Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran lead nominees with nine and six nods, respectively. Kanye West will be the recipient of the Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award.
The 2015 MTV VMAs will air live from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday, August 30, at 9 p.m. ET.
Here's a full list of nominees:
VIDEO OF THE YEAR Beyoncé -- “7/11” Ed Sheeran -- “Thinking Out Loud” Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Bad Blood” Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars -- “Uptown Funk” Kendrick Lamar -- “Alright”
BEST MALE VIDEO Ed Sheeran -- “Thinking Out Loud” Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars -- “Uptown Funk” Kendrick Lamar -- “Alright” The Weeknd -- “Earned It” Nick Jonas -- “Chains”
BEST FEMALE VIDEO Beyoncé -- “7/11” Taylor Swift -- “Blank Space” Nicki Minaj -- “Anaconda” Sia -- “Elastic Heart” Ellie Goulding -- “Love Me Like You Do”
BEST HIP HOP VIDEO Fetty Wap -- “Trap Queen” Nicki Minaj -- “Anaconda” Kendrick Lamar -- “Alright” Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth -- “See You Again” Big Sean ft. E-40 -- “IDFWU”
BEST POP VIDEO Beyoncé -- “7/11” Ed Sheeran -- “Thinking Out Loud” Taylor Swift -- “Blank Space” Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars -- “Uptown Funk” Maroon 5 -- “Sugar”
BEST ROCK VIDEO Hozier -- “Take Me to Church” Fall Out Boy -- “Uma Thurman” Florence the Machine -- “Ship to Wreck” Walk the Moon -- “Shut Up and Dance” Arctic Monkeys -- “Why'd You Only Call Me When You're High?”
ARTIST TO WATCH Fetty Wap -- “Trap Queen” Vance Joy -- “Riptide” George Ezra -- “Budapest” James Bay -- “Hold Back The River” FKA Twigs -- “Pendulum”
BEST COLLABORATION Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Bad Blood” Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars -- “Uptown Funk” Wiz Khalifa ft. Charlie Puth -- “See You Again” Ariana Grande & The Weeknd -- “Love Me Harder” Jessie J, Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj -- “Bang Bang"
VIDEO WITH A SOCIAL MESSAGE Jennifer Hudson -- “I Still Love You” Colbie Caillat -- “Try” Big Sean ft. Kanye West and John Legend -- “One Man Can Change the World” Rihanna -- “American Oxygen” Wale -- “The White Shoes”
BEST CHOREOGRAPHY Beyoncé -- “7/11” (Beyoncé, Chris Grant, Additional choreography: Gabriel Valenciano) OK Go -- “I Won’t Let You Down” (OK Go, air:man and Mori Harano) Chet Faker -- “Gold” (Ryan Heffington) Ed Sheeran -- “Don’t” (Nappy Tabs) Flying Lotus ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Never Catch Me” (Keone and Mari Madrid)
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY Flying Lotus ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Never Catch Me” (Larkin Sieple) Ed Sheeran -- “Thinking Out Loud” (Daniel Pearl) Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Bad Blood” (Christopher Probst) FKA Twigs -- “Two Weeks” (Justin Brown) Alt-J -- “Left Hand Free” (Mike Simpson)
BEST DIRECTION Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Bad Blood” (Joseph Kahn) Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars -- “Uptown Funk” (Bruno Mars & Cameron Duddy) Kendrick Lamar -- “Alright” (Colin Tilley & The Little Homies) Hozier -- “Take Me to Church” (Brendan Canty and Conal Thomson of Feel Good Lost) Childish Gambino -- “Sober” (Hiro Murai)
BEST EDITING Beyoncé -- “7/11” (Beyoncé, Ed Burke, Jonathan Wing) Ed Sheeran -- “Don’t” (Jacquelyn London) Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Bad Blood” (Chancler Haynes at Cosmo Street) A$AP Rocky -- “L$D” (Dexter Navy) Skrillex & Diplo -- “Where Are U Now" with Justin Bieber (Brewer)
BEST VISUAL EFFECTS Taylor Swift ft. Kendrick Lamar -- “Bad Blood” (Ingenuity Studios) FKA Twigs -- “Two Weeks” (Gloria FX, Tomash Kuzmytskyi, and Max Chyzhevskyy) Childish Gambino -- “Telegraph Ave.” (Gloria FX) Skrillex & Diplo -- “Where Are U Now" with Justin Bieber (Brewer) Tyler, the Creator -- “F****** Young/Death Camp” (Gloria FX)
Image Courtesy UniversalToday marks the tenth anniversary of Hurricane Katrina's battering of New Orleans, and Solange Knowles is among the artists featured in a day filled with special activities as part of the rebuilding celebration in that city.
Beyonce’s sister will headline a benefit concert at the House of Blues with special surprise guests. The performance is presented by Brad Pitt’s Make It Right charity, which he founded in 2007 to rebuild the city's Lower 9th Ward with affordable housing for people affected by the hurricane. The neighborhood was inundated after the city's levee system failed. Make It Right has built 109 homes and breaks ground on new homes every month. The houses are available to teachers, fire fighters, police officers, emergency medical technicians, and people who lived in the Lower 9th Ward before Hurricane Katrina.
Solange lives in New Orleans, and according to Make it Right spokesperson Taylor Royle, she “embodies so much of what people all over the world love about New Orleans: creativity, enthusiasm, innovation and an experience you can’t find anywhere else, with anyone else.”
Image Courtesy Universal/InsterscopeThe Game revealed the artwork for his new album Documentary 2 and has announced the release date.
The Compton rapper posted on Instagram that the album will arrive September 25, and he debuted the cover photo -- a shot of himself bare chested in front of a barbed wire fence with “Compton” boldly tattooed across his stomach.
In his lengthy post, the rapper wrote that the album is part of the proud hip-hop history of his hometown, “After Kendrick [Lamar] dropped his album, then Dr. Dre dropped Compton then the movie doing 100 million after just 2 weeks.” He continued, “This album will add to my cities [sic] continuous legacy !!!! I'm proud to be from #COMPTON & I wish #EazyE was alive to see us flourish yet again.”
The Game also commented that the album is his way of telling the story of Compton. “This album cover represents the struggle to stay alive in a city where CRIPS & BLOODS have been at war since 1972.” He added. “It's because of you 'THE FANS' I will again get to give you my documented accounts of life here in Los Angeles.”
Image Courtesy James Minchin III/UniversalBabyface and Toni Braxton are touring together in South Africa through September 3, and Babyface recalls how he convinced her to end her retirement.
The Grammy-winning artist, composer and producer told the South African website IOL, “It was more about trying to get her back into wanting to be in music again.” He adds, “It made sense because she had a lot of things she wanted to talk about and emotions she wanted to get out and there’s no better way to do that than through song.”
Braxton launched her career in 1993 on the La’Face label owned by Babyface, born Kenneth Edmonds, and L.A. Reid. She briefly retired in 2013, however she returned with the 2014 Grammy -winning duet album she recorded with Babyface, Love, Marriage & Divorce. They also performed together in the Broadway musical After Midnight.
Edmonds is now completing his tenth solo album called Return to Tender Lover, a title inspired by his second album, Tender Lover, in 1989.
“I listened to Tender Lover and remembered the feeling of it,” says Babyface. “Not that I’m trying to re-do it, but I want to go back to the feeling of hopeful love -- which is what that song was about and what I want my music to be about today, being hopeful. It’s new music with the same feeling.”
“In light of new developments disputing that Chief Keef is the father of Baby Sno, the streaming TV and music platform FilmOn.com is retracting the right to let the mother, Lauren Woods, use the middle name FilmOn.Com until paternity is settled,” he said in a statement Friday. “We wish Ms. Woods all the best.”
This was a reversal of his Thursday announcement when he said, “Chief Keef and his newest baby mama have agreed to name the newborn Sno FilmOn.Com Cozart in order to promote the release of Sosa’s double album Bang 3 with FilmOn Music and MondoTunes on September 18.”
Bang 3 is Keef’s third studio album and the final edition in his Bang trilogy.
ABC/Randy HolmesRita Ora has added more star power to her “Body on Me” duet with Chris Brown by collaborating with the hottest new rapper of 2015, Fetty Wap.
Fetty remixed the single and recorded additional rhymes for a new version that debuted Friday. Ora and Brown will perform the song live for the first time September 8 on Jimmy Kimmel Live! Rita's upcoming album also features Wiz Khalifa, who performed the song “Religion” with her Wednesday night in Los Angeles.
Ora will be a presenter at Sunday’s MTV Music Video Awards in Los Angeles, where Fetty and Khalifa will compete for Best Hip-Hop Video. Fetty is nominated for “Trap Queen,” and Khalifa is up for “See You Again,” featuring Charlie Puth.
Image Courtesy Lamar Taylor/Republic RecordsToday is The WeekndMadness day. In addition to the release of his new CD, Beauty Behind the Madness, tickets also went on sale for his Madness 2015 Fall Tour. The Toronto native is embracing the spotlight, and tells TIME magazine, "I want to make pop cool again, and the only way I can do that is by being ambitious and grand.”
As he drops his second studio album, The Weeknd believes he’s placed a firm imprint on the music industry. “The game is changing with songs like ‘Earned It’ as opposed to it changing me.” Yet he's also disappointed in his previous work: “I just felt like I was selling myself short,” he says.” The last album (Kiss Land) was rushed. Even though I’m proud of it, I didn’t get to spend as much time as I wanted.”
The Weeknd made sure he took his time recording Beauty Behind the Madness. "I learned, I studied and I delivered,” he comments. “I want the world to hear my music and see the movement my fans and I have created.”
Here's the itinerary for the Madness 2015 Fall Tour:
11/3 -- Toronto, Ontario, Air Canada Centre 11/6 -- Chicago, IL, United Center 11/7 -- Detroit, MI, Palace of Auburn Hills 11/11 -- Newark, NJ, Prudential Center 11/12 -- Boston, MA, DCU Center 11/14 -- Uncasville, CT, Mohegan Sun 11/15 -- Washington, D.C., Verizon Center 11/16 -- New York, NY, Madison Square Garden 11/18 -- Brooklyn, NY, Barclays Center 11/24 -- Montreal, Quebec, Bell Centre 11/27 -- Winnipeg, Manitoba, MTS Centre 11/29 -- Calgary, Alberta, Scotiabank Saddledome 11/30 -- Edmonton, Alberta, Rexall Place 12/2 -- Vancouver, British Columbia, Rogers Arena 12/5 -- Oakland, CA, Oracle Arena 12/8 -- Los Angeles, CA, The Forum 12/13 -- Houston, TX, Toyota Center 12/15 -- Atlanta, GA, Philips Arena 12/17 -- Tampa, FL, Amalie Arena 12/19 -- Miami, FL, American Airlines Arena
Image Courtesy Gomillion & LeupoldTinashe has been in show business since she was three years old, and now at the age of 22, she says she’s waiting on her record label to catch up to her non-stop work mode.
"There's politics involved in everything,” she tells Billboard. “It's about them getting it together to master my schedule.” The singer from Lexington, Kentucky has recorded 30 songs for her second album, tentatively set for release in November. She also recently opened for Nicki Minaj, and is preparing to join the Katy Perry tour later this year.
Tinashe enjoyed success in 2014 with her debut album Aquarius and her first single “2 On." They both peaked at number three on the urban charts, yet she refuses to be categorized. "I don't see myself as an urban niche act," she says. "I want to have mainstream success that doesn't feel forced or label-made."
Image Courtesy Lamar Taylor/Republic RecordsThe Weeknd releases his second studio album, Beauty Behind The Madness, on Friday, and he says he was inspired to write songs by the late Michael Jackson, the anniversary of whose birth is Saturday.
The singer from Toronto covered Jackson’s “Dirty Diana” on his 2012 album Trilogy, and when he read the song’s lyrics, he tells Billboard, “I got emotional -- it’s when I first knew I wanted to write songs.”
Thanks to “Love Me Harder,” his top ten duet with Ariana Grande, and “Can’t Feel My Face,” which remained at number one for nine weeks, The Weeknd has achieved mainstream success, which he says can be uncomfortable. “The pop-star life is a new challenge,” he admits. The singer also says he was shocked by the crowd response when he performed with Taylor Swift at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey in July.
“When she introduced me and the whole stadium screamed their lungs out, it kind of threw me off,” he remembers. "I did not expect that reaction.”
Now he’s working with superstars such as Kanye West, who produced “Tell Your Friends” on the new album. “We never disagreed on lyrics because I’m telling a story in my album,” he says about the collaboration, “and he respected my vision.”
The Weeknd is now preparing to headline the biggest tour of his career, The Madness Fall Tour, kicking off November 3 in his home town of Toronto. As he assesses the rapid rise in his career, he says, “I have much more control. I can go overboard, but nobody can stop me but myself."
ABC/Bob D'AmicoLudacris has both music and acting projects in the works. The rapper tells ABC Radio that he's trying to build on the personal character of his most recent album, Ludaversal, as he works on its follow-up.
"Just continuing to make music that impacts people's lives," Luda says of what will be his tenth studio effort. "I think I've done so much, so it's like accomplishing certain goals that I have for myself when I put out an album and I think I hit that mark with Ludaversal because it was the most personal album I ever put out, so I think people really got to learn more about me as an individual in my everyday life."
The rapper syas his next offering will "help people get through certain things, you know make them laugh, make them cry, so all of that stuff, and relate to my life at the same time."
Aside from new music, the Fast & Furious star adds that he's really excited about his role on Fox's Empire. "I have a guest appearance on the second season so make sure you look for that, definitely a fan of the show," he says.
But how does he balance it all? Luda says it's difficult with his hectic schedule. "You know, that is the hard part, I wonder that every day, but without the work life I wouldn't be able to have such a great personal life, because you got to work hard to put food on the table."
Luda, who recently posted a date-night picture with his wife Eudoxie, adds: "You don't want to work too hard because you'll be away from your family but at the same time you want to work hard enough to be able to provide the best lifestyle and the best living that you can."
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images via ABCHere's proof Nicki Minaj no longer holds a grudge against the MTV Video Music Awards: she's opening the 2015 edition of the show this Sunday night.
Nicki let the cat out of the bag on Thursday, when she posted on her Instagram a photo of a sonogram of a Moonman statue. The picture no longer appears on her page, but MTV later confirmed the news.
You may recall, after this year's nominees were announced, Nicki complained her hit "Anaconda" was excluded from the Video of the Year category, and that her collaboration with Beyoncé, "Feeling Myself," was snubbed entirely. She tweeted, "If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you will be nominated for vid of the year."
Taylor Swift took the comments personally, chimed in on Twitter, and it led to a tense yet brief exchange that ended when Taylor apologized.
It'll be interesting to see if Nicki crosses paths at Sunday's VMAs with host Miley Cyrus, who touched upon the spat in an interview with The New York Times. She said of Nicki, "If you do things with an open heart and you come at things with love, you would be heard and I would respect your statement. But I don’t respect your statement because of the anger that came with it.
"And it’s not anger like, 'Guys, I’m frustrated about some things that are a bigger issue,'" Miley continued. "You made it about you. Not to sound like a b****, but that’s like, 'Eh, I didn’t get my VMA.'"
Miley further argued, "You don’t have to start this pop-star-against-pop-star war. It became Nicki Minaj and Taylor in a fight, so now the story isn’t even on what you wanted it to be about."
Tim Mosenfelder/Getty ImagesTyler, the Creator has been officially banned from the United Kingdom because of his lyrical content.
The rapper wrote on Twitter, "Based on lyrics from 2009 I am not allowed in the U.K. for 3-5 years (although I was there 8 weeks ago).” Tyler canceled several U.K. tour dates last week.
His manager, Christian Clancy, commented on his blog, "Tyler has been banned from entering the UK for somewhere between 3 to 5 years per a letter from the secretary of state for the home department of the United Kingdom. The letter specifically cites lyrics he wrote 6-7 years ago for his albums Bastard and Goblin." Clancy added the letter stated that Tyler’s work “encourages violence and intolerance of homosexuality” and “fosters hatred with views that seek to provoke others to terrorist acts.”
A United Kingdom Home Office spokesperson told the The Quietus, "Coming to the UK is a privilege, and we expect those who come here to respect our shared values." He continued, "The Home Secretary has the power to exclude an individual if she considers that his or her presence in the UK is not conducive to the public good or if their exclusion is justified on public policy grounds."
Last summer, Tyler was banned from entering New Zealand to play Eminem's Rapture Festival.
A$AP Rocky and Tyler, the Creator are still scheduled to kick off their co-headlining American tour on September 19 in Lowell, Massachusetts.
Danielle Milian’s baby boy Richie Bear died Tuesday suffering from omphalocele – a rare birth defect that causes internal organs to grow outside the body. Danielle appears with her sister in the reality series Christina Milian Turned Up.
Christina posted a photo of the baby’s tiny foot on Instagram with a long, emotional comment. She wrote, “Our family was blessed to have met our little Angel Baby Richie. We were fighting for him and with him the whole way and are now coping with the direction in which fate took.” She added, “We've all been touched by our little Guardian Angel. His memory will forever live on in our thoughts and our hearts. May he now rest in peace in the arms of our Heavenly Father.”
The singer/actress also told theNew York Post, “This is a tremendous loss for our family. My sister and brother in law are so strong and we will all get through this together. We appreciate everyone's prayers during this difficult time.”
ABC/Lou RoccoWhile Rihanna continues to work on her next album, she’s fulfilling her role as Brand Ambassador and Creative Director for Puma with a brand new ad.
The company debuted a photo on Instagram of Rih modeling shorts, sweatpants, a jacket, Ignite XT shoes and a sports bra with the comment, “FOREVER BOLDER.” This is the third ad in the campaign. Last month, RiRi posted a shot of her in full Puma gear and wrote, “Proud to be on the team!!!”
Rihanna announced her collaboration with Puma last December. The company stated that she “will work with Puma to design and customize classic Puma styles as well as create new styles to add to the Puma product portfolio.”
The Barbadian singer is also busy promoting her new fragrance, RiRi by Rihanna Eau De Parfum, which is now available online and will be sold in stores beginning next month.
Columbia RecordsAs Beyonce prepares to headline two music festivals in September, there is speculation she is planning another major concert tour.
She will perform at Jay Z’s Made in America Festival in Philadelphia over Labor Day Weekend, and the Global Citizen Festival on September 26 in New York City. Concert promoter Live Nation is dropping hints with an article entitled, Is Beyonce Planning Something Big? The post reads, “We just can’t help but feel something big is coming! Could she be leading up to a world tour announcement?... Whatever it is, we’re excited that Queen Bey is going to be everywhere in the next month!”
Forbes also believes a new Beyonce tour could be coming, publishing an article called "Could Beyonce’s Fall Festival Headlining Slots Lead to a Tour Announcement?" Her last tour, On The Run with Jay Z in 2014, grossed more than $5 million each show with average attendance per show of more than 45,000. Her previous solo tour, The Mrs. Carter Show World Tour in 2013-14, grossed $178 million across 103 dates.
Beyonce is up for five awards, including Video of the Year and Best Female Video for "7/11," at Sunday’s MTV Music Awards in Los Angeles.
ABC/Randy HolmesYouTube founder Chad Hurley reportedly has settled the lawsuit filed against him by Kanye West and Kim Kardashian for posting video of West’s proposal.
According to TMZ, Hurley will pay the couple $440,000 for violating a confidentiality agreement and sharing video of the 2013 proposal at AT&T Park in San Francisco on his latest video-sharing startup, MixBit.com. West and Kardashian say that the footage is owned by the producers of Keeping Up with The Kardashians who aired the video on the show in February 2014.
Hurley tweeted, “I'm matching the Kimye settlement with an additional $440k to my foundation that will reward selfless individuals."
ABC/Randy HolmesFetty Wap continues to dominate the charts, and now he’s in rare company, sharing a feat with TheBeatles. The New Jersey rapper currently has the number eight, nine and 11 songs on the Billboard Hot 100. The only other act to have their first three charted singles in the top 11 was The Fab Four in 1964, when The Beatles had the top three songs: "I Want to Hold Your Hand," "She Loves You," and "Please Please Me."
Fetty’s “679” featuring Remy Boyz is number eight, his debut single “Trap Queen” follows at number nine, and “My Way,” featuring Monty, holds the number 11 position. Fetty's also the first male artist ever to ever have his first three chart entries make the top 11, and he joins Chris Brown and Usher as the only male solo artists in history to have three songs simultaneously in the top 11.
Fetty Wap is hoping to take home his first moonman this Sunday in Los Angeles -- he’s up for two MTV Video Music Awards: Artist To Watch, and Best Hip-Hop Video, for “Trap Queen.”
Image Courtesy Eliot Lee Hazel/RCA RecordsChris Brown is now headlining his One Hell of a Nite tour, and you can be sure he'll never go hungry. He just revealed that he owns 14 Burger King franchise restaurants across the country. This tidbit is one of “25 things you don’t know" about Brown he's shared with Us Weekly.
Breezy also says, “I’m the only singer who has been incarcerated and had a number-one record at the same time.” While he was serving 108 days in a Los Angeles county jail in 2014 for an assault which violated his parole, Chris' single, “Loyal,” reached the top of the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart.
Other revelations include, “I recently went to church for the first time in 15 years and loved it.”
Brown is also a talented graphic artist -- he says, “I love to paint murals, and then I donate most of the profits to charity.” He adds, “I paint monsters that are mirror images of people’s negative views of me.”
Chris hasn't forgotten about Family, either. He says, “I bought my mom a $1 million dollar house when I was 15 years old.”
Brown performs Friday in Saratoga Springs, NY. His tour wraps up September 19 in Concord, California.
Chris Brown needs your help. In honor of the ten-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, the singer has teamed with AidStillRequired.org to assist in ongoing relief efforts.
The singer took to Twitter to ask his 14.8 million fans to donate to the cause. "10 yrs since Katrina. New Orleans inner city youth still need our help. Can you chip in $10?" he tweeted before adding the donation link.
All donations will benefit to various programs in New Orleans for those affected, including the Youth Empowerment Project and Creative Enterprises Program.
Lil Wayne also is giving back to his hometown with the inaugural Lil WeezyAnaFest, taking Friday, August 28 in the Big Easy. A portions of proceeds from the show to Tha Carter Fund, which will assist in ongoing relief efforts and after school programs set up for underprivileged kids.
Image Courtesy Matthew Welch/Atlantic RecordsOmarion is striking while the iron is hot. Following the success of his latest hit single, "Post to Be" featuring Chris Brown and Jhené Aiko, the singer has announced the release date for his next album, titled Reasons.
According to his label, fans can expect his upcoming offering to arrive on October 23. The follow-up to last year's Sex Playlist will include his new single, "I’m Up" featuring Kid Ink and French Montana. The accompanying visual for the song arrived on WorldStarHipHop.com and includes a cameo from his girlfriend, April -- we will soon see the couple in the new season of VH1 series, Love & Hip Hop: Hollywood, beginning Monday, September 7.
In the meantime, the singer is serving as the opening act on Brown's One Hell of a Nite Tour.