By 1996, the world had seen plenty of hip-hop blockbusters. Some of these albums were poppy, some were gangsta, and some were given that slightly condescending label “socially conscious.” Few, if any, checked all three boxes, and none did so more successfully -- artistically or commercially -- than the sophomore effort from Fugees.
Adele's surprise show at The Wiltern in Los Angeles on Feb. 12 was truly the hottest ticket in town. It was her first concert in the city since 2011 -- "I haven't played in L.A. for years," she told the audience early on in the night, and remarked that her "best show here" in L.A. was at The Wiltern, back in January 2009.
Who runs the music business today? Ask the label chiefs, tech superstars, mega-promoters, super-managers and 39 (!) first-timers on this year’s list, and they all know the answer: It’s the fans, as streaming and social media continue to present new challenges -- or, er, opportunities? -- to the top players in the industry.