1. Top 10 Rock/Alternative Christmas Songs That Don't Suck

    December 25, 2014 8:15 AM EST …And one Hanukkah Song (we did our best!) Let’s get this out of the way: there are an awful lot of terrible rock covers of Christmas songs. Lots of genres are guilty of this, but being that Relient K and Bowling For Soup have both done entire Christmas albums, modern guitar music needs to…

  2. Luke Bryan Leads Latest Hot Tours Tally

    December 24, 2014 2:40 PM EST Bryan's That’s My Kind of Night tour was the highest-grossing tour by a country artist in 2014 Country superstar Luke Bryan tops the weekly slate of top-grossing touring artists (see below) with the final 2014 box office stats reported from his That’s My Kind of Night Tour that wrapped…

  3. Taylor Swift Tops Hot 100 for Sixth Week

    December 24, 2014 2:15 PM EST Swift continues her longest career command with 'Blank Space.' Plus, Mark Ronson's 'Uptown Funk!' crowns Digital Songs. Taylor Swift 's "Blank Space" leads the Billboard Hot 100 for a sixth week, extending her longest stay at No. 1 of her three career…

  4. Taylor Swift Back at No. 1 on Billboard 200, Nicki Minaj Debuts at No. 2

    December 24, 2014 11:00 AM EST Taylor Swift makes an expected return to the top of the Billboard 200 chart, as her 1989 album hops up one rung, bringing its total (nonconsecutive) weeks atop the list to six. The set shifted 375,000 equivalent units in the week ending Dec. 21 (up 16 percent), according to Nielsen Music. …

  5. Joe Cocker Tribute: Jennifer Warnes Shares Heartfelt Remembrance of 'Up Where We Belong' Duet Partner

    December 24, 2014 10:04 AM EST When I was teenager there were three large posters of famous people on my bedroom wall -- Bob Dylan, D.H. Lawrence and Joe Cocker in the middle of a scream in concert at Woodstock. The picture of Joe frightened my mother, but I reassured her. "No mom, he's an emotional visionary.…

  6. Questlove: 'Fear of Being Blackballed' Prevents Artists From Releasing Protest Music

    December 23, 2014 8:03 PM EST Neil Young was so shaken by photos of the four unarmed students killed by military gunfire at Kent State that he wrote "Ohio" for Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young right away. By the end of the week, it was playing on the radio. That was 1970. Now, in 2014, outrage over police…

  7. Google Just Dealt a Big Blow to the Digital Economy of Lyrics

    December 23, 2014 3:26 PM EST Remember the days of MetroLyrics and AZLyrics, when you'd search for a song and links to those sites would likely appear right below the YouTube video? You probably do because they lasted until, well, very early Tuesday morning. Now, within the link to a song's official YouTube…

  8. Must-Hear Music Holiday Podcast: Pentatonix, Idina Menzel, Ariana Grande & More

    December 23, 2014 1:30 PM EST Last week on the Must-Hear Music podcast, Billboard staffers shared their personal favorite albums of the year, from D'Angelo 's Black Messiah to Nicki Minaj 's The Pinkprint to Mapei 's Hey Hey . This week, it's all about that Xmas. And (sort of) like Dickens…

  9. CBGB: 10 Classic Moments That Helped Define the Birthplace of Punk



    December 23, 2014 1:15 PM EST Fotrty-one years have passed since iconic music club CBGB (aka the undisputed birthplace of punk) opened its doors. And even though only a handful of artifacts remain at the site of the club that once hosted music legends including the Ramones, Patti Smith, Blondie, Guns N’ Roses and…

  10. Bon Scott's Pre-AC/DC Bandmate Shares Vintage Letters From Late Singer, Reflects on His Legacy

    December 23, 2014 1:10 PM EST "I'm sure he would've been making an album of the great American songbook by now," says former collaborator Peter Head. Bon Scott died from alcohol poisoning on Feb. 15, 1980, just as AC/DC was beginning work on Back In Black , the album that made them arguably the…

  11. Touring in 2014: Stadium Shows Dominate, Garth Returns, Springsteen's Epic Run and More

    December 23, 2014 11:12 AM EST Throughout the week, Billboard will be publishing pieces from our staff writers, each an outstanding authority on their specific area of coverage. From Nashville to Miami, the industry at large, publishing and retail, and the year in touring, we'll be taking comprehensive looks at the…

  12. Exclusive: Prince Premieres Jagged 'ANOTHERLOVE' Lyric Video

    December 23, 2014 10:55 AM EST Who has performed more great anguished-relationship songs than Prince ? " When You Were Mine ," " How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore ," " If I Was Your Girlfriend ," "Last Heart" -- the list is extensive, and each entry is indispensable. Today…

  13. Fat Possum Opens Its Own Vinyl Pressing Plant to Meet (Its Own) Demand

    December 23, 2014 10:55 AM EST Memphis Record Pressing, a new vinyl pressing plant dreamed up and run by Fat Possum founder Matthew Johnson , in partnership with Bruce Watson and AudioGraphics Masterworks owners Mark Yoshida and Brandon Seavers , is ready for business 10 months after construction began in March of this…

  14. Ask Billboard: Why Is There No R&B/Hip-Hop in the Hot 100's Top 10?

    December 23, 2014 10:00 AM EST The genre's been absent from the top 10 for a month ... why? Plus, Nicki Minaj's sales, Meghan Trainor's chart feat and Luke Bryan's big 'Party.' As always, submit questions about Billboard charts, as well as general music musings, to askbb@billboard.com .…

  15. Gregg Alexander Reflects on Joe Cocker's Peerless Talent & Ridiculous Rock Hall Snub

    December 23, 2014 9:50 AM EST I can still remember the first time I heard Joe Cocker sing, which is what they always say is the sign of a truly great singer or song: if you can remember the first time. I was in a "music appreciation class" (whatever the hell that is) before I even hit my teens and our teacher…

  16. Paul McCartney Pays Respects to 'Good Mate' Joe Cocker

    December 23, 2014 5:07 AM EST Paul McCartney has described the “mind-blowing” experience of hearing for the first time Joe Cocker’s performance of “With A Little Help From My Friends.” The Beatles bass player has paid homage to the late artist and recounted how a life-long friendship launched at a listening session. Joe…

  17. Listen to Jodeci's First New Song in 18 Years, 'Nobody Wins,' Featuring B.o.B.

    December 22, 2014 9:31 PM EST s R&B all-stars Jodeci , who broke up in 1996, have returned with a new song titled "Nobody Wins" that's the group's first in 18 years.  The track is suave new jam about domestic abuse featuring vocals by B.o.B. , showing off lush harmonies and expansive…

  18. Joe Cocker: Looking Back at 50 Years of Music, In His Own Words

    December 22, 2014 6:54 PM EST A few years back, Joe Cocker took a minute to mull over the longview of a career that stretched back into the early 1960s.  "You know, now that I'm getting older, when I do a two-hour show I feel it's kind of precious," he said. "As I'm getting to the back…

  19. Will.i.am Commends Iggy Azalea: 'Thanks For Contributing & Spreading Our Culture Positively'

    December 22, 2014 5:32 PM EST The past few days have seen a handful of rappers sound off on Iggy Azalea ’s place in the hip-hop community, from mentor T.I. defending her skills to Q-Tip teaching her a lesson to Azealia Banks effectively ripping her apart . Add Will.i.am to that list of artists: the Black Eyed Peas…

  20. The Making of D'Angelo's 'Black Messiah': A Q&A With Engineer Russell Elevado

    December 22, 2014 4:52 PM EST For D'Angelo fans, Christmas came early last week: The singer unexpectedly released Black Messiah , his first full-length since 2000. One of the many things that sets the album apart is its sound: dense and deep, full of intricate details, somehow welcoming and warm and vicious all at…

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