1. LAPD Investigating Michael Brown Parody Song at Retired Cop's Party

    December 26, 2014 12:44 PM EST Although Michael Brown was killed by a police officer in Ferguson, MO, the Los Angeles Police Department is now investigating a situation pertaining to his controversial death after TMZ released a horrifying video taken at a former cop's party. TMZ uploaded some extremely troubling…

  2. Amazon Touts Big Numbers for Prime During Holidays, Shares Best-Selling Songs and Albums

    December 26, 2014 11:06 AM EST Amazon today released figures touting the performance of its Prime shipping and media subscription service during this holiday season. 10 million people "tried out" Prime during the holiday season, according to a statement from the company. A company representative tells Billboard…

  3. L.A. Reid Talks A&R Eye, Usher's 'Steel Eyes' and Sean Combs' Work Ethic

    December 26, 2014 10:21 AM EST "I like black music being the leader. I like that blues is the root of... music." Former X Factor mentor and current Epic Records CEO and president L.A. Reid sat down with NewsOne for a short series of interviews about the principals that led to his success, the current state of…

  4. Grammys 2015 Preview: Taylor Swift, Meghan Trainor & More on Their Record of the Year-Nominated Songs

    December 26, 2014 9:20 AM EST Check out the five tracks nominated for the Record of the Year Grammy. "All About That Bass" - Meghan Trainor Producer: Kevin Kadish Engineer/Mixer: Kevin Kadish Mastering Engineer: Dave Kutch Label: Epic "My producer [Kadish] had the title and said that none of his prior co…

  5. Grammys 2015 Preview: Beyonce, Sam Smith & Other Artists Vying for Album of the Year Honors Dish on Their Discs

    December 26, 2014 9:00 AM EST Having trouble keeping track of what's nominated for Album of the Year at the 2015 Grammys? Billboard breaks down the five nominees. In the Lonely Hour - Sam Smith Producers: Steve Fitzmaurice, Komi, Howard Lawrence, Zane Lowe, Mojam, Jimmy Napes, Naughty Boy, Fraser T. Smith, Two Inch…

  6. 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…

  7. From Okra Soup to Fried Seafood: Darius Rucker, Chase Bryant and Many More Country Stars Talk Favorite Holiday Dishes

    December 24, 2014 12:19 PM EST When it comes to celebrating the holidays country style, good food is a major part of the equation. From fried turkey to the perfect sugar cookie, every household has its Christmas traditions and certain dishes that are essential to the celebration. Billboard asked country artists to share…

  8. Pentatonix's 'That's Christmas To Me' Surpasses 1 Million in Sales

    December 24, 2014 11:25 AM EST Pentatonix gets an early Christmas gift, as their album That’s Christmas To Me surpassed 1 million in total sales in the week ending Dec. 21. With another 203,000 sold, its cumulative total now stands at 1.02 million. That's Christmas To Me (released through RCA Records) is…

  9. SoundExchange Financials Show Fewer Unclaimed Royalties, Persistent Data Problems

    December 24, 2014 10:48 AM EST A peek under the hood shows SoundExchange has fewer unclaimed royalties, though data issues are a consistent impediment to distributing royalties to artists and labels. SoundExchange's year-end balance, as reported on the organization's Form 990 and detailed for Billboard, grew…

  10. Sony Reportedly Considering a Sale of Its Music Publishing Division

    December 23, 2014 9:19 PM EST Sony Corp. has been considering a sale of its music publishing operation, according to a Bloomberg report on the latest leak of hacked Sony e-mails.  The details of the Sony/ATV Music Publishing's potential sale were being handled by Sony Entertainment CEO Michal Lynton , Sony Corp…

  11. 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…

  12. Stars From Meghan Trainor to Sam Smith Reveal Their Worst Holiday Gifts

    December 23, 2014 5:00 PM EST Sometimes, it doesn't matter if you're naughty or nice -- Sam Smith, Meghan Trainor, and others recall their visits from Bad Santa. "My dad got me a build-your-own tank when I was 11. I don't think he knew I was gay at that point. I got really upset." -- Sam…

  13. Going With The Pitch: More and More, R&B and Hip Hop Artists Are Also TV Spokespersons

    December 23, 2014 4:48 PM EST Usher, Salt-N-Pepa, Waka Flocka Flame and newcomer Kevin Ross are among a growing number of R&B/hip-hop acts doubling as TV spokespersons. Waka Flocka Flame left many viewers scratching their heads and wondering if it was April Fool’s in November when his television spot extolling the…

  14. 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…

  15. 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…

  16. 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…

  17. Chart Highlights: Aretha Franklin Tops Dance Club Songs for First Time in 16 Years

    December 22, 2014 2:05 PM EST The icon's cover of Adele's 'Rolling in the Deep' returns her to No. 1. Plus, new leaders for Taylor Swift, Ariana Grande & more. Chart Highlights offers a sneak peek at a select group of Billboard charts every Monday. (All charts below are based on radio airplay…

  18. Tyler, the Creator and Erykah Badu to Appear in Adult Swim's 'Black Dynamite'

    December 22, 2014 1:20 PM EST The Jan. 10 episode tackles police brutality. Tyler, the Creator and Erykah Badu will be lending their vocal talents to an hourlong special of Black Dynamite on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim. Set to premiere Jan. 10 at 10:30 p.m. (ET), the new episode of Michael Jai White's…

  19. 'X Factor' Winner Ben Haenow Grabs Christmas No. 1 in U.K.

    December 22, 2014 4:42 AM EST British singer Ben Haenow , who won the 11th series of “The X Factor” Dec. 14, has landed the U.K.’s coveted Christmas No. 1 spot with his debut single “Something I Need” (Syco Music/Sony). His cover of the OneRepublic song had a combined chart sales figure of 214,000, reported the Official…

  20. Live Nation Completes Deal for C3 Presents

    December 22, 2014 12:19 AM EST Live Nation Entertainment has completed the acquisition of a controlling stake in C3 Presents in a blockbuster deal that combines the might of the world’s biggest live-events promoter with a festivals juggernaut that was, until now, the largest independent concerts company in its space.…

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