1. BSBB Round 3: Sam Smith, "Stay With Me" vs. Disclosure feat. Sam Smith, "Latch"

    December 14, 2014 10:02 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules Stay With Me Sam Smith Latch Disclosure feat. Sam Smith CAITLIN WHITE: It's pretty safe to say the rest of Sam Smith's career hinges on his feature on Disclosure's "Latch." For most of us, the song was…

  2. BSBB Round 1: Florida Georgia Line, "Dirt" vs. Sam Smith, "Stay With Me"

    December 14, 2014 10:00 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules Dirt Florida Georgia Line Stay With Me Sam Smith CHRIS PAYNE: Call Sam too depressing, too old-timey, too male Adele, whatever — this was a damn sincere song with damn great vocals that ruled all sorts of radio in 2014. Pulling…

  3. BSBB Round 1: OneRepublic, "Love Runs Out" vs. Disclosure feat. Sam Smith, "Latch"

    December 14, 2014 10:00 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules Love Runs Out OneRepublic Latch Disclosure feat. Sam Smith CHRIS PAYNE: I kind of want to say something about how “Latch” was really from like two years ago, but dammit, it’s the coolest song on this list so I just can’t. My…

  4. BSBB Round 1: Katy Perry feat. Juicy J, "Dark Horse" vs. Idina Menzel, "Let It Go"

    December 14, 2014 10:00 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules Dark Horse Katy Perry feat. Juicy J Let It Go Idina Menzel KRISTEN YOONSOO KIM: My dad keeps telling me I simply HAVE TO watch "Frozen." He’s probably right! But there’s no way I can listen to “Let It Go” with a…

  5. BSBB Round 1: Nicki Minaj, "Anaconda" vs. Sam Smith, "I'm Not The Only One"

    December 14, 2014 10:00 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules Anaconda Nicki Minaj I'm Not The Only One Sam Smith CRAIG JENKINS: Nicki’s Pinkprint smash “Anaconda” is deadly clever, a feminist judo flip of one of rap’s most beloved sexual objectification anthems that achieves its…

  6. 'American Idol' Judge Keith Urban Talks Season 14: 'They've Brought Something Fresh'

    December 12, 2014 12:00 AM EST Keith Urban often refers to his American Idol co-stars as a family. And in a conference call with reporters on Wednesday, the country star said that his fellow judges came through for him in his time of need -- the death of his father-in-law, Antony Kidman , dad to Urban's wife, Nicole…

  7. Revisionist History, Holiday Edition: Mariah Gets a 'Christmas' Gift, Wham! Gets the Boot

    December 10, 2014 12:01 PM EST For those who love the Billboard charts, this truly is -- as Andy Williams reminds us every December -- the most wonderful time of the year. The arrival of Billboard 's annual year-end rankings have made it a "Happy" holiday for another Williams -- Pharrell -- whose hit with…

  8. 2014: The Year in... Billboard Chart Headlines

    December 09, 2014 12:15 PM EST A look at the biggest chart newsmakers, from Katy Perry, Pharrell Williams & Iggy Azalea to Enrique Iglesias, Meghan Trainor & Taylor Swift. From veterans who scored their biggest hits ever to newcomers who ruled with rookie releases, 2014 brought week after week of chart records…

  9. The Year in Pop 2014: One Direction, 'Frozen,' & Pharrell Dominate

    December 09, 2014 12:15 PM EST One Direction takes home the trophy as Billboard's top artist of the year for 2014. See All the Year End Charts Here! The English/Irish quintet (comprising Niall Horan , Liam Payne , Zayn Malik , Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson ), is the first group to earn the top artist distinction…

  10. Clive Davis on Billboard Women in Music Honoree Aretha Franklin: ‘There Are No Pretenders to the Throne’

    December 08, 2014 11:00 AM EST The chief creative officer of Sony Music Entertainment writes about the enduring appeal of the Billboard Women in Music Icon honoree. Aretha Franklin is the Queen of Soul. It’s not the totality of who she is -- beneath her cool exterior is a remarkably warm-hearted person -- but it is a…

  11. The 10 Most Surprising Breakout Hits of 2014

    December 08, 2014 10:30 AM EST We didn't see "Rude," "Latch," "Habits (Stay High)" and more Top 20 hits making waves this year. There were instances in 2014 where it was easy to forecast this year’s biggest radio hits — we all heard Pharrell ’s “Happy” and wanted to hear it again, and…

  12. L.A. Film Critics Awards: Jonny Greenwood & Mica Levi Tie in Best Music Score Category

    December 07, 2014 3:07 PM EST The Los Angeles Film Critics Association is meeting to vote its annual awards Sunday morning (Dec. 7). In this century, most LAFCA best picture winners have gone on to be Oscar contenders, and all best director winners have done so. Jonny Greenwood Says Radiohead 'Fumbling' Around…

  13. James Bay Wins Brits Critics’ Choice Prize

    December 04, 2014 11:16 PM EST James Bay , a 24-year-old British singer-songwriter, has been awarded the 2015 Brits Critics’ Choice prize, which is often seen as a forecaster of future success. The award, chosen by U.K. industry experts, is only open to artists due to release their debut album the following year. Bay&…

  14. Sam Smith on Grammy Nominations Eve: 'I Can't Think About It'

    December 04, 2014 9:52 PM EST Who knew, a year ago, that a name as seemingly short and indistinct as Sam Smith 's would be the one on everyone's lips come the end of 2014? Any lack of individuality ended right with his moniker, of course, as the British soulster went on to have not just the top-selling debut…

  15. James Bond Wish List: 5 Artists Who Should Sing 'Spectre' Title Song

    December 04, 2014 10:20 AM EST Like diamonds, James Bond may as well be forever. Skyfall director Sam Mendes revealed the title of the 24th canonical installment in the Bond franchise is titled Spectre and will come out in fall 2015. For the fourth time, Daniel Craig -- the sixth actor to portray Bond on the big screen …

  16. Grammys' Alternative Album Category: The 10 Greatest Injustices

    December 04, 2014 9:00 AM EST 'Out of Time' over 'Nevermind'? 'Get Behind Me Satan' over 'Funeral'? Let's sort through these incorrect choices together. The history of the Grammy Awards is full of both rightful victories and shameful omissions. In hindsight, it's easy to…

  17. Ed Sheeran Hits Million Mark Again in U.K.

    December 02, 2014 9:40 AM EST Ed Sheeran has sold over a million copies of his latest album X in the U.K., making him the first artist to achieve that feat within a calendar year since Emeli Sande 's Our Version of Events in 2012, according to trade body BPI and the Official Charts Company. Released in June, X…

  18. U.K. Vinyl Sales Cross 1 Million Sales Barrier for First Time In Almost 20 Years

    November 28, 2014 10:22 AM EST Vinyl sales continue their ascent, thanks to assists from David Bowie and Pink Floyd. New releases by David Bowie and Pink Floyd have helped push vinyl sales in the United Kingdom over the 1 million mark for the first time since the mid-nineties, according to Official Charts Company data,…

  19. From 'Ignition' to 'Macarena,' 13 Remixes That Eclipse the Originals

    November 26, 2014 9:00 AM EST One of the fascinating things about pop music is that there's more to songwriting than just writing the song. Take, for instance, "You're All I Need/I'll Be There For You," the Method Man - Mary J. Blige duet, which went to No. 3 on the Hot 100 in 1995 thanks to its…

  20. Sinead O’Connor on Band Aid 30 Criticism: ‘Everyone Should Shut the F--- Up’

    November 25, 2014 11:42 PM EST Lily Allen has called it “smug.” Emeli Sande has apologized if its lyrics “caused offence.” Adele is rumored to have snubbed the sessions. But Sinead O’Connor isn’t having any of it. The sharp-tongued Irish singer has hit back at critics of the latest version of the Band Aid all-star…

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