1. Billboard 200 Chart Moves: J. Cole's Trio of No. 1 Albums Puts Him in Elite Hip-Hop Company

    December 19, 2014 9:49 PM EST J. Cole is one of six rap acts to hit No. 1 on the Billboard 200 with their first three full-length studio albums On the latest Billboard 200 albums chart, J. Cole 's 2014 Forest Hills Drive debuted at No. 1 , his third consecutive album to reach the top slot (his entire output of…

  2. INgrooves Founder & CEO Robb McDaniels Resigns

    December 19, 2014 6:35 PM EST INgrooves founder and CEO Robb McDaniels has resigned from the company he founded and guided since 2001. He will remain on the company's board of directors, serve as a consultant to the company and continue as a shareholder. "Over the past 13 years, I have led the expansion of…

  3. Can The Pogues' 'Fairytale of New York' Top the U.K.'s Cherished Christmas Charts?

    December 19, 2014 5:38 PM EST Following the U.K.'s Official Charts inclusion of digital streaming this year, the new accounting is causing some shake-ups this holiday season. Now the highly coveted Christmas No. 1 could be poised for takeover by a song that's nearly three decades old: The Pogues ' "…

  4. Pandora Gets Creative Again: Company Cites Its First Amendment Rights in Turtles Lawsuit

    December 19, 2014 5:08 PM EST In the latest turn of events around The Turtles ' crusade to collect on royalties for songs recorded prior to 1972, Pandora has filed an anti-SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) motion, arguing -- in a creative gambit reminiscent of the company's failed play at…

  5. Top 10 Lyrics From D'Angelo's 'Black Messiah'

    December 19, 2014 3:40 PM EST It's been close to a week since the surprise release of D'Angelo & The Vanguard's Black Messiah , enough time for the formerly distorted lyrics of D'Angelo to become more clear and significant. The easiest tone to take with Black Messiah , in its entire majestic roar…

  6. Taylor Swift's Birthday Boosts Her to No. 1 on Social 50 Chart

    December 19, 2014 3:24 PM EST It pays to have famous friends -- or, in Taylor Swift ’s case, friends with large online followings who will tweet about attending your 25th birthday party. An array of A-listers (like Nick Jonas , Selena Gomez , Lorde , Haim and more) did just that on the night of Dec. 13, spreading online…

  7. This Ain't No Buena Vista: Meet Five Cuban Artists to Watch

    December 19, 2014 9:02 AM EST All of these artists, like many other musicians from Cuba, have already performed in the United States, and their albums are available through all of the U.S. digital music services. President Obama’s announced changes in current Cuba policy may increase Cuban artists’ presence on U.S.…

  8. Beatport Aims to Be the One-Stop Streaming Shop for DJs with New Strategy

    December 19, 2014 8:29 AM EST Billboard spoke with Beatport's creative director Clark Warner about the site's new free streaming model which will launch in 2015. Beatport, the go-to online music store for professional DJs and electronic music obsessives, is adding streaming to its menu. The move is part of a…

  9. Alesso Ascends, Taylor Swift Hits Top 10 on Dance Charts

    December 18, 2014 9:20 PM EST Alesso takes another step closer to achieving his first career chart-topper on Hot Dance/Electronic Songs , as "Heroes (We Could Be)" hikes 4-3. The track, featuring Tove Lo , is the chart's top Digital and Streaming Gainer. "Heroes" sold 30,000 downloads (up 9…

  10. Vessel, New Video Site from Hulu's Former Boss, Will Offer Very Sweet Deals to Content Creators

    December 18, 2014 5:48 PM EST Streaming services are routinely attacked for the inability of their royalties alone to sustain creators. The former head of video streaming service Hulu believes he has a solution. Called Vessel, the service is the creation of Jason Kilar , the former chief executive of Hulu, and Rich Tom …

  11. The 14 Best Pop Albums of 2014

    December 18, 2014 4:49 PM EST From Tove to Taylor to Bleachers, these 14 in '14 were worth many, many listens. I’m not publishing a list of the Best Pop Songs of 2014 list, because, well, we have a week-long bracket tournament discussing the best pop songs of the year already. Instead, I want to highlight my…

  12. K. Michelle Debuts at No. 1 on R&B Albums

    December 18, 2014 4:19 PM EST Plus, album single 'Love 'Em All' attains a new peak on Hot R&B Songs. R&B singer/songwriter K. Michelle returns to the top of R&B Albums with her sophomore studio set  Anybody Wanna Buy a Heart?,  arriving with 84,000 sold in the week ending Dec. 14, according to…

  13. Wendy Rene, Soul Singer Sampled by Wu-Tang Clan & Alicia Keys, Dies at 67

    December 18, 2014 4:12 PM EST Wendy Rene, the budding Stax Records singing and songwriting talent who quit music after the death of Otis Redding in 1967 and saw her music revived through samples decades later, died Tuesday in Memphis, Tenn., following a stroke. She was 67. Born Mary Frierson in Memphis, Rene was given…

  14. Willy Chirino Op-Ed: Why U.S.-Cuba Thaw Is No Victory

    December 18, 2014 3:30 PM EST Miami-based Cuban tropical artist calls decision 'a defeat for those of us who want to see a free, sovereign Cuba.' On Nov. 19, Miami-based Cuban tropical star Willy Chirino accepted a Latin Grammy for lifetime achievement at a ceremony in Las Vegas. "This is dedicated to all…

  15. Communications Agency Fenton's New Leadership Hopes to Bring Artists Back Into Activism

    December 18, 2014 2:11 PM EST The communications agency Fenton, which specializes in working with non-profits, charities and activist organizations, has announced it is being sold and a new leadership being put in place. The company's founder, David Fenton , is stepping laterally into a position as chairman, from…

  16. Top 5 Producers Shifting the Sound of Atlanta Rap in 2014

    December 18, 2014 1:30 PM EST Super producers such as Organized Noize have paved the way for others to craft the way Atlanta is represented sonically. Now it seems that the current role of the producer in Atlanta is to dictate the way the Billboard chart sounds, with songs like "Tuesday" (produced by Metro…

  17. Exclusive: Essence To Honor Jill Scott at Black Women in Music Event

    December 18, 2014 10:30 AM EST The magazine's sixth annual Black Women in Music event will also kick off its 45th anniversary celebration Jill Scott will be the special honoree at Essence magazine’s annual Black Women in Music . The Feb. 5 invitation-only event, held during Grammy Week, will also be the official…

  18. Happy Birthday, Christina Aguilera: 5 Most Underrated Songs

    December 18, 2014 9:00 AM EST Happy Birthday Christina Aguilera ! The teen pop star-turned-songstress-turned-sometimes Voice coach with the huge pipes turns 34 today, and to celebrate, we rounded up five of her underrated (read: non-single) gems from her career over seven studio albums.  Check them out below.  1. "…

  19. Watch Questlove's Animated Story on Chasing Patti LaBelle's Famed Fried Chicken

    December 17, 2014 7:54 PM EST You don't spend as much time in the music business, wearing so many different hats, as Questlove has without getting a few good stories out of it.    Chris Rock and Questlove Talk the Greatest MCs of All Time and Collaborating on New Movie 'Top Five' The Roots drummer has…

  20. J. Cole Earns Third No. 1 Album on Billboard 200 Chart

    December 17, 2014 4:34 PM EST J. Cole 's third album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive , easily debuts at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, marking the rapper's third consecutive chart-topper. He previously led the list with his debut effort, 2011's Cole World: The Sideline Story , and its follow-up, 2013's…

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