1. What the U.S.-Cuba Breakthrough Could Mean for Music

    December 17, 2014 9:43 PM EST Could Obama's 'fresh approach' strengthen both Cuba's draw as a music destination and Cuban artists' popularity in the United States? How could restoring diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba impact musicians in both countries? According to…

  2. Exclusive: TuneCore Buys 'Location Goodie Bag' Startup DropKloud

    December 17, 2014 5:49 PM EST TuneCore has added to its list of artist services by acquiring DropKloud , the maker of a consumer-facing mobile app aimed at musicians and is set to launch next year. Boston-based co-founders James DeNino and Kedar Frederic will head TunesCore's new office in that city. DropKloud is a…

  3. Best Song Bracket Battle 2014: Read Round 3 in our Year-End Pop Showdown!

    December 17, 2014 11:30 AM EST Which 2014 smash is the critics' pick for pop song of the year? We made 64 hits battle it out, March Madness-style, to determine a winner! Welcome to BEST SONG BRACKET BATTLE 2014, Billboard.com's weeklong bracket-style tournament in which 64 of the year's biggest songs are…

  4. Anthony Hamilton Hits 'Home' With First Holiday Album

    December 17, 2014 9:43 AM EST The Grammy Award winner and current nominee will also appear as a special guest on Fox's new drama "Empire." To co-opt a popular phrase during this time of year, 'tis the season for Anthony Hamilton . Home for the Holidays , the R&B singer/songwriter/producer’s first…

  5. Eurythmics Co-Founder Dave Stewart Gets OK to Shoot Video in Louisiana Jail

    December 16, 2014 10:30 PM EST Local officials in west Louisiana say former Eurythmics singer and guitarist Dave Stewart plans to film a new music video early next year in their century-old Gothic Revival jail. Secretary-treasurer Tayra DeHoven says the Beauregard Parish Police Jury had voted to allow it if she OK'd…

  6. Tony Bennett Among Kennedy Center Honorees

    December 16, 2014 9:07 PM EST Tony Bennett is among those being honored by the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice & Human Rights at a New York gala. Guests gathered at a Manhattan hotel on Tuesday evening (Dec. 16) for the organization's star-studded Ripple of Hope Award ceremony. Lady Gaga & Tony Bennett…

  7. Imagem No Longer for Sale After Failed Auction Process

    December 16, 2014 8:24 PM EST While BMG was the top bidder, a deal was never made. Imagem, one of the largest indie publishers with revenues of about 99 million euros ($125 million) in 2013, has been taken off the block after a failed auction process. According to a statement from the company, a strategic review by its…

  8. Why Were Jay Z, Justin Timberlake & Taylor Swift Hanging Out? 10 (Not-So-Likely) Theories

    December 16, 2014 2:24 PM EST "I stay out too late...then have music titans come over the following afternoon." Even by Taylor Swift 's high standards, she's having a pretty great weekend. After receiving Billboard 's Woman of the Year Award on Friday, she had her 25th birthday party attended by…

  9. Op-Ed: Why 'Dad Rock' Became 2014's Put-Down Du Jour (Sorry, Bruce and U2)

    December 16, 2014 12:00 PM EST The first time Wilco singer Jeff Tweedy , 47, heard the phrase “dad rock,” he was reading a Pitchfork review of his band’s 2007 album, Sky Blue Sky , which a writer said “nakedly exposes the dad-rock gene Wilco has always carried but courageously attempted to disguise.” This was followed by…

  10. Chart Highlights: Taylor Swift, Avery Sunshine, Tim McGraw Notch New No. 1s

    December 15, 2014 5:05 PM EST Swift makes the quickest jump to No. 1 this year, Sunshine scores her first Adult R&B Songs leader and McGraw makes more history. Chart Highlights offers a sneak peek at a select group of Billboard charts every Monday. Find out the top songs, Greatest Gainers and debuts on the surveys…

  11. BSBB Round 1: Meghan Trainor, "All About That Bass" vs. Ed Sheeran, "Don't"

    December 14, 2014 10:00 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules All About That Bass Maghan Trainor Don't Ed Sheeran CRAIG JENKINS: Ed Sheeran’s push from coffee shop folk-pop to the hodge-podge of styles he occupied on x was lauded as an evolution this summer, but “Don’t” is…

  12. BSBB Round 1: MKTO, "Classic" vs. Enrique Iglesias feat. Descemer Bueno & Gente de Zona, "Bailando"

    December 14, 2014 10:00 AM EST Best Song Bracket Battle: View the Matchups | Critics and Rules Classic MKTO Bailando Enrique Iglesias feat. Descemer Bueno & Gente de Zona CHRIS PAYNE: I love catchy songwriting, but there comes a time when your musicology skews too close to advertising jingle instead of pop song. That…

  13. 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…

  14. Reggie Watts Will Be James Corden's 'Late Late' Band Leader

    December 12, 2014 2:30 PM EST CBS is getting ready for the new Late Late Show . Though James Corden doesn't assume the hosting gig until Mar. 23, the multihyphenate's show has filled out much of its staff and found a bandleader in Reggie Watts . Josh Groban Jams With Reggie Watts on 'Comedy Bang! Bang!&…

  15. Arca, JMSN & Oh Wonder: Emerging Picks of the Week

    December 12, 2014 1:32 PM EST Warm up your winter weekend with Billboard 's latest triple offering of tracks that all debuted on this week's Billboard + Twitter Emerging Artists chart. Be sure to give them a listen and check back next week for a new set of selections. Arca – "Hips Don't Lie" An…

  16. Billboard Year in Music 2014: Nicki Minaj on Getting Sir Mix-A-Lot's Blessing for 'Anaconda'

    December 12, 2014 9:00 AM EST The Rap Diva "Anaconda" 6 Weeks on Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs Putting a fresh spin on a classic isn't always a slam-dunk. But letting Nicki Minaj , 32, cut loose on Sir Mix-A-Lot 's 1992 anatomy anthem "Baby Got Back" was a no-brainer. Displaying her ample…

  17. Billboard Year in Music 2014: The Story Behind Carlos Santana's No. 1 Spanish-Language Album, 'Corazon'

    December 12, 2014 9:00 AM EST The Hall of Famer Corazon 6 Weeks on Top Latin Albums The idea for Carlos Santana 's first Spanish-language album was hatched between the guitarist and his manager, Michael Vrionis, over dinner in 2012. "He asked me, 'Have you ever wanted to do a Latino Supernatural ?'…

  18. Billboard Year in Music 2014: Enrique Iglesias 'Always Knew There was Something Magical' About No. 1 Hit 'Bailando'

    December 12, 2014 9:00 AM EST The Crowd Pleaser "Bailando" 32 Weeks on Hot Latin Songs ; 1 Week on Dance Club Songs When Enrique Iglesias , 39, premiered "Bailando" during the Billboard Latin Music Awards in April, the consensus was immediate: The song was a hit. By midsummer, the irresistible mix of…

  19. J. Balvin & Jenni Rivera Collect New No. 1s

    December 11, 2014 4:00 PM EST Also: Romeo Santos' 'Yo Tambien' hits top 10 on Hot Latin Songs. Rising urban act J. Balvin continues his chart ascent as "Ay Vamos" becomes the second No. 1 on Latin Airplay for the Colombian singer. A 10 percent audience increase, to 10.7 million audience…

  20. The 20 Best K-Pop Songs of 2014

    December 11, 2014 2:30 PM EST K-pop fans may remember 2014 as a dramatic, and at times heartbreaking, year. Members left groups fans envisioned them in for years, tragedy struck the live scene and the dark sides of the industry were brought to light in the wake of mourning one of the scene's most promising acts…

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