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. 14 More Madonna Songs Leak From 'Rebel Heart,' Including Pharrell Collabo

    December 24, 2014 1:39 PM EST It's not shaping up to be a very merry Christmas for Madonna . Fourteen more tracks from Madge's upcoming album Rebel Heart have leaked online, including a track with Hard Candy collaborator Pharrell allegedly called "Back That Up (Do It)." This second massive security…

  3. Watch Celia Cruz Sing 'Jingle Bells' to a Pre-Revolution Cuban Beat

    December 24, 2014 11:55 AM EST Let’s do the rumba again this Christmas, as the U.S. and Cuba restore diplomatic relations. During Cuba's last Christmas season before Fidel Castro claimed victory for the Revolution at the start of 1959, the great Cuban orchestra Sonora Matancera recorded a holiday album featuring the…

  4. 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…

  5. Listen to This Kanye West Christmas Parody, 'Kreezus'

    December 23, 2014 9:01 PM EST If Kanye West decided to make a Christmas album where he believed he is Santa Claus, it would be Kreezus  -- the new album-long parody of West's Yeezus by sketch comedy trio Local Business that dropped Monday.  Remember When Beyonce 'Ruined' Christmas? The commitment to…

  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. 'American Idol' Alums Casey Abrams, Taylor Hicks, More Remember Joe Cocker

    December 23, 2014 6:38 PM EST "To make a hit that was already a hit ... an even bigger hit, that's hard to do," said Phillip Phillips of the late singer. When Casey Abrams competed on the tenth season of American Idol , he was asked to perform music inspired by their own musical idols. Abrams didn’t even…

  8. Rdio CEO Anthony Bay Talks Taylor Swift, Global Expansion and the Battle for 'Listening Market Share'

    December 23, 2014 5:14 PM EST Founded by Skype co-creator Janus Friis and launched in August 2010, Rdio was one of the first wave of music streaming services. Today it operates in 60 countries, including the U.S, United Kingdom, France, Brazil and Australia, offers a catalog of 30 million songs and provides customers…

  9. 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…

  10. 'Entourage' Trailer Arrives: Vincent Chase Plays a Mutant DJ

    December 23, 2014 3:26 PM EST The big-screen adaptation of HBO's comedic bro-fest Entourage is headed to theaters in June, and fans just received their first look at the long-awaited reunion of Vince, E, Drama and Turtle. And after "starring" in fake movies like Aquaman and Medellin , Vinnie Chase (Adrian…

  11. 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…

  12. 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…

  13. 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…

  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. Exclusive: New Company Looks to Improve Digital Sales' Bottom Line By Lowering Credit Card Fees

    December 23, 2014 8:00 AM EST A system designed in the '70s isn't helping an ailing digital music sales industry. Digital commerce has presented the music business with two key problems: First, credit card fees hamper direct-to-fan sales, and second, large online retailers like iTunes don't give sellers…

  17. 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…

  18. Renee Fleming to Make Broadway Debut

    December 23, 2014 1:21 AM EST Renee Fleming is no stranger to the Metropolitan Opera or Carnegie Hall stages. But the world-renowned soprano and four-time Grammy winner will venture for the first time to Broadway in the spring, when she'll star as -- what else? -- a celebrated diva in Joe DiPietro's new comedy…

  19. 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…

  20. Casey Kasem Finally Laid to Rest in Norway; Questions About Death Remain

    December 22, 2014 5:13 PM EST After a lengthy legal battle, Casey Kasem’s body can finally rest in peace. However, the burial means the legendary radio host’s demise will likely remain shrouded in mystery. According to TMZ , Kasem was buried Tues., Dec. 16 at Norway’s Vestre Gravlund Cemetery. The news broke today …

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