Billboard Bits: Juanes, BMI Urban Showcase, Sanjaya Malakar
Juanes will release his fourth album, "La Vida Es Un Ratico," this September or October via Universal Latino. The album, Juanes' first since 2004's "Mi Sangre," reunites the 12-time Latin Grammy winneJuanes will release his fourth album, "La Vida Es Un Ratico," this September or October via Universal Latino. The album, Juanes' first since 2004's "Mi Sangre," reunites the 12-time Latin Grammy winner with Oscar-winning co-producer Gustavo Santaolalla.
The Spanish-language rock album will incorporate Colombian music styles such as vallenato and cumbia, along with tangos and boleros. In addition, Juanes will be the keynote Q&A April 25 at the Billboard Latin Conference in Miami.
-- Jonathan Cohen, N.Y.
Producer/songwriter Jazze Pha has been tapped to host this year's BMI urban music showcase, taking place April 19 at E.S.S.O in Atlanta. A winner will be chosen by a panel of celebrity judges for a prize which includes paid studio time and two tickets to the 2007 BMI Urban Awards.
The four finalists, who were chosen from hundreds of applicants, will take the stage first, followed by rappers T-Pain, Yung Joc and Fat Joe, who are scheduled to make guest appearances.
The winner will be selected by a panel of judges including Grand Hustle Entertainment GM Hannah Kang, producers DJ Toomp, Jim Jonsin and Dre & Vidal among others. Other surprise judges will be joining as well. Pha will be joined by co-host Rashaan Ali, from Atlanta's Hot 107.9 FM. The show is open to the general public.
-- Mariel Concepcion, N.Y.
There's no confusing "American Idol" contestant Sanjaya Malakar with another Sanjaya in the blogosphere. Web chatter over his improbable enduring presence in the top-rated TV singing competition has reached such a fever pitch that bloggers now primarily refer to him by first name only, according to a new study.
By a factor of three-to-one bloggers now use the shorthand of "Sanjaya" when talking about Malakar, Nielsen BuzzMetrics reports. And overall online references to Malakar have increased more than 330% between the weeks of Feb. 18 and April 8.
At the center of the conversation about Sanjaya is the idea that he does not belong among top "Idol" contestants because he lacks talent. Rather, bloggers think his staying power is being driven by Howard Stern and Vote for the Worst, a Web site dedicated to supporting the least-talented "Idol" contestants, the report says.
-- Brian Garrity, N.Y.