The tracklist is below. It includes one of the biggest hits of recent memory, “Hotline Bling,” plus recently leaked song “Controlla.”
Did you take a Twitter vacation over the weekend? If you weren't already aware, Beyonce just went right ahead and Beyonce'd again, releasing a (sort of) surprise album called Lemonade. Though it was previously only streaming on Tidal, for which you have to have a paid account, it's coming out on CD/DVD May 6th! You can preorder it now.
Anyone who's played her previous album to death, 2013's excellent Beyonce, knows they're in for something special. To boot, this new album features work by The Weeknd, James Blake, Jack White and Kendrick Lamar, plus samples and inspiration from the likes of Led Zeppelin, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Soulja Boy and Animal Collective. Production was handled by Just Blaze, Diplo and Ezra Koenig of Vampire Weekend.
No doubt hip-hop artists and aspiring artists of any genre will find interest in Protect Ya Neck! [A Music Industry Survival Guide]. To be published in late March, the Christian Farrad authored non-fiction book promises to reveal "tips to survive (and thrive) in the cut-throat world of entertainment."
A New York City-based business manager specializing in music and entertainment, Farrad's background includes being GM of Miami independent rap label Slip N Slide Records. While by no means the first tome to tackle the topic of the snake-filled music industry (Fredric Dannen's 1990 book Hit Men remains one of the best in that genre), it does put a contemporary (as in digital age) and hip-hop generation themed spin on its subject matter. This it does via the scenarios cited in its many what-not-to-do tales of the music industry like why Eminem had to sue his record label for miscalculating digital sales of his music or Lil Wayne filing a $51 Million lawsuit against his label over unpaid royalties. Beyonce firing her manager for stealing money from her tour and Rihanna suing her accountant for mismanaging her money are among the other cautionary tales examined in the book that promises to teach, among other things, "defensive strategies to protect ya neck!"
Books like Farrad's offer invaluable tools to navigate the pitfalls of the tricky music business. And there are many, from the importance of management to the ins-and-outs of publishing, and the unforeseen challenges of long term music distribution in the digital age. Unfortunately, it seems, most young artists starting out in their careers (i.e., those who need to read books like this the most) likely will not read them, at least not until after the fact. Typically they'll be too preoccupied with jumping headfirst into their music careers to stop, read, study, and take a sober look at the big picture of what lies ahead. This week I reached out to author Farrad to ask him about this and other topics related to his forthcoming publication.
We've tallied up our top sellers for the year at Amoeba Hollywood and Amoeba.com, including CDs, vinyl and downloads. Take a look below at what Amoeba shoppers picked up in 2014.
Arctic Monkeys megahit fifth LP from 2013 continued selling right into 2014 on the strength of hits like "Snap Out of It."
Jack White's experimentally bluesy second album helped his legion of fans grow larger by the day.
Once again #AnDyWuMUSICLAND has produced his audio/video mashup megamix of many of the most notable pop hits of the past year. Billed as best of 2014 it is technically songs released from November 2013 up until recently (this way he gets a head start on those who wait til December 31st to do their best of the year mixes). The 88 song megamix, whose playlist is detailed below in alphabetical order by artist, includes many artists with more than one hit such as Ariana Grande with two ("Break Free" and "Problem (feat. Iggy Azalea)," Iggy Azalea, who also guests on Jennifer Lopez's sole entry "Booty," herself as artist has three hits ("Fancy (feat. Charli XCX)," "Work," and "Black Widow (feat. Rita Ora)"). [This week a deluxe edition LP version of her hit album The New Classic arrived in Amoeba.] Meanwhile Katy Perry has a total of five hits on the above megamix that include "Dark Horse (feat. Juicy J)," "Unconditionally," "Birthday," "This is How We Do," and "Walking On Air" - culled from her late 2013 release Prism. Beyonce's self-titled 2014 album also rendered a string of hits including the duet with her husband - "Drunk In Love (feat Jay-Z)." Some have commented on this year's mix saying that it is not quite as good as last year's but if so, the onus is not on AnDy Wu musicland, who did an excellent job once again, but rather perhaps on the quality of pop music in 2014.