Francisca Valenzuela Debuts Powerful A Cappella Version of ‘Por Que Me Lo Hiciste?’: Exclusive

Francisca Valenzuela is paying homage to women around the world on International Women’s Day (March 8) with her feminist anthem “Por Qué Me Lo Hiciste?” inspired by stories of real women.

In the a cappella rendition of “Por Qué Me Lo Hiciste? (Why Did You Do This To Me?),” the Chilean singer-songwriter tackles the topic of femicide, or violence against women, a social issue that affects women in Latin America and all over the world.

“This song takes flight from confusion, anger and lament over what violence and abuse can cause,” Valenzuela said about the song. “But it’s because of that violence and abuse that I won’t stay silent, I won’t stay static and I won’t stay alone. It’s a call for collective action.”

Femicide claims the lives of 12 women a day in Latin America and 98 percent of gender-related killings go unprosecuted, according to the United Nations. Furthermore, Latin America is home to 14 of the 25 countries with the highest rates of femicide in the world.

Delivering a powerful and evocative interpretation of “Por Qué Me Lo Hiciste?,” Valenzuela is later joined by backing vocalists Luciana García Huidobro, María Cordero, Annalise Drake, Elisa González.

Watch the video, directed by Brigitte Kattan Wrighton, below.

Valenzuela’s recent album La Fortaleza explores self-discovery and multiple issues that affect the Latinx community. “Whatever la lucha [the struggle] is, take that vulnerability as something strong and part of the process,” she previously told Billboard. “For me this album is about that strength in being vulnerable as well as the strength of being loud and raising your fist and finding a place within yourself and the collective.”

Hayley Williams Shares Lyrics For Boygenius Collaboration on International Women’s Day

Hayley Williams is not only celebrating her own “personal journey through femininity, with it’s endless facets” this International Women’s Day, but revealing that she’s got a collaboration coming up with three women who sing and rock as hard as she does.

On Sunday (March 8), Williams, in the spirit of honoring “the feminine wonder that connects literally everyone and everything,” shared the handwritten lyrics to “Roses/Lotus/Violet/Iris,” a collaboration with boygenius — a.k.a. Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus — that she’ll be releasing soon. The indie supergroup provided backing vocals to the song, and Williams is clearly thrilled to be working with them as she prepares for the release of her solo album, Petals for Armor.

“they are just 3 of the incredible women who i get to know and grow alongside in this life,” she wrote on Twitter. “can’t wait to release this song and more.”

The lyrics incorporate all of the flowers mentioned in its title, and each blossom makes an appearance in the chorus, which slightly changes on the two pages Williams revealed: “Roses roses roses roses / Show no concern for colors of a violet / Lotus lotus lotus lotus / Hopes it won’t spark / Envy in your irises.”

Check out Williams’ handwritten lyrics for “Roses/Lotus/Violet/Iris” below, and stay tuned for the drop of the collaboration.


McCoy Tyner, Iconic and Influential Jazz Pianist, Dies at 81

McCoy Tyner, the groundbreaking and influential jazz pianist and the last surviving member of the John Coltrane Quartet, has died. He was 81.

Tyner’s family confirmed the death in a statement released on social media Friday (March 6). No more details were provided.

“It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of jazz legend, Alfred “McCoy” Tyner. McCoy was an inspired musician who devoted his life to his art, his family and his spirituality,” the statement read. “McCoy Tyner’s music and legacy will continue to inspire fans and future talent for generations to come.”

Tyner was born in Philadelphia on Dec. 11, 1938. He eventually met Coltrane and joined him for the 1961 album My Favorite Things, a major commercial success that highlighted the remarkable chemistry of the John Coltrane Quartet. The album was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 1998.

The quartet would go on to release more revered projects, becoming an international renowned group and one of the seminal acts in jazz history.

Tyner eventually found success apart from the John Coltrane Quartet, releasing more than 70 albums. He also won five Grammy Awards.

In 2002, he was named a Jazz Master by the National Endowment for the Arts.


SXSW Coronavirus Cancellation a ‘Hard Pill to Swallow’ for Artists & Execs Missing Out

Following South by Southwest’s announcement on Friday that the annual conference will not be held this year due to concerns over the coronavirus, artists and other members of the music industry say they’re losing critical professional opportunities and financial investments.

SXSW was scheduled to start next weekend and run March 13-22, but was canceled following a press conference where Austin Mayor Steve Adler declared a local disaster. This is the first time SXSW’s 34-year history that the entire event has been cancelled.

For emerging artists in particular, SXSW provides a significant platform for fan and industry exposure alongside networking opportunities with members of the music business whom they may not otherwise encounter. Many of the artists, managers and publicists with whom Billboard spoke say that their tours, album releases and marketing campaigns were designed around the conference, which last year drew close to 160,000 attendees.

“We picked March to put out our record because we were gonna go to SXSW,” says Sean Solomon, singer-guitarist for L.A. post-punk band Moaning, who were scheduled to play more than a dozen shows at the festival. “Every time we played past years, we were able to reach as many people as we would touring for a whole month, because you’re playing three or four shows a day.”

Solomon continues, “Had I known I wasn’t gonna be there I would’ve tried to get work in L.A. We still operate as an indie band, we’re not raking in a ton of money. We all have jobs. Now I don’t have anything lined up.”

Moaning know the value of the exposure SXSW can provide. The band landed its current deal with Sub Pop after label reps saw them play at SXSW three years ago.

“This event can impact a band’s growth immensely,” says Moaning’s manager Laurel Stearns. “The album was to be released the Friday of SXSW, and now that building block is wiped. A very important part of their campaign is no longer. This festival can change the course of a campaign domestically and internationally. It was a hard pill to swallow.”

The cancellation has sent artists and their teams scrambling to reroute tours and seek refunds on travel and lodging, with varying success. Others are being forced to eat the cost of expensive travel visas, road gear and record shipments. And for many, the cancellation means not getting paid for work days they were counting on, or could have worked elsewhere.

“I intentionally released my record in October, knowing that would give me six months to build intelligently to SXSW, which is exactly what happened,” says electronic artist and activist Madame Gandhi, whose group was booked for a dozen gigs, with more coming in. “This was the first time I was actually going to come out net positive, financially, after a SXSW experience, which felt like a personal graduation for me as a musician who’s been attending since 2011.

“I was really treating my SXSW shows as showcases to people whose opinion I value. We were going to have Bob Boilen of [NPR’s] Tiny Desk concerts as a guest at one of our shows. Additionally, on the creative side, I love going to SXSW because I always get exposed to new musicians and new producers to collaborate with.”

For many working behind the scenes in music, SXSW sets the tone for the year ahead in the industry, exposing them to new ideas and trends and providing a platform for real-life connection in an oftentimes fragmented business.

“SXSW is always a highlight of my year, whether it’s spreading the word about artists I’m working with or an opportunity to meet and connect with people I email on a regular basis,” says Kerry Harrison, a publicist with Listen Up who was planning to attend with three artists. “Canceling the festival affects a lot of opportunities for artists to share their story and show what they’re all about to a wide, influential audience… It’s disappointing that our clients won’t be given that opportunity this year. There are so many journalists at SXSW looking for fresh, new artists, so it will be interesting to see how media coverage adapts over the next couple weeks.”

Those missed opportunities hit particularly hard for greener acts playing their first SXSW, such as L.A. garage-punk band All My Friends Hate Me.

“We’re a new band, only one year old, so it was a pretty big look for us,” says singer-guitarist Bobby Banister. “We had been in talks with a lot of people coming out from radio and publishing. Everything we’ve been doing for the past two months was leading up to SXSW. We even had a radio campaign so that we could target people in Austin and get the word out even more.”

The band, who all have day jobs in the music industry, says they have been quick to find a silver lining by drawing on their network to plan a SXSW-style showcase in L.A. for all of the local acts scheduled to play the Austin festival.

“We’re already in talks with other contacts and agencies, and already sourcing emails with bands offered to play this festival and lift this dark cloud,” Banister says. “We’re gonna do a full push and campaign. We’ve already registered social handles and websites. We’re creating it as we speak and working around the clock till it’s locked in.”


Celebrate International Women’s Day With 12 Empowering Songs From the Women of K-Pop

While love songs are dime a dozen in the K-pop world, many of the top female acts have also regularly taken down the status quo of perceptions of what it means to be a female pop star.

To celebrate International Women’s Day 2020 this Sunday (March 8), take a listen and watch the music videos for some of these South Korean pop acts serving up fiery hits as they question what it means to be a female, both as public figures and private women, in the 21st century.

EXID’s “Ah Yeah”

Had enough with: Being the object of the male gaze
Context: EXID’s career surged out of near failure after a fancam of Hani’s performance of “Up & Down” went viral in South Korea, and their following release “Ah Yeah” spent the majority of its music video putting the members of the act in situations where they were dealing with how men treat women in workplaces, Internet spaces and more.
Also check out: EXID’s “Cream,” “Hot Pink”

ITZY’s “Dalla Dalla”
Had enough with: Conforming
Context: ITZY’s first single celebrated self-love and served up a confident anthem for their fans, in which they cheerfully sing about how being different is something wonderful.
Also check out: ITZY’s “ICY” and “Want It”

Sunny Hill’s “Princess and Prince Charming (Is the White Horse Coming?)”

Had enough with: South Korea’s competition and dating culture
Context: Sunny Hill spent a sizable portion of their career addressing things like working conditions, beauty standards, and, in this song, how dating in South Korea often feels like it’s based on rubrics rather than emotions.
Also check out: Sunny Hill’s “the Grasshopper Song,” “Darling of All Hearts”

2NE1’s “I am the Best”
Had enough with: Submissiveness
Context: 2NE1 was a dominant act in K-pop throughout the majority of its career, and regularly released empowering hits. like “I am the Best,” where they proudly proclaimed their power and reveled in what it meant to be a top act.
Also check out: 2NE1’s “Try to Copy Me,” CL’s “Baddest Female”

IU’s “Twenty-Three”
Had enough with: The way people perceive her
Context: South Korea’s “little sister,” IU grew up in the spotlight as one of the country’s most prominent singers and actors, and in the past few years she’s used her music to question why people think they know her (and use their time to critique her).
Also check out: IU’s “Bbibbi,” “Palette”

miss A’s “I Don’t Need A Man”
Had enough with: Men
Context: On their Independent Woman Pt.III album, miss A followed in the path of Destiny’s Child and declared their independence with this single.
Also check out: miss A’s “Bad Girl, Good Girl” and Fei’s “Fantasy”

4Minute’s “What’s Your Name” 

Had enough with: Being asked out by random men
Context: 4Minute, and rapper HyunA who has had a successful career as a soloist, spent much of their career toeing the line, singing about the way women are viewed as easy and expected to share their private information with strangers.
Also check out: HyunA’s “Lip & Hip,” 4Minute’s “Crazy”

Brown Eyed Girls’ “Warm Hole”
Had enough with: The idea that Korean pop acts can’t sing about sex
Context: Brown Eyed Girls is one of the longest-running and most impactful female teams in the South Korean music world, and are in part to thank for the dance from Psy’s “Gangnam Style.” They’ve spent most of their career questioning the status quo, both through their joint and solo works.
Also check out: BEG’s “Sixth Sense,” “Kill Bill,” and all of Ga-In’s solo work, especially “Bloom” and “Fxxk U”

Mamamoo’s “Hip”
Had enough with: Obsessive critiques of their bodies and actions
Context: One of the most popular female acts in Korea today, Mamamoo’s members have regularly been criticized by Internet trolls for the way they act, what they look like, what they wear, etc. “Hip” put these criticisms in the spotlight in its empowering lyrics and music video.
Also check out: Mamamoo’s “Girl Crush”

Lim Kim’s “Yellow”
Had enough with: Racism and patriarchy
Context: Lim Kim was formerly signed to a Korean entertainment company, which she felt put her into “this box that is called ‘Woman,” she told Billboard. She has returned as a soloist singing about her place as an Asian woman in the world, and “Yellow” is her takedown of racist stereotypes.
Also check out: Her entire first EP, Generasian

CLC’s “No”
Had enough with: The assumption women are acting and dressing certain ways for men
Context: CLC said “fork off” to stereotypes that women change and do certain things in order to make men happy.
Also check out: CLC’s “Me,” and labelmate’s (G)I-dle’s “Lion”

BoA’s “Woman”
Had enough with: Stereotyping women
Context: One of the biggest K-pop stars of the last generation, BoA is considered to have played an integral role in launching K-pop across Asia, setting the industry up to spread across the globe. Her 2018 single celebrated everything about being a “Woman,” and even gave a brief rebuke of forced femininity and girlishness of the early days of her career, singing about how she’s taken ownership of her womanhood later in life as if it’s a new adventure to be had.
Also check out: BoA’s “Girl’s On Top,” “The Top”

YoungBoy Never Broke Again Builds Momentum at Second Tour Stop in L.A.

Thousands of YoungBoy Never Broke Again fans crowded the Microsoft Theater in downtown Los Angeles on Saturday (March 7), eagerly awaiting to see the second stop of the rapper’s headlining Still Flexin’, Still Steppin’ tour.

Never Broke Again artist Quando Rando opened the night, followed by a lengthy break featuring a DJ set and dancer Famous Dex. Later, Rich the Kid graced the stage, wearing sunglasses and puffing a joint for the duration of his performance.

After a brief intermission, a beaming YoungBoy Never Broke Again was greeted by excited screams from attendees. Decked out in a glow-in-the-dark, black-and-white ensemble and a blue bandana-patterned coat, the rapper launched into “Ten Talk.” A crew of Never Broke Again members (most of whom were also dressed in various black-and-white styles) helped the 20-year-old fill the area as he paced before the packed venue. Famous Dex remained on stage for every song, blending seamless with the NBA squad — including Quando Rando, Ben 10, and three others trailed closely behind — as he danced and hyped the crowd with notable enthusiasm.

Mobile phone camera lights assisted the dim, richly blue-tinted theater in highlighting YoungBoy on the stage, as “FREEDDAWG” came next. By this time, YoungBoy had shed his coat and bounced on the stage’s risers, head tilted back, as he passionately bellowed along to “Carter Son,” the backing track almost inaudible over his voice and the bass. Throughout the entire show, YoungBoy delivered live raps and vocals, rarely relying on the background music.

The stage lighting eventually brightened, shedding the dark, deep blue shade in lieu of a warm yellow. For “Red Eye,” the rapper held court on the stage with fellow NBA member OG 3three, as concert-goers belted the melancholy song’s lyrics with precision. Fans got their first interaction with YoungBoy when he jumped down to the VIP area, leaning towards the crowd and allowing the front row to touch him during “Swerving,” much to the security’s dismay. After the Louisiana native cycled through a few more tracks, including “Slime Mentality” and “Bad Bad,” he paused for a few minutes as a young woman near the front required emergency medical assistance. He appeared concerned as he led the crowd in a “shake back” chant for the fallen fan, before sliding into hit single “Make No Sense.”

As the concert’s tempo picked up and the (seemingly improvised) set list grew more energetic, the NBA squad continued to span the stage, shirtless at this point, as women’s bras were tossed to the rapper. The crew waved the bras around without missing a beat, also brandishing light green bandanas either in their hand or on their head. The energy only dwindled for “Lonely Child,” for which YoungBoy requested everyone “puts [their] lighters up,” as he was joined by the audience in singing every word.

Towards the show’s end, YoungBoy prompted the crowd to chant “R.I.P. Juice WRLD” before diving into the duo’s hit collaboration “Bandit.” Aside from rapping his verses, YoungBoy sang Juice WRLD’s parts, throwing water into the crowd for effect. Almost abruptly, “Knocked Off” rounded off the show, with YoungBoy quickly turning and exiting the stage, entourage in tow, after a brief “thank you” to his fans.


DaBaby Claims He Was Hit Before Striking Woman in Club Altercation

DaBaby was set to celebrate following a concert in Florida on Saturday night (March 7), but a physical altercation that involved him hitting a woman in the face went down before his after-party began.

After his set at Wind Splash 2020 in Clearwater, Fla., DaBaby (a.k.a. Jonathan Kirk) and his crew made their way to the Whiskey North nightclub in North Tampa, where he was scheduled to host an official after-party following the festival. DaBaby was making his way through the crowd when a woman tapped his face with her phone, and footage shows him retaliating by punching her squarely in the face before he continued to move through the club.

TMZ reports that the club booed him until he and his entourage left. Later via his Instagram stories, DaBaby offered $10,000 to any of his followers who “got a good angle of shorty hitting me in my eye.” After someone provided him with video of the incident, he reposted it: “Who know shawty government name so my lawyer can get active?” (Billboard has reached out to DaBaby’s rep for comment.)

This isn’t the first time DaBaby found himself in hot water in Florida this year: in January, he wound up in jail in Miami after he punched a promoter and members of his entourage robbed the victim of $80.

DaBaby’s tour continues tonight (March 8) at the Van Andel Arena in Grand Rapids, Mich.