The 2020 Billboard Music Awards are next month, and one of the top prizes of the year will be for Top Hot 100 Artist — but who should take home the award?
Lil Nas X had an incredible summer run in 2019, when his “Old Town Remix,” featuring Billy Ray Cyrus, stayed at the No. 1 spot for a record-breaking 19 weeks. DaBaby dubbed himself “Billboard Baby” for his own chart moves, following Lil Nas X’s lead by taking home the Song of the Summer this year for “Rockstar,” featuring Roddy Ricch, which led the Hot 100 for seven weeks.
The 2020 Billboard Music Awards will air Oct. 14 at 8 p.m. ET, live from Los Angeles’ Dolby Theatre on NBC, with Kelly Clarkson returning for her third year as the evening’s host. The 2020 Billboard Music Awards are produced by dick clark productions, which is owned by MRC Entertainment, the parent company of Billboard.
So which chart-topper is your top contender to win Top Hot 100 artist at the 2020 BBMAs? Vote below!
As a celebrated actress, producer and philanthropist, Rita Wilson has remained busy as a musician in quarantine throughout 2020: the veteran artist, who’s been prolific since issuing her debut album AM/FM in 2012, has released a string of singles following last year’s full-length, Halfway to Home.
Earlier this month, Wilson unveiled “What I Would Say,” a meditation on a loved one battling addiction; earlier this year, she released “Everybody Cries,” from the film The Outpost, and “Where’s My Country Song?,” an ode to working class women who often lack representation in popular music. And of course, she teamed up with rap greats Naughty By Nature for an inspired remix of their beloved 1992 hit, “Hip Hop Hooray,” with net profits being donated with the MusicCares Foundation Inc. COVID-19 Relief Fund.
After celebrating her latest single release, Wilson checked in with Billboard and answered questions about her musical background, recent listening habits and making new songs while socially distancing.
1. What’s the first piece of music that you bought for yourself, and what was the medium?
I can’t remember buying it but the first music I couldn’t get enough of was Meet The Beatles. A neighbor worked at Capitol Records, and she would bring us the new albums on release day. It was vinyl, of course, and we’d put it on the turntable inside the “Hi-Fi” cabinet my dad made. Tuner, TV and Turntable all in one.
2. What was the first concert you saw?
Led Zeppelin. The Forum in Los Angeles. I later worked at the Universal Amphitheater as a ticket taker. It was the best way to see free shows. I’ll always regret not seeing the Beatles at the Hollywood Bowl and Elvis in Las Vegas.
3. What did your parents do for a living when you were a kid?
My mom was a homemaker and my dad was a bartender at the race tracks. Either Santa Anita or Hollywood Park, depending on the season. On Saturday mornings we would count my dad’s tips that he kept in a Crown Royal felt bag. We’d sort all the coins and put them into those little paper bank rolls.
4. Who made you realize you could be an artist full-time?
This is a multi-part answer. First, I guess you could say, it was me. I started working at 14 as a model, then got my SAG card at 16 doing an episode of The Brady Bunch. I went to junior college but was working so much as an actor (I missed a lot of classes) that I began to realize that I could be an actor full-time.
The second time was when a director of a play I was doing, Merwin Goldsmith, suggested I train classically in London, since he felt I enjoyed being on the stage. I went to the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. At LAMDA, I started to realize there was a craft to being an actor. I started so young, I didn’t know you could train and get better.
Third, was when I had put out my first album, AM/FM. I had done Chicago on Broadway, and a few years later met the songwriter Kara DioGuardi, who had also done Chicago. She knew I had put out an album of cover songs, and asked what I wanted to do. I told her I’d love to write songs but that I couldn’t play an instrument. She said, “Neither do I. But do you have something you want to say?” Kara wrote my first two songs (with Jason Reeves) with me. Songwriting has truly made me feel the most creative.
5. What’s at the top of your professional bucket list?
I don’t think like that. I have accomplished so many things I never thought I would. Those things came out of a passion for doing what I love to do. Awards and things like that have never been a goal. So, I guess it would be to continue working with people who are at the top of their creative game and to get better.
6. How did your hometown/city shape who you are?
In every possible way. I was born and raised in Hollywood, California. It was my hometown and yet, world renowned. I grew up in the shade of the Hollywood sign and graduated high school from the Hollywood Bowl stage. Wait! That might be a bucket list item; performing at the Hollywood Bowl!
I drove by Capitol Records weekly. Hollywood Blvd. was our Main Street, USA. Yet, it was also where I worked at the local grocery store, cashed Coke bottles in for dimes, and took the bus to Santa Monica beach during summer. People would come from all over to live the dream, but seeing it as my hometown gave me perspective that you could also live a normal life.
7. What’s the last song you listened to?
Does listening to a mix of one of your own songs count? Probably not. So, I’d say Bob Dylan’s new album, Rough and Rowdy Ways.
8. If you could see any artist in concert, dead or alive, who would it be?
I really regret not having seen Elvis when he was in Vegas, and Frank Sinatra. I’d love to have seen Bobby Gentry.
9. What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen happen in the crowd of one of your performances?
At one of my acoustic shows, there was a loud gasp and the sound of something heavy hitting the ground. A guy had passed out and we had to stop the show while the paramedics came and took him out on a stretcher. Thankfully, we heard that he ended up being okay. That was so nice of them to let us know. I mean, I’ve heard of killer shows but…..
10. How has the pandemic affected the way you’ve created music in 2020?
Well, can you say “FaceTime”? I wrote a lot during quarantine and that continues to this day. I recorded “Where’s My Country Song?” socially distanced with everyone recording their parts at their home studios and my co-producer, Mikal Blue, working his magic at his studio. I did the “Hip Hop Hooray” remix with Naughty By Nature during quarantine. That was sort of spontaneous and awesome.
11. As a song about addiction, what does “What I Would Say” represent for you artistically?
Writing songs about subject matter that is hard to look at can be cathartic. Sometimes, songs are expressions of fears or emotions that you tend to avoid dealing with because it’s painful or frightening. Putting that into music is a way to process some of that.
12. Why did you feel like your recent track “Where’s My Country Song?” was a song that needed to be written?
Sometimes, how women are written about in music is idealized. Women can be portrayed as a man’s fantasy of what she should be like. In my song, I imagined women that are single moms, working hard, or women that we encounter every day that help to make our lives run a little smoother, or nurses on the frontline, women who work in offices and warehouses that we may never see; the women who aren’t wearing high heels in somebody else’s fantasy life. I thought about them getting into their cars after a long day of work, turning on the radio, and wondering why their lives aren’t being sung about on the radio. There’s room for everything, but there could be more room for women‘s stories than what we currently have going on.
13. 2020 has been a wild, tumultuous year. What are you hoping for in 2021, generally and personally?
Good health. For everyone.
14. As a longtime philanthropist, what would you recommend to someone who wants to make a difference this year, but isn’t sure where to start?
It’s simple. Vote. Your voice needs to be heard. The best thing you can give to yourself is to exercise your right to vote.
15. What’s your karaoke go-to?
Hello??? “Hip Hop Hooray” by Naughty By Nature.
16. What movie, or song, always makes you cry?
“I Will Always Love You” – Dolly Parton.
17. What TV series have you watched all the way through multiple times?
Not a one.
18. What’s one thing that even your most devoted fans don’t know about you?
That I speak French.
19. If you were not a musician, what would you be?
An athlete or a detective.
20. What’s one piece of advice you would give to your younger self?
It’s okay to say “no,” because the “no’s “ define you just as much as the “yes’s” do.
Just two days after Chrissy Teigen shared that she’d been hospitalized over the weekend due to heavy bleeding while pregnant, the model shared an update on her condition.
In a series of posts on Instagram on Monday (Sept. 28), Teigen revealed that she received two blood transfusions. “hello from hospital. about to have my second blood transfusion which truly truly truly sounds more dramatic than it is. It’s an IV, but instead of fluids, the blood of some kind human being out there,” she shared.
“Baby and I are completely fine, just missing the little things like walking…cooking…playing with the other buttbutts. came across this little gem from ringing in 2020. It all makes sense now,” she cheekily assured alongside a photo from New Year’s Eve, in which Teigen is seen looking completely over it.
On Tuesday (Sept. 29), Teigen provided another update–this one a bit more serious than the others. “Just had a really scary morning,” she tweeted. “huge clot, almost save-worthy. The scramble to hear the heartbeat seemed like hours. I never thought I’d relief sigh so much in my liiiiife.”
The hospitalization comes after the Cravings cookbook author had been on strict bedrest “for a few weeks” as a result of her high-risk pregnancy. “I get up to quickly pee and that’s it. I would take baths twice a week, no showering, just as little as possible,” she explained on her Instagram Stories over the weekend.”But I was always, always bleeding. I’m about, like, halfway through pregnancy and the blood has been going on for like a month. Maybe a little bit less than a month, but we’re talking, like, more than your period, girls. And definitely not spotting. A lot of people spot and it’s usually fine. But yeah, mine was a lot.”
Teigen is currently pregnant with her third child, which she revealed was a boy last week, with husband John Legend. The couple also share daughter Luna, 4, and son Miles, 2.
MOSCOW — Russia’s largest bank, state-controlled Sberbank, has acquired the local music streaming service Zvuk in a bid to create a major competitor to Apple Music, Spotify and local rival Yandex Music.
Renamed SberZvuk, the streaming service will become part of the company’s new product family, alongside SberBox, a TV streaming device, and SberPortal, a smart speaker with a screen that offers voice and gesture recognition.
The move is part of Sberbank’s broader drive to reinvent itself as a tech company, after it dropped the word “bank” from its name and logo and introduced a range of new products. Sberbank would not disclose how much it paid for Zvuk, which had been around since 2010, or what investment it plans to make to develop the music streaming service.
The bank launched a basic version of the platform on Monday (Sept. 28), using the same catalog and features that the original Zvuk had.
In an interview with Billboard, Michael Ilyichev, CEO of SberZvuk, says the company is “compiling the most relevant catalog for audio content in one place, including music, radio, podcasts, audiobooks, live shows, comedy shows, news, audio performances, sleepcasts, meditation music and many more pieces.”
The streaming service is also touting a proprietary recommendation system that will take into account users’ tastes, listening history, items added to collections, the context of each situation, “as well as all your activities inside the Sber ecosystem and interactions with its other products and services,” Ilyichev says.
Sberbank is a late entry in Russia’s music streaming market, which is dominated by established players, including local leader Yandex Music and global companies Apple Music and Spotify, which launched in July.
Sberbank hopes that its finance and tech ecosystem, which has a 100-million customer base, will enable ZberZvuk to offer users advantages that competitors don’t have.
“Russia is a big country, with almost all of its economically active citizens using Sber,” says Ilyichev. “Inside the ecosystem we understood the people’s mood, what they like to listen to, eat and watch. All that provides us with great opportunities that even Google doesn’t have.”
The platform, for example, will give users access to the SberPay payment tool, which has features that go “beyond the Apple and Google apps embedded in stores,” the CEO says. Users can link several cards with the app, making subscription renewal simpler “and not leave you without content at the worst possible moment.”