Jack White Buys Busker a New Guitar After It Was Smashed by Passerby

Jack White came to the rescue of a young musician who lost his guitar in an unfortunate way.

26-year-old Matt Grant explained to CNN that he was busking on the streets of Edinburgh, Scotland earlier this week, when he was confronted by an angry woman who grabbed his guitar and smashed it. Without the funds to buy himself a new one, Grant set up a crowdfunding page.

Grant went on to note that by the next day, he had raised £4,000 (about $5,200), which was more than enough to purchase a new guitar. But when he got to the store, he was met with an incredible surprise.

The staff told him that he had a call from a “third party,” which turned out to be White’s manager, because the White Stripes star heard about Grant’s situation and asked his management to try to find him by ringing every guitar shop in the city.

“Incredible,” Grant updated his GoFundMe page. “Jack White from The White Stripes got in touch this morning and decided to buy me a brand new guitar. Unbelievable. From one of the worst things to happen to one of the best. Once again, thank you for everyone’s help.”

On Wednesday (Oct. 21), Grant shared a photo of his sleek, baby blue Fender guitar to Instagram. “This morning I came into @guitarguitaredinburgh to pick up the new acoustic. Next thing I know I’m on the phone to @officialjackwhitelive ‘s manager who tells me Jack White has seen my go fund me page, feels bad for what happened and wants to buy me a new guitar,” he wrote. “Flashforward one kid in a candy shop later testing as many guitars as possible and I settle on a #custommade #fenderstratocaster.”

“Absolute once in a million lifetimes thing happened today and I cannot thank Jack enough for his absolute generosity,” he continued. “Apparently he saw what happened and hit up his manager just this morning, who then amazingly tracked me down to the guitar shop just in time for me to walk out with this absolute beauty. Thanks Jack. I’d love to thank you personally one day, you’re a legend.”

See his post below.


View this post on Instagram


And now for something absolutely incredible… Story time. This morning I came into @guitarguitaredinburgh to pick up the new acoustic. Next thing I know I’m on the phone to @officialjackwhitelive ‘s manager who tells me Jack White has seen my go fund me page, feels bad for what happened and wants to buy me a new guitar. Flashforward one kid in a candy shop later testing as many guitars as possible and I settle on a #custommade #fenderstratocaster. Absolute once in a million lifetimes thing happened today and I cannot thank Jack enough for his absolute generosity. Apparently he saw what happened and hit up his manager just this morning, who then amazingly tracked me down to the guitar shop just in time for me to walk out with this absolute beauty. Thanks Jack. I’d love to thank you personally one day, you’re a legend. #fender #guitar #electricguitar #thewhitestripes #jackwhite @guitarguitaruk @guitarguitaredinburgh

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iHeartMedia to Acquire Voxnest, Its Latest Bet on Podcasting

iHeartMedia plans to acquire Voxnest, a podcasting services company that offers advertising, analytics and publishing tools to enterprise clients such as Vanity Fair and Wired, the company announced Friday (Oct. 23). A source with knowledge of the acquisition says iHeartMedia will pay for Voxnest roughly what it paid for Stuff Media, which was reported to be $55 million.

Among Voxnest’s products is “dynamic ad insertion,” meaning it can place ads into podcasts based on factors such as listener demographics, location and interests. Voxnest “will ensure critical mass for the platform and accelerate its growth,” iHeartMedia Chairman and CEO Bob Pittman said in a statement. The Brooklyn-based company, which formed in January 2018 from the merger of Spreaker and BlogTalkRadio, also hosts and distributes podcasts.

Like Spotify’s two-pronged approach to podcasting, a mix of acquisitions and original content, iHeartMedia has actively improved its stature in the format. Among the U.S. audience, as of September, iHeartMedia narrowly ranked second behind NPR, 26.05 million to 25.98 million, according to podcast analytics company Podtrac. iHeartMedia produces such popular podcasts as Stuff You Should Know, Crime Stories With Nancy Grace, Paper Ghosts and Dead Ass With Khadeen and Devale Ellis.

iHeartMedia certainly needs a boost in 2020. Digital advertising accounted for about one-fifth of iHeartMedia’s second quarter revenue, from April to June. Broadcast radio sales, half of total revenues, fell 56.5% compared to the same period last year from $561.1 million to $244 million. But podcasting revenue grew 103% from the prior-year period, helping digital sales improve 2.4% — iHeartMedia’s only improving segment.

Arlo Guthrie Announces Retirement From Touring: ‘Gone Fishing’

Arlo Guthrie is hanging up his touring hat.

In a message on his website on Friday (Oct. 23) titled “Gone Fishing,” the folk singer revealed that after 50 years, “touring and stage shows are no longer possible.”

He explained that he has experienced a number of mini-strokes, the first in 2016. “I got really dizzy in the parking lot of the hotel, and started seeing as though I were looking through a kaleidoscope,” he said, before sharing that he didn’t find out it was a mini-stoke until a few weeks later. “It didn’t appear to affect my performance, or my state of being. I continued touring for the next 4 years.”

He experienced another in November 2019, on Thanksgiving, but was still able to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York the next day. When he returned to Florida a few days later, he was experiencing pain on both sides of his body and went to the hospital. “They kept me there for 3 days, running tests of all kinds, and essentially informed me that I’d suffered a stroke,” he said. “This time was more serious, as I’d lost some ability to walk, and I wondered if if would be able to play music.”

He went on to thank his girlfriend Marti for her care and support, and shared that he’s been quarantining at his farm in Massachusetts, playing music online.

“A folksinger’s shelf life may be a lot longer than a dancer or an athlete, but at some point, unless you’re incredibly fortunate or just plain whacko (either one or both) it’s time to hang up the ‘Gone Fishing’ sign,” he concluded. “Going from town to town and doing stage shows, remaining on the road is no longer an option.”

“I’m happy, healthy and good to go, even if I’m not going anywhere. I’ve taken back 6-9 months that I used to spend on the road, and enjoying myself with Marti, my family and friends. In short – Gone Fishing.” See the full message here.


Here’s Why Selena Gomez Decided She Couldn’t Stay Silent About This Election

Selena Gomez chatted one-on-one with former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams about empowering the Latina population during this election season.

Their livestream Spotlight Conversation on Friday (Oct. 23) was one of the last stops on the weeklong She Se Puede Latinas Make a Difference Tour 2020, which galvanizes Latinas to vote in the Nov. 3 presidential election, less than two weeks away. Gomez proudly wore her “I Voted” sticker on her sweater, which she first showed off in a patriotic Instagram post on Thursday while filling out her ballot.

Abrams, who is the first Black woman to become a gubernatorial nominee of a major party in the U.S., told Gomez about her historic 2018 run and how she recruited Latinos for her team when she was elected as Democratic leader in the Georgia House of Representatives.

“I picked up the phone and called the Georgia Association of Latino Elected Officials and said, ‘I want to hire someone Latino. I want to make certain that my office actually looks like Georgia. I need to make certain that I’m not trying to speak for a community I’m not apart of, but that I know is incredibly important,'” she told Gomez. “…I may start out standing as a Black woman, but if I’m doing my job right, every woman of color knows that she should be standing right there with me, especially the Latina population.”

The Rare artist spoke to the politician’s point about the younger generation stepping up this year, and why she used her voice to speak on this issue. “A part of why I wanted to do so much around voting and around getting my generation going is because I believe that my generation specifically gets distracted and there’s so much going on in the world,” Gomez said. “This is the one time that we can make a difference.”

According to a recent study by The New York Times, the Latino population has a significantly larger gender gap, with the women leading by 26 percentage points, compared to Black, white and Asian voters. But Gomez read out another statistic about how the voter turnout rate for Latinas was 14-20% lower than non-Latina Black women.

“When you look around, sometimes you despair when you see intergenerational poverty, when you see persistence of prejudice and bigotry, when you see these artificial barriers to your success, it is absolutely understandable that you decide the system just doesn’t work,” Abrams said about why women of color can feel reluctant to cast their ballots. “But then, we’ve got to have a conversation about what’s possible if we can suspend that suspicion for just one day, for just one vote.”

In June, Gomez handed over her coveted Instagram handle, which was once the most-followed account on the social media platform, to Abrams as part of the singer’s effort to give her platform to activists fighting for change on the front lines.

Watch Gomez and Abrams’ Spotlight Conversation in full here.

20 Questions With Tchami: The French Phenom on His Debut Album, Working With Lady Gaga & ‘The Communion’ of Live Music

It’s perhaps a surprise that Tchami, who pioneered the future house sound all the way back in 2013, is only now releasing his debut album. That project, however, is well-worth the seven year wait.

The furthest evolution of the French producer’s massively influential future house sound, Year Zero’s 16 tracks bump and glide along on synth and sex appeal, oscillating easily between house, nu-disco, beautifully textured soft rock, deliciously hectic peak time weapons and chilled out afterparty makeout jams. Featuring cameos from Zhu, Gunna, Todd Edwards and more, the LP is out today (October 23) via Tchami’s own Confession label.

The project is a high point of an already high year for the French producer, who tucked global hits under his standard clerical garb with Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande’s “Rain on Me,” which he co-produced, along with a number of other tracks (including lead single “Stupid Love”) from Gaga’s Chromatica. This was his second round of work with the Mother Monster, with the pair first collabing on Gaga’s top 5 Hot 100 hit “Applause” in 2013.

Here, the Miami-based producer talks about working with Gaga, the communion of live music and how Joni Mitchell has helped him get through quarantine.

1. Where are you in the world right now, and what’s the setting like?

I’m at home in Miami right now. I have my studio here and I’ve been living down here for six years now.

2. What is the first album or piece of music you bought for yourself, and what was the medium?

It was a vinyl copy of Method Man’s Tical 2000: Judgment Day.

3. What did your parents do for a living when you were a kid, and what do they think of what you do for a living now?

My father is an architect, and my mother used to be a teacher. She also studied theology in Sweden. They have been watching me do this for many years now so they understand very well the blood, sweat and tears that went into my musical path.

4. What was the first song you ever made?

It was probably a remix of Diddy and Keyshia Cole’s “Last Night.”

5. If you had to recommend one album for someone looking to get into electronic music, what would you give them?

Daft Punk’s Homework. It’s a pillar in French electronic music. It defined a whole new era for French music.

6. What’s the first thing you bought for yourself when you started making money as an artist?

A Waldorf Q, the yellow keyboard version, and an ATC1-X from Studio Electronics. Bought a new computer as well.

7. What’s the last song you listened to?

Romy’s “Lifetime.”

8. What’s one song you wish you had produced?

There are so many… in no particular order: M83’s “Midnight City” Daft Punk’s “Around the World” and A Tribe Called Quest’s “Bonita Applebaum.”

9. What’s the first electronic music show that really blew your mind?

I remember having a great time seeing Chromeo, Sebastian and Carte Blanche in Paris.

10. What’s distinctive about the place you grew up, and how did it shape you?

I grew up in a small village in the southwest of France. I loved growing up in a medieval village around nature and old houses made of stones.

11. How has future house evolved in the last seven years, and what’s your feeling on where the genre is at now?

I think there are amazing producers in future house. It became a genre quickly, and this was not the way I saw things evolving for me at that time. Almost every producer was trying this future house wave. There was a lot to digest. Even today, I think there is more space now to get the genre to a more mature level. Some artists do it already.

12. You’ve worked on some of the biggest songs of the year with your contributions to Chromatica. Are you a longstanding pop music lover? 

I don’t define myself as a pop lover. I like music that is well-made and well-written. The melodic and catchiness aspect is definitely satisfying to my ears, maybe this is why pop is attractive to me. It translates in my music to a certain point.

13. How did you first link with Gaga, and what’s it like being in the studio with her?

Lady Gaga and I first met briefly in Paris around the time I co-produced “Applause,” amongst other songs in her album Artpop. But we really connected for Chromatica. BloodPop did a proper introduction during the making of Chromatica.

14. What messages and ideas are you trying to get across on Year Zero?

Year Zero is a new beginning for me. It applies personally in my life, and I left it open for the rest of us to understand in other ways. I chose the name before the pandemic, but it seems to suit this era we’re living in accurately.

15. Given that we can’t currently go to shows, what’s the best setting in which to listen to your new album? Any recommended activities to do while listening?

I like my music in my headphones, not too loud to appreciate the work. But that’s just my personal preference and everyone has different set-ups where they enjoy music. I also have a vinyl version coming up with two exclusive tracks.

16. What does Year Zero say about where you’re at in your career and your evolution as an artist?

It’s constant evolution for me. There is history and business to be taken care of, but I know I’m at my best when I try new sounds, textures, and song structures. I hope Year Zero will be a milestone creatively, but also not letting go of the past because it will make sense to refer to it musically.

17. What music has helped you get through quarantine?

I’ve listened to Joni Mitchell, RTJ4 and Sampha’s “Process.”

18. You’ve said that you wear the clerical collar because you want people to have a spiritual experience with your music. Is there anything you consciously do on tracks or during live shows to help audiences (and yourself) achieve this state?

I don’t think I do. Everything is in the music and the show around it. I am part of the experience, as well as the public. When there is no energy, you won’t see me vibing the same. So in that spiritual sense, live music is a communion sometimes.

19. Your label is of course called Confession. Is there anything you’d like to confess here?

There are a lot of amazing artists on Confession right now. If you haven’t checked out the music yet, you’re in for a treat.

20. One piece of advice you’d give to your younger self?

Don’t overthink too much. You’re enough for today.

‘SNL’ Plays Up ‘Rumours’ Surrounding Adele’s Hosting Gig in New Promo

Adele is returning to the Saturday Night Live stage for the third time — this time as host — and a new promo is playing into the buzz of a new album on the way.

The 15-second clip features snippets of the vocal powerhouse’s previous SNL gigs in 2008 and 2015, all to the fitting soundtrack of her 21 hit, “Rumour Has It.”

Adele last commented on the timeline until when her next album will be released back in August, when she answered a fan’s question about its status with “I honestly have no idea.”

Watch the SNL promo below, and catch the full episode on Saturday (Oct. 24) at 11:30 p.m. ET on NBC.