PinkPantheress Wins BBC’s Sound Of 2022 Poll

PinkPantheress is no longer hiding in plain sight. She’s officially tipped for superstardom.

The mysterious singer-songwriter-producer is the winner of BBC Sound Of 2022 poll, an annual honor that identifies the next big thing in popular music.

The 20-year-old artist, who still chooses not to reveal her real name due to privacy concerns, was tapped by an independent music industry panel, the latest in what some are predicting will be a string of accolades.

Originally from Bath, England, the youngster came to prominence by creating her own beats on Garage Band and dropping retro-tinged demos on TikTok.

Millions tuned in, and labels paid attention. She signed with Parlophone Records last April and Elektra Records in June, and landed on Billboard’s 21 Under 21 list in October 2021, the same month her debut mixtape To Hell With It debuted at No. 20 on the Official U.K. Albums Chart.

“I think my biggest interest when it comes to music making is within the topline writing — as opposed to the beat production and the singing aspect,” she told Billboard for an interview published following the release of To Hell With It.

“I’m a big fan of writing lyrics, writing melodies, so I wasn’t too bothered with collaborating with other people. It’s only a good thing to get the help of a producer because I’m a terrible producer, which is why I have to sing on top of samples.”

Now in its 20th year, the Corporation’s Sound Of predicts the act who will “make it big in the music world in the coming year” and has been previously won by the likes of Adele, Sam Smith, and Jessie J.

Wet Leg, the duo of friends Rhian Teasdale and Hester Chambers, come second on this year’s list, while Mimi Webb, Lola Young and Central Cee respectively complete the top 5.

PinkPantheress can add to her growing collection of trophies at this year’s Brit Awards, where she’s a contender in three categories.

BBC Sound Of 2022:
1. PinkPantheress
2. Wet Leg
3. Mimi Webb
4. Lola Young
5. Central Cee

The Weeknd Unveils ‘Dawn FM’: Stream It Now

The dawn has officially arrived.

After first teasing his fifth studio album back in August, Dawn FM dropped just after midnight on Friday (Jan. 7) to kick off the new year.

The 16-song set kicks off with the title track, followed by “Gasoline,” “How Do I Make You Love Me?,” the single “Take My Breath,” “Sacrifice,” “A Tale” and “Out of Time.”

Dawn FM also features collaborations with Quincy JonesTyler, the CreatorLil WayneOneohtrix Point Never and actor Jim Carrey, who praised the project after the teaser dropped Jan. 3. “I listened to Dawn FM with my good friend Abel @theweeknd last night. It was deep and elegant and it danced me around the room. I’m thrilled to play a part in his symphony,” Carrey tweeted.

The new album serves as a follow-up to After Hours, which debuted atop the Billboard 200 in March 2020. Its single, “Blinding Lights” became Billboard‘s Greatest Songs of All Time Hot 100 chart topper, and earned a record-breaking most weeks as a top five hit (43 weeks), a top ten hit (57 weeks) and a top 40 hit (86 weeks). It also surpasses Chubby Checker’s 1960s classic “The Twist” as the all-time number one song, spending 90 weeks on the Hot 100 Chart.

Stream The Weeknd’s Dawn FM in full below.

DJ Kay Slay Reportedly Hospitalized With COVID-19

DJ Kay Slay is reportedly in the hospital battling COVID-19 and on a ventilator.

Longtime music manager Wack100 shared the unfortunate news on his Instagram Wednesday (Jan. 5) by posting a picture of the New York DJ and record executive and writing, “Pray for my brotha @djkayslay It’s not looking good. He might be mad at me for this those that know Slay but he needs all the support he can get … Been 14 days fighting Covid and he’s just be put on a ventilator . Keep him in your prayers Please.”

A post on DJ Kay Slay’s Instagram page urges supporters to “keep the positive energy up for my brother Slay fir a speedy recovery.”

LL Cool J, who’s frequently collaborated with him on mixtapes such as 2002’s Get Down Or Lay Down Pt. 2 and 2008’s The Return of the G.O.A.T., also shared similar sentiments by writing, “Send Strength @djkayslay. love u bro. of DJ Kay Slay” on another Instagram tribute to him.

Veteran NYC hip-hop promoter and producer Van Silk addressed a message to his “brother” Kay Slay, which he first sent to HipHopDX. “I’ve known you since you were 15 years old,” said Silk. “We done a lot together — from me helping you with Straight Stuntin magazine as the first editor to how the many DJs we put on during the mixtape era, and now working on the ‘Rolling Deep 200’ project. Brother, I love you and you gotta get well. You know how I was on your back about getting vaccinated.”

NYC radio station Hot 97 sent a message from Kay Slay’s family to the public on its Twitter account. “Legendary #HOT97 @djkayslay’s family sends their appreciation for the outpouring of prayers, love and support as he works through a current health issue. They ask everyone to please respect his privacy during this time, and continue to send your positive energy and prayers.”

Just last month, Kay Slay released a new project titled The Soul Controller featuring Snoop Dogg, Too $hort, Busta Rhymes, Ghostface Killah, Raekwon and many more.

Julia Fox Details Lavish First Date & Photo Shoot With Ye: ‘It Felt Like a Real Cinderella Moment’

Julia Fox say she’s living in a fairytale after going on a first date with Ye (formerly known as Kanye West), she writes for Interview magazine on Thursday (Jan. 6).

The Uncut Gems actress and model, who starred alongside Ye’s frequent collaborator The Weeknd in the 2019 Safdie Brothers film, gave details on their romantic evenings in NYC after the two met in Miami on New Year’s Eve and had “an instant connection,” Fox wrote.

“His energy is so fun to be around. He had me and my friends laughing, dancing, and smiling all night,” she continued. “We decided to keep the energy going and fly back to New York City to see Slave Play. Ye’s flight landed at six and the play was at seven and he was there ON TIME. I was impressed. After the play we chose to do dinner at Carbone which is one of my favorite restaurants. Obviously.”

Following dinner, the Grammy-winning rapper, 44, staged a photo shoot for Fox, 31. “The whole restaurant loved it and cheered us on while it was happening,” she reminisced on the Kodak moment. But the Yeezy fashion designer had a stylish surprise waiting for her in a hotel suite that had her feeling like a princess for a night.

“After dinner Ye had a surprise for me. I mean, I’m still in shock. Ye had an entire hotel suite full of clothes. It was every girl’s dream come true. It felt like a real Cinderella moment. I don’t know how he did it, or how he got all of it there in time. But I was so surprised. Like, who does things like this on a second date? Or any date! Everything with us has been so organic. I don’t know where things are headed but if this is any indication of the future I’m loving the ride.”

The two met in the same month Ye begged his estranged wife Kim Kardashian to “run right back to me” while performing “Runaway” during his Dec. 9-dated Free Larry Hoover concert with Drake. Ye and Kardashian married in 2014 after two years of dating. She filed for divorce in February 2021 after months of speculation that a split was imminent. Both cited irreconcilable differences for the split and asked for joint legal and physical custody of their four kids. Meanwhile, Fox married pilot Peter Artemiev in November 2018 and announced they had separated three years later, in November 2021. The two welcomed a son in January 2021.

See some of the photos from their romantic NYC night in below.

Kylie Jenner Shows Off Baby Bump in Glowing Pregnancy Photos

Kylie Jenner will soon be welcoming her second child with Travis Scott, and she took to Instagram on Thursday (Jan. 6) to give fans a glimpse at her growing baby bump.

“i am woman,” she captured the series of film photos, in which the makeup mogul is seen in jeans and a long sleeved white top, tied up to show off her pregnant belly. The caption, complete with a music note emoji, is in reference to the empowering song “I Am Woman” by Emmy Meli, which has been inescapable on TikTok in recent months.

See the snaps here. Jenner and Scott have yet to reveal the gender of the upcoming bundle of joy or the due date.

In September, Jenner announced in a video shared on Instagram that she and Scott are expecting. The sweet clip begins with a closeup on a pregnancy test that says “pregnant,” before moving on to a shot of the rapper hugging the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star around the belly.

The reality star simply captioned the video with a silver heart and pregnant woman emoji, and tagged the “Franchise” rapper.

The couple are already parents to three-year-old daughter Stormi.

Here’s Why the Buzzy ‘Encanto’ Hit ‘We Don’t Talk About Bruno’ Won’t Be Nominated for an Oscar

Fans of the Walt Disney animated film Encanto – and there are a lot of them, evidenced by the soundtrack’s sprint from No. 110 to No. 7 in its fifth week on the Billboard 200 albums chart – are no doubt hoping that the witty and lighthearted “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” receives an Oscar nomination for best original song. The song, credited to Carolina Gaitan, Mauro Castillo, Adassa, Rhenzy Feliz, Diane Guerrero, Stephanie Beatriz and the Encanto Cast, is the top new entry on the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 50.

The tune is connecting, but an Oscar nod isn’t going to happen. “Dos Oruguitas,” another entry from Lin-Manuel Miranda’s song score, was the only song submitted from that film. That acoustic, Spanish-language ballad is on the shortlist of 15 contenders for best original song, which was culled by members of the music branch of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences from a longer list of 84 eligible songs. Those same music branch members will vote again to winnow the list of 15 shortlisted songs down to the five nominees that will be announced on Feb. 8. All Academy voters will vote to determine the winners, which will be revealed on March 27.

So why wouldn’t the Encanto team have entered both songs in hopes of putting two songs on the shortlist and maybe even landing two nominations?

They could have. Filmmakers may submit up to five songs from any one film. But it’s risky. You can wind up splitting your votes. In 2014, multiple songs were entered from Boyhood, The Fault in Our Stars, Muppets Most Wanted and Rio 2, among other films. No songs from those films were nominated. The five nominees that year were the only songs entered from those films.

The Encanto filmmakers weren’t the only ones who were careful not to split their votes. An Academy spokesperson said that of the 15 films that had songs shortlisted for best original song this year, only two — Cinderella and Don’t Look Up – had more than one song in contention. In each case, two songs were submitted, one of which advanced to the shortlist.

It has been five years since the last film that had more than one best original song nominee – La La Land. “City of Stars” won. “Audition (The Fools Who Dream)” was also nominated. Justin Hurwitz, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul collaborated on both songs.

It has been 12 years since an individual songwriter achieved a double. In 2009, Randy Newman was nominated with two songs from The Princess and The Frog. “Almost There” and “Down in New Orleans” both lost to “The Weary Kind” from Crazy Heart.

The first film to receive two best original song nominations was Fame in 1980. Four films have spawned three nominated songs: Beauty and the Beast (1991), The Lion King (1994), Dreamgirls (2006) and Enchanted (2007). One of the nominated songs from the first two of those films won, but Dreamgirls and Enchanted were shut out in the category. A new rule was instituted in June 2008 that a film could have no more than two songs nominated.

The Academy also has a rule to limit repetition on the shortlist. No more than two songs from any one film by the same writers may be shortlisted. If more than two songs from a film by the same writers make the top 15 on the music branch members’ tally, the two songs with the most votes will advance to the shortlist.

A lot is riding on the decision of which song from Encanto to enter. Miranda has just needed an Oscar to clinch EGOT status since 2014, when he won an Emmy to go along with his Tony and Grammy, both won for In the Heights. (His collection of hardware has since expanded to include three Tonys, three Grammys and two Emmys.) While it’s nice to be just one award away from EGOT status, it’s nicer to nail it down already. Miranda was Oscar-nominated five years ago for “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana but lost to the aforementioned “City of Stars.”

“Dos Oruguitas,” which is performed on the Encanto soundtrack by Sebastián Yatra, has special meaning for Miranda. It was his first song written entirely in Spanish. (The title is Spanish for “Two Caterpillars.”)

“It was important to me that I write it in Spanish, rather than write it in English and translate it, because you can always feel translation,” Miranda told The Los Angeles Times. “There are masterful translators out there — I am not one of them. I was really proud of it, I felt like I pulled it from a deeper place within myself.

“I really had to go out of my comfort zone. My task was to write a Colombian folk song that feels like it’s always existed. So I’m imitating some of the folk songs from my culture, great songwriters like [Antonio Carlos] Jobim and Joan Manuel Serrat.”

“We Don’t Talk About Bruno” isn’t the only song from Encanto that is off to a fast start. A second song from the film, Jessica Darrow’s “Surface Pressure,” is the second-highest new entry on the Hot 100 at No. 54. Both of those songs also enter Digital Song Sales, at Nos. 10 and 9, respectively. Two more Encanto songs enter Digital Songs Sales: “The Family Madrigal,” by Beatriz, Olga Merediz and the Encanto Cast, opens at No. 35, while Guerrero and Beatriz’s “What Else Can I Do?” enters at No. 42.

Miranda wrote both music and lyrics for all of the Encanto songs. Germaine Franco composed the score. (Her work was shortlisted for best original score. She is vying to become the first Latina to be nominated in the category.)

Encanto is the first soundtrack to reach the top 10 on the Billboard 200 in as few as five weeks since Frozen II made the top 10 in its second week a little more than two years ago. Frozen II vaulted from No. 15 to No. 3 on the Dec. 7, 2019, chart, on its way to No. 1 a week later.

In addition to its breakout move on the Billboard 200 following the film’s premiere on the Disney+ streaming service on Dec. 24, Encanto surges from No. 7 to No. 1 on this week’s Top Soundtracks chart. Disney’s Moana soundtrack, on which Miranda was one of the songwriters (along with Mark Mancina and Opetaia Foa’i) held the top spot on that chart for a record-setting 61 weeks from 2016 into 2021. (Its run at the top was likely extended because the pandemic slowed the release of new theatrical films that might have provided competition.)

The idea that the smartest strategy in awards is generally not to compete against yourself isn’t limited to the Oscars, of course.

In the upcoming 64th annual Grammy Awards, of the 14 artists who are nominated for record of the year (three of the 10 nominated singles billed multiple artists), all but two were those artists’ only entries on the massive list of eligible singles and tracks (which numbered 1,172 entries). Even Justin Bieber, Lil Nas X and Olivia Rodrigo, who released multiple strong singles in the Grammy eligibility period (Sept. 1, 2020 to Sept. 30, 2021), knew better than to flood the zone with multiple entries.

Artists and their labels know that, while it can be ego-stroking to submit multiple entries, you’re almost always better off taking what you think is your best “shot” — to borrow a word from an earlier Miranda song.