A Lana Del Rey Course Launched at NYU’s Clive Davis Institute

Class is in session for Lana Del Rey fans. New York University’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music has launched a new course for this fall centered around the singer-songwriter.

The two-credit course, titled “Topics in Recorded Music: Lana Del Rey,” is taught by journalist and author Kathy Iandoli and will run from October 20 to December 8, according to Variety. According to the course description, “Over the course of eight critically-acclaimed albums, the six-time Grammy nominated artist has introduced a sad core, melancholic, and baroque version of dream pop that in turn helped shift and reinvent the sound (and mood) of mainstream music beyond the 2010s. Through her arresting visuals and her thematic attention to mental health and tales of toxic, damaged love, Del Rey provided a new platform for artists of all genders to create ‘anti-pop’ works of substance that could live in a mainstream once categorized as bubblegum.”

The course will also examine Del Rey’s relationship to feminism, musical influences and connection to social justice movements.

Earlier this year, the Clive Davis Institute also offered a course on Taylor Swift, which delved into the superstar’s journey as a creative music entrepreneur, the legacy of pop and country songwriters that have influenced the star and how discourses of youth and girlhood are exploited in the media and music industry.

In May, Swift delivered the commencement address to New York University’s Class of 2022, sharing wisdom as an honorary doctor of fine arts.

‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ Season 5: How to Watch the Hulu Series for Free

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“Blessed be the fruit.” The latest season of The Handmaid’s Tale premiered on Hulu on Thursday (Sept. 14). 

Elisabeth Moss, Samira Wiley, Bradley Whitford, Yvonne Strahovski, Max Minghella, O-T Fagbenle,  Ann Dowd, Madeline Brewer, Amanda Brugel and Sam Jaeger star in the series set in a totalitarian, dystopian republic known as Gilead.

In season 5, June (Moss) faces consequences for killing Commander Waterford (Joseph Fiennes) while struggling to “redefine her identity and purpose.” June, Luke (Fagbenle) and Moira (Wiley) fight Gilead from afar and continue to try and save and reunite with Hannah (Jordana Blake).

Serena Joy (Strahovski), now a widow after June killed Commander Waterford, tries to raise her profile in Toronto as Gilead’s influence makes its way to Canada. Meanwhile, Commander Lawrence (Whitford) works with Nick (Minghella) and Aunt Lydia (Dowd) to try and reform Gilead and “rise in power.”

Adapted from the Margaret Atwood novel of the same name, The Handmaid’s Tale is produced by MGM Television and executive produced by Bruce Miller, Warren Littlefield, Moss, Daniel Wilson, Fran Sears, Eric Tuchman, Yahlin Chang, Rachel Shukert, Sheila Hockin, John Weber, Frank Siracusa, Steve Stark and Kim Todd.

How to Watch The Handmaid’s Tale for Free

Season 5 of The Handmaid’s Tale is streaming exclusively on Hulu. “Morning” and “Ballet,” the first two episodes in the new season, were released on Sept. 14. Episode 3 drops on Wednesday (Sept. 21) at midnight ET.

If you’re not yet subscribed to Hulu, join today, and stream for free for the first 30 days. Hulu starts at $6.99 a month (or $69.99 a year) after the free trial ends. Hulu’s ad-supported package is the platform’s most popular streaming plan and its most affordable, but there’s also a commercial-free plan for $12.99 monthly package ($129.99 a year).

Hulu
$6.99/month after free 30-day trial

To widen your streaming library, bundle Hulu with Disney+ and ESPN+ for $13.99 a month, or upgrade to Hulu + Live TV and pay just $49.99 a month (regular $69.99/month) for a limited time only. The live TV streaming packages gets you access to 75+ live and on-demand channels, plus Hulu, Disney+, ESPN+ and DVR.

You can stream most network and cable shows on Hulu a day after they air, in addition to Hulu Originals like Only Murders in the Building, The Kardashians, Deep Water, Tell Me Lies, No Exit, Prey and Candy, in addition to a bunch of movies, fascinating documentaries, and 2022 Emmy-winning shows such as The Dropout, Dopesick, and Abbott Elementary. 

Episodes and full seasons of The Handmaid’s Tale (seasons 1-4) are currently available for purchase on Prime Video, Google Play and other platforms.

Watch the trailer for the new season of The Handmaid’s Tale below.

Ciara Shows Off Fiery Orange Hairstyle & Grills

Summer may be over, but Ciara is still bringing the heat. The “Level Up” singer took to Instagram on Tuesday (Sept. 20) to flaunt her new look — a creamsicle-hued hairstyle complete with shiny gold grills on her teeth and matching accessories.

“Where’s my twin at??:) #BetterThangs,” she captioned the post. The orange tone comes just in time for football season, as Ciara’s husband Russell Wilson plays for the Denver Broncos — and orange is one of their team colors.

In July, Ciara and Wilson celebrated their sixth wedding anniversary. “Doing life with you has been everything I’ve hoped for, dreamt of, and more,” Ciara captioned a video that showcased intimate moments from her and her husband’s relationship. “It’s the best feeling in the world waking up to you everyday. I’m a better woman because of you. There is absolutely nothing I wouldn’t do for you. Happy Anniversary Mi Amore. My Best Friend. I love you so much @DangeRussWilson God is Good! Year 6. Forever to Go.”

Since their marriage in 2016, the couple has welcomed two children — 5-year-old Sienna and nearly 2-year-old Win — joining big brother Future Zahir, from Ciara’s previous relationship with rapper Future.

Spotify Launches Audiobook Store With 300,000 Titles

The expanding audio books market has a major new retailer: Spotify.

On Tuesday, the music streaming service announced its long-rumored audiobook initiative, launching a store that includes more than 300,000 titles, including such popular works as Delia Owens’ “Where the Crawdads Sing,” Michelle Obama’s “Becoming” and Colleen Hoover’s “It Ends With Us.” Spotify has previously offered audio books on a limited basis, including J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” and such public domain novels as Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” and Jane Austen’s “Persuasion.”

“We’ve always believed that the potential for audio is limitless, and have been saying for a while now that our ambition is to be the complete package for everyone’s listening needs,” Nir Zicherman, Spotify’s vice president and global head of audiobooks and Gated Content, said Tuesday.

“Audiobooks are next to come into the picture because we see a substantial untapped market: while audiobooks represent just a 6-7% share of the wider book market, the category is growing by 20% year over year.”

Other available works include Dave Grohl’s “The Storyteller,” James McBride’s “Deacon King Kong” and Emily Henry’s “People We Meet On Vacation.”

At least initially, Spotify will sell audio books individually, not on a subscription basis, at prices that are “competitive” with other sellers. According to a Spotify spokesperson, “After assessing testing and user research, we found that the best initial offering would allow users to purchase books individually,” a policy which “allows for pricing flexibility and for more casual listeners to access audio books easily.”

TV Composer Kurt Farquhar to Receive Career Achievement Award at 2022 Hollywood Music in Media Awards

 

Kurt Farquhar, who has scored more primetime television series than any other African American composer over the past three decades, is set to receive the Career Achievement Award at the 13th annual Hollywood Music in Media Awards (HMMA) ceremony on Nov. 16 at the Avalon in Hollywood.

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Farquhar, who was born in Chicago and now lives in Los Angeles, is a television and film composer, songwriter and producer and founder/CEO of True Music, a music licensing company.

His credits include series such as The History Channel’s mini-series Abraham Lincoln; CBS’ The Neighborhood and The King of Queens; The CW’s Black Lightning; and Girlfriends; and numerous series for the BET network.

“We are so proud to be honoring Kurt,” HMMA executive producer Brent Harvey said in a statement. “He is an incredibly talented composer with a great message.  After overcoming homelessness, he became a Hollywood success story. His journey is an inspiration to all.”

Farquhar joins such past HMMA honorees as Kenny Loggins, Smokey Robinson, Diane Warren, Earth, Wind & Fire, Glen Campbell, Dave Mason and film composers John Debney and Christopher Young.

HMMA nominees are chosen in specific genres of music for film, TV and video games including dramatic feature, sci-fi/ fantasy, documentary, and animation. Submissions for this year’s awards are open until Oct. 15.

The Hollywood Music in Media Awards will be held The Avalon, Hollywood, 1735 Vine St, Los Angeles, CA 90028 on Nov. 16. This marks the first time since 2019 that the event will take place as a live, in-person ceremony, following two years of virtual ceremonies during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Tickets to attend the ceremony will be available on Oct. 1.

For additional information on the awards, visit HMMawards.com.

Halle Bailey Reveals Her Favorite Song From ‘Little Mermaid,’ the Best Part of Being Ariel & More

The teaser trailer for Disney’s upcoming live-action remake of The Little Mermaid dropped earlier this month, giving fans their first glimpse of Halle Bailey as Ariel. On Tuesday (Sept. 20), Bailey hosted a Q&A session on her YouTube channel, where she shared her thoughts on the coveted role.

In response to the sweet reactions circulating online showing young Black girls see a mermaid princess who looks like them, the Chloe x Halle star said she loves it. “It’s a crazy feeling, really, to see all of the babies’ reactions to just the teaser and, you know, it’s really overwhelming,” she shared. “I’ve just been crying at all of the videos that you guys have been sending me. All of my friends have been sending me all these TikToks and reactions, and I’m just overjoyed and overwhelmed and filled with so much gratitude.”

Of course, she revealed that her favorite song from The Little Mermaid is “Part of Your World,” but she added that her “close second” is “Under the Sea.” “I’m super excited for y’all to hear the rest of the songs. There’s four new songs,” she told her followers.

Bailey also shared what it was like when she got the news that she’d be portraying Ariel. “I was in shock, I didn’t believe it,” she said. “I didn’t think it was true. I thought it was a prank call, but it wasn’t. I was just overjoyed that I get to put my own spin on Ariel and who she is to me and how much she has meant to me this whole time has been so important.”

As for solo music, Bailey said she’s been sending songs to her sister Chloe and working in the studio. “Hopefully, soon you guys will have some of my own music as well,” she said, adding, It’s been a process, just being in the studio and creating on my own. It’s exciting, it’s fun, it’s nerve-racking but I can’t wait until you guys finally get to hear it.”

Watch Halle Bailey’s full Q&A below.

More Evidence Against Marilyn Manson Needed to Pursue Sexual Assault Charges, Prosecutors Say

Detectives have handed the results of their 19-month investigation into sexual assault allegations against Marilyn Manson to prosecutors, who said Tuesday (Sept. 20) they need more evidence gathered before they can consider criminal charges.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement that on Monday their investigators handed off the case, which involves sex assault and domestic violence allegations dating from 2009 to 2011 against the 53-year-old rocker, to the District Attorney’s Office.

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The office called the case it received “partial.”

“Once we receive everything, experienced prosecutors will carefully and deliberatively review everything that has been submitted prior to making a filing decision,” the office said in a statement. “This review will take some time but rest assured our office takes these allegations very seriously.”

Representatives for Manson, whose legal name is Brian Hugh Warner, did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but his attorney has called the allegations “provably false.”

The investigation included a November search of Manson’s home in West Hollywood, where media devices and other items were seized.

Authorities have not identified the women involved, but several have publicly alleged that they were physically, sexually and emotionally abused by Manson around the time of the incidents under investigation, and some have filed civil lawsuits.

They include Game of Thrones actor Esmé Bianco, whose attorney said she also gave interviews to law enforcement.

Manson is himself suing his former fiancée, Westworld actor Evan Rachel Wood, whose February 2021 Instagram post alleging he had “horrifically abused me for years” set off the wave of public allegations against him.

The suit calls her assault allegations fabricated, and said she and another woman used false pretenses including a phony letter from the FBI to convince other women to come forward.

Wood’s attorneys said in court documents that the suit is meritless, and an example of the retaliation Manson long threatened Wood with if she spoke out about his abuse.

Manson emerged as a musical star in the mid-1990s, known as much for courting public controversy as for hit songs like “The Beautiful People” and hit albums like 1996’s Antichrist Superstar and 1998’s Mechanical Animals.

The Associated Press does not typically name people who say they have been sexually abused unless they have come forward publicly as Bianco and Wood have.