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ABC Music News

Music notes: Alanis Morissette, Lewis Capaldi, Ed Sheeran and Adele

Alanis Morissette will headline the 2023 RBCxMusic Concert Series on June 10 in Toronto. She will be the closing act of the festival and said in a statement, "It's always a great feeling to perform back home in Canada." 

Lewis Capaldi is out promoting his new album, Broken by Desire to be Heavenly Sent, due May 19. He shared a clip of his press tour to TikTok, where he jokingly tells fans not to buy the album and to buy Ed Sheeran's instead: "It's a complete and utter joke that I've been allowed to make a second one."

Speaking of Ed, he opened himself up to a Q&A on Instagram and was asked by a fan if he'll check out Taylor Swift's Eras Tour. "I'd love to see it. It looks like the greatest show on planet earth," he confirmed. "It's incredible what she's doing!" No word yet on which show he might possibly crash.

Adele might be pioneering a new kind of audio experience for concerts. Billboard reports she's using a 3D soundscape system, L-Acoustics, which allows for "hyper real sound" that can be heard practically anywhere, no matter where she's standing — and, more importantly, allows her voice to move with her. Unfortunately, it costs more money to use such a system, but fans are apparently loving it, so more artists might use it in the future.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Sam Asghari open to starring in a movie with Britney Spears: "That would be a dream come true"

Sam Asghari says starring in a movie alongside wife Britney Spears "would be a dream come true."

The actor, who stars in the upcoming series Lioness, chatted with TMZ about his acting ambitions and whether or not they'd include his wife.

"I think she’s a great actress," he said, adding, "I hope one day. That would be a dream come true."

TMZ asked what kind of project he can see himself doing with Britney and if it comes down to it being the right script. "Maybe [I'd] write the script," he responded.

Sam doesn't think he'd want to do a rom-com with the pop star, adding, "Maybe it's an action film, because she’s very athletic. She's able to jump up and ... do a bunch of stunts. I think she'd be really good at that."

He also thinks Britney would do her own stunts.

The hitmaker previously starred in the movie Crossroads, and made memorable cameos in the shows like How I Met Your Mother and Glee.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Chris Kirkpatrick says NSYNC stood out from other boy bands because they embraced pop culture

Tim Boyles/Getty Images

Friday marks the 25th anniversary of NSYNC's eponymous debut album, one of the bestselling albums of all time.

Chris Kirkpatrick spoke with ABC Audio at 90s Con in Hartford, Connecticut, about how he and his bandmates created their unique footprint when boy bands were all the rage.

"We understood who we were and we didn't try to be anything that we weren't," Chris said, adding the only thing he and his bandmates wanted to change was the stigma around groups like theirs.

As for how they shaped the mold, Chris said, "Mostly it was us looking at it like, 'What would we do to have fun? What kind of music would we listen to? What kind of clothes would we wear? What kind of shows would we want to go see?' And that was it ... everything we did, we did as a fan first."

Another part of their plan was to embrace pop culture. "We were a pop band," Chris said, but they still wanted to define what their style of pop was. "Bubblegum pop kept getting thrown in our faces ... and I was like, 'Man, this isn't bubblegum pop ... It's darker than that. It's like dirty pop." 

Chris said that criticism led to Justin Timberlake writing the band's 2001 song "Pop" with record producer Brian Transeau

"[It was] freakin' awesome," the singer winked. "It was still pop music, but it wasn't your parents' pop music."

Chris continued, "We just embraced it. We just said ... 'We're going to come out here and get in your face until the end. And you guys are going to be tired when you leave the shows.'"

He said the NSYNC song he wishes he had written is "I Thought She Knew," off the No Strings Attached album.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Ed Sheeran to perform new album "all the way through" at Brooklyn's Kings Theatre

Atlantic Records

If you want to be among the privileged few who get to hear Ed Sheeran's new album, -, pronounced Subtract, in its entirety before it's released, then you should plan on heading to New York.

The singer announced Friday that he and the album's producer, Aaron Dessner, will take over the Kings Theatre in Brooklyn on April 10, announcing they "will be playing Subtract all the way through with a full band."

"These shows are gonna be some of the most magical of my career, I can’t wait for this one. We rehearsed this on Monday and I can’t describe how excited I am," he said.

Fans can enter to win a pair of tickets to the show if they presave Subtract now. The album arrives May 5, and the first song off the album, "Eyes Closed," was released Friday.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

New music Friday: BTS' Jimin, Demi Lovato, Hailee Steinfeld and more

It's Friday! Let's see who's out with new tunes ...

BTSJimin is out with his debut solo album, FACE, and he also released the official music video for the album's main track, "Like Crazy."

Demi Lovato updated their 2013 hit "Heart Attack" by giving it a mosh-ready rock makeover. The singer also rerecorded their vocals for the rebooted song, which features a bumping drum beat and heavy guitars.

Calvin Harris and Ellie Goulding dropped the music video for their new techno song "Miracle." The video sees Ellie standing in a desert as a storm rolls in, as well as people who are seemingly worshipping her.

Hailee Steinfeld released new song "SunKissing," which appears to be designed to make fans think about the summer months. Critics are already hailing the song as a contender for a summertime smash.

Trevor Daniel dropped "SYL" and its music video. He said in a statement, "To me, this record is special - it’s about finding myself and finally being true to that version of me that maybe I’ve suppressed for a while."

The estate of the late Whitney Houston released I Go to the Rock: The Gospel Music of Whitney Houston, which includes 15 tracks — six of which are never-before-heard songs. The album showcases Whitney's deep love of gospel music.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Lance Bass reveals his top songs from NSYNC's 'No Strings Attached' album

Jesse Grant/Getty Images for the Environmental Media Association

NSYNC's No Strings Attached recently celebrated its 23rd birthday, and Lance Bass revealed what tracks are his favorites. Shockingly, the space-loving singer didn't even place "Space Cowboy (Yippie-Yi-Yay)" in the top five.

Taking to TikTok, Lance told fans in the caption, "I made my choices, sorry not sorry!"

The video sees him playing a clip of each of the album's 12 songs and dancing along before revealing where they ranked on his list.

Lance's favorite song was "It Makes Me Ill," which was never released as a single. The same goes for his second-place pick, which was "I Thought She Knew."

Rounding out the top five were "Bye Bye Bye," "This I Promise You" and "It's Gonna Be Me," which were all released as singles.

As for the bottom portion of Lance's list, it starts with "Just Got Paid" in sixth place. In descending in order, he ranks "Digital Get Down," "That's When I'll Stop Loving You," "Space Cowboy" and "I'll be Good For You" in slots seven through 10.

As for his least favorite songs on the album, he revealed he dislikes the album's title track and "Bringin' Da Noise" the most, respectively placing them in 11th and 12th place.

Fans pushed back against Lance's list and demanded a redo, but the singer wouldn't budge and responded to one disappointed critic, "I said what I said."

No Strings Attached was released March 21, 2000. To date, it is certified 14-times Platinum by the RIAA. 

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Taylor Swift's Eras Tour is here ... but which of her albums is America's favorite?


Taylor Swift's Eras Tour celebrates every single one of her albums, but which one is America's favorite?

FiveThirtyEight dissected several polls from YouGov and Morning Consult to figure that out — and found that each poll yielded a different result.

For example, YouGov found most respondents liked Lover, followed by 1989. There was a tie for third between Taylor Swift and Red. Their least favorite picks were folklore and evermore, with 4 percent of the vote. 

The YouGov poll did not include "Taylor's Version" options.

In comparison, one Morning Consult poll of just adults discovered 1989 and the original version of Fearless were tied as respondents' top picks, while Taylor Swift finished second and Red, not the "Taylor's Version," was third. The least favorite album, with 1 percent of the vote, was folklore.

A different Morning Consult poll that talked to Taylor's "avid fans" had a different lineup of favorites. In first place was 1989, with 15 percent of the vote, followed by Taylor Swift in second, while the original Fearless, not the "Taylor's Version," finished in third place. In last place was evermore, which polled at 3 percent.

The Morning Consult poll included the "Taylor's Version" of Red and Fearless.

FiveThirtyEight suggests this can be seen as a good lesson about polls, because while each of the three mentioned above asked the same question, they procured different results. This could be boiled down to the age and music tastes of those who responded to the poll.

It also notes that including "Taylor's Version" in the Morning Consult polls may have further shifted the overall findings.  

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Shawn Mendes says he's "in my rock star era"

Tristar Media/Getty Images

Shawn Mendes is embarking on a brand new chapter.

While chatting with fashion icon Tommy Hilfiger for Evening Standard about what rock stars look like and how music legends serve as fashion icons, the singer described himself as "in my rock star era."

Shawn reflected on his own style evolution. "I’ve been famous since I was young, and it’s a funny thing to ask a 17-year-old to be stylish, because they’re 17 and they’re trying to figure out who they are," he said. 

Shawn added, "There was a time where I refused to wear anything that wasn’t a flannel [shirt] and moccasins. It’s definitely gotten a lot, a lot more fashionable."

The singer also suggested being a celebrity is more difficult nowadays. Why? He says it's due to a lack of privacy thanks to the rise of smartphones.

"In the '70s and '80s, the photos you saw of celebrities were more scarce. Nowadays, everything is so volatile. Because there’s phones, there can be a photo or a video of you at any minute in the day, and it changes the perception of you. It can change everything," he said.

"If you pick your nose, and you’re wearing a weird shirt, the perception is that you wear weird shirts and pick your nose. The next day, you’re on a red carpet and in an amazing suit and, like, that’s that ... It’s really hot and cold," Shawn continued.

The singer admitted he does feel pressure to look good all the time, adding "it's super stressful." He keeps his attire simple "because therefore it’s hard to mess up."

Shawn stars in the brand's new Tommy X Shawn Classics Reborn campaign, which is a capsule collection of sustainable clothing.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Selena Gomez says Hailey Bieber reached out to her amid feud rumors

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

Selena Gomez is trying to put the Hailey Bieber drama to rest.

The singer/actress posted a message on her Instagram Story Friday, asking for kindness.

“Hailey Bieber reached out to me and let me know that she has been receiving death threats and such hateful negativity,” Selena wrote.

“This isn’t what I stand for,” she continued. “No one should have to experience hate or bullying. I’ve always advocated for kindness and really want this all to stop.”

There have long been rumors of a feud between the two -- Hailey is of course married to Selena’s ex, Justin Bieber -- but things ramped up online recently with fans flooding social media with alleged evidence that Hailey has been bullying Selena, including a video where Hailey and her pal Kylie Jenner appeared to be shading Selena's eyebrows.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Ellie Goulding won't let others define who she is

Universal Music Group

Ellie Goulding is still figuring herself out and admits she might never fully discover who she is — but she's learned who she isn't and won't let others influence that.

Speaking to Rolling Stone, the singer opened up about resisting pressure from others. "I think that the most shocking thing for me at the beginning was how much people cared about your physical appearance: your weight, your hair, your clothes, and also your opinion on things," she said.

Ellie recalled hearing conflicting messages and realized she couldn't win when it came to making everyone happy. "I was not prepared to be scrutinized in that way. And I think the thing that has always kept me going is that I never got lost in that," she noted.

When talking about "Like A Saviour," which is her favorite song off her upcoming new album, Higher Than Heaven, Ellie said, "Right when I first started out, it was quite vulnerable because there was no kind of support for young female artists going into the studio with predominantly male artists and producers."

"I think when I wrote that song, I just needed to reclaim a power that maybe I’d lost at the beginning where I’d go into studios and it just didn’t feel safe. You go into sort of survival mode," she continued, adding she wrote the song as the #MeToo movement was happening. "That’s probably the deepest [song] on the album."

Ellie also appeared to let slip she has a deluxe version of Higher Than Heaven: "There’s a song on the deluxe version called 'Better Man,' which just feels really empowering to sing because it’s me saying I’m the better man."

She also hinted at the potential of a tour, saying, "I am trying to make my tour carbon-neutral."

Higher Than Heaven arrives April 7.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

20 years ago, 'A New Day' dawned in Las Vegas, thanks to Celine Dion

Celine Dion on opening night of 'A New Day'/Gregg DeGuire/WireImage

On March 25, 2003 — 20 years ago Saturday — Celine Dion single-handedly changed the face of Las Vegas entertainment when she launched her first residency, A New Day..., at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace.

The state-of-the-art show, designed by Franco Dragone of Cirque du Soleil fame, ran through 2007 and is still the highest-grossing Vegas residency of all time, taking in $385 million. What's more, it took Vegas from a place where careers went to die to a bucket-list item for major artists. 

In 2011, Celine returned for a second residency, which ran until 2019 and made her the highest-paid entertainer in Vegas, raking in $500,000 per show. Looking back, it's hard to believe that people initially thought the Canadian superstar was making a terrible move.

"People thought I was going to finish my career here, and that the Titanic was going to sink again," Celine told ABC News in 2019. 

But ultimately, other stars — especially female artists with children — realized what Celine knew all along: staying in one place, rather than dragging yourself around the world, is a great option.

"Vegas has given me, in a way, stability to be home every night, raising my kids," Celine told ABC News in 2019. "I mean, I love touring, don't get me wrong, but it's very, very, very different."

And thanks to Celine, if you don't have a Las Vegas residency these days, are you even a star, bro? Maroon 5 starts theirs on Friday, and just some of the artists who set up shop in Vegas in Celine's wake are Adele, Elton John, Katy PerrySting, CherRod Stewart, Jennifer Lopez, Mariah Carey, Bruno Mars, Lady Gaga, Britney Spears, Christina AguileraJanet Jackson and the Backstreet Boys.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Ed Sheeran releases new single/video 'Eyes Closed'

Destiny Dominguez

At the stroke of midnight, Ed Sheeran dropped “Eyes Closed,” the lead single off of his upcoming new album  -  [pronounced Subtract], along with the music video.

“This song," says Sheeran, "is about losing someone, feeling like every time you go out and you expect to just bump into them, and everything just reminds you of them and the things you did together. You sorta have to take yourself out of reality sometimes to numb the pain of loss, but certain things just bring you right back into it."

"Just dancing with my eyes closed / ‘Coz everywhere I look I still see you / Time is moving so slow
And I don’t know what else that I can do / So I’ll keep dancing with my eyes closed," he sings in the chorus.

The "Eyes Closed" video shows the 34-year-old singer/songwriter standing next to his imaginary friend -- a blue furry creature -- which, according to Sheeran, "was inspired by movies like Harvey, where the main character has an imaginary friend who’s a giant rabbit that no one can see."

"There’s also a book I read my daughters where sadness is encapsulated by an imaginary creature," he continues. "Often sadness is something that follows you around, engulfing the rooms you’re in, and you can feel and see it, but no one else around you can. So I decided to create my own big blue monster for the video. He gets bigger and bigger as the video goes on, til he takes up whole rooms, and is all I can see, just like sadness.”

Subtract comes out May 5.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Music notes: Kelly Clarkson, Meghan Trainor, Selena Gomez and Katy Perry

Kelly Clarkson unleashed her Lenny Kravitz energy when performing his hit song "Are You Gonna Go My Way" on her daytime talk show Thursday. She even opened the song with a confident wink before belting out the 1993 smash.

Meghan Trainor wants her fans to find themselves "a hype guy" like her bestie Chris Olsen. She told fans on Instagram she needed a confidence boost when making the "Mother" music video because Kris Jenner was in it. She has since shared a behind-the-scenes video of how the music video was made.

Victoria Beckham's son Brooklyn is apparently in a "throuple" with Selena Gomez. He told The Jennifer Hudson Show that he and wife Nicola Peltz are very good friends with Selena, and called her "such a sweet girl." The trio have vacationed together before, with Brooklyn noting, "I love when my wife makes new friends, especially really great friends."

Katy Perry is selling the clothes off her back — kind of. She announced Thursday she's working with the Nostalgia Store to sell "REAL stage-worn cutie costumes & props from some of my past performances!" She previewed some of the items that will go up for sale on Friday.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

John Mayer shocks with first performance of Taylor Swift duet "Half of My Heart" in years

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for VEVO

John Mayer hasn't performed his 2009 Taylor Swift duet "Half of My Heart" in years — but that changed this week.

John and Taylor dated after recording the duet when they were respectively 31 and 19, but broke things off a few months later. Their relationship is said to have inspired several songs by both artists, which fans wouldn't necessarily describe as cordial.

For Taylor, it's believed "Dear John" and "Would've, Could've, Should've" are about their relationship, age gap and eventual breakup.

Conversely, John appeared to return fire in the 2013 song "Paper Doll." He also called out Taylor's "Dear John" when speaking to Rolling Stone, saying in part, "I think it's kind of cheap songwriting ... I think it's abusing your talent to rub your hands together and go, 'Wait till he gets a load of this!'" 

John has since removed "Half of My Heart" from his set lists, despite its commercial success — it earned Platinum certification from the RIAA and peaked at #2 on the Billboard Adult Top 40 list.

But the hitmaker did a surprise performance of the song during his Wednesday night acoustic show at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Michigan. 

Several concertgoers have shared videos of the moment on their social media accounts, which show the audience singing along with him.

While we may never know why John decided to dust off his 14-year-old hit, he did ask fans ahead of his Wednesday show to hit him up with song requests. He then tweeted after the concert, "It’s an open source show."

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Ed Sheeran gets into a car wreck, plunges off a cliff in "Eyes Closed" teaser

Atlantic Records

Fans only have to wait one more day to hear the first single off Ed Sheeran's upcoming new album. "Eyes Closed" and its music video arrive Friday at 12 a.m. ET.

To hype fans up for the release, Ed shared another teaser of the music video. Previously, Ed said the video personifies grief and sadness as a big, blue monster that grows in size until it's the only thing he sees. 

This new clip, however, takes an unexpected and scary turn. 

"I’ve told the story of the blue monster but now you’ll get to see him in action," Ed said. "Enjoy."

The clip starts with Ed driving along a roadway that hugs a beachside cliff before another vehicle comes out of nowhere and collides with the side of his car. The force is strong enough to not only knock him out, it sends his vehicle tumbling over the cliff and into the ocean below.

Ed remains unconscious as his car sinks into the sea and fills with water. The clip ends with Ed's fluttering eyes about to open.

"Eyes Closed" comes out Friday, March 24.

Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.



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