ABC/Image Group LALil Nas X hasn't been shy about how the success of his first smash-single "Old Town Road" radically changed his life for the better.
The track's popular remix featuring Billy Ray Cyrus was released a year ago on Sunday, April 5. Before the rise of the record-smashing single, the Lil Nas X -- born Montero Lamar Hill -- says he had dropped out of college and was living on his sister's couch.
Now, living in his own home thanks to the song that -- according to Forbes --earned him a reported $14 million, the 20-year-old paid tribute to the song that completely changed his life.
"1 year ago today i dropped a remix to old town road with billy ray cyrus. i knew it would be successful but DAMN did it change EVERYTHING!," He tweeted Sunday and treated fans to a brief behind-the-scenes video of him and Cyrus putting the finishing touches on "Old Town Road."
"can’t express how much this song has done for me. thank u to everybody who made this happen!," the rapper concluded, later crediting his track for birthing "the most exciting times of my life" on a separate Instagram post.
"Old Town Road" went on to become the fastest single to reach RIAA-certified Diamond status. It also spent a historic 19-weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100 -- beating out previous record-holders "Despacito," by Luis Fonsi and Daddy Yankee, and "One Sweet Day," by Mariah Carey and Boyz II Men, both of which reigned at number one for 16 weeks.
Lil Nas X isn't done with the big milestone moments this week. He turns 21 on Thursday.
The album shows Gaga, dressed in black leather armor and her signature impossibly high platform heels, seemingly frozen in midair while delicately holding onto the symbol that represents Chromatica.
Not only that, she revealed the art of the vinyl copy of her album, which features a frosty white body and a pink center that also bears the Chromatica insignia. Another version comes in the same white color, but with Gaga posing in the center in her pink "Kindness Punk" regalia.
The latter image will also be used for a cassette version.
So far, she has not announced the new release date for Chromatica.
On March 24, Mother Monster announced that she made "the incredibly tough decision to postpone the release" of her upcoming album. She said the reason for the delay was that "it just doesn't feel right to me to release this album with all that is going on during this global pandemic."
She will instead use the time to start "focusing on finding solutions" because "it's important to me that the attention is on getting essential medical equipment to healthcare professionals" along with making sure no child goes hungry or people struggle financially due to losing their jobs.
Dave M. Benett/Getty ImagesLast month, the Welsh singer Duffy revealed that she was kidnapped an raped, leading to her sudden and then unexplained disappearance from the spotlight following her 2010 album Endlessly. On Sunday, she posted an essay on her official website detailing the experience.
"It was my birthday, I was drugged at a restaurant...for four weeks and travelled to a foreign country," she recalls. "I can’t remember getting on the plane and came round in the back of a travelling [sic] vehicle. I was put into a hotel room and the perpetrator returned and raped me."
Adds Duffy, "I remember the pain and trying to stay conscious in the room after it happened. I was stuck with him for another day, he didn’t look at me, I was to walk behind him, I was somewhat conscious and withdrawn. I could have been disposed of by him."
The 35-year-old "Mercy" singer goes on to describe how she was held captive in her own home, and that she didn't feel safe going to the police, fearing that "if anything went wrong...he would have killed me."
"I have told two female police officers, during different threatening incidents in the past decade, it is on record," she continues. "The identity of the rapist should be only handled by the police, and that is between me and them."
Duffy writes that she "can now leave this decade behind. Where the past belongs. Hopefully no more ‘what happened to Duffy questions.’"
Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert/Getty ImagesDuran Duran bassist John Taylor is on the mend after contracting COVID-19. The 59-year-old revealed his diagnosis in a candid Facebook post on Sunday.
"DEAR FRIENDS OF MINE after giving some thought to this, I have decided to share with you that I tested positive with the Corona Virus almost three weeks ago," began Taylor, who went on to describe how the virus affected him.
"I like to think I am - or was blessed with getting only a mild case of Covid 19 - but after a week or so of what I would describe as a 'Turbo-charged Flu', I came out of it feeling okay," he admitted, saying that he was able to fully recover after quarantining himself.
Now, he's using his experience with COVID-19 to assuage his fan's growing concern about the pandemic.
"I am speaking out in answer to the enormous amount of fear being generated by the pandemic, some of it entirely justified, and my heart goes out to everyone who has had to deal with real loss and pain," said Taylor before focusing on a more positive note.
"I want to let you know that it isn't always a killer, and we can and will beat this thing," he promised.
COVID-19 has upended the music industry, cancelling or postponing numerous tours and forcing multiple album releases to be pushed back to a later date.
However, Taylor remains positive that he will be "be back onstage again, sharing new music, love and joy."
Taylor isn't the only musician to have contracted the virus. Other artists who've revealed they've tested positive for the virus include Marianne Faithful, Jackson Browne, Christopher Cross, Sara Bareilles, Bon Jovi's David Bryan, Broadway star and actor Brian Stokes Mitchell, Placido Domingo and revered singer/songwriter John Prine.
ABC/Karen NealSunday night's episode of American idol took viewers back to the tropical island of Hawaii to find out who will round out the Top 20. Katy Perry, Lionel Richie, and Luke Bryan finished making their tough decisions before handing over the baton to viewers.
Picking up right where they left off last week -- with the fate of Dylan James hanging in the balance -- fans were finally given the answer they've been waiting for... he's into the next round.
Here's who else performed and whether or not their journey on American Idol has survived another round.
Genevieve Linkowski: This returning lady, who has been open about the struggle of losing her sister, sang "You Say" by Lauren Daigle but unfortunately it wasn't enough to push her through to the Top 20.
Franklin Boone: The music teacher told the heartwarming story of how he performed "Daughters" by John Mayer the night before he found out he would become a father. This must be his lucky song because it landed him a slot in the Top 20, where Lionel felt he could be an inspiration to his students.
Julia Gargano: Katy previously called her Top 5 material and her performance in Hawaii proved just why. Gargano sang Pink's "Glitter In The Air" and earned the praises of all the judges but especially Luke Bryan who felt like he could see her performing on the Grammys someday. With a comment like that, it's easy to see why she made it through to the next round.
Aliana Jester: Singing "This Is Me" from The Greatest Showman soundtrack broke out of her shell and, because of that, is into the Top 20.
Sophia Wackerman: Where to start? Sophia stunned with her cover of Nick Jonas' "Levels" but it wasn't solely because of her vocals. It was the overall performance that made her look like a pro she as she played air guitar with the band, interacted with fans and straight-up had a good time on stage. After Katy, Lionel, and Luke lead her on to believe she's going home, they shock her with the news she gets to stay n the competition a little longer.
Robert Taylor: There's no denying Robert has the vocal range to be a stay but his tendency to overdo it with hitting too many notes and performing too many runs stuck the unfortunate nail in his coffin when he took on Elton John's "Take Me To The Pilot." So upset by the news he was unable to do an interview but Bobby Bones came to the rescue, on his day off, to come and support the American Idol contestant he has come to know after all these weeks.
Kimmy Gabriela: Taking on Demi Lovato's "You Don't Do It For Me Anymore" she brought her father to tears and while her performance was amazing, Katy had a bone to pick with her. After explaining that it's not enough to "just be a good singer," and some advice to step up her game, Kimmy made the Top 20.
Next up, wrapped together in a neat little bow were powerhouses, Cyniah Elise who performed "Lady Marmalade," Makayla Phillips with "Sorry Not Sorry" by Demi Lovato, and Lauren Spencer-Smith who sang Aretha Franklin's "Respect". They all impressed with their Hawaii performances earning them each a spot in the Top 20.
Shannon Gibbins: While she certainly had a good time on stage covering "Send My Love (To Your New Lover) by Adele, Shannon didn't quite make the cut and was sent home.
Olivia Ximines: Taking on Tina Turner's "Proud Mary" she surely made her family and friends proud. This high schooler gave quite the performance, complete with a costume reveal and all, and got the judges out of their seats. Needless to say, she's moving forward.
Arthur Gunn: He made the crowd sway as he sang Bob Marley & The Wailers' "Is This Love" and had Katy gushing over how "pure" he is. While he kept it simple and classic, strumming his guitar as he sang, he stayed true to himself which was good enough to make it to the top 20.
Demi Rae: She had the vocals to compete with the powerhouses but faced with the tough decision to narrow down the competition, her performance of "Lonely" by Noah Cyrus, while great, was not great enough, and she was sent packing.
With one spot left in the Top 20 and two singers left, Katy, Lionel, and Luke switched things up a little bit and had Grace Leer sing Aretha Franklin's "You Make Me Feel (Like A Natural Woman)" and Lauren Mascitti sing Emmy Lou Harris' "Two More Bottles Of Wine" -- and both found out their fates together.
Both country singers are from Nashville and made their home city proud, however, the decision was just too hard for the judges. So, in a shocking twist of events, they decided to hand the decision over to America one week early.
What would come next for American Idol is the live performances, but due to the current global pandemic production has been put on hold. Still, the show will return next week with a special episode titled American Idol: This is Me, which will delve deeper into the lives of the Top 20 contestants, with unseen footage and performance highlights.
ELIMINATED: Genavieve Linkowski, Robert Taylor, Shannon Gibbons, Demi Rae, 3 others who were not named.
TOP 20: Dylan James, Franklin Boone, Julia Gargano, Aliana Jester, Sophia Wackerman, Kimmy Gabriela, McKayla Phillips, Lauren Spencer-Smith, Cyniah Elise, Olivia Ximines, Arthur Gunn, Grace Leer, and Lauren Mascitti.
They join Nick Merico, Dewayne CrockerJr., Louis Knight, Francisco Martin, Jovin Webb, Faith Becnel, Just Sam, and Jonny West.
Justin: BG020/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images; Miley: Mike Coppola/FilmMagicSince the COVID-19 pandemic began, many stars have announced large donations to various charities that are supporting efforts to stem the spread of coronavirus. Justin Bieber's now announced that he plans to do his part, and he's "working on ways" to help.
In a lengthy Instagram post, Justin wrote, "I woke up today healthy which I am so grateful for but I know there are people who didn’t. I write this to acknowledge the people who don’t have it so easy."
The singer, who was forced to postpone his Changes tour due to the pandemic, added, "We understand there are a lot of people who can’t afford to stay home right now, people who don’t know how they are going to pay their bills. There are people facing extreme anxiety and worry. We are currently working on ways to help those in financial crisis and will let you know how you can help as well. We love you and we are in this together."
Meanwhile, Miley Cyrus and her boyfriend Cody Simpson helped out on Saturday by providing a treat for local health care workers.
According to E! Online, the couple delivered 120 tacos to healthcare workers at Providence Cedars-Sinai Tarzana Medical Center in Tarzana, California. Cody posted photos of himself and Miley, wearing masks and gloves, standing next to a cart filled with tacos, and a picture of the happy workers enjoying their goodies.
On Instagram, Cody wrote, "Tacos for the incredible healthcare workers at our local hospital! So grateful for these true legends of our time dedicating their lives to battling this pandemic. Show some love to yours in your community!"
Tacos for the incredible healthcare workers at our local hospital! So grateful for these true legends of our time dedicating their lives to battling this pandemic. Show some love to yours in your community! pic.twitter.com/Ro5UgY43E9
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagicWhile performing in Australia last month, Katy Perry told the crowd that she hoped her unborn child was a girl. Well, she got her wish.
On Instagram, Katy posted a photo of her fiance Orlando Bloom with his face smeared in what looks like whipped cream, which looks vaguely pink. "It's a girl," she captioned the photo.
Many celebrities and family members chimed in with congratulations in the comments; Katy's fashion designer bestie Jeremy Scott wrote, "I CANT WAIT TO DRESS HER !!!"
A source tells People that the couple is "ecstatic that it's a girl," adding, "They love that they have this amazing, positive thing to focus on right now. It’s such a happy distraction for them.” The source dishes that Katy is "feeling good," but hopes that the COVID-19 pandemic lessens before her due date.
“Along with so many other people, they stay home. They both try to exercise and eat well so they can stay healthy,” the source notes. "Katy really hopes everything has calmed down with the virus by the time the baby will be born this summer.”
The source adds that both Katy and Orlando have "donated money to several causes" to help fight the pandemic.
"They are both very low-key about it and don’t want any attention,” claims the source. “Everyone just knows that they are a very generous couple.”
The baby is Katy's first and Orlando's second: He has a nine-year-old son, Flynn, with his ex-wife, Miranda Kerr.
Andrew MacPhersonFirst, the bad news: Two weeks ago, Pink tested positive for COVID-19. Now, the good news: She's recovered, and now her test results are negative.
In a lengthy Instagram post, the singer writes, "Two weeks ago my three-year old son, Jameson, and I were showing symptoms of COVID-19. Fortunately, our primary care physician had access to tests and I tested positive. My family was already sheltering at home and we continued to do so for the last two weeks following the instruction of our doctor. Just a few days ago, we were re-tested and are now thankfully negative."
Pink then goes on to criticize the government's response to the pandemic.
"It is an absolute travesty and failure of our government to not make testing more widely accessible. This illness is serious and real," she writes.
"People need to know that the illness affects the young and old, healthy and unhealthy, rich and poor, and we must make testing free and more widely accessible to protect our children, our families, our friends and our communities."
The "What About Us" star then announces that she's donating $500,000 to Philadelphia's Temple University Hospital Emergency Fund in honor of her mom, who worked there for 18 years, and another $500,000 to the City of Los Angeles Mayor’s Emergency COVID-19 Crisis Fund.
Pink finishes her note by thanking "all of our healthcare professionals and everyone in the world who are working so hard to protect our loved ones."
"You are our heroes! These next two weeks are crucial: please stay home. Please. Stay. Home," she writes.
ABC/Image Group LASelena Gomez has had her share of medical issues, mostly due to her lupus, but now she's revealing more about her mental health challenges.
Guesting on her old friend Miley Cyrus' Instagram Live show Bright Minded on Friday, Selena confirmed she's been diagnosed as bipolar.
"Recently, I went to one of the best mental hospitals in...America, McLean Hospital, and I discussed that, after years of going through a lot of different things, I realized that I was bipolar," Selena told Miley. "And so when I got to know more information, it actually helps me. It doesn't scare me once I know it."
She continued, "I've seen some of it even in my own family, where I'm like, 'What's going on?' I'm from Texas, it's just not known to talk about mental health...I just feel like when I finally said what I was going to say, I wanted to know everything about it. And it took the fear away."
Selena, who was honored by Boston's McLean Hospital for her mental health advocacy, said at the hospital's annual awards dinner back in September that she dealt with anxiety and depression, but did not specify she was bipolar.
In her speech, she said when she learned of her diagnosis, she felt "equal parts terrified and relieved -- terrified because the veil was lifted but relieved that I finally had the knowledge of why I had suffered with various depressions and anxieties for so many years. I never had full awareness or answers about this condition."
Friday's full episode of Bright Minded, which also features chats with Elton John, Kerry Washington, Jimmy Fallon, can be seen now on Miley's Instagram page; it'll be posted on YouTube tomorrow.
Hugo Comte/Warner RecordsDua Lipa is breaking streaming records with her latest album, Future Nostalgia.
On Spotify, she broke the records for most streamed album in a day (or first day) by a British female artist globally, most streamed album in a day (or first day) by a British female artist in the U.K., and most streamed album in a day (or first day) by a British female artist in the U.S.
Spotify has also released the Future Nostalgia Experience to accompany the album, which offers new exclusive video content and visuals that give a deeper look into the track list and Dua’s inspiration behind the songs.
For example, of the track “Love Again,” Dua reveals, “'Love Again' is one of my favorite songs on the record, it’s quite dramatic. I didn’t write this about anyone, but manifesting it, someone gave along and gave it meaning.”
She says of the song “Hallucinate”: “When making ‘Hallucinate,’ I knew this would be my festival track. Normally when I write, I imagine what it would be like to perform the song at a festival, and that helps me decide what songs I’m going to put on the record.”
Future Nostalgia also features the hit single “Don’t Start Now” and “Physical.”
Craft RecordingsIt's hard to believe that it's been 15 years since "Hey There Delilah" put Plain White T's on the map. Now the band is releasing a 15th anniversary edition of the album that featured that song: All That We Needed.
The new version of the album, due out April 10, features previously unreleased live acoustic versions of its original songs, including "Hey There Delilah," "Revenge," "Breakdown," "Take Me Away," and the title track.
Right now you can watch a brand-new lyric video for "Hey There Delilah," which according to a press release is currently being used by listeners to express their feelings about being quarantined during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Grammy-nominated song has sold over four million copies in the U.S. alone since its release.
Plain White T’s will also be one of the many musical guests appearing on ABC's The Bachelor Presents: Listen to Your Heart. You can watch the episode April 13 at 8 p.m.
Capitol RecordsAnother tour bites the dust. Niall Horanannounced on social media Friday that his Nice to Meet Ya trek has been canceled for this year, due to the COVID-19 crisis.
“Given the unprecedented circumstances I have decided to not move forward with the Nice to Meet Ya world tour this year,” Niall wrote.
He added, “This was a difficult decision, but the well-being of my fans and touring family is always my top priority. Not being able to tour for what is effectively most of 2020 just didn’t feel right and I’m so sorry to all you amazing people who bought tickets.”
Niall said he looks forward to bringing a new tour to fans in 2021 and plans to announce new dates once “the dust has settled and things have gone back to normal.”
For now, Niall said, he's going to focus on writing and recording so he'll have even more new music to perform when he is able to tour again.
His tour was to have started in Nashville on April 20 with special guests Lewis Capaldi and FLETCHER.
Def Jam RecordingsAlessia Cara has released her new song, “I Choose,” from the Netflix animated film The Willoughbys.
Alessia, who voices a character in the film, co-wrote the track, which is about finding where you belong and who matters most to you.
“Through the lows and the highs I will stay by your side/There’s no need for goodbyes now I’m seeing the light/When the sky turns to grey and there’s nothing to say/At the end of the day, I choose you,” she sings.
The Willoughbys, based on the children’s book by Lois Lowry, follows the Willoughby siblings as they hatch a scheme to send their insufferable parents on vacation because they’re convinced they’d do a better job raising themselves.
Alessia voices the eldest Willoughby sister, Jane, a spirited girl who loves to sing. The voice cast also includes Maya Rudolph, Will Forte, Martin Short, Terry Crews, and Jane Krakowski.
Def Jam/RBMGAs Justin Bieber spends his time social distancing in nature while up in Canada with wife Hailey, he’s bringing those same vibes of nature and solitude to his latest video.
The singer has released the “nature visual” for his album title track, “Changes,” which features him bundled up fireside by a frozen lake, as well as strolling through an empty field in shorts and a t-shirt.
Earlier this week, Justin was forced to postpone his upcoming Changes tour due to COVID-19, but he’s been steadily releasing content for his fans to enjoy while in quarantine. Last week, he released compilation EPs, and he’s also continued to release videos for his #ChangesTheMovement series, featuring dancers performing choreography to tracks off his Changes album.
Atlantic RecordsBetween hosting her daily talk show and appearing on The Voice, Kelly Clarkson has finally found some time to make new music. On Twitter, she announced that a new single, "I Dare You," will be arriving later this month.
"This is my favorite/hardest project that I’ve ever worked on," she wrote. "I can’t wait for you to hear 'I Dare You" out everywhere April 16th!"
Kelly's most recent album was 2017's Meaning of Life. Last year, she released the song "Broken & Beautiful" from the UglyDolls soundtrack, and she's also featured on the soundtrack of the new animated film Trolls World Tour, for which she also voiced a character named Delta Dawn.
And of course, Kelly's also been thrilling fans on her talk show with her "Kelly-oke" cover songs.
Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagicThe Weeknd just proved that his talent goes way beyond just singing.
The Canadian artist took to Instagram on Thursday to reveal that he penned an episode of American Dad alongside writer Joel Hurwitz. He also shared that he will lend his voice his very own character.
"Me and this guy wrote an episode of American Dad," the 30-year-old captioned the photo of himself and Joel. "Also gonna play myself... kinda."
The Weeknd, born Abel Makkonen Tesfaye, added that fans can expect the episode on May 4 and issued a small public service announcement for those who may have thought the "Heartless" singer forgot about the current social distancing guidelines amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
"Photo was taken a while ago... STAY HOME," he explained.
In addition to taking on the extra responsibility of working behind the scenes of American Dad, Deadline reports that the Grammy-Award winner created an all-new original song that will exclusively premiere during the episode.
Mindy Small/FilmMagicWhile social distancing, artists have been performing stripped-down songs from their homes. It's no wonder that MTV, whose franchise series MTV Unplugged made playing acoustically into a thing, has gotten into the act.
Alessia Cara will perform on MTV Unplugged at Home starting today at 12 p.m. ET, and performances will be available stream on MTV YouTube, Instagram and Twitter. Exact schedules will be announced at a later date, but among the stars participating are Shaggy, Jewel, Melissa Etheridge, Monsta X, Bazzi, CNCO and Finneas.
Each performance will feature stripped-down acoustic sets of greatest hits. MTV kicked off the new series with Wyclef Jean, JoJo and Yungblud.
JUANKRA Great Big World has given an early release to a song they feel sends a much-needed message in these unprecedented times.
"I Will Always Be There," a song that reassures people that they're never alone, was going to be released on the duo's upcoming third album this summer, but Ian Axel and Chad King decided to put it out now.
"Over the past week, we’ve scrambled to finish recording ‘I Will Always Be There’ from our homes,” the duo says in a statement. "We wanted to get it out as soon as possible to help spread a message of hope and togetherness while so many people are feeling alone and isolated.”
Along with the release, A Great Big World and their record label are making a donation to Feeding America's COVID-19 Response Fund. Feeding America is the country's biggest hunger-relief organization, with 200 food backs and 60,000 food pantries and meal programs throughout the U.S.
No word yet on when A Great Big World's third album, which will also include their Christina Aguilera duet "Fall On Me," will be released.
Mike Coppola/FilmMagicMiley Cyrus and Cody Simpson are still going strong and they sweetly proved that on Thursday's episode of Bright Minded: Live with Miley.
The "Malibu" singer had her boyfriend on her Instagram show to promote his new book of poems titled Prince Neptune.
Fortunately, fans don't have to wait too long to get a taste of what his written work sounds like. The 23-year-old Australian singer gave a preview of his work by reading a love poem he wrote about Cyrus.
"In the ancient night, she flies once more back to her home in the stars," he began. "I try to chase her there but fall short because I cannot breathe up that high in the radiant heavens where she lingers. I can only admire her from below, humble, starry-eyed poet with the desire for that which is most beautiful. And she is most beautiful."
As Simpson continued reading that last few lines of the poem, Cyrus adorably flushed with emotion and yelled, "Babe."
For those dying to hear more, Prince Neptune will be available for purchase on Tuesday, April 7 both as a paperback and audiobook.