RollingStone’s 100 Greatest Songwriters 100-90

rolling stone

100- Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson

Benny and Björn had already been a songwriting duo for six years when they teamed up with their girlfriends Anni-Frid Lyngstad and Agnetha Fältskog — who were both Swedish pop stars already — to form Abba. The two of them were hardcore about songwriting: they bought a cottage on the island of Viggsö where they could focus on making their music and lyrics as catchy as humanly possible. “Each song had to be different,” Andersson said in 2002, “because, in the Sixties, that’s what the Beatles had done. The challenge was to not do another ‘Mamma Mia’ or ‘Waterloo.'” Ulvaeus’s lyrics grew progressively darker over the course of Abba’s career, even as the band became so unbelievably popular that they were able to release an 18-song greatest hits album simply called Number Ones. After the band split up, Ulvaeus and Andersson went on to collaborate on several musicals — including the Abba jukebox musical, Mamma Mia!, one of the most successful in Broadway history.

99- Tom T. Hall

Hall was an English major who said he learned to write songs by osmosis, soaking up everything from Dickens to Hemingway. His best work was charged with literary irony but unfolded with the ease of spoken language, as when the mini-skirted heroine of “Harper Valley P.T.A.” struts into the local junior high and exposes small-town hypocrisy by asking why Mrs. Taylor uses so much ice when her husband’s out of town. A Number One pop and country hit for Jeannie C. Riley in 1968, it freed Hall to record his own work, which included songs about burying a man who owed him 40 dollars, mourning the death of the local hero who taught him how to drink and play guitar, and “Trip to Hyden,” a journalistic tale of a drive to the scene of a mining disaster that was part Woody Guthrie, part Studs Turkel. One of Nashville’s most overtly political songwriters, he was a liberal who recorded “Watergate Blues” and turned a drink in a bar after the 1972 Democratic convention into a Number One country hit called “Old Dogs, Children and Watermelon Wine.” “I couldn’t write the ‘Darling, you left alone and blue’ or ‘I’m drunk in this bar and crying’ [songs]— I just didn’t get it,” he once said. “And so I started writing these story songs.”

98- Otis Blackwell

A Brooklynite who was equally entranced by R&B and country (claiming his favorite singer was C&W mainstay Tex Ritter), Otis Blackwell began his career with 1953’s “Daddy Rollin’ Stone,” which has been covered repeatedly. But large-scale success as a performer eluded him. “I didn’t dig it. Got more into writing,” he said. When Elvis Presley recorded one of his songs, the result was 1956’s epochal “Don’t Be Cruel,” which was simultaneously Number One on the pop, R&B and country charts. Blackwell subsequently gave Elvis “All Shook Up” and “Return to Sender,” and wrote a cluster of hits for other artists, including “Great Balls of Fire” for Jerry Lee Lewis. And even though Blackwell’s own singing career never took off, it’s been noted that his vocals on demos of songs that Presley recorded were followed faithfully by the King. “At certain tempo, the way Elvis sang was the result of copying Otis’ demos,” said Blackwell’s friend Doc Pomus. Oddly, Blackwell and Presley never met.

97- Taylor Swift

Many singer-songwriters reach the point where they have too many great tunes to fit into a live show. Taylor Swift reached that peak before she turned 21. And then she just kept going. She might be the youngest artist on this list — as you may have heard, she was born in 1989, the year Green Day released their first record. But she’s already written two or three careers’ worth of keepers. “Hi, I’m Taylor,” she told the crowds on her Red tour. “I write songs about my feelings. I’m told I have a lot of feelings.” Swift’s first three albums display her emotional yet uncommonly inventive country style — even early hits like “Our Song” and “Tim McGraw” sound like nobody else. (Only she could slip the line “Any snide remarks from my father about your tattoos will be ignored” into a teen romance like “Ours.”) But she’s really hit her stride with the pop mastery of Red and 1989, especially on confessional ballads like “Clean” and “All Too Well.” There’s no limit to where she can go from here.

“If you listen to my songs, they tell stories,” Missy Elliott has said. “I write almost as if I’m in conversation with somebody.” The crucible of her collaboration with Timbaland was the Swing Mob, a loose constellation of performers and producers who worked with Jodeci’s DeVante Swing in the early Nineties. Tim and Missy started working in earnest as a writing team in 1996, when they collaborated on most of Aaliyah’s One in a Million. That was followed by Missy’s 1997 breakthrough Supa Dupa Fly — a set of cool, witty, deceptively minimal tracks that flipped between hip-hop, R&B and electronica with finger-snapping ease — and a string of genre-melting records like “Get Ur Freak On” and “Work It” that lasted until the early 2000s. The duo has also penned hits for other artists including SWV’s “Can We,” Total’s “Trippin'” and Tweet’s “Call Me.” Missy hasn’t released a new album for 10 years, but she and Timbaland have dropped hints that they’ve got something brewing.

95- The Bee Gees

America first discovered the Bee Gees with the 1977 disco soundtrack Saturday Night Fever. But that multiplatinum triumph was just the tip of the iceberg: Australian brothers Barry, Robin and Maurice Gibb were massively successful songwriters for decades. Elton John has called them “a huge influence on me as a songwriter”; Bono has said their catalog makes him “ill with envy.” The Bee Gees’ earliest hits (“New York Mining Disaster 1941,” “To Love Somebody”) were melancholy psychedelia, and their first U.S. Number One single, “How Can You Mend a Broken Heart,” was promptly covered by Al Green. But when they took a stab at disco with 1975’s “Jive Talkin’,” their career kicked into an even higher gear. Besides their own hits (including a string of six consecutive Number Ones), the brothers wrote the title song for Grease, Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton’s “Islands in the Stream,” Barbra Streisand’s “Guilty,” and Destiny’s Child’s “Emotion.” “We see ourselves first and foremost as composers, writing for ourselves and other people,” Robin Gibb said.

Maybe it’s his family’s blue-collar background or the years he spent delivering mail before becoming a full-time musician. But John Prine has always had the innate ability to emphatically capture the highs, lows and occasional laughs of everyday Americans and fringe characters: the drug-addled vet in “Sam Stone,” the lonely older folks in “Angel from Montgomery” and “Hello in There.” One of a group of early Seventies singer-songwriters to get pegged with the unfortunate tag “New Dylan,” Prine has written poignant songs of romantic despair (“Speed of the Sound of Loneliness”), songs that sound like centuries-old mountain ballads (“Paradise”) and ribald comic masterpieces aimed at advice columns and various crazies. “You write a song about something that you think might be taboo, you sing it for other people and they immediately recognize themselves in it,” Prine says. “I call it optimistic pessimism. You admit everything that’s wrong and you talk about it in the sharpest terms, in the keenest way you can.”

“Back then, I just wanted to write songs I could be proud of and be able to play in five years,” Billie Joe Armstrong said last year of his attitude while creating Green Day’s 1994 pop-punk breakthrough Dookie. The LP went on to sell millions and Armstrong — who didn’t get the credit he deserved as a writer back in the days of more serious-minded bands like Nirvana and Pearl Jam — has amassed one of the most impressive song books of the last 20 years. His 1996 acoustic ballad “Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)” has become a standard and a pop cultural touchstone; the Who-scale ambition of 2004’s American Idiot made for a rock-opera that remains a totemic response to the Bush era; and Green Day’s recent three-album trilogy, Uno!, Dos!, Tre!), displayed a mastery of styles from throughout rock & roll history. And Armstrong is a punk through and through: the whole band gets songwriting credit on its hugely successful catalog.

Paul Westerberg wasn’t precious about his craft (“I hate music/It’s got too many notes,” he sang on the first Replacements album in 1981). But he become the American punk-rock poet laureate of the Eighties, reeling off shabbily rousing underdog anthems like “I Will Dare” and “Bastards of Young,” as well as beautifully afflicted songs like “Swinging Party” and “Here Comes a Regular.” A high-school dropout, Westerberg spoke for a nation of smart, wiseacre misfits, paving the way for Green Day and Nirvana, both of which were led by avowed Replacements fans. “Westerberg could be barreling along and do ‘Tommy Gets His Tonsils Out’ or ‘Gary’s Got a Boner,’ and then he could slide into ‘Unsatisfied’ or ‘Sixteen Blue,’ says Craig Finn of the Hold Steady. “So you think this guy was this drunk, punkish dude and all the sudden he’s really sensitive and really vulnerable. Because he’s got you looking both ways, it’s bigger, it hits harder. Or softer, depending on how you look at it.” Westerberg has his own explanation for his unique underdog genius: “I think the opposite when I see something,” he once said. “I have dyslexia, and I’ve used it to its best advantage.”

With a talent for wordplay that can be as head-spinning as it is disturbing, and a knack for incessant sing-song choruses that suggest he might’ve thrived in a Brill Building cubicle, Eminem crams hugely popular songs with more internal rhymes and lyrical trickery than anyone else in contemporary pop. His most recent Number One, “The Monster,” features bonkers couplets like “Straw into gold chump, I will spin/Rumpelstiltskin in a haystack/Maybe I need a straight jacket, face facts.” Like his character in the 2002 biopic 8 Mile, Eminem honed his formidable skills in Detroit rap battles, then polished his rhymes in the studio over springy Dr. Dre tracks that gave him room to freak out as agilely and aggressively as he liked. “Even as a kid, I always wanted the most words to rhyme,” Eminem told Rolling Stone. “Say I saw a word like ‘transcendalistic tendencies.’ I would write it out on a piece of paper and underneath, I’d line a word up with each syllable: ‘and bend all mystic sentence trees.’ Even if it didn’t make sense, that’s the kind of drill I would do to practice.”

Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds rose to fame for his work with Antonio “L.A.” Reid on Bobby Brown’s Don’t Be Cruel, reinforcing taut R&B songwriting with hard hip-hop beats to help create New Jack Swing. But Edmonds’ true legacy is as a craftsman of thoughtful ballads and mid-tempo romantic material, with his own solid career as a performer often overshadowed by the huge successes he’s enabled other artists to enjoy: “End of the Road,” which he wrote for Boyz II Men, broke records with its 13-week run as the Number One song on the Billboard Hot 100. Edmonds has said, “I don’t just come in with songs. I talk with the artist and find out what they will or won’t sing about.” That technique has helped him develop an unrivaled gift for matching a lyric and a mood with a particular singer, especially a particular female singer. It’s hard to imagine anyone but Whitney Houston giving shape to “Exhale (Shoop Shoop),” anyone but Mary J. Blige taking a stand with “Not Gon’ Cry,” anyone but Toni Braxton lending the necessary sultry edge to the many songs he’s written for her over the past quarter-century.

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Eminem Joins His Protegee YelaWolf on ‘Best Friend’

Yelawolf’s second studio album, Love Story comes out on April 21st.

“Best Friend” relays lyrics like, “But if you spit on my f**kin’ grave and wish me hell, then I wish you well, and I’ll send you straight up to my best friend.”

Love Story is Yelawolf’s first full-length album since his 2011 debut Radioactive.

Eminem Annotates Lyrics for Genius: His 10 Best

From RollingStone.com

EminemEminem has joined the likes of Rick Rubin, Grizzly Bear, A-Trak and The-Dream by becoming the latest Genius-verified artist. The rapper has annotated more than 40 lyrics for tracks from across his own catalog and select songs by other artists. Throughout his annotations, Eminem gets candid about his life and career, discussing his addiction to pills and sometimes-fraught relationship with his colleagues.

The annotations follow his recent celebration of Shady Records’ 15th anniversary. His personal notes on the lyrics and songs range from recollections of how they were produced to his mental state at the time he recorded them. Plus, the rapper offers some insight on his humor, detailing how his more surreal quips come about. The whole thing is worth a read, but here are 10 of Eminem’s best Genius annotations.

1. “Biggie/Tupac Live Freestyle” (1999)

Lyric: [Entire Notorious B.I.G.’s verse]

There’s people who rap to make songs, just because they enjoy doing it and want to express themselves. And then there are people who rap competitively. I believe that anybody who competitively raps — like Drake and Kendrick and Jay-Z — raps to be the best rapper. People diss each other, but it’s more in the vein of “How can I kill you with record sales? Or with a flow? How can I be better than you at making records, at punchlines, metaphors, wordplay, syllables?”

But when you have two rappers like Biggie and Tupac getting into it, you get the hip-hop community torn. No one wants to see something real happen. If for a second you entertain the idea of that being entertaining, if something ever happened out of that? No. That’s not healthy.

2. “Just Don’t Give a Fuck” (1999)

Lyric: “So put my tape back on the rack / Go run and tell your friends my shit is wack”

When we put [Eminem’s 1996 debut album] Infinite out, it was local. We pressed up under a thousand, initially. We expected we’d be able to get something with it, though. When that didn’t happen, it was really deflating. People were saying that I sounded like AZ and Nas. I was upset. Not to say that I didn’t love AZ and Nas, but for a rapper to be compared to someone, for people to say that you sound like someone else — nobody wants that. I had to go back to the drawing board. So I remember getting mad. I was like, “I’m gonna rap like I don’t care anymore. Fuck it.” I started to write angry songs like “Just Don’t Give a Fuck.”

3. “Just Don’t Give a Fuck

Lyric: “Slim Shady, Eminem was the old initials (bye bye!)”

Coming out with an alias was part of Proof’s whole idea. He said, “Let’s be in a group called D12, and there will be six of us, and we’ll each have an alias. We’ll each be two different people.” When I started rapping as Shady, as that character, it was a way for me to vent all my frustrations and just blame it on him. If anybody got mad about it, it was him that said it. It was a way for me to be myself and say what I felt. I never wanted to go back to just rapping regular again.

4. “My Name Is” (1999)

We saw [the video] for the first time on MTV. It came on really late at night. That’s when it was like, “Okay, this isn’t a joke anymore.” We had kind of felt that, being in the studio with Dre and shit. But once that single came out, my life changed like that. Within a day. Just going outside. I couldn’t go outside anymore. In a day. It went from the day before, doing whatever the fuck I wanted to do, because nobody knew who the fuck I was, to holy shit, people are fucking following us. It was crazy. That’s when shit just got really — it was a lot to deal with at once.

5. “Lose Yourself” (2002)

Lyric: “Food stamps don’t buy diapers, and there’s no movie / There’s no Mekhi Phifer, this is my life”

Putting the name of the actor right there in the lead single was just about the rhymes. I had started with this syllable scheme — “somebody’s paying the pied piper” and “Mekhi Phifer” ended up fitting. That was all it was.

That was one of those songs where I remember telling [manager] Paul [Rosenberg], “I don’t know how to write about someone else’s life.” Because the movie is not me; the movie is Jimmy Smith Jr. So I’m playing this character, but I have to make parallels between my life and his, in this song. I gotta figure out how to reach a medium. It would sound so corny if I was just rapping as Jimmy Smith Jr. How is that going to come from a real place?

If I’m telling you that my daughter doesn’t have diapers, I need this amount of money to pay my bills this month, and it’s some real shit I’m telling you, then you know that it’s just coming from me. That was the trick I had to figure out — how to make the rhyme sound like him, and then morph into me somehow, so you see the parallels between his struggles and mine.

6. “8 Mile: Final Battle” (2002)

This is Rabbit’s battle, not mine. I had a big battle of my own, and it was definitely not like Rabbit’s.

We had pressed up The Slim Shady EP and it was doing pretty well in Detroit. At some point, [Rap Coalition founder] Wendy Day called me and said, “I want you to be on the battle team. I got you a ticket to the Rap Olympics in Los Angeles.”

I went to the Olympics, got all the way to the end, and then lost to the last guy. The guy who won was Otherwize, from L.A. It was a local thing. They had a bunch of crowd support there. When I rapped, he went and hid behind a video screen. He walked away while I was rapping. I didn’t have anyone to battle! I’d never been in a situation like that before. I went through a lot of people to get through to the end, and then he walked away while I was rapping. I’m like, “What the fuck do I do?” I was devastated.

I come off stage. I’m like, that’s it. It’s over for me. This kid from Interscope, Dean Geistlinger, walks over and he asks me for a copy of the CD. So I kind of just chuck it at him. It was The Slim Shady EP. We come back to Detroit, I have no fucking home, no idea what I’m gonna do. Then, a couple weeks later, we get a call. Marky Bass said, “Yo, we got a call from a doctor!”

7. “Sing for the Moment” (2003)

Lyric: [Verse 1]

This is where I was dealing with critics who didn’t understand why people were identifying with me. I realized I was becoming like the rappers that I looked up to as a kid. I identified with and loved LL Cool J and the Beastie Boys. I felt like if everybody didn’t understand their music, it didn’t matter — they were speaking to me. So that’s what I was trying to make people realize on this track. I may not be shit to you, but there’s a kid in fucking Nebraska, or somewhere, that I’m talking to. I don’t care if you’re listening, because he’s listening. That’s who I’m directing my material at.

8. “Fack” (2005)

It was a goofy fucking song. I was taking a lot of fucking pills at the time. Ambien will make you do crazy shit. Imagine if you took it all day long.

9. “Rap God” (2013)

Lyric: “Ungh, school flunky, pill junkie / But look at the accolades, these skills brung me”

I don’t ever want to be too braggadocious. If I’m going to brag, let me pull it back with lines like “school flunky, pill junkie.” I’m a fucking waste of life. I’m a waste of sperm. I am a fucking outcast of society, I am a piece of shit. But I know how to rap. Other than that, I’m a fucking scumbag. I’m worthless. Or this is what I’ve been told.

10. “Shady XV” (2014)

Lyric: “I slap Linda Ronstadt with a lobster, throw her off a balcony / Just so happens she’s fond of algae”

Let’s say I’m writing, and I lock onto Linda Ronstadt. I’m in the studio and I chuckle. Someone hears me and is like, “What the fuck are you laughing at?” It’s because I thought of something funny that rhymes with something. I’m not gonna not say this, because it’s funny, regardless of whether or not it’s fucked up. If it happens to connect and there’s some kind of humor in it, some reason for it to rhyme with something else, then I’m going to say it.

When I’m pushing boundaries, I want to make sure that I keep myself in check. I want you to know that this rhyme might be fucked up or funny or not, or whatever. I’m aware of it and I know I’m probably fucked up for saying it.

I don’t think it’s any different than what comedians do. Have you ever seen Lisa Lampanelli? She takes the piss out of herself while she says these ridiculous things. You’re like, “That was fucked up,” and then she comes right behind it with some self-deprecating thing about herself. She’s figured out a way to weave certain things together that’s very clever.

SHADY CXVPHER Released

Eminem & his gang of lyricist have once again captured the hearts of Hip-Hop lovers, with their release of the “SHADY CXVPHER” video.

The video features Slaughterhouse members, Crooked I, Joe Budden, Joell Ortiz, & Royce Da 5’9,” along with Yelawolf & Slim Shady himself, Eminem free styling  off top, in different locations.

CLICK HERE & check out the video below, and let us know who had the best verse in the cypher.

Happy 42nd Birthday Eminem!

Eminem

1. As a nine-year-old, Eminem was beaten so badly by a school bully that he spent over a week in a coma. His music has since been credited with helping to bring more than one fan out of similar states, including a twelve-year-old girl who was hit by a car in Northumberland.

2. As a youngster, Marshall harbored ambitions to become a comic book artist rather than a rapper, which explains various animated threads through-out his career, including the Dubya-baiting ‘Mosh’ video and The Slim Shady Show series.

3. The Slim Shady moniker may never have materialized if he’d pursued one of his pre-fame jobs as a cook at a family restaurant in Michigan. Still, you can take the white trash outta the trailer park, but old habits die hard: Em’s a Taco bell man nowadays.

4. Reckon Marshall’s turbulent marriage/divorce seesaw with on/off wife Kim mirrors the family unit’s decline? That’s nothing: his grandmother Betty Hixson comfortably eclipses those antics with five walks up the aisle. Nearly halfway there, Em’…

5. Despite a tearaway image and numerous brushes with the law, Mathers didn’t clock his first arrest until aged twenty, apprehended for shooting at a cop car with a paintball gun. No word on whether the aftermath resembled a scene from Shady’s all-time favorite movie, classic gangster flick ‘Scarface’, but we’ll take a punt on no…

6. Another blond-bonced establishment upsetter, strip club magnate Peter Stringfellow, shares Eminem’s birthday. Also born on october 17th are Fugees rapper Wyclef Jean, Ziggy Marley and the late motorcycle daredevil Evel Knievel.

7. Recently re-crowned King of Pop himself Michael Jackson co-owns rights in Em’s back catalog, despite publicly pillaring Mr. Mathers for depicting him as a flammable plastic surgery-riddled sex offender in the ‘Just Lose It’ video. When ol’ Wacko and Sony/ATV Music Publishing acquired Famous Music LLC in 2007, the purchase included hits like ‘Without Me’ and ‘The Real Slim Shady’.

8. Moby bears no grudge despite also being on the receiving end of Eminem’s video nasties. “He is, I think, a really remarkably talented MC,” the bald-headed producer admitted last year. “If I was to meet him I would probably compliment him for being so talented. Some of his rhymes are really pretty impressive.”

9. At the risk of branding Eminem a hypocrite, however, he wasn’t so keen on parodies when poodle-haired musical piss-taker ‘Weird Al’ Yankovic came a-calling. Yankovic had permission refused to film a video for ‘Lose yourself’ take-off ‘Couch Potato’. Apparently, Mathers didn’t want to “detract from his image as a serious hip-hop artist”.

10. Adding to the list of musicians rumored to have attracted attention from the US administration, unreleased Eminem song ‘We As Americans’ purportedly nudged the American secret service awake thanks to lyrics including “Fuck money / I don’t rap for dead presidents / I’d rather see the president dead”. Bush, not Obama, was the target of his ire.

11. Like many artistic types, Eminem is left-handed. If you look hard enough, various writing dexterity clues are buried within his music videos, as well as movie ‘8 Mile’.

12. Although Marshall Mathers’ iconic stage name is taken from his initials and not, sadly, moreish sugar-covered chocolate treats, one of the best Eminem-inspired works is an M&Ms portrait of the star by Florida artist Enrique Ramos. Assembled from more than eight pounds of sweets, over one thousand M&Ms were used.

American Music Award Nominations 2014 – See a Full List of All AMA Nominees!

The 2014 American Music Award nominations are here. Iggy Azalea is leading the pack with six nominations! Following with five nominations each include John Legend,Katy Perry and Pharrell Williams.

Other nominees include Taylor Swift,Beyoncé, Luke Bryan, Drake, Eminem,Imagine Dragons, Lorde, One Direction, Sam Smith, and more!

The 2014 AMAs will air on ABC on Sunday November 23.

ARTIST OF THE YEAR
Iggy Azalea
Beyoncé
Luke Bryan
Eminem
Imagine Dragons
John Legend
Lorde
One Direction
Katy Perry
Pharrell Williams

NEW ARTIST OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY KOHL’S
5 Seconds of Summer
Iggy Azalea
Bastille
Sam Smith
Meghan Trainor

SINGLE OF THE YEAR
Iggy Azalea Featuring Charli XCX “Fancy”
John Legend “All of Me”
MAGIC! “Rude”
Katy Perry Featuring Juicy J “Dark Horse”
Pharrell Williams “Happy”

FAVORITE MALE ARTIST – POP/ROCK
John Legend
Sam Smith
Pharrell Williams

FAVORITE FEMALE ARTIST – POP/ROCK
Iggy Azalea
Lorde
Katy Perry

FAVORITE BAND, DUO OR GROUP – POP/ROCK
Imagine Dragons
One Direction
OneRepublic

FAVORITE ALBUM – POP/ROCK
Lorde “Pure Heroine”
One Direction “Midnight Memories”
Katy Perry “Prism”

FAVORITE MALE ARTIST – COUNTRY
Jason Aldean
Luke Bryan
Blake Shelton

FAVORITE FEMALE ARTIST – COUNTRY
Miranda Lambert
Kacey Musgraves
Carrie Underwood

FAVORITE BAND, DUO OR GROUP – COUNTRY
Eli Young Band
Florida Georgia Line
Lady Antebellum

FAVORITE ALBUM – COUNTRY
Garth Brooks “Blame It On My Roots: Five Decades of Influences”
Eric Church “The Outsiders”
Brantley Gilbert “Just As I Am”

FAVORITE ARTIST – RAP/HIP-HOP
Iggy Azalea
Drake
Eminem

FAVORITE ALBUM – RAP/HIP-HOP
Iggy Azalea “The New Classic”
Drake “Nothing Was The Same”
Eminem “The Marshall Mathers LP 2”

FAVORITE MALE ARTIST – SOUL/R&B
Chris Brown
John Legend
Pharrell Williams

FAVORITE FEMALE ARTIST – SOUL/R&B
Jhene Aiko
Beyoncé
Mary J. Blige

FAVORITE ALBUM – SOUL/R&B
Beyoncé “Beyoncé”
John Legend “Love in the Future”
Pharrell Williams “G I R L”

FAVORITE ARTIST – ALTERNATIVE ROCK
Bastille
Imagine Dragons
Lorde

FAVORITE ARTIST – ADULT CONTEMPORARY
Sara Bareilles
OneRepublic
Katy Perry

FAVORITE ARTIST – LATIN
Marc Anthony
Enrique Iglesias
Romeo Santos

FAVORITE ARTIST – CONTEMPORARY INSPIRATIONAL
Casting Crowns
Hillsong United
Newsboys

FAVORITE ARTIST – ELECTRONIC DANCE MUSIC (EDM)
Avicii
Calvin Harris
Zedd

TOP SOUNDTRACK
Frozen
The Fault In Our Stars
Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix, Vol. 1

This Day in Music History — October 12

1978 : Sid Vicious of The Sex Pistols is arrested for the murder of his girlfriend, Nancy Spungen, who he found dead in the bathroom of their hotel room with a stab wound to her abdomen. Vicious died of a heroin overdose before he could be tried for the murder.

1997 : John Denver, an avid amateur pilot who loves flying experimental aircraft, is the victim of a fatal plane crash. The airplane he flies has a fuel selection valve behind the pilot’s head, forcing him to balance on the right rudder in order to switch tanks. That day, Denver leaves the airport with less fuel than he should have. He hits the right rudder when attempting to switch tanks, causing him to plow into the Pacific Ocean.

2003 : Rapper 50 Cent takes home all five trophies for which he is nominated at the World Music Awards, held in Monaco. Russian teen duo t.A.T.u. picks up three awards, while Norah Jones and Eminem win two.

2013 : Pharrell Williams marries the model Helen Lasichanh. She would inspire several tracks on his 2014 album G I R L, including the song “It Girl.”

 

This Day in Music History — September 17

1967 : Keith Moon of The Who rigs his bass drum to explode at the end of “My Generation” during the group’s appearance on CBS-TV’s Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, but doesn’t realize that the stage crew had already set the charge. The resulting explosion cuts Moon’s leg, singes Pete Townshend’s hair, and startles fellow guests Bette Davis and Mickey Rooney.

1983 : Vanessa Williams, who would become a popular actress and score a #1 hit with Save The Best For Last, becomes the first black Miss America. She gives up the title the next year after naked photos of her appear in Penthouse.

1998 : A 19-year-old named Amit Singh is removed from the plane after harassing the members of Hootie & the Blowfish on their flight from New York to Los Angeles.

1999 : Rapper Eminem is hit with a $10 million defamation lawsuit filed by his mother Debbie Mathers-Briggs. The suit charges that the rapper made defamatory remarks about his mother in several interviews, including that she was “pill-popping” and “lawsuit-happy.”

2009 : Avril Lavigne and Sum 41’s Deryck Whibley go their separate ways after being married since 2006.