CHR Music News

Music notes: Harry Styles, Zedd, Meghan Trainor, Charlie Puth and Avril Lavigne

Harry Styles could win an Academy Award next year. Variety reports Amazon Studios has submitted him -- and the entire My Policeman cast -- to be considered in the Oscars' supporting categories. We'll find out if he scores a nod when the Oscars reveals its nominees on January 23.

Zedd will celebrate the 10th anniversary of his album Clarity with a special live performance at the Dolby Theatre on October 9, where he'll be accompanied by a 50-piece orchestra. The event will stream exclusively on the Moment platform, and tickets are on sale now.

Meghan Trainor has a special, bright pink vinyl edition of her new album, Takin' It Back, for sale. The color is described as "candy fleece" and it's a 2-side LP. You can preorder the vinyl now. The album comes out October 21.

Charlie Puth released the music video for Calvin Harris' "Obsessed." He stars alongside collaborator Shenseea, whom he pines for in the beach-vibed video.

Avril Lavigne has been changing up her look for each new album, but says her Love Sux era is "a little bit of all of my styles over the years." She told Billboard she loves that looks from the early 2000s are back in style and raved, "It’s more sexy now ... Everything used to be so baggy and low, and now, the new versions are high waisted with a crop top."

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Meghan Trainor reveals "COVID really broke my confidence in my career"

ABC/John Fleenor

Meghan Trainor says her new album, Takin' It Back, symbolizes a rebirth of her music career after her confidence was shattered by the pandemic.

The Grammy winner appeared on Smallzy's Surgery to explain how going back to her doo-wop roots helped her out of her funk. She revealed she views her new album as an updated version of her debut album, revealing, "I call it Title 2.0."

"I think COVID really broke my confidence in my career," she confessed. When the pandemic shut the music industry down, she worried that had killed her momentum. Her main concerns were she'd never come back and fans would forget her. "That really messed up [my] mind," she added.

What helped rebuild her confidence was when her old songs went viral on TikTok. Meghan also felt relief when she heard that new artists wanted to do "that Meghan Trainor sound" a.k.a. doo-wop. She recalled thinking to herself, "They still know who I am?"

The "No" singer says her new album will detail the insecurity she felt at the time and how she overcame it. "I forgot all the good I had ever done before," she confessed. "And I had to remind myself."  

Takin' It Back arrives October 21. Meghan revealed she's about to release a new song off the album, titled, "Mama Wanna Mambo."

Speaking of mama, Meghan admits she's feeling some "mom guilt" for having to head Down Under to serve as a first-time judge on Australian Idol. The singer hates being away from her son, Riley, and confessed, "I wish I was with him."

Thankfully, her family will soon move to Australia, where Meghan confirmed she and husband Daryl Sabara will try for baby number two. "I'm banking on twins at this point," she declared.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Ed Sheeran salutes Pokémon in nostalgic song "Celestial," which will be featured in 'Pokémon Scarlet & Violet'

Warner Music Group

Ed Sheeran showed off how important the world of Pokémon is to him in his new and nostalgic song, "Celestial."

The song is about the comfort the franchise continues to bring him and why it stuck with him since he was in primary school. 

"You make me feel/ Like my troubled heart is a million miles away/ You make me feel/ Like I'm drunk on stars and we're dancing out in the space," Ed croons as his day flashes between real life and his imagination -- where he is assisted by his Pokémon pals in a pseudo-animated world.

Cameos include Pikachu, Charmander, Snorlax, Lapras, Bulbasaur, Eevee, Charizard, Machamp, Hypno and his favorite one of all, Squirtle.

The music video culminates with him creating a new song about his Pokémon pals then falling into a fully animated dream world, where he recreates the climax of 1999's Pokémon: The First Movie. Ed heroically throws himself between the franchise's two most powerful Pokémon -- Mewtwo and Mew -- in order to stop their destructive fighting.

Ed mostly salutes the first generation of Pokémon, the original 151, as that was the era he fell in love with the franchise. He does make a nod to the eighth generation of Pokémon by including the three starters of Sword and Shield, which was released in 2019.

"I loved the whole world they created; it kept me distracted if there was negative stuff happening in my life/school that I wanted to avoid. It was a world I could escape into and I’ve played it ever since," the Grammy winner expressed in a statement. 

He then revealed on Instagram that "Celestial" will be featured in the upcoming games Pokémon Scarlet and Pokémon Violet, which arrives November 18.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


will.i.am hints he has another collab with Britney Spears on the way

Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Are we about to hear more new music from Britney Spears? If will.i.am gets his way, then our chances are looking good.

The Black Eyed Peas artist appeared on Good Morning Britain, and the hosts were buzzing about the possibility. To recap, will.i.am and Britney teamed for the 2012 hit song "Scream & Shout." With the Grammy winner now rising up the charts with her new Elton John collab, "Hold Me Closer," it begged to question if this really is the beginning of Britney's comeback.

Speaking of his old collaborator, will.i.am expressed, "We've done cool things together, and I'm so happy that she's on this new journey and shining."

"She's still got hurdles, but you know what, we're all there to support her," he continued, adding that her husband, Sam Asghari, has his seal of approval. He emphasized, "Sam is awesome!"

With will.i.am confirming he's kept in touch with the "Toxic" singer, he was then pressed if the two have chatted about making music together again.

"Yeah. There have been things in the works.  Things that we've done in the past," he coyly teased while looking anywhere but the camera. Unfortunately for us, he refused to divulge a single detail about what those "things" are.

"I can't reveal," he announced with a laugh. "I live a very private life." When pressed if fans should circle a date about a future announcement, will.i.am jokingly looked side to side and quipped, "Announcement to what?"

As for Brit's collab with Sir Elton, will.i.am gave a glowing review. "Yo, that song is awesome," he raved.

will.i.am and Britney's "Scream & Shout" arrived in November 2012 and peaked at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100.  The song is currently RIAA-certified thrice Platinum and has since sold over 8 million copies worldwide.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Elton, Britney and Harry reach new milestones on 'Billboard' airplay chart

Interscope

"As It Was" may be ruling the Billboard Hot 100, but over on one of the publication's other charts, a different Harry Styles song is on top.

Harry's track "Late Night Talking," another song from his album Harry's House, has topped Billboard's Adult Pop Airplay chart. That makes Harry the only artist so far this year to score two number ones on that chart, the other being "As It Was." Last year, both Olivia Rodrigo and The Kid LAROI doubled up at the top.

Meanwhile, "Hold Me Closer," Elton John's collaboration with Britney Spears, reached the top 10 on that same chart. It's Elton's third top 10 on the chart overall and his second this year: "Cold Heart," his collab with Dua Lipa, reached number one in March.

But surprisingly, "Hold Me Closer" is Britney's first-ever top 10 on the Adult Pop Airplay chart. The highest she'd ever gotten previously was #19, with 2011's "Till the World Ends" featuring Nicki Minaj and Kesha.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Was Nicky Youre's smash "Sunroof" inspired by a 2012 movie?

@theonlymang (Austin Cieszko)

The summer's over, but Nicky Youre's hit "Sunroof" is still going strong. Nicky says he was sick when he wrote the tune last April, so he wanted a feel-good song to cheer himself up. But he might have been subconsciously influenced by a movie he had just watched.

While promoting "Sunroof," Nicky has either been asked about, or has brought up, one famous scene in the  2012 movie The Perks of Being a Wallflower, starring Emma Watson, Logan Lerman and Ezra Miller. While Emma's character is riding in a pickup truck going through a tunnel at top speed, she climbs through the back window and stands up in the cab with her hands up high.

So, did that scene inspire "Sunroof"? "I don't even know. I think it just had, like, some small amount of, like, inspiration there," Nicky tells ABC Audio.

He notes that while he loves movies, watching at least a movie a day, he doesn't write with "intent."

"I think everything that I write is, like, kind of subconsciously written ... with words that feel like they make sense and are fun," Nicky says.

But the movie happened to be on his mind at the time.

"I wouldn't say that that was the main thing, but that's, like, one of my favorite movies," he recalls. "I remember I just watched it for the second time, so I was like, 'Oh, this movie is so sick.'"

"I don't even know if I really wrote about it," Nicky adds. "When I think of 'Sunroof,' that's kind of the scene that I think of ... with Emma Watson's hands in the air."

So, we'll take that as a yes?

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Music notes: Lil Nas X, Lizzo, Meghan Trainor, Olivia Rodrigo and Rihanna

Lil Nas X was being a super uncle at his latest show: he brought his young nephew onstage to dance with him to the new "Star Walkin'" anthem. He shared a video on TikTok of the two busting moves to the new hit, which drove the crowd wild.

Lizzo shared a behind-the-scenes video of her playing James Madison's 200-year-old crystal flute. In a new TikTok, the singer revealed she not only was the first person to ever play it, she is also the first person to play music in the Library of Congress' Reading Room -- and, of course, she played the historic relic for that, too!

Remember that viral photo of Meghan Trainor and husband Daryl Sabara visiting a sex shop? Well, she finally explained what she was doing there in a TikTok video and said "it's not what you think." She was there to pick up a few things for a friend who was too shy to go in there herself -- so Meghan was simply being a brave friend.

Olivia Rodrigo broke a major streaming record on Spotify. Her team confirmed to ABC Audio she is the first female artist on the platform to have three solo songs off the same album hit 1 billion streams. Her song "dejavu" joins hits "drivers license" and "good 4 u" in Spotify's billion streams club.

TMZ is now reporting Rihanna has not picked a guest to assist her at the Super Bowl halftime show. Apparently her team has compiled a list of 50 potential names, but the "Umbrella" singer could choose to do the entire set solo.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Melanie C reveals she was nearly kicked out of the Spice Girls over fight with Victoria Beckham

ABC/Eric McCandless

Melanie C was almost kicked out of the Spice Girls because of an argument with Victoria Beckham.

Although the Dancing with the Stars alum said everything is fine between them now, there was a moment when her future with the girl group was thrown into question.

Speaking with Entertainment Tonight, Melanie revealed, "Something happened quite early on in the Spice Girls' journey, and I have a little bit of fall out with Victoria at the [Brit Awards] in '96 -- not the Union Jack dress [year], but year [the] before."

Melanie said "few people knew us" at the time because they were "unreleased," so when the drama reared its ugly head it was almost curtains for Sporty Spice. "There was a little fall out, and I was threatened to get kicked out the band," she disclosed.

Melanie revealed the moment freaked her out. She said she realized, "I have to control myself. I have to control what I do."

That impulse went into overdrive and morphed into an eating disorder in order to maintain her moniker as the "sporty" one of the group. "I was controlling what I ate. I was controlling how much exercise I was doing," she explained. "I think because in a situation like that so much is out of your control, the things you can control I became very obsessive about."

Melanie said she wasn't "ready to accept" help for her eating disorder when it was first offered, noting, "You can't really help somebody until they're willing."

The "Viva Forever" singer reflects on her rise to fame in the memoir The Sporty One: My Life as a Spice Girl

Looking ahead, Melanie is hoping for a Spice Girls reunion some day, saying the girls "would love that."

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Christina Aguilera teases her next music chapter, 'La Luz'

Chris Polk / Billboard

Christina Aguilera is ready to unleash her new music era and teased what she has planned during Billboard's Latin Week celebrations.

The singer credited her new all-Spanish album, Aguilera, for making her "truly [fall] in love with music all over again." She said she would "laugh" and "learn something new" every time she went into the studio to record it.

Christina is gearing up to release La Luz, the third part of her compilation album, and revealed that an unreleased single off the EP is called "No Es Que Te Extrañe."

She said the song "deals with an estranged or difficult relationship you may have had with someone you were close with, a loved one."

While not revealing who inspired the song, Christina said, "For me, it does touch on some experiences I had growing up, the environment around me. Inside the home and outside the home, I witnessed various forms of abuse."

The singer says that now she's a mother, she has a new perspective on her journey, and doesn't want the song to "vilify anyone" and "be about blaming." She expressed, "My purpose is to tell a story that hopefully others can relate to and feel empowered by and find forgiveness for themselves and those who have hurt us."

She said the song is about "feeling closure in a peaceful way" because "it's important to let go of things that hurt us so badly that we end up being held prisoner ourselves by them."

Christina said her new song is not only about forgiveness, but considering that those who hurt her "might have a story, as well" that may have "led to certain choices" in their life.

La Luz is available to preorder now.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Avicii's family sells 75% of his music catalogue for estimated 9 figures

Gabriel Olsen/Getty Images for CBS Radio Inc

The family of late DJ Avicii -- born Tim Bergling -- has sold three quarters of his music catalogue for an estimated nine figures.

Variety reports conditions of the deal were not disclosed. However, it was announced Avicii's family made the deal with Pophouse Entertainment and sold the entity a 75 percent stake in his master publishings and recordings.

Pophouse Entertainment was co-founded by Bjorn Ulvaeus of ABBA in 2014 and helped power the Swedish group's "Voyage" shows in the U.K. this year. It also should be noted the late EDM star's family worked with Pophouse for The Avicii Experience, a digital tribute and museum in Stockholm.

As for the remaining quarter of Avicii's master recordings, the rights and ownership will be maintained by his family.

A statement about the partnership says the deal will "safeguard Avicii's indelible legacy through future global endeavours."  

Avicii's father, Klas Bergling, explained further, "Pophouse has presented a concrete concept and proposal for the long-term care and development of Tim’s musical heritage. Through this deal, we are also securing the Tim Bergling Foundation’s long-term finances, creating opportunity to act decisively on the Foundation’s commitments to supporting such important issues as mental health and well-being of young people."

The "Wake Me Up" artist died by suicide in April 2018. He was 28 years old.

If you are in crisis or know someone in crisis, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741. You can reach Trans Lifeline at 877-565-8860 (U.S.) or 877-330-6366 (Canada) and The Trevor Project at 866-488-7386.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Jack Harlow named among world's rising stars by TIME

Rich Polk/Getty Images for SESAC

Time says we need to watch out for "First Class" rapper Jack Harlow because he's among their 2022 TIME100 Next list of the world's rising stars.

Late night host Jimmy Fallon praised the rapper in the publication. "'What’s poppin?' That was the first time I heard Jack Harlow, and I couldn’t have pulled my phone out any faster to Shazam the song," Fallon's tribute began. "That usually leads to a string of phone calls and emails to see if an artist is ready to perform or debut on The Tonight Show."

He continued, "It's been fun to ride with him—from that race against time on Shazam, to his debut TV performance, to being part of his viral VMA opening, to his actually co-hosting The Tonight Show with me."

Others earning nods in this year's roundup is "Kiss Me More" singer SZA, who earned some serious kudos from Lizzo. The Grammy winner raved, "The authenticity in her craft—the way she’s able to tell her story and the way she uses melody—is extraordinary. No one can replicate that. When she’s onstage, she’s timeless."

Taylor Swift's boyfriend, Joe Alwyn, made the cut, and his forward was written by pal Ryan Reynolds. The Deadpool star lauded, "Joe will launch the charm attack of the hero. He’ll do the dirty work of the villain. He’ll hoist up the complicated and often murky portrait of a historical figure. Joe Alwyn will surprise you. He’s managed to do all this while evading the industry’s tried-and-true ability to label and pigeonhole a performer."

Machine Gun Kelly was also saluted by TIME; Avril Lavigne praised him saying, "He’s grown in the most authentic way, starting as a rapper and evolving into one of the biggest rock stars in the world. I have a lot of respect for him and how thoughtful he is with his craft."

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Camila Cabello praises Shawn Mendes after 'Voice' contestant auditions with his song

Tyler Golden/NBC

Camila Cabello was the only coach to not turn her chair around for aspiring singer Tanner Howe, who auditioned for The Voice on Tuesday night by performing Shawn Mendes' "Mercy."

Camila and Shawn famously dated for two years before calling it in quits in November. Apparently, Howe sounded so much like Shawn, Camila even asked coach Blake Shelton during the audition if her ex was on the stage.

"I thought that was Shawn," Camila then admitted.

Blake and fellow judges Gwen Stefani and John Legend all turned their chairs for Howe, which led to a slightly awkward moment for the "Havana" singer.

When she pointed out Howe sounds like her ex, he joked that she "does know him best." Camila agreed, "I know him better than everybody in this room."

She then revealed why she didn't turn her chair for him. "I felt like you sounded a little bit too much like him," she explained. "Obviously, he has an amazing voice [and] I love this song."

Camila told him she hopes one of her fellow coaches helps him "kind of distinguish yourself."

Howe was receptive to the Grammy nominee's advice and promised he will "try and be more unique" going ahead in the future. He chose to join Gwen's team.

The Voice airs Mondays and Tuesdays on NBC at 8 p.m. ET.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Lizzo says she's the first and only person to have played President James Madison's 200-year-old crystal flute

ABC

Lizzo says she's officially the only person in the world to have played President James Madison's crystal flute, a relic that is over 200 years old.

For a quick refresher, James Madison is one of America's founding fathers who helped draft and later signed the Constitution. He also served as the fourth president of the United States between 1809 and 1817. French aristocrat Claude Laurent gifted Madison the flute in 1813 to celebrate his second inauguration.

Lizzo played that same flute during her Tuesday night show in Washington, D.C.'s Capital One Arena.

The Grammy winner shared the moment on Twitter, writing, "NOBODY HAS EVER HEARD THIS FAMOUS CRYSTAL FLUTE BEFORE. NOW YOU HAVE."

"IM THE FIRST & ONLY PERSON TO EVER PLAY THIS PRESIDENTIAL 200-YEAR-OLD CRYSTAL FLUTE," she continued and thanked the Library of Congress for the rare, high honor.

In the video, the singer jokes she has to be careful with it because "it's like playing out of a wine glass."

Lizzo plays a few notes while shaking her booty then declares, "B****, I just twerked and played James Madison's crystal flute from the 1800s! We just made history tonight!" She also shouted out the library "for preserving our history and making history freaking cool." 

So, how did this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity happen? Carla Hayden, the librarian of Congress, tweeted out to Lizzo ahead of her show about the institute having "the largest flute collection in the world" and made specific mention of the crystal flute while inviting her to play a couple of them.

Lizzo, a classically trained flutist, obviously only wanted to play one.

The Library believes former first lady Dolley Madison saved the flute during the War of 1812, when British troops torched Washington, D.C.-- and the White House -- in 1814.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Lewis Capaldi is now the proud owner of his own pizza brand, Big Sexy Pizza

ABC

Hungry? Let Lewis Capaldi take care of your Italian cravings because he's just launched his very own pizza brand.

The "Someone You Loved" singer announced his new business venture on Instagram, writing, "Do you like warm mouthfuls of delight? well thankfully your old pal lewis here has you covered."

Lewis has launched "Big Sexy Pizza," which he says comes "straight from me to your lovely little tummies."

The Grammy nominee revealed in a promotional video that he, like many homebound individuals during lockdown, "turned to sourdough" and began baking bread. He had a knack for it, so "the cogs started turning," and he realized "pizza could be my true calling."

"It was a lot of trial and error and, eventually, I stumbled upon greatness," he raved as the video showed him being bathed in heavenly light while chomping down on a pizza slice. Lewis revealed that he wants his new venture "to succeed," so fans might catch him on cooking shows in the future.  

"You'll be seeing a lot about cheese," he joked while gesturing to himself.

Unfortunately, only fans in the U.K. can give Lewis' "Big Sexy Pizza" a try as it's only sold in the country's Iceland and Tesco grocery chains. Those outside the country can "follow along for the ride" on the company's Instagram.

"New music and pizza in the same month? Don’t say @lewiscapaldi isn’t good to you," Big Sexy Pizza declared in its latest post.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Hailey Bieber says she never "stole" Justin Bieber from Selena Gomez: "I was raised better than that"

Gotham/GC Images

Hailey Bieber says she never "stole" husband Justin Bieber from Selena Gomez -- and that it's "sad" that continues to be a narrative.

Appearing on the Call Her Daddy podcast, Hailey opened up about the controversy surrounding her "very rapid and fast" engagement to Justin.

Justin proposed to Hailey in July 2018, two months after he and Selena parted ways for good, prompting "Jelena" fans to call Hailey a "homewrecker." Hailey said, "The only people that really know the truth of the situation and what the timeline really was and how it happened and how it went down are me and him."

Stating Justin and Selena's relationship "was very much completely closed," she continued, "Perception is a really tricky thing." Noting of the fans "watching something from the outside," Hailey debunked the rumors that she stole Justin from Selena, saying that is "not the reality of what happened behind closed doors."

"I can say, period, point blank, I was never with him when he was in a relationship with anybody. That's the end of it," Hailey declared. "I was raised better than that." She added Justin choosing to "move on" with her "was the most healthy, mature decision he could have made." 

Hailey said of the online abuse she continues to suffer, "I think it's sad to be against someone's happiness... to not wish somebody well." She said people aren't "obligated to like me" but that she is deserving of respect.

Hailey doesn't regret marrying Justin. "He's my best friend," she said. "There is nothing better than being with the person that makes you smile the most, makes you laugh the most. He's just literally the best human to me ever."

She also detailed their sex life, including their favorite "positions" and how adventurous they are between the sheets.

Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


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