Rap's Love Guru: Why Plies Is Smarter Than You Think

Plies's decade in the rap game—in which he navigated through his native Florida's underground, ascended briefly to mainstream fame via two Gold-selling albums, and has since returned to the Southern rap mixtape circuit—immediately calls to mind one word: "realness." There are the titles of his first three albums: » 12/04/14 11:18am 12/04/14 11:18am

This One Guy Has Written Hundreds Of Awful Songs About Sports

Every time you stream a song on Spotify, the artist you're listening to gets some money. A very tiny amount of money. The exact amount varies, but according to a website set up by Spotify—as reported by The Guardian— it's between $0.006 and $0.0084 a stream. And that's just the money that goes to the music… » 11/15/14 4:12pm 11/15/14 4:12pm

Watch Prince's Electric Performance From Tonight's Saturday Night Live

Prince served as tonight's SNL musical guest in one of the most anticipated appearances on NBC in recent memory. Here's his balls-out, unprecedented eight-minute-long performance in its entirety; note that, for once, the Saturday Night Live sound mix sounds great. » 11/02/14 12:33am 11/02/14 12:33am

Beyoncé's VMAs Performance, With Her Vocals Isolated

When we put up the isolated vocal track from Taylor Swift's MTV Video Music Awards performance last night, skeptics protested that "you could do that with any performer and it would sound just as bad." In response, here's Beyoncé's full 16-minute, show-ending mini-set, using just the unaltered audio from her… » 8/25/14 12:38pm 8/25/14 12:38pm

"Weird Al" Yankovic's Mandatory Fun Is Not The End (We Hope)

Does anyone actually hate "Weird Al" Yankovic? You'll usually find two reactions to him: adoration or indifference, with the indifference mostly confined to wayward millennials. Considering that he's been churning out parodies (and originals!) for nearly 35 years, that in itself is impressive. He's done his thing for… » 7/18/14 10:03am 7/18/14 10:03am

Nasty Dread: Beware The Ersatz Island Schmaltz Of Magic!

It's the rare band that makes Smash Mouth seem edgy by comparison. It's the rare band that makes Sublime seem arty, that makes 311 seem novel, that makes Jack Johnson seem… tolerable. But here we are, and here we go: Magic. Oops, make that Magic!—the exclamation point being one of many red flags indicating that these… » 7/03/14 9:34am 7/03/14 9:34am

The Freewheelin' Riff Raff: Embracing The Cagey, Loopy Joys Of Neon Icon

My favorite Bob Dylan interview is the infamously painful sit-down with Time magazine in D.A. Pennebaker's 1967 documentary Dont Look Back, wherein Dylan gets miffed at a prying line of questioning and slams the writer, the publication, and the publication's readership alike for subscribing to a worldview mechanistic… » 7/01/14 2:25pm 7/01/14 2:25pm

The Incestuous World Of Rock-Star Collaborations, On One Huge Chart

Pop Chart Lab has put together a new print titled "The Charted Connections of Rock," which shows how over 700 artists have collaborated on over 500 projects as an enormous web diagram. It's pretty dense, but useful for "six degrees of separation" games for the musically inclined. » 6/11/14 3:42pm 6/11/14 3:42pm

Get Ready To Hate The Caxirola

Brazil's answer to the vuvuzela? Not quite. The "official musical instrument of the 2014 World Cup" is softer—it produces a rattle, not a blare. Another thing in favor of your viewing experience: it's been formally banned from Brazilian stadiums. But that hasn't stopped fans from bringing them in so far, so you might… » 6/05/14 3:40pm 6/05/14 3:40pm

The Worst Songs to Play During a Father-Daughter Wedding Dance

Just as guests patiently endure long church weddings between atheists who are appeasing their religious bill-footing parents in order to get to the real fun at the reception, so too have we endured a terrible-ass spring to arrive where we are now, at fun-ass wedding season. And, as such, to the perennial awkwardness… » 6/04/14 5:16pm 6/04/14 5:16pm

Lethally Blonde: Miranda Lambert's Cheerful Country-Radio Revolution

You approach a Miranda Lambert song called "Automatic" with certain expectations—by not approaching it at all, really, instead crouching behind a desk, or a wall, or a Camaro, or something, braced for a cleansing, delightful hail of epithets and flames and bullets. She's a Texan country superstar whose first big song… » 6/03/14 12:50pm 6/03/14 12:50pm