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Day in Pop Report for 02/09/2016


Taylor Swift Will Reportedly Open the Grammy Awards

(Radio.com) It's commercial music's biggest night and the lineup of Grammy performers continues to grow. In one of the biggest additions so far, Taylor Swift will join the lineup of stars performing the biggest hits of 2015.

USA Today reports that Swift will open the show, though other details are slim. Swift is up for seven awards of her own including Album of the Year (1989), Song of the Year and Record of the Year ("Blank Space"), and Best Music Video ("Bad Blood").

Other performers on the big night include Kendrick Lamar, Adele, the Weeknd, Rihanna and Carrie Underwood. Lady Gaga will perform a special tribute to the life and work of David Bowie. Read more here.

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Kanye West Teases Secret New Album Title

(Radio.com) It seems like the speculation as to Kanye's new album title won't end until the record is actually out with West playing up the hype about the title in a new online post.

Kanye West has announced that "There may be a new secret album title." He hasn't revealed what the title may be, but, hopefully it won't create another Twitter beef with anyone!

The album was originally titled SWISH, and then changed to Waves, So Help Me God has also circulated as a potential option. Whatever it's title, the album is scheduled to be released this week on February 11th.

Check out Kanye's cryptic tweet here.

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Elton John Does Post-Super Bowl Carpool Karaoke

(Radio.com) After Sunday night's Super Bowl 50, James Corden welcomed a very special guest to the latest edition of his "Carpool Karaoke" series--Elton John. The fellow Brits went to town on some of John's most classic singles, from emotional ballads to The Lion King soundtrack.

The duo performed "Your Song," followed by the peppy "I'm Still Standing," and a psychedelic "Crocodile Rock." Even more Elton John crowd-pleasers followed with "Tiny Dancer," "The Circle of Life," and they aptly closed with "Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me."

Elton has been gamely making the rounds to promote his new album, Wonderful Crazy Night, which was released on Friday. He's also revealed an upcoming collaboration on Lady Gaga's forthcoming solo album. Watch Elton's appearance here.

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Josh Brolin Cast As George Jones In Biopic

(Radio.com) Josh Brolin will play country legend George Jones in the upcoming biopic, No Show Jones. The actor talked to Conan O'Brien about the upcoming film that will include Jessica Chastain as Tammy Wynette.

"I have a bit of a past and when they were trying figure out who might be best to play him, they thought what about Brolin?" Brolin told O'Brien, referencing his 2013 arrest for public intoxication.

"Who has been to jail in the last 10 years?" Brolin has apparently been doing his research for the film. "He refused to speak in anything but duck voice for three years," Brolin says. Read more here.

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Drake Says He Is Not Performing at The Grammy Awards

(Radio.com) After a commercial announcing Drake as one of the performers at the Grammys, Drizzy set the record straight about his involvement with the awards show.

Via Twitter, the rapper broke the news that he won't be part of the broadcast. He wrote, "I am not performing at the Grammy Awardsbut hey it's the thought that counts."

The rapper will, in fact, be attending and coaching a celebrity team during the NBA ALL-Star Weekend in Toronto this upcoming week. See his full tweet here.

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Willie Nelson Releasing Gershwin Tribute Album

(Radio.com) Willie Nelson is readying a new album, Summertime: Willie Nelson Sings Gershwin. The project honors songwriters Ira and George Gershwin with the country legend covering 11 of their classic tunes.

'When I was just a small guy, I remember hearing all these great Gershwin songs," Nelson explains. 'Ira and George Gershwin were fantastic writers. They wrote some of the greatest songs ever."

'The reason I wanted to do an album of Gershwin songs is because I'm getting the Gershwin award in Washington D.C.," Nelson adds. "I thought it'd be cool to cut an album of Gershwin songs to thank the Gershwin folks for giving me that honor." Read more here.

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Missy Elliot Debuts New Track In Super Bowl Ad

(Radio.com) Since returning to form with "WTF (Where They From)" in 2015, Missy Elliott has remained relatively quiet on the music front. That all changed on Sunday, when she released her new single "Pep Rally" during Amazon's Super Bowl ad.

In an ad for the Amazon Echo, Alec Baldwin shares all the tricks the device can do, like play music, order things and spout off information to help him beat supposed rival Dan Marino. After things grow heated between Baldwin and Marino, the actors tells everyone to cool it because 100 million people are watching. When Missy gets wind of that number, she tells the Amazon Echo to release her new single.

Building off the song's title, there's a marching band drumline that takes center stage while whistles, cheers and more can be heard punctuating the track. It's very much Missy's take on a pep rally. Even though it was only a snippet of the song, it sounds like a big, enthusiastic track from the rapper. Check it out here.

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Sam Hunt Reveals Awkward Valentine's Day Memory

(Radio.com) Valentine's Day is the perfect time to share how you feel with that special someone. However, it can lead to some awkward moments, as Sam Hunt recalls.

He was dating a girl who was headed to Honduras on a mission trip not long after Valentine's Day and decided to write her a love note in Spanish acknowledging the trip.

'I had written her a letter in Spanish," he told Sounds Like Nashville. "It was way too soon to say 'I love you' and I accidentally told her that I loved her in Spanish without knowing it. So it created a really awkward moment when she called me out on it. That's a Valentine's Day memory that I won't forget." Read more here.

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Weezer's Rivers Cuomo Covers Fetty Wap's 'Trap Queen'

(Radio.com) There are many collaborations in the world of music, as witnessed just Sunday night at the Super Bowl, so maybe there is bound to be this unlikely one on the way.

Weezer's Rivers Cuomo apparently knows his Hip Hop or just knows what songs are on the charts. He took to Instagram to showcase his "trap" skills by covering Fetty Wap's hit, Trap Queen.

This isn't the first time he's covered a big Hip Hop track as he recently covered Rae Sremmurd's Come Get Her. Let's see which Hip Hop artist he jacks next. Check out the cover here.

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Chris Stapleton Shares Insight Into 'Traveller'

(Radio.com) "If you ever get the chance to drive through the desert, I think you should." Sound advice from multi-GRAMMY nominee Chris Stapleton, talking about the title track of Traveller.

In this Radio.com interview, he discusses writing the song. Stapleton's wife bought him a 1979 Cherokee Jeep, and they flew out to Arizona to pick up the car. Instead of having it shipped home, they drove it back to Nashville.

It was a risky idea, he allows, given that the car is over three decades old. They also decided to film their trip, with no real reason to do so. "We were just going to do it to do it, which is the best reason to do things, because you feel led to do them."

He wrote the song before his father passed away, but after his father's passing "That became the time to sing the song." His father also inspired another song on the album, "Daddy Doesn't Pray Anymore," which he discusses in the below video as well. Read more here.

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Von Miller Raps With Lil Wayne at Super Bowl After Party

(Radio.com) Super Bowl winner and New York Giants quarterback Phil Simms just wanted to go to Disney World after winning in 1987, but Super Bowl 50's MVP and Denver Broncos linebacker Von Miller had a different idea of how to celebrate his team's victory.

At an after party, Von Miller rapped alongside Lil Wayne, and the football player completely held his own, keeping up with the rapper word for word. TMZ got a hold of Snapchats from the party, held at the Grand Nightclub, which show Von Miller next to Lil Wayne and Chris Brown on stage.

One of the snaps shows the entire team and their audience freaking out to Drake and Future's "Big Rings," especially that line, "Cause I got a really big team/ And they need some really big rings." Watch it here.

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Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors Wins Epiphany Prize

(Webster) Country music legend Dolly Parton's NBC TV movie "Dolly Parton's Coat of Many Colors" early the star the Epiphany Prize for the Most Inspiring TV Program of 2015 from the Movieguide Awards.

"I really wanted to celebrate the people, my whole family, who made me who and what I am today. I'm so blessed and thankful for a great cast, producers, director, and for everyone who watched and I'm extremely thankful to the Movieguide Awards for this honor," Parton said.

The presentation of the Epiphany Prizes for the Most Inspiring Movie and TV Program of 2015 is the highlight of the Awards, which also will be telecast Monday, Feb. 22, and Wednesday, Feb. 24 on the REELZChannel.

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Kanye West Reveals Sneak Peek of 'Yeezy Season 3'

(Radio.com) He may not have settled on an album title for his upcoming release on February 11th just yet, but Kanye West did hint at what's to come from his fashion show, Yeezy Season 3.

Yeezy Season 3 will take place at Madison Square Garden on the same evening Kanye debuts his new album with a live performance. Kanye tweeted a link to the fashion show's site today (February 8), which immediately opens on a countdown timer slowly ticking away.

While the timer runs, a grainy video showing an unknown brunette pulling up her jeans plays in the background. Her jeans have such large rips in the knees that they almost look like shorts at first. Wearing strappy red heels and an ankle monitor, the model poses her leg for a videographer who holds a camera up close to the shoe. Kanye can be heard instructing both the model and the videographer in the background. Read more and see his posts here.

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Singled Out: Dawn Landes and Piers Faccini's Book Of Dreams

Acclaimed musicians Dawn Landes and Piers Faccini just released their new joint "Desert Songs" EP and to celebrate we asked Dawn to tell us about the song "Book Of Dreams". Here is the story:

Collaboration is strange. Normally songwriting is a solitary pursuit for me, but when Piers Faccini and I started writing songs together it came naturally. One morning, I was sitting in his kitchen in the South France trying to think of a song idea for the day and I'd pulled a bunch of Sufi poetry books from the shelves. He told me he'd written a book of poetry inspired by the Sufi's.

When I looked through his poems one of them caught my eye. "This could be a song" I told him and pointed to the 'book of dreams' line "and this could be the chorus!" I had some music that I thought might fit it, and it did! Magic. We reworded a few things and 20 minutes later we had a song.

Hearing is believing. Now that you know the story behind the song, listen for yourself here and learn more about the album right here!

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