Day in Pop Report for 03/21/2016

Today's Top Stories

Keith Urban Announces New Album and Tour

(Radio.com) Keith Urban's eighth studio album Ripcord will be released on May 6th and Urban will tour the country extensively this summer in support of the new record with Brett Eldredge and Maren Morris as opening acts.

"Ripcord is almost done--and it's been an exhilarating journey," said Urban. "Getting to work with so many new musicians and writers and co-producers has been a divine experience for me--and I can't wait for everyone to hear it!"

"I'm seriously chomping at the bit to kick off this tour," Urban said of his first tour in two years. "We'll be playing a lot of new music from RipCORD, all new production, new cities where we've never played' and Brett Eldredge and Maren Morris? It's gonna be potent and unbridled!!!" See the dates here.

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Justin Timberlake And Pharrell 'Currently' In The Studio

(Radio.com) Justin Timberlake shared a photo showing him in the studio with Pharrell Williams. He mysteriously captioned the photo, "Currently" and didn't say much else about the shot or what they were doing together.

Considering Pharrell helped score Despicable Me 2 and was all over its soundtrack, perhaps he was simply advising Timberlake about music for Trolls. Still, there could be more going on with regards to new, original music.

Pulling double social media duty, Pharrell shared a brief video with Timberlake from the same recording session. In the video, Timberlake provides the PSA of the day. "There'll be Snapchapping, no Instabamming and no Swittering," he said, much to everyone's amusement. It doesn't sound like they stuck to their creed very well. Read more here.

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Iggy Azalea Explains Psychotic Breakdown Claim

(Radio.com) Iggy Azalea spoke with 97.1 AMP Radio's Carson Daly last Friday morning about her upcoming album Digital Distortion and its debut single "Team." Daly asked about a recent interview with a British magazine where the Australian-born entertainer confessed she had a "psychotic breakdown."

"Well, not psychotic," Azalea responded with a hearty laugh. "I'm a bit of an exaggerator." "I think it can get a bit claustrophobic -- this whole gossip thing that we have in the entertainment industry. It almost reminds me of a soap opera. It's like other people write your narrative for the soap opera and it is your real life and you might not want to have that storyline."

Azalea explained she "would have paparazzi outside her house nonstop." She couldn't be in her garage without them taking pictures of her. "I would feel every claustrophobic. I didn't feel like I could go and live my normal life because I felt like I had to be weary all the time of who was taking a picture of me and what that would turn into and what that storyline would be." Read more here.

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Blake Shelton Denies Excessive Drinking Claim In Court Filing

(Radio.com) Blake Shelton is suing a magazine for a September cover story that alleged his drinking led to his divorce from Miranda Lambert and that he was headed to rehab.

The suit, which was filed in October 2015, is against InTouch Weekly. In response, the publication filed a motion in February saying the suit interferes with its first amendment rights. Now, Shelton is firing back.

"I do not drink excessively, binge drink or have a drinking problem ' I am never drunk, intoxicated or unable to perform my job on The Voice or elsewhere '," Shelton tells the court in a new filing. 'I did not do anything while 'wasted that destroyed [my] marriage' ' During our marriage, Ms. Lambert never begged, demanded or asked me to go to rehab ' I did not handle my first divorce by drinking, nor has my drinking increased or escalated since my divorce from Ms. Lambert."

In the motion from Feb., Bauer Publishing, which owns InTouch Weekly, defends its actions due to Shelton's self created drinking persona. Shelton addressed those claims in his most recent filing. "Contrary to Bauer's reporting, drinking has not taken a toll on my well-being," documents state. "I do not now, nor have I ever had, health problems caused by or related to drinking ' The Rehab Story is wrong that my friends, colleagues and team think I have a problem and need help. To my knowledge, nobody around me, including my managers, peers and work colleagues, and friends, thinks I have a drinking problem." Read more here.

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Zayn Malik Previews New Songs Via App

(Radio.com) Zayn Malik had some fun on Periscope Friday, March 18th. After setting up two failed live sessions without any audio, Malik got the app working and sat in a stairwell at his house previewing tracks off his upcoming debut solo album, Mind of Mine.

Malik asked followers what they wanted to hear, and the first person to respond requested, "She" so he played a brief snippet. While waiting for his followers to decide what track to preview next, he asked someone in the background what he should play and that person-a female-suggested "Drunk". His fans requested "She Don't Love Me" instead, and he ended up previewing a longer chunk of that song while he searched for "Drunk", which he eventually found and also played.

Telling fans he could only play one more, they all clamored to hear his collaboration with Khelani. Malik wanted to save that, though, so instead he said he would "a little bit less of two more." He previewed "Take It Off" and "Wrong". Read more here.

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CeeLo Green' Releases Barbershop Themed 'Working Class Heroes' Video

(Radio.com) CeeLo Green has premiered the music video for his track, "Working Class Heroes (Work)." Not only does it appear on his newest album Heart Blanche, but it's also in the upcoming movie, Barbershop: The Next Cut.

The song calls out Calvin's Barbershop in the opening before Green announces, "Alright, let's get to work." Featuring an upbeat rhythm reminiscent of neighborhood double-dutch, the song is a peppy tune all about working for that paper.

"Get up, get out/ Go get that money/ It's time to work," Green sings in the song's intro. The video intersperses shots of Green working at a Chicago radio station with scenes from the film. Watch the video here.

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Gwen Stefani Using Music To Get Through Divorce

(Radio.com) Gwen Stefani appeared on CBS Sunday Morning on March 20th, where she opened up about how songwriting helped her get through her painful divorce from Gavin Rossdale.

The couple had been married for 13 years, when they split in February 2015. "At that time, everything was like, I had no skin, it was so raw, you know what I mean," she told host Lee Cowanand. "Nobody knew what was happening and I had this big secret."

Like many a musician before her, she turned that pain into music, a process that helped her heal. Stefani shared, "During that time period, I felt like, I was down all the way. Like you don't go down lower than that. It was rock bottom. I was so embarrassed, you know what I mean? I was like, 'Wow, I can't. I have to turn this into something. I can't go down like this. Like if I can do music, then maybe just everything will be okay."

While her record label at first resisted the incredibly personal songs Stefani wrote, they eventually changed their tune when they heard what would go on to be her new album's first single, "Used to Love You". Read more here.

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Ariana Grande's Unaired SNL Judy Garland Impression Goes Online

(Radio.com) Ariana Grande's visit to Saturday Night Live is the gift that keeps on giving --we loved her impressions of Britney, Celine, Whitney, Shakira, Rihanna and Jennifer Lawrence, but there's more.

In an unaired sketch from last week's show, Grande went back in time to impersonate Judy Garland. The premise is a kitschy sci-fi movie as aired and presented by "the Cinema Channel," and Grande nails the vocalization and mannerisms.

The mock film title is Up We Go in Our Fantastic Rocket, which sets the style up rather perfectly. Like many of the other impressions Ariana did last weekend, her Garland makes ample use of her song-and-dance abilities as well as her preternatural knack for voices. Watch it here.

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Justin Bieber and Marilyn Manson Bond Over T-Shirts

(Radio.com) On the surface, Justin Bieber and Marilyn Manson may not appear to have much in common, but they share a mutual recognition of what one another is doing.

At recent concerts, Bieber has worn a Marilyn Manson t-shirt--not the first time he's done so--and the Prince of Darkness returned the compliment with a tweet.

His photo wearing a Justin t-shirt might not have been a compliment, per seManson captioned the image "Bigger than Bieber." For good measure, he re-posted the same selfie and caption on Instagram. Read more here.

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Singled Out: Killer Deluxe's Tomorrow Is Yesterday

Killer Deluxe (Andy Waldeck and Chris Reardon) recently released their self-titled debut album and to celebrate we asked Chris to tell us the story behind the single "Tomorrow Is Yesterday". Here is the story:

"Tomorrow Is Yesterday" is a cautionary tale about watching someone you deeply care about go barreling down a destructive path with booze and drugs. We came at this subject matter from both sides, having lived in that vortex and having seen dear friends not come out of it. But rather than address it in a maudlin way, we felt the driving pulse of our track perfectly conveyed that sense of invincibility that the addict often tricks themselves into believing. There are several references to the false confidence that substance abuse fosters: "you believe youre a renegade, got your blinders on, you're on a roll baby."

However, the song is not an indictment of anyone going through a hard time with self medication, but more an expression of the frustration their friends and loved ones feel, watching the flame out but unable to break through with some sanity. The title merely refers to that Groundhog Day feeling of replaying the same bad scene over and over.

Our bridge offers some redemption and urges our protagonist to ditch the leeches and fair-weather friends who just want to keep the party rolling: "Dont give a damn what they say / you're in a bad way baby."

But as with all Killer Deluxe jams, melody is king. Even when we try to deliver a serious message, a spoon full of sugar makes the medicine go down; you know the rest.

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

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Click here to read today's full Day in Rock report


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