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Rap legend JAY-Z has announced a North American tour in support of his new album, 4:44.
The 31-date trek will hit arenas across the country. JAY-Z is also set to make headlining appearances at New York City’s The Meadows and Austin’s Austin City Limits festivals, as well as his own Budweiser Made in America festival, where he has enlisted J Cole, The Chainsmokers, Solange, Run the Jewels and more to perform.
4:44 has made headlines for going RIAA-certified Platinum in less than a week after its release. The album was initially only available to subscribers of the rapper’s streaming service, Tidal, and Sprint customers. Although it was made available as a free download to the latter group, Sprint did purchase these copies, allowing the album to reach its Platinum status. However, 4:44 did not chart on the Billboard Top 200, although this is probably due to Tidal not reporting its streaming figures to Nielson Music. 4:44 has since been released to iTunes and Apple Music and a physical release is forthcoming.
A Roc Nation representative recently confirmed to Pitchfork that JAY-Z now officially has added the hyphen back to his name (after dropping it for 2013’s Magna Carta…The Holy Grail) and will now be formatted in all caps.
For 4:44 tour dates nearest you, click here!
Written by Eugene
Last evening (July 12th, 2017) marked the highly anticipated ESPY Awards- a high class event that was designed to recognize top-performing athletes, and affiliates of various sporting organizations. This year marked the 25th annual ceremony, and it was hosted in Los Angeles, California.
Narrated by former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning, this event was full of honorable, tear-jerking stories, accompanied by good humor to lighten the mood. Manning poked fun at several different athletes (although Kevin Durant wasn’t a fan) before rolling out the actual awards.
Aside from recognizing top performing players, the Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly Award show also accredits noble individuals who have made a difference within the sports community. This year there were several heart-warming awards given to extremely deserving individuals including:
For a complete list of winners click here!
Written by Tara
The Foo Fighters have announced a new album, Concrete and Gold, as well as a series of US tour dates in the fall.
The tour will run, playing arenas through mid-October to mid-December. Directly before the tour, they will host Cal Jam 17, a one-day festival also featuring Queens of the Stone Age, Royal Blood, Cage the Elephant, the Kills, Japandroids, and former Oasis singer Liam Gallagher. The festival name is a tribute to the original California Jam festival, which occurred in 1974.
Concrete and Gold will be released on September 15th through Roswell/RCA Records. The album was produced by Greg Kurstin, who has previously worked with Adele and Sia. Frontman Dave Grohl told Rolling Stone that “[Kurstin] is the guy we ask to be our producer because he’s never made a heavy rock record before and we’ve never worked with a pop producer.” So far, a single, “Run,” has been released and the band recently performed another new song, “Lah Dee Da,” at Iceland’s Secret Solstice Festival.
The Foo Fighter’s latest studio album was 2014’s Sonic Highways. The band also released an EP, Saint Cecilia, in 2015.
For a complete list of tour dates click here!
Written by Eugene
The NBA began a new tradition yesterday by launching their first annual award show in New York City. This lavish event boasted some of the biggest names in mens basketball, and rewarded them for their major accomplishments on, and off the court.
Typically the NBA holds a small ceremony upon the conclusion of the regular season during the NBA Playoffs to grant these annual awards. However, this year the NBA chose to honor their valued players by setting up an actual award show which was hosted by rapper, Drake.
In front of a large, supportive crowd the following awards were granted to deserving members of the NBA:
The NBA granted fans the opportunity to weigh in on who they believed should win each award. Their website hosted a contest beginning in April which allowed fans to cast their votes. Seeing as this will be an annual event, be sure to check back next year, to nominate your favorite NBA player as a winner!
Written by Tara
New Zealand pop star Lorde (real name: Ella Yelich-O’Connor) has announced the North American portion of her Melodrama World Tour via her Twitter account. See the dates here.
The singer will crisscross the country from the beginning of March to late April, hitting arenas in every major market. The tour will feature an opening act that has yet to be announced.
Melodrama, Lorde’s sophomore effort, was released on June 16th to near universal acclaim. The album was produced and written almost entirely by O’Connor and collaborator Jack Antonoff. The follow-up to 2013’s Pure Heroine was preceded by the jarring, key-shifting single “Green Light” and, more recently, “Perfect Places.”
O’Connor, who is only 20 years old, told USA Today that Melodrama is not a concept album, but does revolve around a loose narrative of a house party which she described as an “interesting metaphor for young adulthood.”
Written by Eugene
Tim Tebow is making headlines as a minor league baseball player as he continues to hit well for the New York Met’s A affiliate, the Columbia Fireflies. As of last week he was 40 for 178 with 18 RBIs.
As we all know Tim Tebow did not start off with Major League Baseball dreams. In 2011, the Heisman Trophy winner led the Denver Broncos to their first AFC West title since 2005. However, even after a successful season he was traded to the NY Jets (and then released), signed with the New England Patriots (and cut) and he stepped away for a few seasons to only try again with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2015. Never getting back to his “Tebow Time” ways of 2011, Tebow switched gears and surprised many when he signed with the New York Mets on a minor league contract in 2016.
Tim Tebow is not the only athlete to switch professional leagues, and no we aren’t talking about that time Michael Jordan tried playing for the Chicago White Sox. We are talking about athletes who successfully transferred to a new league or crazily enough, played in two professional leagues at the same time!
Brian Jordan, from 1989 to 1991, Jordan played in the NFL and earned a spot on the roster for the Pro-Bowl as an Atlanta Falcon. After that? In 1992 he moved over to the MLB where he played 15 seasons. In 1999 he was voted into the MLB All-Star game as an Atlanta Brave.
Bo Jackson, like Tebow, he won the Heisman Trophy. Jackson was originally drafted to the NFL only to play professional baseball (first) instead. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers who initially drafted Jackson would go on to trade him to the Los Angeles Raiders in 1987. In 1987, Jackson had 396 at bats with 22 home runs, 53 RBIs and an on base percentage of .296 with the Kansas City Royals and he played in 7 games for the Los Angeles Raiders, rushing for 554 yards with 6 touch downs. He would continue to play for the Raiders for three more seasons before leaving the NFL and stayed in the MLB until 1994.
Deion Sanders, he once played a professional baseball game (where he hit a home run) and a professional football game (where he scored a touchdown) all in the same weekend! He would later attempt to play in both leagues on the same day, after playing with the Falcons in Miami Sanders went to Pittsburgh for Game 5 of the NLCS however, after he arrived he sat on the bench. He is also the only person to have rings from both the World Series and the Super Bowl.
Gene Conley, was a pitcher in the MLB for 11 seasons and concurrently played in the NBA for six. He is the only person to have a World Series ring and a NBA Championship ring.
While the number of athletes who have successfully played in multiple professional leagues may be few it does not mean that Tim Tebow cannot succeed as an outfielder after an attempt at a career as a quarterback. Only time will tell if Tebow will get to put on the orange and blue jersey in Queens but if and when he does, he could become part of an elite group of athletes in sports history.
Written by Kristen
Abel Tesfaye aka The Weeknd has extended his “Legend of the Fall” tour into the fall.
The newly announced set of dates will feature support from rapper Gucci Mane and Nav, who is signed to Tesfaye’s XO label. On select dates, French Montana will provide support.
The tour, which kicks off the week of Labor Day, will see The Weeknd playing arenas in major cities across the country. See the dates below.
The Weeknd’s latest, Starboy, was released in November 2016 via XO/Republic records. The album features guest appearances from Daft Punk, Kendrick Lamar, Future and Lana Del Ray and has been certified Double Platinum by the RIAA.
For a full list of "Legends of the Fall" tour info Click Here.
Written by Eugene
Born and raised in Compton, California, Kendrick Lamar Duckworth is a 29-year-old award winning rapper, and songwriter. Growing up, Lamar always loved to write poetry, and he later turned these pieces into song. As a teenager he referred to himself as K-Dot, and upon the release of his first mixtape, he was signed by Top Dawg Entertainment.
With the help of local support Lamar’s reputation soared, and he began collaborating with big-name artists including The Game, Busta Rhymes, Snoop Dog, and even Dr. Dre.
2011 brought the release of Lamar’s first independent studio album titled Section. 80. This album was a huge success, so Lamar worked relentlessly to produce more music for his fans. In 2012 Lamar released Good Kid m.A.A.d City, which ranked at number 2 on the US Billboard 200 chart, and later was certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America.
It comes as no surprise that after all of the acclaimed success Lamar proceeded to release 2 more albums, including his most recent titled, Damn. With a total of 7 Grammy Awards, it’s safe to say that Lamar is a respected artist within the hip-hop/rap genre. He has a loyal following due to the nature of his truthful, and soulful lyrics; including bits of his past, and the harsh realities of growing up in a gang-infested neighborhood, all of Lamar’s lyrics are filled with passion, which is why his fans love him so much.
His summer ’17 tour called DAMN is in officially in full swing, and it features Travis Scott, and D.R.A.M as headliners. According to fans, this tour is one to rave about!
Learn more about our previously featured artists John Mayer, Chris Stapleton, J.Cole, Sam Hunt, and Metallica.
Written by Tara
I am sure we have all at some point heard one of Sia’s trendy new songs. It could have been on the radio, at a party, even walking through the store. Trying to think of who she is? "Chandelier" and "Cheap Thrills" are two of her popular songs. Still guessing? Sia is the new artist that is famous for wearing wigs so big they cover her face.
So why does Sia cover her face? Let’s back up and look inside to see who Sia is, was, and where she has been. Some artists have their unique style, as Sia has her wigs, but she was not always hiding behind her hair.
Sia Kate Isobelle Furler, 41, grew up in South Australia. As a young child, she loved to sing to Aretha Franklin, Sting and Stevie Wonder. Around the mid-1990’s, she started her career as a singer in a local Adelaid acid jazz band, Crisp. Around 1997, Crisp disbanded and Sia released her first album, Only See. This Trip Hop album didn’t succeed as well as she hoped it would. Sia continued to release music and change her genres slightly, in attempt to entice the mainstream audience.
After her release in 2004 of Colour the Small One, she decided to move to New York City and tour the country, releasing her fourth and fifth studio releases.
All of a sudden, we no longer saw any new music released from Sia. She took a hiatus from the music industry.
To read about Sia's triumphant return to music, Click Here.
Written by Shelley
Indie Rockers Arcade Fire have announced plans for a new album and accompanying tour. See the dates below.
The follow-up to 2013’s Reflektor will be titled Everything Now and will be released on July 28th via Columbia Records. The album will contain a song of the same name, which was sold previously as a 12” single at Primavera Sound festival. Everything Now was produced by Arcade Fire, Steve Mackey, Markus Dravs and Thomas Bangalter (of Daft Punk). Frontman Win Butler recently told Zane Lowe of Beats 1 radio that the album will features contributions from Geoff Barrow of Portishead.
The band have also released a video for the title track, which features synthesizer contributions from Bangalter.
As far as touring arrangements go, Arcade Fire will headline Sunday night of Lollapalooza in Chicago on August 6th before embarking on the “Infinite Content” tour. Support will come from Wolf Parade, Broken Social Scene, Angel Olsen, Phantogram, Preservation Hall Jazz Band and Grandmaster Flash on select dates.
For the full list of tour dates, Click Here.
Written by Eugene
The Launchpad Blog is written and made possible by our team members at Ticket Galaxy. Each contributing writer shares their passion for the sports, music and entertainment industry.
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