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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
Time does not heal all wounds. Back in 2002 the boys of ‘N sync merely said they were taking a break, going on a “hiatus” if you will and that there was nothing to worry about. Once Justin Timberlake’s Justifed was released later that year some started to question whether or not this boyband would ever release another album together. Those fears have been more than realized as here we are almost two decades later and the men seem to be allergic to the phrase “reunion”.
Like the Backstreet Boys, ‘N sync found early success overseas before hitting it big in the US after securing their own Disney Channel special, guest appearance on hit TV show, Sabrina the Teenage Witch and opening for Janet Jackson on her “Velvet Rope Tour”. Their debut album would go on to be certified diamond for selling more than 10 million copies. In 1998 they released a Christmas album and would later file a lawsuit to break free of their management.
After much contention and threat of losing their name, ‘N sync prevailed and found a new home and released their record setting album, No Strings Attached in March of 2000. Selling 2.42 million records in the first week of release, this record would stay in place until 2015. In 2001, Celebrity was released selling 1.8 million in its first week and spurred a stadium tour that would go on to gross 90 million dollars. They embarked on an arena tour in 2002 that has since become their last tour ever.
To read about their solo efforts, Click Here.
Written by Kristen
Nas and Lauryn Hill will join forces for a North American tour this fall. Support will come from Chronixx and comedian Hannibal Buress on select dates.
The two co-headliners have a history together. They went on a similar tour in 2012, after Nas released his latest album, Life is Good. Hill also collaborated with Nas on his 1996 single, “If I Ruled the World (Imagine That),” which was nominated for a Grammy Award in 1997.
The tour will kick off September 7th in Chicago, mostly stopping at outdoor amphitheaters before wrapping up October 11th in Vancouver.
Nas has been quite a bit more active than Hill in recent years, releasing the aforementioned Life is Good in 2012 and contributing to the recently-cancelled Netflix original series The Get Down. Hill hasn’t released anything since 2002’s MTV Unplugged, although her lone solo album, 1998’s The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill, is consistently listed on critic’s best-of lists and has sold over 19 million copies worldwide.
For the full list of tour dates, Click Here.
Written by Eugene
Their debut album barely made a blip on their New England hometown radar. New Kids on the Block would perform wherever they could, bars, school dances, you name it– they sang at it. It is surprising that the boyband from Boston was even given another shot.
Their second album, Hangin’ Tough started off slow but after they were given the opportunity to open for then pop sensation Tiffany, things started to go their way. So much so in fact that when the two acts toured together again, Tiffany opened up for them! “Please Don’t Go Girl” eventually peaked at number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 Single Chart and then “I’ll Be Loving You (Forever)” peaked at number one. Riding high on their success their third album was a Christmas album which gave them yet another top 10 single “This One’s for the Children”. Their next album Step by Step saw them reach even more success as the title track gave them yet another number 1 hit. Soon the boys from Boston were plastered over everything and we mean everything! Lunchboxes, buttons, comic books, they even had their own Saturday morning cartoon!
But all good things must come to an end, by 1993 music tastes were shifting away from pop music and even though they tried to remain relevant, (they started going by NKTOB) their album Face the Music failed to live up to their previous albums. Jonathan Knight left the band in ’94 and the rest of the group disbanded shortly after.
Who went solo?
Jordan Knight – In 1999 Knight released his first solo effort, “Give it to You” and it peaked at number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100. His self-titled album went on to sell 1.5 million records worldwide. In a perfect of example of things coming full circle, Jordan Knight a former boyband member became an opening act for new boyband, ‘N Sync on their 1999 “Ain’t No Stopping Us Now” tour. It wouldn’t be until 2005 when Knight would release new music, The Fix featured “Where is Your Heart Tonight” which peaked at number 12 on the Billboard Adult Contemporary chart. In 2006 he released Unfinished and in 2014 teamed up with Backstreet Boy, Nick Carter for Nick & Knight.
Joey McIntyre – Also in 1999, McIntyre tried to find his footing as a solo artist. He used his own money to record his album Stay the Same and the single of the same name would go on to peak at number 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. His second album Meet Joe Mac failed to chart. He would go on to release 8:09 and Talk to Me.
Donnie Wahlberg stayed in the spotlight but as an actor, while Jonathan and Donnie Wood lived under the radar.
After 14 years, NKOTB reunited, Click Here to read more.
Written by Kristen
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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