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Billboard MagazineBillboard Magazine

Billboard Magazine May 19, 2018

Written for music industry professionals and fans. Contents provide news, reviews and statistics for all genres of music, including radio play, music video, related internet activity and retail updates.

United States
Prometheus Global Media
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29 Issues


access_time4 min.
childish gambino earns first no. 1 with ‘this is america’

DRIVEN IN LARGE PART by its socially conscious video, in which Childish Gambino alternates joyous singing and dancing with striking segues to abrupt gun violence, “This Is America” rockets onto the Billboard Hot 100 at No. 1, launching as the most streamed and top-selling song of the week. The track is the first Hot 100 chart-topper for actor-writer-director Donald Glover’s musical alter ego, who unveiled it as the musical guest on the May 5 episode of NBC’s Saturday Night Live, which Glover hosted. (The song and its video were released at midnight ET on May 6.) “America” opens at No. 1 on the Streaming Songs chart with 65.3 million U.S. streams in the week ending May 10, according to Nielsen Music. Notably, video accounts for a robust 68 percent of the song’s…

access_time4 min.
music’s judgment day

THE ANNOUNCEMENT BY Spotify on May 10 that it was removing R. Kelly’s music from all of its editorial and algorithmic playlists stunned the music world. The move, part of its new public hate content and hateful conduct policy, was because “we want our editorial decisions — what we choose to program — to reflect our values,” the company said in a statement. “When an artist or creator does something that is especially harmful or hateful, it may affect the ways we work with or support that artist or creator.” Yet the implementation of the policy, which also de-playlisted controversial rappers XXXTentacion and Tay-K, left many in the industry wondering why those three artists in particular — who have been accused but not convicted of felonies — were singled out. Several…

access_time2 min.
luke cage ’s musical dna

WHEN CHEO Hodari Coker, creator and show-runner of Netflix series Luke Cage, began shooting the first season of his series about the Marvel superhero, he wanted R&B artists to perform live at the fictional Harlem’s Paradise nightclub. But lining up talent was not easy for the program, which debuted in September 2016. “The show wasn’t a home run in terms of the music community,” says Coker, who pulled favors from two decades as a music journalist to land acts like Raphael Saadiq, Faith Evans and Sharon Jones for the first season. “There were a lot of questions. No other Marvel show had [live] music.” What a difference a season makes. For season two, which premieres June 22, Coker had his choice of acts. This year’s lineup includes Evans, Joi & D-Nice, Gary…

access_time4 min.
holograms hit the road

OVER 3,000 PEOPLE FILED INTO the 5,000-capacity Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff, Wales, on April 8 to see Roy Orbison perform. That the rock legend has been dead for almost 20 years was of little importance: They were gathered to see a hologram of the star croon his hits. Ronnie James Dio and Frank Zappa will also both be “touring” soon, while some living stars have started reaching out to hologram companies, researching whether they might be able to “perform” while they’re actually in the studio, or dealing with medical issues, or just really far behind on their Netflix queue. For years, hologram tours have promised to be the next big thing, with augmented and virtual-reality technologies developing at a rapid clip. (The 2Pac hologram that appeared onstage at the Coachella festival in…

access_time5 min.
dre london

ONE DAY IN JANUARY 2017, Post Malone’s manager, Dre London, born Andre Jackson, was in the type of bind typically reserved for action movies: He had to come up with $25,000 cash in 30 minutes to save his client’s music video shoot. Following the release of Post Malone’s debut album, Stoney, the month before, London says people were consumed with the holidays and weren’t thinking about his artist. So he saw an opportunity to set the tone for 2017, deciding to self-fund a video for the album’s fifth and final single, “Congratulations.” The concept was simple: Show Post Malone in the studio intercut with as much on-a-budget celebrating as possible. But it all hinged on a cameo from the track’s featured artist, Quavo of Migos. London, 37, got word that Quavo…

access_time3 min.
rihanna to fans: ’sup, bra?

Rihanna fans waited hours in a digital queue on May 11 to purchase corsets, bras and negligees from her new 90-piece lingerie line, Savage X Fenty, the latest addition to the superstar’s sprawling fashion and beauty empire. Developed in partnership with TechStyle — the subscription-oriented parent company behind Kate Hudson’s Fabletics and Kim Kardashian’s ShoeDazzle — Savage X Fenty items are all priced under $100 apiece, while a $50 annual subscription program offers exclusive early access to product launches and limited-edition items. A rep for the star declined to share sales figures, but the site was visited over 326,000 times as of May 16, according to SimilarWeb. Sources tell Billboard that Rihanna’s next product line is already in the works. From her collaborations with Puma to her cosmetics line Fenty Beauty…