Inez and VinoodhEven if you're an obsessive American Horror Story fan -- or an obsessive Lady Gaga fan, for that matter -- you probably wouldn't have been able to pick up on the clue the show's creator, Ryan Murphy, inserted into an October episode to let people know that Mother Monster was joining the cast.
Entertainment Weekly reports Gaga and Murphy had been in talks since last fall about her role on the show, but it was all top secret. However, on the October 29 episode of American Horror Story: Freak Show, there was a close-up shot of a paper coffee cup with a picture of a top hat on it. At the time, Murphy told EW, "That is a big season 5 clue! It’s an arcane clue, but it’s very purposeful, and it illuminates something that you’ll be like, ‘Oh! You dirty bastard!’”
Turns out that was the "clue" that Murphy says should have tipped viewers off that Gaga was coming. Why? There's a 1935 movie called Top Hat, and one of the famous songs written for that movie was "Cheek to Cheek" -- which, of course, is the the name and title track of Gaga's album with Tony Bennett, which came out last September.
Murphy also meant for the Top Hat reference to telegraph the news that the new series of American Horror Story will be set in a hotel, because that's also where Top Hat is set. If you didn't manage to pick up on any of this, you're probably in good company.
Speaking of Cheek to Cheek, in other Gaga news, she and Tony Bennett have booked two concerts at the Axis at Planet Hollywood Resort in Las Vegas on April 10 and 11. It's a return to Sin City for the duo, who started their joint tour in Vegas over New Year's Eve.
Jeff Daly/NBCOne Direction’s Liam Payne is hitting back at claims he’s an alcoholic. After the website Inquisitr published a rumor-filled article suggesting he might have a drinking problem, the 21-year-old responded on Twitter.
“Now I don't really like responding to news articles anymore but i really think this is out of order I don't have a problem,” he tweeted.
Liam further tweeted he doesn’t spend his time off stage drinking, instead preferring to “play video games with friends and go to the gym.” In his final tweet on the subject, he wrote, “I don't drink anymore than a uni student my age so don't treat me like I'm any different to a normal boy my age.”
The Inquisitr’s article cited speculative reports that Liam has been spotted “worse for the wear” recently. They also pointed to tweets from Liam to suggest that he’s been partying too hard lately. In one of them, he declared, “Early show after a night out not a good mix, hope it’s good for you Tokyo.”
After Liam took the online publication to task, the editor updated the story to include an apology. “We offer our apologies to Liam Payne and his fans for the nature of the above story,” the editor’s note says. “Our writer has been counseled on the difference between reporting on existing gossip and rumors and, essentially, creating them through interpretation and speculation.”
Peter Kramer/NBCNickelodeon’s 28th Annual Kids’ Choice Awards is preparing for an Australian invasion. Aussie hitmakers 5 Seconds of Summer and Iggy Azalea are both set to perform at the awards show, according to People.
5SOS is nominated for Favorite New Artist. "We are so excited to be nominated and perform at the Kids' Choice Awards!" the band said in a statement to People. "It's our first time at the show and it's going to be awesome!"
Iggy is up against the band in the Favorite New Artist category and she’s also up for Favorite Song of the Year, for both “Fancy” and “Problem.” She’ll also be taking the stage with Jennifer Hudson to perform their song, “Trouble.”
Nick Jonas, who’s joining Iggy on tour this spring, will be pulling double duty at the show. He’s hosting, as well as opening the ceremony with a performance of his hit, “Jealous.”
Voting for the Kids’ Choice Awards is still open across 21 categories. The awards air live on Nickelodeon at 8 p.m. on March 28.
ABC/Adam TaylorAfter taking New York Fashion Week by storm last month, Kesha is ready to start performing again. The singer will be taking the stage for a special performance at the ninth annual Delete Blood Cancer Gala on April 16.
“I am honored to be working with the awesome people at Delete Blood Cancer and performing at the gala,” Kesha said in a statement. “They work every day to save lives and keep the hopes of families and communities lifted. Everyone who is a part of this evening is so inspiring and I feel fortunate to be a part of it.”
Kesha took time out of the spotlight at the beginning of last year to seek treatment for an eating disorder. She dropped the dollar sign from her name and served as a judge on ABC's Rising Star, but was largely absent from the music scene in 2014. The 28-year-old resurfaced for multiple appearances at Fashion Week this year, and revealed to Yahoo! Style that she’s currently working on a follow-up to her 2012 album, Warrior.
Record producer and former American Idol judge Randy Jackson will be hosting the Delete Blood Cancer Gala, which will take place at Cipriani Wall Street in New York City. The gala aims to inspire people to register as bone marrow donors. The evening will include a moment when a patient is introduced, for the first time, to the unrelated donor who saved his or her life.
School Boy/Giant Little Man/Mad Love/Interscope RecordsRixton's song "Me and My Broken Heart" was a hit last year, but it's only this week that the British band's debut album, Let the Road, is hitting stores. While they say it's been nice for them to have been able to lay the groundwork for the album's release, they're relieved it's finally in fans' hands.
"We were ready [for it to come out] six years ago when we first formed," says lead singer Jake Roche of the album's delayed release. "So it feels great now. And y'know, you have to have that momentum and that snowball effect, if you will....so it feels ready and it feels right."
While anyone who's seen Rixton live over the past year has already heard many of the album's songs, Let the Road serves as a good introduction for those who are only familiar with "Me and My Broken Heart" and its follow-up singles.
"I think it’s quite versatile," drummer Lewi Morgan tells ABC Radio of the album. "I gets across all our musicality, and vocally, we focus very heavily on vocals, y'know, we’re all about harmonies. So I think it very much shows off everything that we’re about."
As for the album's title, it takes its name from a harmony-heavy song that Jake and bass player Danny Wilkin wrote six years ago called "Let the Road." So why was it the right title to sum up the album?
"Well the main thing that we’re all about is family," Danny explains. "We all love our families and that song is, 'No matter where the road takes you, you can always follow it back home to where you belong.' So I think it gets across exactly what is important to us four, and hopefully everyone else feels the same way."
Rixton is currently on the road opening for Ariana Grande.
Pamela LittkyA diverse group of artists led by Fall Out Boy, Train and No Doubt will headline Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day, a free event that'll be held on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. on April 18. Also on the bill are Usher, Mary J. Blige and rock band My Morning Jacket. Black Eyed Peas frontman will.i.am will co-host with Soledad O'Brien.
The event -- a expansion of the annual Global Citizen Festival held in New York City's Central Park -- will mark the 45th anniversary of Earth Day, and is designed to educate and inspire people to take immediate action, not only to solve climate change, but to end extreme poverty. Hugh Evans, CEO of the Global Poverty Project, says in a statement, "Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day will see thousands of citizens calling on world leaders continue to recognize that the effects of climate change are felt the hardest by the world’s poor."
Additional performers and appearances will be announced in the coming weeks.
In a statement, No Doubt said, "Last year we rocked with 60,000 global citizens in Central Park, all committed to ending extreme poverty. We now help bring this movement to the nation’s capital, this time with a focus on climate change and its...effect on the world’s poor. We owe it to our children to protect our planet and their futures.”
Usher added, "I’m proud to lend my voice to the call to end extreme poverty, solve climate change, and educate our youth on such a historic stage.”
Fall Out Boy's statement said, "We are honored and humbled to be a part of this crucially important event. Taking direct action to make the world a better place...but for our kids and all future generations."
Train stated, "[We are] honored to lend our music to the movement to protect our environment. We are excited to join everyone on the National Mall to help shine a light on such important issues.”
“Our generation has the power to build a better world,” added Mary J. Blige. “On April 18th, we will come together for a day of music, education, and action as we call on world leaders to build a world free from poverty and climate injustice.”
FOXWednesday’s edition of American Idol featured the season’s first live show, with host Ryan Seacrest revealing which eight guys would get the chance to sing once again for America’s vote to secure a spot as a top finalist.
The top eight guys, as decided by America’s vote, are Daniel Seavey, Mark Andrews, Rayvon Owen, Adam Ezegelian, Clark Beckham, Nick Fradiani, Qaasim Middleton and Quentin Alexander.
It was the end of the line for Riley Bria, Trevor Douglas, Savion Wright and Michael Simeon.
The top eight girls will be revealed Thursday night.
The top eight guys took the stage at The Fillmore Detroit Theater in the Motor City and performed classic Motown songs for judges Keith Urban, Jennifer Lopez and Harry Connick, Jr., as well as America’s votes.
Aretha Franklin opened the show with a performance of “I Will Survive.”
The first performer of the night was 15-year-old Daniel Seavey, who sang Marvin Gaye’s “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved by You).” Keith loved the performance, declaring, “For me, all you need is to just keep doing this.” Keith, however, did urge Seavey to play around with the melodies a little more. Jennifer was also pleased with the performance, overall, but thought the key was a little low for Seavey. Harry didn’t think Seavey was “singing and swingin’ hard enough,” and said the teen needed to feel the beat a little more.
Mark Andrews was the next artist called to the stage. He tackled The Temptations’ “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone.” The performance felt a little flat for Lopez, who said she didn’t “connect” with it. Connick loved what he called Andrews’ “jam band” arrangement, but wondered how far he would go in the competition if he did too many of them.
The next act up on the stage was Rayvon Owen, who followed with another Temptations song, “My Girl.” Harry complimented Owen on the performance, as well as his stage presence, but wanted to see other sides of Rayvon’s personality in the future. J-Lo praised the singer for making the song his own.
Adam Ezegelian sang “I Want You Back,” by the Jackson 5. Urban thought it was a great song choice. Jennifer also thought Ezegelian did an amazing job on the song. Harry declared the singer’s voice was his most “dangerous” talent, noting he was able to tackle a lot of really high notes and nail every one of them.
The next name announced was Clark Beckham, who took on Smokey Robinson & the Miracles’ “The Tracks of My Tears.” The audience enjoyed it, as well as Lopez, who declared Beckham had one of the best voices in the competition. She did, however, pass on some advice Aretha Franklin gave her about singing live, noting Clark should “not think so much” and just “let loose and feel” the song. Connick thought the performance showcased all of the strategic things an Idol performance needs, including a lot of high notes, but it lacked “a beginning a middle and an end.” Urban would have liked to see Beckham ditch the band and deliver a more stripped down performance.
Nick Fradiani tackled Stevie Wonders’ “Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours.” Connick thought it was a great arrangement and performance, showcasing Fradiani’s guitar-playing skills, as well as his vocals, but urged Nick to smile a little more. Urban didn’t think the singer looked comfortable playing the guitar, noting it seemed to prevent him from moving around the stage.
Qaasim Middleton followed with Wonder’s “I Wish,” complete with some flashy dance moves. Keith said when Middleton gets in front of an audience he "just explodes." Jennifer also thought Middleton owned the stage, but warned him not to forget the vocal aspect of his performance. Harry declared, “That’s what we’re looking for.”
The last act to sing for America’s vote was Quentin Alexander, who had the audience and judges bopping to yet another Stevie Wonder tune, “Master Blaster (Jammin’).” After gushing, “I’m glad you’re here,” Lopez called Alexander’s performance “easy and smooth” and declared him one of her favorites in the competition. Connick said Quentin “settled into the groove” of the song, but noticed a little reservation during the performance, chalking it up to Alexander being “freaked out because [he] was the last guy to get put through.” Urban praised the performance and said Quentin knows who he is and what songs suit him.
American Idol continues Thursday on Fox at 8 p.m. Eastern time.
Peter Hapak for Men’s HealthJustin Bieber is shirtless again -- this time on the cover of Men’s Health. The singer and Calvin Klein model, who recently turned 21, bares his abs, and a little bit of his soul, in a new interview for the magazine’s Reinvention Issue. "This is almost like a full 180 from how I was," he tells the magazine.
He talks about making the transition from boy to man, and how that process was sped up by living a life in the public eye. “I had to grow up so quick,” he tells the mag. “And it was almost like I grew up for the public but I didn’t necessarily grow up. There were things I had to do, as far as the way I had to make relationships, and conversation, but as far as actually growing up, there were a lot of things I missed out on.”
As was perhaps evident from his recent apology tour, which included appearances on The Ellen DeGeneresShow and heartfelt Facebook video confessionals, Justin says this past year has been one of progress. “This has really been a big year for me, as far as figuring stuff out,” he says. “This is almost like a full 180 from how I was. Yesterday -- a year from yesterday -- I was in jail.”
But while he’s keen on not repeating certain mistakes of his youth, he doesn’t want to say goodbye to his childhood completely. “There’s a part of me that I don’t ever want to grow up,” he says. “I want to always remain...to have that sense of purity inside of me where I don’t...I don’t want to lose that sense of purity.”
Justin, who’s gearing up for his Comedy Central Roast on March 30, also reveals some other interesting tidbits about himself. For example, he can solve the Rubik’s Cube in less than a minute and he has a man crush on Ben Affleck. Selena Gomez’s ex also says he’s “very much a relationship guy” and is attracted to brunettes.
The April issue of Men’s Health hits newsstands March 10. Of course, the Internet is already speculating about whether or not Justin’s muscles in the cover photo were enhanced with the power of Photoshop.
The daughter and only child of Bobby Brown and the late Whitney Houston has remained in a medically-induced coma at a hospital in Georgia since she was found face-down in a bathtub in late January.
In a message posted Wednesday on WhitneyHouston.com, Patricia Houston, the late singer's sister-in-law and the president of The Whitney Houston Estate, writes, “Today is Bobbi Kristina's 22nd birthday and we ask you to continue to keep her in your prayers as she is still fighting the battle of her life.”
ABC/ Ida Mae Astute Last month, controversial British journalist and TV personality Katie Hopkinstweeted some extremely nasty comments about Kelly Clarkson, criticizing her for her weight and her appearance. Well, if Hopkins was hoping to shame Kelly into going on a diet, she's failed, because the singer just doesn't give a hoot.
Asked what she thought of Hopkins' tweets -- one of which asked, "Jesus, what happened to Kelly Clarkson? Did she eat all of her backing singers?" -- Kelly told the British magazine Heat, ""I don't have a clue what you're talking about. Someone tweeted something about me?" After it was explained to Kelly who Hopkins is, Kelly laughed, "Oh, and she's tweeted something nasty about me? That's because she doesn't know me. I'm awesome! It doesn't bother me. It's a free world. Say what you will."
"I've just never cared what people think," she added. "It's more if I'm happy and I'm confident and feeling good, that's always been my thing. And more so now, since having a family -- I don't seek out any other acceptance."
While unknown in the U.S., Hopkins is well known in the U.K., for, among other things, openly criticizing anyone who is overweight. In fact, she even starred in a reality show in which she purposely gained and then lost about 40 pounds, to show that people are capable of dieting successfully and have no excuse for being obese.
School Boy/Interscope RecordsThe much buzzed-about Carly Rae Jepsen video, starring Oscar-winner Tom Hanks, has an official premiere date. The “I Really Like You” video is set to debut on Bravo Media this Friday.
Beginning Wednesday night, the network will run on-air promotions for the reality show Newlyweds: The First Year featuring Carly's catchy new tune. Then on March 6, the video for the song will premiere on BravoTV.com’s The Daily Dish at 10:15 p.m. ET/PT.
Carly recently told ABC Radio that the video will follow a day in the life of Tom Hanks, as he prepares to join the singer for her music video. It’s sort of a “video inside of a video,” she said. Justin Bieber also makes a cameo.
ABC/Randy HolmesAfter her own struggles with self-image, Demi Lovato wants her fans to know that looks aren’t everything. The 22-year-old singer spoke to E! News about unrealistic beauty standards while promoting her Tampax Always Radiant campaign in Los Angeles this week.
"Your body is going to change, your looks are going to change, you're going to have great hair and makeup days, you're going to have bad hair and makeup days -- it doesn't define who you are,” she explained. “At the end of the day, who you are is who people really see.”
Last week, Demi shared an Instagram photo of herself in a bikini, to show her fans that she doesn’t have a “thigh gap” and she’s ok with that. "For some reason this whole thigh gap thing has kind of swept over what people think is beautiful," Demi told E!. "And if you have that naturally then that's totally fine, you're still beautiful. But my body doesn't naturally have that. I wanted to show my fans out there who don't naturally have [the thigh gap] that it's okay. You don't have to have what you see in the magazines if that's not what your body naturally has."
Demi strives to be a role model to young girls, but she also looks to role models of her own for inspiration. "Some of the women that really inspire me, I would say I've become really close with Jennifer Lopez," she said. "She's such a strong, confident woman that she's really helped me with learning that stuff and she's just such an inspirational person and so empowering and if there's anybody that's super radiant and confident, it's her."
A.M.P.A.S.(r)/Michael YadaLady Gaga already received praise from Julie Andrews for her Sound of Music Oscars tribute, and now another Sound of Music star has given her the stamp of approval.
Christopher Plummer, who played Captain Von Trapp in the 1965 film, tells Deadline he thought Gaga’s performance at the February 22 ceremony was “just wonderful.” He especially liked that she kept the music’s classic style. “She sang it so well in the style of the piece and she didn’t add any modern rock sounds,” the 85-year-old says. “She did it straight and she has a lovely voice.”
PLummer, who won his first Oscar in 2012 for his role in Beginners, wasn’t able to make the ceremony this year, but he says it was just as well. He wanted Julie Andrews to have her moment. “I didn’t go to the Oscars because first of all I couldn’t, and the second thing, it was a tribute to her,” he says. “I would’ve looked stupid being there and not doing anything.”
The actor will get his own moment on March 27, when his hands and footprints are immortalized at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood. This year marks the 50th anniversary of The Sound of Music.
Republic RecordsJennifer Lawrence said she hated having to sing on camera for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay -- Part 1, but we’re guessing she may have changed her tune about the experience now. The actress has been nominated for her haunting rendition of “The Hanging Tree” at this year’s MTV Movie Awards, just one month after the song was certified platinum.
J. Law is competing in the Best Musical Moment category against Chris Pratt in Guardians of the Galaxy, Seth Rogen and Zac Efron in Neighbors, Bill Hader and Kristen Wiig in The Skeleton Twins, and Miles Teller in Whiplash. We’d say she has a good shot, being that her “musical moment” is the only one out of the nominees that became a bona fide radio hit.
You can vote for Jennifer and all of your favorites at MovieAwards.MTV.com. The 2015 MTV Movie Awards, hosted by Amy Schumer, will air live from the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles April 12.
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for MTVTaylor Swift, Selena Gomez and a bunch of their best gal pals got together Tuesday night to celebrate Fifth Harmony singer Camila Cabello's 18th birthday.
The group made it a stay-at-home bash, complete with two cakes, party hats and a tiara for the birthday girl. Taylor Instagrammed a picture from the soiree as the girls sang “Happy Birthday to You” to Camila. Selena also posted a photo from the night, with the caption: "Camila_Cabello happy birthday my nugget. #girlsnighttothefullest."
Other famous besties in attendance included the sister band Haim, Paramore’s Hayley Williams, Oscar-nominated actress Hailee Steinfeld and Modern Family's Sarah Hyland. Jaime King, who recently appointed Taylor godmother of her unborn child, was also there to celebrate.
Image Group LA/ABCJordin Sparks’ new album, Right Here, Right Now, is due out in May. And yes, it will include a couple of songs inspired by her breakup with Jason Derulo.
"Everybody takes experiences from their personal life and puts it in there because that's how you get the real emotion, that’s how you get the real story,” Jordin tells E! News. “That's how that one fan that is laying in her room puts on your record and she cries with you because she feels it with you …I’ve always drawn from personal experiences to sing songs.”
Jordin and Jason split last September after dating for three years. Jordin, 25, explains that she’s been able to channel these experiences of love and heartbreak in ways she wasn’t able to do when she was younger. "When I was 17 and I put out my first record, I had never been in love like that before,” she says. “So doing a song like ‘No Air,’ I had to imagine what it would feel like to lose somebody that I loved that much.”
She adds, “Now, I know what it feels like to feel like I can't get out of bed in the morning because it hurts so bad or feel like I can't breathe, but I also know the other side. Like, I know what those butterflies feel like."
While the breakup-inspired songs might have come from a painful place, Jordin's latest single, "Double Tap," was inspired by something not nearly as heavy: Instagram. Released Tuesday, “Double Tap” features rapper 2 Chainz, who coincidentally also worked with Jason on the song “Talk Dirty.”
"So you double-tap to 'like' a picture, so there are a couple of ways you could take it,” Jordin explains. “For me, in the song, I take it as a girl knowing that there's a guy looking at her pictures, but he won't like them because he doesn't want her to know. And she's like 'I bet you're not going to double-tap that picture.'"
"Double Tap" is available on iTunes now. If you pre-order Jordin’s new album from her website, you'll get your name featured on the album booklet’s “thank you” page.
Alex KirzhnerFlo Rida has a new EP on the way and he’s launching a campaign to get fans hyped for its release.
The rapper will be dropping new songs, videos, contests and other major announcements in the weeks leading up to the April 7 release of the My House EP. He’s calling the campaign “Flo Madness,” because it coincides with the college basketball's "March Madness" NCAA tournament. The hotly anticipated EP includes some interesting collaborations, like the track “I Don’t Like It, I Love It,” featuring Robin Thicke and Earth, Wind & Fire’s Verdine White.
Anyone pre-ordering the EP now will receive an instant download of Flo Rida’s newest single, “Once in a Lifetime.” The video for that song was released Tuesday. Additional instantly available tracks, including “I Don’t Like It, I Love It,” will be made available bi-weekly preceding the EP’s release.
ABC/ Ida Mae AstuteKelly Clarkson is having a moment. After taking time off to welcome her first child, River Rose, the Grammy-winning singer is back with a new album, Piece by Piece, and a newly announced tour. And Kelly says her contentment with her personal life -- husband, baby and two stepkids -- has her super-excited for the future, whatever it may bring.
"I mean, this is gonna sound so cheesy but I have the most successful marriage and I have the best kids ever and I just feel like anything is possible at this point," Kelly tells ABC Radio. "And I’ve always kinda been that kid, but I just feel like they make me so much more empowered. And I have a couple of other things in the works because they’ve been inspiring me, so we’ll see. It’s going to be a very different next decade."
Those "other things" might include a future stint on Broadway, a country album and more. But for now, Kelly is focusing on Piece by Piece, the album she recorded while she was pregnant with River. Unlike her previous albums, Kelly didn't co-write the bulk of the material, because she had such a difficult pregnancy and was constantly sick. Instead, she recorded songs written by others, and she's pleased with the results.
"This is the first album I didn’t write too much...I just was feeling so down," Kelly tells ABC Radio. "And so it was interesting. I mean, I have a lot of singer-songwriter friends, so that helped! And then, also, it was interesting just to tell people, 'Hey, we’re looking for these kind of songs,'” and to see what everybody submitted. It was a different process for this album, and I loved it."
As a result, Piece by Piece is an interesting mix of upbeat, danceable tunes, heartfelt ballads, a handful of very personal songs written Kelly, a duet with John Legend and two tracks co-written by Sia. "Yeah, it was just a lot of randomness on this album, but it all kind of fit together," Kelly tells ABC Radio. "And [it] was very much just my mood while I was trying to climb out of the rabbit hole of pregnancy."
One unexpected benefit of recording the album while pregnant, Kelly says, was the way she was able to bring extra emotion to the material.
"It is a different thing, it’s hard to describe to people," she says. "Like, you just feel everything a hundred percent more. Everything is enhanced when you’re pregnant. And there are good and bad points of that, ‘cause when I was feeling sick it would be really bad, but when I wasn’t, you’d get these really raw emotional vocals, and they would just be even more vulnerable than normal, so I loved it."
Kelly jokes that she liked that experience so much that she might insist on being "knocked up" for the follow-up to Piece by Piece, too. "I probably will be [pregnant] while recording the next one, 'cause I do want another baby," she laughs.
Meanwhile, the singer will launch her Piece by Piece tour July 11 in Hershey, Pennsylvania. And how different will it be hitting the road with baby River in tow?
"This is gonna sound funny-slash-horrible but I already traveled with two dogs beforehand, so now I’ve just kind of switched out," Kelly laughs. "Dogs are harder! Like, I have a baby and I’m telling you: dogs are harder to keep up with than my baby!"