First, there was Beyonce. Now, here's a clean-living, happily married career woman who rarely is the subject any scandals (unless you count drawing the wrath of Etta James). Beyonce is also rarely the target of any Auto-Tunes/ProTools-centric accusations that she cannot sing. Because, well, she can. But this week Beyonce's talent was called into question, when a tape of her unedited vocals, supposedly pulled for the Today Show soundboard, was played on Howard Stern's radio show. The tape of her allegedly live "If I Were A Boy" performance sounded worse than an American Idol reject's bad audition, and soon all the blogosphere was debating Beyonce's vocal abilities, or lack thereof. Was Beyonce really just another lip-synching Britney or Ashlee?William Hung. "Yes, I created [the bad vocals], and they are fake," a mystery blogger named "Matt" told E!
Beyonce's daddy didn't find Matt's practical joke too amusing. (He griped to TMZ: "If no one took the time to listen to Beyonce sing 'America The Beautiful' and 'At Last' at the Neighborhood Ball for the first dance of President Obama and the First Lady, and they question Beyonce's vocal ability, they've gotta be an idiot. That would be like questioning if Kobe Bryant could shoot a jump shot. The vocals were obviously altered.") But Sasha Fierce herself actually demonstrated a sense of humor, or at least a sense of wonder, about the whole thing, telling the Today Show this week: "It's so amazing that someone in their home can do a little prank and it can end up on these major radio stations. How could you believe that? I heard it was really over-the-top."
However, this week Susan admitted that wasn't really true, telling U.K. morning show GMTV: "That was made as a joke! Never been kissed? I've never stopped!" One of the Britain's Got Talent judges volunteered to give Susan her first liplock before this truth about her lovelife was revealed...and now that the tabloids are reporting she's hired a hunky bodyguard and has undergone a makeover (slick leather jacket, hairdye job to conceal those grays, Burberry scarf, weed-whacked eyebrows), Susan will probably be getting plenty more offers.Paula Abdul granted an exclusive interview to ABC's Nightline this week, on which she vehemently stated: "I've never been addicted to any prescription drugs. I've never been drunk. I've worked my whole life. I will not take those drugs. And you can check my medical records. There is nothing like that. I was never on Oxycontin or Vicodin or anything like that. I was on [non-addictive] nerve medicine and anti-inflammatories [for a 1992 neck injury]."
Paula actually went so far as to say that her biggest career mistake was signing up for a show that perpetrated false rumors of her alcohol and drug abuse--a confession which in turn perpetrated rumors that she won't be returning to American Idol after her contract expires at the end of this season. We will just have to see later if Paula is forever Idol's girl.Paul McCartney headlining performance on the anniversary of his first wife Linda's death (he paid lovely tribute to her, and to John Lennon and George Harrison as well); a Public Enemy set consisting solely of a complete recreation of their landmark album It Takes A Nation Of Millions To Hold Us Back; new mom M.I.A. filling in on the main stage for cancelled performer Amy Winehouse; and a Sunday night curfew-breaking Cure performance that amusingly continued for several songs after Coachella authorities pulled the plug on their sound system. Meanwhile, the stellar 2009 lineup for this summer's Lollapalooza fest in Chicago was announced, featuring Depeche Mode, Tool, the Killers, Jane's Addiction, the Beastie Boys, Kings Of Leon, and Snoop Dogg, among others.
Yes, the 2009 musicfest season is now fully and officially underway--let's just hope that prankster "Matt" doesn't steal, and subsequently doctor, any audio from the festival soundboards.
And so concludes another wild week in music news. Come back next Friday for even more dish--no lie!
THIS WEEK'S TOP 10 STORIES:
1) Beautiful Liar - A prankster digitally doctors a Beyonce recording to make it seem like she cannot sing.
2) Boyling Point - Susan Boyle mania takes over the media.
3) Paula Abdul Talks Straight-Up - She goes on Nightline to address rumors of her drug abuse.
4) Coachella, Ella, Ella, Ella, Ay, Ay, Ay - McCartney, M.I.A. and others rock the desert.
5) Depeche Mode Stop Traffic - They close down Hollywood Blvd. for a free outdoor Kimmel concert.
6) Madonna Horses Around - She suffers minor injuries in a riding accident that police say may have been caused by the paparazzi.
7) Elton John Not Still Standing In Vegas - His five-year Sin City residency comes to an end.
8) Dave Grohl On Diaper Duty - The Foo Fighter fathers a second child.
9) Festival Season Officially Underway - Lollapalooza announces its impressive 2009 lineup.
10) Oklahoma Governor Realizes Flaming Lips' Greatness - Gov. Brad Henry agrees to let "Do You Realize" be Oklahoma's official rock song, despite protests from state officials.
- Arts & Entertainment