Stop The Presses!

May 3-9: B.o.B.: Who’s The Guy With The #1 Album In The Country?

Stop The Presses!


Who exactly is B.o.B? You know, the Atlanta rap dude with the#1 album in the country.

The 21-year-old MC, singer andproducer with two names -- B.o.B and Bobby Ray Simmons -- may feel like an overnightsuccess since his debut album, B.o.BPresents: The Adventures Of Bobby Ray, opened at the top of the pop charts thisweek, seemingly out of nowhere. But this is hardly the case.

A few months after graduatingfrom ATL's Columbia High School in 2006, helanded a deal with Atlantic Records in a partnership with Jim Jonsin's Rebel Rock.Jonsin is the mastermind producer behind Beyonce's "Sweet Dreams," Lil' Wayne's "Lollipop," andT.I.'s "Whatever You Like." T.I.'s Grand Hustle label later entered the fold.

While it has takenthree-in-a-half years for B.o.B's album to get released, he has kept busymaking a name for himself. The reaction to his popular mixtapes resulted in hisfeature on covers of leading urban magazines XXL and Vibe in 2008.

But B.o.B's most recent successcan be attributed to his song "Nothing On You." The pop-friendly alternativehip-hop ballad featuring Bruno Mars singing the catchy chorus was #1 for thepast two weeks and has been embraced by urban, pop, and rock radio stations.

The song about being a hopelessromantic is followed by an equally infectious track, "Airplanes," whichfeatures Paramore's Haley Williams providing the hook. Eminem makes anappearance on a second version of the song, "Airplanes, Part II."

T.I. has helped B.o.B find thebalance between his hip-hop and alternative sounds. When B.o.B has strayed toofar away from his hip-hop base, T.I. has offered his input. "'You got to bringit back to the hood some Bobby, you got to come back down to the earth andland,'" B.o.B laughs, quoting advice from T.I. in an interview with Urban News Network.

Before adopting the stage nameB.o.B, Bobby Ray would simply refer to himself as B. But one night, his friendWillie Joe inadvertently suggested a new moniker. "My name is really Bob. So hewas like, 'What's up B.o.B?' and I was like, 'Dawg, you just gave me my name'"the rapper told DJBooth.net.

B.o.B grew up listening to fellowATLiens OutKast and Goodie Mob, but credits DMX with helping him learn how towrite raps. "I learned how to rap by writing out DMX's lyrics on It's Dark And Hell Is Hot," B.o.B told MTV."I listened to it religiously. I was in the third grade at the time." Clearly, B.o.B's dedication and hard work have paid off in a big way.

B.o.B wasn't the only musicianwith good news this week. After suffering a brain hemorrhage a few weeks ago,Bret Michaels' doctor expressed that the RockOf Love star would make a complete recovery.

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Things, however, were trying for Nashville residents,among them country luminaries Kenny Chesney, Keith Urban, and Brad Paisley, whowere affected by flooding from a storm. Plus, Miss Miley Cyrus created a stirwith her controversial new video, "Can't Be Tamed."

THE WEEK'S TOP 5 NEWS STORIES

1) BornTo Be Alive - Bret Michaelsexpected to make full recovery.

2) Can'tHold Me Down - MileyCyrus' releases racy video.

3) StormTroopers - Nashville's music community recovers fromdevastating storm.

4) Shock Value - Is Christina copying Lady Gaga in her new video?

5) BobbyDigital - B.o.B lands #1 albumand single.

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