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Philpop attracts more entries from Mindanao and Visayas

AFTER TAKING a break last year, the Philippine Popular Music Festival or Philpop is back for its 7th year and recently presented the 30 semifinalists of this year’s songwriting competition.

Rockin’ the orchestra

ROCKESTRA 2018, performed at The Theatre at Solaire was a historic moment for the Manila Symphony Orchestra (MSO) as it was their first attempt to play a full concert dedicated to rock-classical fusion music.

Dark synth-pop singer Robyn back after 8 years

NEW YORK — Robyn, the Swedish singer whose dark yet danceable synth-pop has won her an avid fan base, returned Wednesday with a song off her first album in eight years.

Rapper Shanti Dope celebrates a successful 1st year in music

RAPPER Shanti Dope marks his first anniversary as an artist under Universal Records with an upcoming collaboration and a concert.

Nicki Minaj hunting for Tracy Chapman for sample clearance as album...

NEW YORK — Rapper Nicki Minaj said Wednesday that she is pushing back her new album as she desperately seeks to reach Tracy Chapman to clear a sample.

Do you want to be a K-pop idol? There is a...

KOREAN POP idols are all the craze not just in Asia but worldwide — BTS headlined the 2018 Billboard Music Awards and even appeared on Ellen; Big Bang celebrated its 10th anniversary by guesting on CNN’s Talk Asia; and Korean music festivals featuring boy and girl groups are making the rounds of Europe and the Middle East. K-pop fame is indeed enticing — although the road to stardom is never easy.

The Gentle Sungjae

YOOK SUNGJAE is only 1/7 of the Korean boy band BtoB (Born to Beat) but he is arguably the most popular member. Aside from his activities with the group, he has a flourishing acting career which shot up several notches when he joined the cast of blockbuster K-drama Goblin, and played the nephew of Gong Yoo from Train to Busan fame.

Loving Celine Dion even more

IT WAS a weekend morning in the late 1990s when a familiar piano introduction (in C major) blared into the room and woke this writer (who was then probably in kindergarten) from her sleep. “I know this song. I’ve heard it before,” I thought. I got up and hurried to the shelf beside the stereo system (where Dad would usually place his newly purchased CDs) and saw an album cover with a woman wearing a white shirt and denim pants, her hair in a pixie cut. The singer’s voice was captivating. From then on, I continued to listen to her songs — playing them loud and singing along as if it were a live concert.

Spotify says no to payola on its playlists

SPOTIFY TECHNOLOGY SA is overhauling the way musicians and record labels submit songs for certain playlists, a move that will affect how tens of thousands of artists reach their fans.

After movie, Cher to release album of ABBA covers

NEW YORK -- Pop legend Cher has announced an album of ABBA covers as she stars in a film sequel to Mamma Mia!, the musical inspired by the iconic Swedish group.

Singer Cliff Richard wins BBC privacy case

LONDON — Veteran British pop star Cliff Richard won a privacy case against the BBC on Wednesday after it broadcast live on television a police raid on his home, in a ruling the broadcaster warned threatened press freedom.

Rockestra 2018: MSO goes beyond Mozart

THE MANILA Symphony Orchestra (MSO) has given us some of the best classical music performances in the country, and from time to time, they do small-scale collaborations with other artists on fusion genres and add some musical variety to their plate.

With dreamy electro pop, Milk and Bone charts own path

QUEBEC CITY, Canada — With smooth minimalist electro pop and lush vocal harmonies, Milk and Bone has found a growing audience while charting an unusual path for French Canadian artists — singing entirely in English.

K-pop’s Holland releases new single ‘I’m Not Afraid’

SOUTH KOREA’s first openly gay singer Holland has released his new single, “I’m Not Afraid.” This autobiographical track is the first volume of his new twin single album: Holland Twin Single Project.

New Tom Petty song debuts ahead of box set

NEW YORK — The family of Tom Petty on Wednesday released a previously unheard song by the late rocker as a preview of a box set full of new discoveries.

2nd suspect arrested over rapper XXXTentacion’s killing

MIAMI — A second suspect has been arrested over the death of Florida rapper XXXTentacion, whose fame was quickly rising when he was gunned down last month, authorities said Wednesday.

Rap star Cardi B gives birth to daughter

NEW YORK — Cardi B, who has quickly risen to become one of the most prominent women in hip-hop, has become a mother, announcing Wednesday the birth of daughter Kulture Kiari Cephus.

What is a fiesta without a band? This one has 14.

THE MERRYMAKING in traditional Filipino fiestas is never complete without the presence of a brass band or groups of instrumentalists that parade through the streets with their cheerful music. And this fiesta will be brought to the stage of the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) on July 20 to 22 thanks to the 14 bands and orchestra groups that will perform in Banda Rito, Banda Roon.

After 2 surgeries in 2 months, Gary V is raring to...

SINGER Edgardo Jose “Gary” Valenciano — often referred to as “Mr. Pure Energy” because of his high energy performances — announced that he has been cleared of kidney cancer, a diagnosis which was made shortly after he underwent successful emergency open heart surgery in May.

Tencent’s US music IPO reflects more upbeat recording industry

TENCENT HOLDINGS Ltd.’s plan to spin-off its online-music business and list shares in the US is the latest sign that the long-beleaguered recording industry is staging a comeback.

Take 3 in the Philippines for singer Charlie Puth

AMERICAN singer/songwriter, Charlie Puth, is coming back for a third time in the Philippines on Nov. 6 in the Mall of Asia (MOA) Arena in Pasay City as part of his ongoing North America and Asia tour promoting his newest album, Voicenotes.

Justin Bieber engaged to model Baldwin — reports

NEW YORK — Trouble-prone pop star Justin Bieber will be a married man after popping the question to model Hailey Baldwin whom he has dated for one month, reports said on Sunday.

Louvre sets up Beyonce and Jay-Z art tour

PARIS — The Louvre has dedicated a new art tour to Beyonce and Jay-Z after pop’s biggest power couple shot the video for their latest hit in the Paris museum.

Boyzone’s last tour touching down in PHL

IRISH POP vocal group Boyzone is coming back to Manila which is one stop in its their 25th Anniversary and Farewell Tour.

Everlasting Super Junior

THIRTEEN YEARS after they were catapulted to stardom, Korean pop group Super Junior can still give boy bands half their age a run for their money. In their first solo concert in Manila in five years, the group — which is recognized as the catalyst that led to the worldwide K-pop craze — rocked the SM Mall of Asia Arena. Fans could only describe their performance as “walang kupas” (unfading).

Saving the Pasig River through an arts program

A NUMBER OF arts activities are scheduled in six cities of Metro Manila until December as an initiative to raise awareness of the need to rehabilitate the Pasig River.

Drake smashes streaming record with new album

NEW YORK — Drake has smashed streaming records with his new album Scorpion, with Apple Music and Spotify both reporting unprecedented listenership in its first day.

Independent record labels get boost from streaming music services

FOR DECADES, independent record labels have dreamed that if only they had the massive budgets to get their artists in front of music fans, the fans would love the music — and maybe even choose it over offerings from major record labels.

Westlife’s Filan promotes new album with Sept. concert in PHL

WESTLIFE’S lead singer Shane Filan is coming back to Manila for a one-night concert featuring the Irish boy band’s greatest hits and some of his new singles on Sept. 15 at the Kia Theatre in Quezon City.

Michael Jackson returns posthumously on Drake album

NEW YORK — Nearly a decade after his death, Michael Jackson is out with new music in a guest appearance on the new album by Drake.

Slain rapper XXXTentacion returns to fight old self in posthumous video

NEW YORK — XXXTentacion, the rising rap star whose short, violent life was cut short in a shooting, has returned in an eerie posthumous video in which he battles his old self.

Posporos hooks up Spanish, Pinoy musicians

SINCE 2016, the Philippine-Spanish music project Posporos has showcased indie music talents from both countries, giving them the opportunity to experience each other’s music. Posporos has already featured 18 Spanish and Filipino music bands and six DJs, in nine different venues across Metro Manila.

After 20 years, Workshy returns

BRITISH BAND Workshy, best known for the song “Never the Same,” and covering Carole King’s “It’s Too Late,” comes back to Manila after more than 20 years to promote the group’s newest album, Wayward, on Aug. 10 at the Theatre at Solaire Resort and Casino.

K-pop idols versus food

THE WORLD is fascinated with food these days. Food blogs, cooking segments, and reality television shows centered on food prove that every gastronomic experience — even the vicarious kind — makes for great entertainment.

Joe Jackson, patriarch of the US musical Jackson dynasty, 89

JOE JACKSON, the patriarch of an American musical dynasty who started his son Michael, daughter Janet, and the Jackson 5 on the road to stardom but also verbally and physically abused them, has died at the age of 89, his family said on Wednesday.

A busy K-pop weekend

JUNE 30 will be a busy day for Filipino K-pop fans. Super Junior (below) will hold the Manila leg of Super Show 7 (Super Junior World Tour) at the Mall of Asia Arena at 8 p.m., while fast-rising actor Jung Hae In (right) will meet his local fans for the first time at the Kia Theater at 6 p.m. With Super Junior members taking turns serving their mandatory military service, the group was forced into inactivity for a few years.

70 years since 1st LP released, vinyl enjoys revival

LONDON — In the basement of the British Library, curator Andy Linehan inspects the latest addition to a massive archive of wax cylinders, cassettes, LPs and CDs — a vinyl record that made musical history.

Calum Scott’s Asian tour comes to PHL in Oct.

BRITISH crooner Calum Scott, is coming back to Manila for a concert on Oct. 30 at the Kia Theater in Quezon City as part of his ongoing Only Human Asia Tour.

Paul McCartney sees music as travelogue on new album

NEW YORK — Paul McCartney on Wednesday announced his first album in five years, Egypt Station, which he described as a kind of musical travelogue with each song exploring a new area.

Janet Jackson says battles with depression

NEW YORK — Janet Jackson has revealed that she suffered an “intense” battle with depression, which she linked to a childhood inferiority complex and societal racism and sexism.

FROM THE ARCHIVES | Proud: How Tegan and Sara are changing...

By Sam L. Marcelo Associate Editor, High Life To celebrate Pride, BusinessWorld is bringing out an article first published in December 2013 about Tegan and Sara’s...

Beyonce and Jay-Z celebrate marriage and blackness in surprise album

NEW YORK — Music’s most famous couple Beyonce and Jay-Z pulled a surprise by releasing a joint album, a long-rumored collaboration that celebrates their marital passion and black identity.

What we learned from Everything is Love

NEW YORK — Jay-Z and Beyonce late Saturday released Everything is Love, a surprise album after years of speculation that they were working on a joint project.

Musical time machine is coming to Manila

INTERESTED in hearing Mariah Carey’s “Always Be My Baby” sung as Ella Fitzgerald would? Or Justin Bieber’s “Sorry” performed as if it came out in the 1960s? Or Ed Sheeran’s “Perfect” done 1950s prom style? You can thanks to Post Modern Jukebox (PMJ), a vintage minstrel band which currently has over one billion views on YouTube and almost 3.5 million subscribers.

Beach Boys hits get a classical spin in orchestral collaboration

LONDON — The timeless California sounds of the Beach Boys have been given a new spin thanks to Britain’s Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.