Sunday July 15th 2001

Hello all, back again for another weekly update. It's still the holiday season
and it shows ; not much new releases. But we do have the new Usher, well at
least in Europe. The American fans will have to wait until August. Next week
will be a little bit busier with new albums from Aaliyah and Michael Cooper
(ex-Con Funk Shun).

Usher -  8701

Usher's "8701" has to be the most anticipated R&B album for the last 16 months.
Originally set for release in early 2000 the album saw set back after set back,
mostly because tracks were leaked onto Napster. Some of the tracks, that were
available via Napster, have now been discarded from the album and in some cases
they have been totally re-recorded.
So was it worth the wait and all the hassle? The answer is of course yes! "8701"
is a great R&B album that features the cream of today's R&B hottest producers,
Jermaine Dupri, Puffy, Neptunes, Darkchild etc. The majority of the 17 tracks
on the album are club joints, a refreshing change to today's ballad soaked R&B
The debut single for America and the second for Europe is "U Remind Me", which
has all the necessary ingredients for a massive crossover smash. Meanwhile "I
Don't Know" is suitably dope with its deep speaker-busting bassline, although
the accompanying P. Diddy rap is nothing short of modest! Usher goes into
smoothed out mode with the accoustic guitar led and suberbly produced "Twork
It Out". More fierce snares and guitar strums come via the accoustic downlow
monster "U Got It Bad" with again more evidence of the Usher vocal talent."If I
Want To" is an awesome slice of RnB thattakes the listener back to the day of jack
thanks to its in-ya-face snares. Other highlights are "TTP", "Hottest Thing" and
"Seperated" a stunning ballad.


Other news items :

J-Lo in trouble over n-word

Jennifer Lopez is in trouble in the states because her new single there "I'm Real"
contains the n-word. Many black Americans use the word freely, but some think
J-Lo has no right to. It has caused a row, but her former boyfriend Puffy is
defending her.

Alicia Keys takes J Records to the top

Clive Davis' new label J Records has wasted no time breaking its acts into the
Billboard 200. J's latest release, Alicia Keys' debut album "Songs in A Minor,"
bows at No. 1 on 235,825 units scanned. This marks the third top-10 debut and
first No. 1 for the 10-month-old label: Boy group O-Town's self-titled arrived at
No. 5 in February, and Luther Vandross' self-titled album bowed at No. 6 last
week. "Songs In A Minor" pushes Eminem's Detroit rap collective D12 to No. 2
as "Devil's Night" (Interscope) added 220,875 units during the week ending July 1,
according to SoundScan figures obtained from industry sources


Faith Evans Album Pushed Back

Singer Faith Evans who was due to release her album "Faithfully" on August 21,
has pushed back the release date, and now the album will probably come out in


New Brian McKnight CD August 28th

Singer/songwriter Brian McKnight is set to release his brand new CD entitled
"Superheroes" on August 28th...The new album will contain all original music,
as well as an appearance by Justin Timberlake of 'N Sync, who sings on "My Kind
Of Girl".


Left Eye's "Supernova" ready to explode

After talking it up for years TLC's Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes finally has a solo album
to call her own. The new disc, "Supernova" will hit stores August 14, while the
first single, "The Block Party" has already found its way to radio.
The solo career is keeping Lopes busy. So busy, in fact, that she's delayed her wedding
to former and current boyfriend, Oakland Raiders wide receiver Andre Rison.
The two were supposed to tie the knot in Atlanta last week, but Lopes was busy in
Los Angeles shooting the video for "The Block Party." The couple had reserved the
Atlanta Botanical Gardens on July 5 for the ceremony, but the two weren't together.
No other reason has been given for the delay, but Lopes and Rison still insist the
wedding will take place someday.
For now, however, Left Eye is concentrating on the "Supernova" release, but is
also working along side T-Boz and Chilli. The trio is currently recording new tracks
for an upcoming TLC album, which should be out before the end of the year.


News 2001