Sunday November 3rd, 2002
New CD's this past week:
Tank – One man: second album from Tank, filled with mostly ballads
Short news stories this week:
Mariah Carey's 'Charmbracelet' Moved Up To December 3
Mariah Carey's Charmbracelet, her upcoming
debut album for her MonarC
Music label, is now due out December 3, according to Island Records. It
was previously scheduled for release on December 10. Carey worked with
producers Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Jermaine Dupri, DJ Quik, 7 Aurelius,
Irv Gotti, and Damizza on Charmbracelet. She also recently announced
that *NSYNC singer Justin Timberlake will likely appear as one of
several guests on the album on a track titled "Yours".
Carey covers Def Leppard's 1980s song "Bringin' On The Heartbreak" on
the album, which will also contain her current single, "Through The
Rain," as well as "My Saving Grace." A "Through The Rain" remix
featuring Kelly Price and Joe is also in the works.
Carey's MonarC Music imprint is a part of the Island/Def Jam Music
Usher Enters 'The Twilight Zone'
Usher's episode of The Twilight Zone will
air on UPN November 6 at 9
p.m. ET/PT. The multiplatinum, Grammy Award-winning singer portrays a
police officer fighting to eliminate the crime in his hometown.
Usher explained the show and his character to LAUNCH. "The name of the
piece was 'To Serve And To Protect.' And it's a guy who's caught in The
Twilight Zone. And his old neighborhood, the city has basically took a
turn for the worse. But yet, he's still looking to protect his land, and
his place, what is sacred to him. By the time he makes it to be a young
cop, prostitution is at its worse on his old street and (in) his old
neighborhood. And he noticed this one situation where there's domestic
violence. And they go to sort out the problem. And that's when the whole
To help prepare for the role in law enforcement, Usher brought to the
set one of his bodyguards, who is a former police officer.
In related news, Usher is in Los Angeles taping an upcoming segment for
WB drama 7th Heaven. He will release Usher Mr. Entertainment Evolution
8701 DVD - Live In Concert on November 12.
Aaliyah's 'Miss You' Tapped As First Single From Posthumous Album
Aaliyah's "Miss You" is the first
single from her posthumous album, I
Care 4 U, due out December 10 on Blackground/Universal Records. In
addition to "Miss You," the album will feature other unreleased tracks
as well as previously issued selections.
In the ballad released online this week, the late singer sulks about
losing her high school sweetheart to college. She sings, "It's been too
long and I'm lost without you."
Proceeds from the album will partially benefit the Aaliyah Memorial
Fund, which makes contributions to the Revlon UCLA Women Cancer Research
Program and the Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in Harlem.
"I Care 4 U" is also the title of her single that has held the Number
Four position on Billboard's Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Singles & Tracks chart for
the last several weeks.
Aaliyah was killed in a plane crash in August 2001.
Craig David On 'Slicker Than Your Average'
Singer-songwriter Craig David will release
his sophomore album, Slicker
Than Your Average, on November 19. The first single from the set is
titled "What's Your Flava?", and Chicago-based rapper Twista is featured
on the remix. The original version of the song is currently Number 25 on
the Billboard Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart.
David recently shared why he chose to title his latest set Slicker Than
Your Average: "It's going to throw the question as to, 'Craig, are you
trying to be arrogant? Are you saying that you're slicker than average?
You're better than what's out there?' And I'm saying, you know what,
'I'm not saying I am and I'm not saying I'm not. The music will do the
talking and you'll soon come back to me and tell me if I'm slicker than
you average or just average,' so hopefully the music will do the talking
for me on this joint."
David's debut collection, 2001's Born To Do It, has sold more than 1.5
million copies in the United States.
Whitney Houston's Having 'One Of Those Days'
Whitney Houston's "One Of Those
Days" impacted at radio Monday (October
28) as the new release from the singer's album, Just Whitney, which is
expected to hit stores during the holiday season.
The feel-good ballad was produced by She'ksphere, who is known for
providing music for TLC's "No Scrubs" and Destiny's Child's "Bills,
Bills, Bills." "One Of Those Days" interpolates portions of the Isley
Brothers' "Between The Sheets."
She'ksphere and Houston began working together in early 2002. In
February, She'ksphere explained to us his plans for Houston. "I want
Whitney to appeal to Whitney's people," She'ksphere said. "I'm going
back to the essence. I'm not trying to do anything outlandish. It's just
great songs, great melodies, simple grooves, so that when you first hear
it from the get-go whether you're 15 years old or you're 46."
She'ksphere, who has also worked with Mariah Carey and Pink, added that
Houston is the "cream of the crop." "Whenever she opens her mouth, just
even to do a little ad-lib or to even ask if she could do it this way,
everything sounds incredible," She'ksphere said. "She's truly a molded
individual in the singing game. She has it locked down to a tee."
Houston's first single "Whatchulookinat?" was released in August.
K-Ci & JoJo On Working With Superproducer Rodney Jerkins
K-Ci & JoJo Hailey are set to release
their fourth album as a duo,
titled Emotional, on November 26. The first single from the set, "It's
Me," was produced by hit maker Rodney Jerkins, who has produced hits for
Michael Jackson, Monica, Brandy, Jennifer Lopez, and Toni Braxton, among
K-Ci recently told us that the group hit it off with Jerkins
immediately, as he had a good concept of the type of track they were
looking for: "Man, that was our first time really working and meeting
Rodney Jerkins when we did that track right there, man. Working with
him, man, it was a great experience. The man is professional--he's
talented and he knew exactly what we wanted. You know, it wasn't no,
like, 'I don't like that,' or, 'It could be better.' It was just, like,
dead on point, you know what I'm sayin'? Yeah, it was cool working with
Rodney on that track."
Gerald Levert's 'G-Spot' Heats Up The Sales Top 10
R&B singer and songwriter Gerald
Levert's latest CD, G-Spot, landed
among the top10 SoundScan albums this week. In its first week on the Top
200 Albums chart, G-Spot makes a strong showing at Number Nine, with
sales of 75,000 units in one week.
G-Spot is Levert's sixth album as a soloist since parting ways with the
successful trio Levert ("Casanova"), which featured his brother Sean
Levert and songwriting partner Marc Gordon. The son of Eddie Levert of
the veteran R&B act the O'Jays, Gerald has also penned hits for a number
of other acts, including Barry White, the Rude Boys, Patti LaBelle, and
the O'Jays. He recorded a successful duet album with his father, 1995's
Father And Son, and also hit chart paydirt in 1997 by teaming with
fellow new jack crooners Keith Sweat and Johnny Gill for the smash album
G-Spot features all-original tunes focusing on various aspects of
romance and relationships, including the catchy single "Funny." The
title tune in particular is a sensual ballad that features Levert in a
sexy rap segment.
So how did Levert, who describes himself as "shy," get in the mood to
perform the sweat-inducing vocal? Levert said: "I have a very good
imagination, now. And being shy has nothing to do with imagination. I'm
basically like a one-on-one person, I'm not a good crowd person unless
I'm controlling the crowd, unless I'm doing my thing. So one-on-one, I'm
good at that. So what I did was just, in my mind, use my imagination of
what I would say and how to make it sensitive and make it something that
was sexual also."
Kelly Rowland Simply Thrilled About 'Simply Deep'
Destiny's Child singer Kelly Rowland's
debut solo album, Simply Deep,
was released last week (October 22) via Music World Music/Columbia
Records. The album is highlighted by "Dilemma," Rowland's chart-topping
duet with rapper Nelly, and her follow-up single, "Stole."
The album features tracks penned by Steve Kipner, Billy Mann, Solange
Knowles, and Rowland, and it features a guest appearance by New
Jersey-based Def Jam rapper Joe Budden on "Make U Wanna Stay." Simply
Deep was executive produced by Destiny's Child manager (and groupmate
Beyonce Knowles's father) Matthew Knowles.
Rowland told LAUNCH that she really enjoyed recording Simply Deep
because she surrounded herself with the right group of people: "I just
wanted to get in the studio and for it to be stress-free. I didn't want
to worry about what people were thinking or anything like that, and I
went in the studio and I had fun, above anything. And I did all these
songs, and people were as excited to work with me as much as I was to
work with them. We just had a great chemistry, and I got Simply
Deep."The 21-year-old Houston native co-wrote three songs on the album,
including "(Love Lives In) Strange Places," "Heaven," and "Make U Wanna
Stay." Rowland also arranged the vocals on several tracks.
More than 700,000 copies of Simply Deep were shipped to stores this
week, and the album has a very good chance of topping the Billboard 200
albums chart next week. Rowland explained that no matter what happens,
she's just glad to have an album out that she can call her own: "I'm
just happy that everybody is loving the album so far. I've gotten some
good reviews and a lot of people are saying, of course, that it's
different than Destiny's Child and it just reflects Kelly, so that's
Meanwhile, Rowland is following in the footsteps of her Destiny's Child
partner Beyonce Knowles by making her movie debut in the upcoming horror
film, Freddy Vs. Jason, which is currently shooting in Vancouver,