Sunday June 29th, 2003


New CD's this past week:

- Beyonce - Dangerously In Love
- Blu Cantrell - Bittersweet


Music news stories this week:

All Eyez On Monica As She Nabs Top Chart Slot

With her first album in five years, Monica may be "So Gone," but she's
certainly not out.
The R&B singer's third album, After the Storm, will take the top spot on
next week's Billboard albums chart, having sold more than 185,000
copies, according to SoundScan. Produced by Missy Elliott, the follow-up
to 1998's The Boy Is Mine was originally titled All Eyez on Me, an
appropriate first thought given its first-week standing.
After the Storm just barely weathered the heat from the previous #1 LP,
Luther Vandross' Dance With My Father. While still recovering from a
serious stroke, Vandross moved just 3,000 fewer copies than Monica last
week to take the #2 spot.
The next three albums will simply recede a place to make room for chart
newcomer Monica. Metallica's St. Anger will show up at #3 (with 137,000
copies sold), Radiohead's Hail to the Thief drops to #4 (95,000) and
Annie Lennox's Bare comes in at #5 (92,000).

Fat Joe, Sean Paul, & Lil' Kim Help Blu Cantrell With 'Bittersweet'

R&B singer Blu Cantrell released her sophomore set, Bittersweet, on
Tuesday, June 24th. The set features guest appearances by Lil' Kim, Fat
Joe, Sean Paul, and Ian Lewis of Inner Circle. The current single from
the set is "Breathe" featuring Sean Paul.
Bittersweet's release was pushed back several times but Cantrell
recently told us that it was due to the addition of more hot tracks:
"Well you know we pushed it back a couple of times cause we got some
more hot stuff to put on the album. You know I don't think that you
should rush a process like that. I think you should take as much time as
you need."
Cantrell also said that she titled the album Bittersweet because the
title would symbolize both of her releases to date: "Well the last album
is a little bit more bitter and this one is a little bit more sweet, so
I decided to call it Bittersweet."
Cantrell's 2001 debut, So Blu, was certified gold for sales of 500,000.

Raphael Saadiq To Record Live Album

Singer-songwriter Raphael Saadiq will release his first ever live album
in October on his Pookie Entertainment label. Saadiq and his 12-piece
band will be recorded for the set while performing at the Belly Up
Tavern in San Diego, California, on July 2nd; the House of Blues in Los
Angeles, California, on July 3rd; and the House of Blues in Las Vegas,
Nevada, on July 4th.
While the audio from the performances will be used for Saadiq's live
album, the video footage will be included in an upcoming DVD to be
released in 2004 through Saadiq's Pookie Entertainment.
Saadiq is also presently working on his sophomore solo release scheduled
for a February 2004 release. The set will be recorded at his Blakeslee
Recording Studios in North Hollywood, California.
Formerly a member of Tony! Toni! Tone!, Saadiq is looking to establish
himself as a label head. The singer is looking for new unsigned soul,
R&B, and hip-hop artists with copyrighted material. Interested artists
should forward material to him at: Pookie Entertainment, 4850 Vineland
Avenue, #241, North Hollywood, CA 91601.

Beyonce Knowwles First Solo Album Out

Arriving Tuesday (June 24th) was Dangerously In Love, the first solo
album by Beyonce Knowles of Destiny's Child. Already a hot item thanks
to the single "Crazy Love," which features a guest rap from Jay-Z, the
album also features collaborations with Luther Vandross, Sean Paul,
Missy Elliott, and others.
Knowles says that a solo album allows her to do some things that might
not be possible within Destiny's Child: "Whenever you work with more
than one person, it has to complement the group as a whole, so there are
certain things that I like that are in my mind that now I can do -- even
though I could do that with Destiny's Child, but I can take it to the
next level and do everything that compliments me, as opposed to
Destiny's Child."
Knowles will probably tour this fall to support Dangerously In Love.
She says Destiny's Child plans to record a new album in 2004.
Knowles's next film role is in The Fighting Temptations, which opens
September 19th. She costars in the movie with Cuba Gooding, Jr.

Luther Vandross Released From Hospital

Luther Vandross, who suffered a severe stroke at his home on the Upper
East Side April 16th, was released on Wednesday from the Weill Cornell
Medical College in New York to a rehabilitation center, said Lois
Najarian, a publicist for J Records. Ms. Najarian said that it was
unclear when, or if, Mr. Vandross would be able to sing. "He's not
speaking yet. We're taking it one day at a time."


News 2003

News 2002

News 2001