In the last few weeks of 2012, some celebs had much to celebrate and much to look forward to in the year ahead! Read our celebrity news round up below!
Singer Brandy is engaged! The 33-year-old diva is engaged to her beau, Ryan Press, who she went public with last New Year's Eve. Brandy revealed the exciting news earlier this week while vacationing with her fiance in Hawaii. She and her music executive love, were pretty serious about the relationship before the engagement, even Brandy confessed to People magazine earlier this year that she would marry him with a bubblegum ring.
You may not have heard of Elan Lea yet, but chances are, you will soon. This singer/songwriter hails from his native South Africa and has recently made quite a splash in the UK. Elan is getting ready to debut his US project, Conversations Over Time. Elan is a protege of the late Robin Gibb and his highly successful Universal Records album My Only Excuse was released in 2009. So be the first of your friends to check him out and learn all about his new album and his transition to the US music scene below!
Meet the main man of indi-rock band, A Bad Think, one-man wonder Michael Marquart, formerly of A Flock of Seagulls and Alias. Michael is a talented drummer, guitarist, keyboard player, singer, and producer (pause to take breath) who has been in numerous bands, but has now ventured out on this solo project. Their latest album, Medicine, was released at the end of June and is their fourth studio album. Marquart's daughter, Samantha Marq, has also gotten involved in his solo career and can be heard singing on a majority of the band's tracks. Joonbug got the chance to chat with Michael and here's what he had to say.
Simon Richards has recently released his debut single, "Bee Bopping to My Life" and has his first album set to come out in September. Simon isn't your typical musician -- he actually had a past career as a doctor and has recently made his transition into music. He looks forward to helping people heal in a different way. His album, Kaleidoscope Worlds, is being released through Pyramid Records , Inc. We got the opportunity to talk with Simon about his album, his former career as a doctor, and how music has influenced his life.
Tell us a bit about your upcoming debut album.
My debut album, Kaleidoscope Worlds, I finished recording last year in November 2011. It took me two and half years and more than 1500 hours of studio production to finalize the album to where it is today. It was a truly amazing process and I really did pour my heart and soul into this album. I’m very excited to be sharing my first album with the world. It will be available for purchase in September 2012. Right now my single, Bee Bopping To My Life, is currently on the radio. It is a catchy summer song with a reggae influence.
Do you have any favorite singles off the album?
I would say that Children of the Ghetto, Joe’s Cafe, Come Fly with Me and Blown Away are my favorite songs off the album. “Children of The Ghetto” hits home for me because it portrays a serious message. The song in itself is focused on the under-privileged. It’s a message of hope and of never giving up, even when confronted with the harshest of realities, and always fighting for what you believe in. It is a very powerful song with an upbeat rhythmic song with a strong afro-influence.
How did you choose your first single "Bee Bopping to my Life" to be the first single released?
I decided to go with Bee Bopping to My Life because it is a fun, upbeat reggae song. I thought would be the perfect song to get out onto the radios just in time for summer. It’s a very bubbly, exciting song that is a catchy summer jam!
What made you transition from doctor to musician?
It was more to do with a spiritual journey that had started with medicine and was to continue through music. I wanted to go from the art of healing to the art of creating music. There was an inner force inside of me that always existed and I just allowed it to flow with questioning. It truly was an enlightening experience and felt as if I was going through a metamorphosis.
Do you see any similarities between your career as a doctor and your career as a musician?
Definitely! There is a distinct relationship as both professions are capable of healing and reaching the inner soul of people. Doctors and musicians help bring health and joy to people. I believe that I was born to be a healer and now that I am a musician I am still healing people around the world but in a different way.
How has music influenced your life?
It has allowed me to discover myself as a human being and become a better person. I am able to understand others on a different level and believe that I have truly grown in every field of life. I believe that music intertwines with every aspect of life.
If there was one catchphrase that you'd say you live your life to, what would it be?
I wear my soul on my sleeve.
You can visit Simon online here!
NvS, hot new artist hailing from Canada (eh), is fighting her way up to the top. Having recently received a number of accolades, including Juno Award nomination and Best New Artist at the Canadian Radio Awards, she is now making herself known in the US. Bystorm Entertainment, who has signed her on, also has managed big names like J. Cole, Kardinal Offishall, and home of the Notorious B.I.G. The singer is currently working on her debut album, produced by Midi Mafia and Teddy Riley. The sexy singer dishes to Joonbug about her naughty alter egos, her latest single, "Between My Thighs," and what she up to now.
Angelina Lavo, singing sensation from Russia, has made her way to the United States, becoming a big hit on YouTube. On April 18th, Angelina launched her debut EP album, Risque, at The Salon at Hudson Terrace. Her EP was produced by Grammy winner, Omen and features artists such as hip hop singer Twista, songwriter Jillian Gottlieb, and producer Lu Diaz. Her launch party was sponsored by Boutique Artists, Star Vodka, Legend of Kremlin Vodka, Omen, and other music industry execs. We got the chance to check out her performance at Hudson Terrace and chat with her about her blossoming career. See what this Russian babe has to say!
Ja Rule. Remember him? The rapper who sounded like a mix between DMX and Cookie Monster? He also occasionally sang, or at least attempted to, and we ate it all up. What really put the artist in the spotlight were his top-selling singles with Jennifer Lopez ("I'm Real" remix,) as well as fellow labelmate Ashanti ("Mesmerize", "Always On Time", etc.).
Unfortunately, the former go-to recording artist for any musical collaboration in the early 2000s has run out of luck. Wednesday 06/08/11, Ja Rule was found guilty of gun possession, way back from an arrest in 2007, and was sentenced to two years in prison. He will initially be placed in a city jail as of now and will soon be transferred to a state prison.
If you are looking for an amazing live show, look no further. Dallas’ own Hunter Hendrickson, the 19-year-old guitar sensation has been honing his craft for years, and it shows! Born in Dallas, and playing guitar since his early teens, Hendrickson is certainly on his way to becoming a true homegrown rock and roll staple. For several years, he has been drawing crowds, and earned the respect of his fellow local musicians, not only with skillful guitar playing, but showcasing his original singer/songwriter chops as well.
His live performance is nothing short of jaw dropping. With certain riffs reminiscent of Cream, to masterful solos that he makes completely his own. He combines rock and blues, with modern day grooves that sets him apart from the masses. He is truly a unique talent. Hunter's band performs as a a trio featuring Jerry Saracini on drums and Dave DeShazo on bass.
Some might doubt about it, but this is a male singer. I don’t know what’s happening in Philippines, but they have pretty strange folks there.
Do you remember this scary guy who had a horse voice ? It was on Philippine Idol too ! He actually looks a bit like Pete Burns before his twentieth surgery.
And now we has this new guy who has found his female side, trying to sing like Beyoncé.